CARANAVI, Bolivia?Demonstrators blocked a major road and burned down a police station in Bolivia on the eve of a major countrywide strike, in what the interior minister charged was an "armed political action" to overthrow the government.
Protesters in Caranavi, some 100 kilometers (65 miles) northeast of La Paz, said they want a fruit processing plant to be built in their region, demands the government dismissed as a mere pretext for violence.
Four police officers and a civilian have been shot and wounded in street clashes since Friday, according to an official report, while Caranavi residents and television stations say two protesters were killed by gunfire during the unrest.
"We're not talking about an organization making just claims, we're talking about armed political action" directed against the government, Interior Minister Sacha Llorenti said in La Paz.
Llorenti's words echo Vice President Alvaro Garcia, who on Friday accused the United States of fomenting a general strike planned for Monday by the country's biggest union, amid mounting labor unrest challenging leftist President Evo Morales.
The United Nations' office in Bolivia Saturday said it was concerned over the level of violence in Caranavi and called on government and protesters to settle their differences "in a framework of dialogue and tolerance."