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Cover image: The Cochabamba, Bolivia temple via

Daniel Woodruff, a spokesman for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, released this statement on Friday concerning the full-time missionaries currently serving in Bolivia:

The Church is in the process of transferring 63 missionaries from the Bolivia Cochabamba Mission. This is due to growing political unrest as well as the U.S. government’s recent decision to pull non-emergency workers from that country. The missionaries — who are all from North America — are being temporarily reassigned to other missions. A few who are nearing the end of their missions will return home. At this point, in coordination with security professionals, all other missionaries throughout Bolivia are remaining where they are and will continue with limited missionary work in those areas where it is safe to do so. The safety of our missionaries is our highest priority, and we will continue to carefully monitor developments in Bolivia and make further adjustments and decisions as circumstances require. We pray for the people in Bolivia as they navigate this difficult time in their country.

Church membership in Bolivia is at more than 250 congregations made up of over 200,000 members. The country takes in five missions and has one temple in Cochabamba. That temple was dedicated in April 2000 by President Gordon B. Hinckley.