- Title: BOLIVIA: President Morales threatens closure of U.S. embassy over Snowden row
- Date: 5th July 2013
- Summary: LA PAZ, BOLIVIA (JULY 05, 2013) (REUTERS) GENERAL VIEW OF MAN READING HEADLINES AT NEWSPAPER KIOSK
- Embargoed: 20th July 2013 13:00
- Location: Bolivia, Plurinational State Of
- Country: Bolivia
- Reuters ID: LVA5YC091DX56YM7VMBIJH9W4KQD
- Aspect Ratio:
- Story Text: Bolivian President Evo Morales warns U.S. he may close embassy in La Paz in row over plane drama.
Latin American leftist leaders rallied around Bolivian President Evo Morales on Thursday (July 4) to condemn the refusal of four European countries to fly over their airspace on suspicions that U.S. spy agency contractor Edward
Snowden was aboard.
At a summit in Cochabamba, Bolivia five regional leaders joined Morales in denouncing his "virtual kidnapping" and the U.S. pressure they believe spurred it behind the scenes.
At a rally before the summit, Morales said regional unity was needed "to defeat North American imperialism" and raised the possibility of closing the U.S. embassy in La Paz.
"My hand would not shake if it came to closing the embassy," he said. "Without the United States we are better off
politically and democratically."
The U.S. embassy remains open in Bolivia although the two countries have not had full diplomatic relations in years.
At the end of the summit - which included the leaders of Argentina, Uruguay, Ecuador, Surinam and Venezuela - a statement was issued demanding answers from France, Portugal, Italy and Spain. The United States was not mentioned in the statement.
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