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OAS weighs in on incident in Europe involving aircraft carrying president of Bolivia
Published on July 11, 2013 Email To Friend    Print Version

WASHINGTON, USA -- Hard on the heels of serious concern expressed by the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), the permanent council of the Organization of American States (OAS) on Tuesday adopted a resolution concerning the incident on July 2 involving the president of Bolivia’s official aircraft, condemning actions against the inviolability of heads of state and urging the European countries involved to provide explanations and apologies.

President of Bolivia, Evo Morales
The text, adopted by consensus in a special meeting of the Council convened at the request of Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela, resolves "to condemn actions that violated basic rules and principles of international law such as the inviolability of heads of state," and "to strongly call upon the governments of France, Portugal, Italy and Spain to provide the necessary explanations and apologies about the events involving the president of… Bolivia, Evo Morales, as well as the corresponding apologies."

Moreover, the resolution reaffirms the "full validity of the principles, rules, and international customs governing diplomatic relations among states," and calls on the parties involved to "continue respectful and constructive dialogue, under the rules of international law and the mechanisms for the peaceful settlement of disputes."

The text includes footnotes from the United States and Canada.

OAS Secretary General José Miguel Insulza
During the special meeting, the secretary general of the OAS, José Miguel Insulza, said he feels "a great indignation and immense solidarity in response to the aggression suffered by a leader of Latin America and the Caribbean. What happened on July 2 cannot be qualified as a commonplace incident. It is a serious offense to a democratic president of this region."

"It is very clear that this is an event that goes beyond the explanations that have been given here," said the secretary general. "With all due respect to my European observer friends, with all the affection that we have for them, there is a serious matter here that has not been clarified."

The incident, Insulza said, "leaves a wound.”

"And the best way to heal that wound, to mend that wound, is to know what really happened, what really took place," continued the secretary general. "Where did this news come from that Mr Snowden was on the plane? Why was it believed?"

The best way to clear everything up, he added, "is through transparency."
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