Time does not appear to be healing what ails Bolivia. Its leader remains as furious as ever over this week's plane incident, and now President Evo Morales' ire has been joined by that of five of South America's leaders. The presidents of Argentina, Ecuador, Suriname, Venezuela, and Uruguay joined Morales in the Bolivian city of Cochabamba late yesterday to address the diplomatic row. Morales again placed the blame at the feet of the US, who he says pressured European countries to deny his plane entry to their airspace due to the belief that Edward Snowden was aboard. His most attention-grabbing quote, by way of the AP:
- "United we will defeat American imperialism. We met with the leaders of my party and they asked us for several measures and if necessary, we will close the embassy of the United States. We do not need the embassy of the United States."
The BBC reports that the leaders issued a statement post-meeting demanding answers from France, Portugal, Italy, and Spain. Spain today supplied a bit of info, though probably not of the sort the leaders were looking for. In a TV interview, Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo maintained that his country has "no reason to apologize," saying Morales' plane was not cut off from Spanish airspace. He also says Spain and other European countries were told Snowden was aboard the Bolivian presidential plane. The minister did not say who supplied the information. Al-Jazeera notes that France expressed its "regrets" on Wednesday.