Emergency Summit Being Held Over Bolivian President's 'Unjustifiable' Treatment
As if the Snowden saga hadn't already caused enough almost-international-incidents, twelve South American countries are holding a summit today in Bolivia to discuss the "unfriendly and unjustifiable" treatment of Bolivian President Evo Morales, whose plane was rerouted and searched on Wednesday because of suspicions that the NSA leaker was on board.
The Union of South American Nations, UNASUR—which includes Ecuador, Venezuela, Argentina and Uruguay—made a joint statement after Morales landed on Wednesday, condemning the President's treatment and calling an emergency meeting of UNASUR members. It has it also said it will summon French, Italian and Portuguese government officials in order to demand an explanation.
On Wednesday, Morales' plane was reportedly denied airspace in Portugal, France and Italy, and was forced to land in Vienna—where the disgruntled Bolivian President spent the night—because of reports that Edward Snowden may have been on the flight.
Argentinian President Cristina Fernández called the incident "humiliating," saying it had “vestiges of a colonialism that we thought was completely overcome.”
Bolivia also filed a complaint to the United Nations yesterday, claiming that the rerouting was as good as kidnapping the president.
The incident is being viewed as an example of U.S. aggression, although the White House has declined to say whether it had anything to do with the plane’s diversion.
France, however, have since apologized for not allowing Morales into their airspace, blaming contradictory data.
“There was conflicting information about the passengers who were on board,” said French President François Hollande. “When I knew it was the plane of the Bolivian president, I immediately gave permission for it to fly.”
Will the Snow(den)-storm ever settle?