08:07 04 July 2013
Bolivia has accused various European countries of an “act of aggression” after they refused its presidential jet into their airspace on fear that whistle-blower Edward Snowden was on board. Earlier, President Evo Morales suggested that his government would consider granting asylum to the American. The plane was rerouted to Austria.
Both officials from Bolivia and Austria confirmed that the whistle blower was not on board and that the plane was taking Morales back home after attending a summit in Russia.
Bolivia’s UN envoy Sacha Llorenti said that he would file a complaint against European countries that blocked the plane from flying over their territory. These include Spain, Portugal, France, and Italy.
"The decisions of these countries violated international law. We are already making procedures to denounce this to the UN secretary general.”
"We have no doubt that it was an order from the White House... For no reason whatsoever should a diplomatic plane with a president [inside] be diverted from its route and forced to land in another country."
Meanwhile, France and Spain denied refusing the plane permission to fly over their territory. Portugal, on the other hand, said it granted permission for the plane to pass through its airspace but denied the plane’s request to refuel in Lisbon due to technical reasons.
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