Press Release


OAS Permanent Council Adopts Resolution that Condemns Incident in Europe involving the Plane of the President of Bolivia

  July 9, 2013

The Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS) today adopted a resolution expressing the solidarity of its member states with the President of Bolivia regarding the incident concerning his official aircraft which took place on July 2, condemning actions against the inviolability of Heads of State and urging the European countries involved to provide explanations and apologies.

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 violate the basic rules and principles of international law such as the inviolability of Heads of State," and "to firmly call on the Governments of France, Portugal, Italy and Spain to provide the necessary explanations of the events that took place with the President of the Plurinational State of Bolivia, Evo Morales Ayma, as well as apologies as appropriate."

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 involving the parties, in accordance with the rules of international law and the mechanisms for peaceful settlement of disputes." The text includes footnotes from the United States and Canada.

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, said the leader of the hemispheric institution, "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."

The Chair of the Permanent Council and Permanent Representative of Paraguay to the OAS, Martin Sannemann, expressed on behalf of the Council condolences to Canada over the railroad accident of July 6 in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, and to the United States over the deaths of 19 firefighters in Arizona. Also, the Chair of the Council congratulated Argentina on the occasion of its independence day on July 9.

A gallery of photos of the event is available here.

The video of the event is available here.

For more information, please visit the OAS Website at www.oas.org

Reference: E-267/13