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Iranian president meets with Bolivia’s Morales reinforce cooperation deals

Wednesday, June 20th 2012 - 06:08 UTC
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Ahmadinejad, “two sovereign and independent countries with very old civilizations” Ahmadinejad, “two sovereign and independent countries with very old civilizations”

Iran's President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad stopped in Bolivia Tuesday en route to the Rio+20 summit in Brazil, to court support from another Latin American nation which has tense ties with the United States.

Ahmadinejad had a warm welcome at the airport high in the Andes from his Bolivian counterpart President Evo Morales. Then they headed to the Palacio Quemado presidential palace to hold meetings on cooperation deals.

Bilateral cooperation investment in recent years has topped one billion dollars with projects in farming, mining, oil and gas, and health care.

Iran also is considering mining lithium at Bolivia's Salar de Uyuni, the world's biggest deposit of the mineral used in laptop and electric car batteries.

Three indigenous people's groups close to the government, Morales is Bolivia's first democratically elected indigenous president, issued a statement of support for Ahmadinejad and his solidarity with Bolivia.

Iran has courted warm ties with Latin leftists who are critical of the US role in international relations. Topping the list is Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, as well as Morales and Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega.

“The long age of colonial exploitation is the result of the attitude and actions of greedy governments and states that want to stop others from developing, and from exercising freedom,” Ahmadinejad said in a speech alongside Morales.

“We are two sovereign and independent countries with very old civilizations. Today we've decided to stand on our own feet. Today we've decided to provide our people with freedom, justice, and rights. We want to reach heights of development and build our countries with our own natural and human resources,” he added.

The visit came as Iran and world powers failed to narrow differences over the Iran's nuclear program after talks in Moscow held amid threats of a crippling oil embargo or even military action against Tehran.

The high-level environmental meeting entitled the Rio+20 Summit, also known as the Earth Summit, which is formally called the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, will be held from June 20 to 22 at the Riocentro Convention Centre in Rio de Janeiro.

After the summit, Ahmadinejad will then travel to Venezuela on the last leg of his South American tour to meet Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

Iranian Foreign Minister Ali Akbar Salehi, Vice President for Executive Affairs Hamid Baqaei, and Vice President for International Affairs Ali Sa'eedlou are accompanying President Ahmadinejad on the trip.

Chavez has made nine trips to Tehran over the past 13 years while Morales has visited Tehran twice, once in 2008 and again in 2010.

Ahmadinejad last visited Latin America in January and made stops in Venezuela, Nicaragua, Ecuador, and Cuba.

Top Comments

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  • briton

    great fantastic,
    another chance of a picture President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and CFK

    when does she arrive .

    Jun 20th, 2012 - 12:03 pm 0
  • Alexei

    South American politics gets so confusing. Bolivia's the one that Argentina's backing to grab a bit of Chile? Argentina's the noisy one that's covertly nuclear technology with Iran?

    Jun 20th, 2012 - 03:42 pm 0
  • Kirk Nelson

    The President of Iran said “....we've decided to provide our people with freedom, justice and rights.” Is he serious about this? He means that women in Iran can drive cars? wear what they please?
    Attend any mix-gender school? Be active sexually ? Read any kind of books? Watch any foreign pictures? and stop civilian prosecution to those against his regime?
    I do not think so.
    Therefore, Ahmadinejad false statements is part of his abilities, he is far from transparence, being his main purpose in south america to gain anti- american suporters and to get support for his country on the nuclear go ahead production.
    He is the devil himself, reason why Brasil will apprehend at his port of entry to any Iranian official that match their names with the list of individuals that were involved in the anti-jews massacre in Arentina not log ago.

    Kirk Nelson,
    New York, USA

    Jun 20th, 2012 - 09:23 pm 0
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