Senior US diplomat visits Bolivia to discuss improved ties, resuming exchange of ambassadors
June 2, 2010 - Canadian Press

By The Associated Press (CP)

LA PAZ, Bolivia -- A senior U.S. diplomat is in Bolivia to discuss resuming ties at the ambassador level that Bolivia severed in late 2008 when it also kicked out U.S. drug agents.

Assistant Secretary of State Arturo Valenzuela met with Foreign Minister David Choquehuanca in La Paz on Tuesday. Choquehuanca says the two sides are 99 per cent done with a pact that would allow the exchange of ambassadors.

Bolivia kicked out the U.S. ambassador in September 2008, accusing him of conspiring against President Evo Morales with the opposition.

On the eve of Valenzuela's visit, Morales suggested U.S. drug aid is counterproductive. He said Bolivian judges and prosecutors who get training in the U.S. have returned and freed drug traffickers from jail.

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