Tensions Rise Between Bolivia and Chile

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Bolivia’s President Evo Morales has demanded the release of three soldiers being held in Chile.

The soldiers were charged with illegally entering Chilean territory and carrying illegal firearms. Bolivia insists the soldiers were in pursuit of car smugglers and had informed the Chilean authorities.

Bolivia stated that they will appeal to an international court if Chile did not release the soldiers. “If this is not resolved, in the next few days a lawsuit will definitely be designed and presented before an international court,” Bolivian Deputy Foreign Minister Juan Carlos Alurralde stated.

Mr. Morales accused Chile of making “political decisions” rather than ones based on law.

Bolivia and Chile ended formal diplomatic relations in 1978 and have only consular relations today. Bolivia became a landlocked nation after losing widespread territory to Chile following the 19th century War of the Pacific. Consequently, huge bitterness remains between the two states.

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