Morales returns envoys to Europe after apologies

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Associated Press

Posted on July 24, 2013 at 11:34 AM

Updated Wednesday, Jul 24 at 2:03 PM

LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Bolivian President Evo Morales says he's returning his ambassadors to Spain, France, Italy and Portugal after the European nations apologized for refusing to let his plane fly over amid apparent suspicions U.S. leaker Edward Snowden was aboard.

Morales told reporters Wednesday he's not fully satisfied with the apologies but maintaining respectful relations is important.

Bolivia says the countries forced Morales to make an unscheduled 14-hour stop on July 2 in Vienna where he eventually allowed Austrian border police to search it.

Morales says the countries were acting at Washington's behest.

He was returning home from Moscow, where Snowden has been holed at Sheremetyevo airport after his l disclosures about the U.S. National Security Agency's spying on its citizens and other nations.

Bolivia and Washington have lacked ambassadors since 2008.

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