US Military Behind Honduras Coup - Bolivia's Morales

Bolivian leader Evo Morales has accused the U.S. military of being behind the coup in Honduras, saying the "imperial structure remains in force," despite President Barack Obama's inauguration.

"I have first-hand information that the empire, through the U.S. Southern Command, made the coup d'etat in Honduras," President Morales said during a visit to the Uruguayan capital Montevideo.

The coup that saw Honduran President Manuel Zelaya swept up by the military on June 28 in his pajamas and expelled from the country "is an aggression, a provocation of the empire," he added.

"Maybe I do not know Obama, but the imperial structure remains in force."

Ties between the U.S. and Bolivia have been tense since leftist Morales came to power in 2006.

Morales has accused Washington of conspiring with his opponents to incite violence in Bolivia, and of even having a hand in an assassination plot against him.

Morales and Uruguayan President Tabare Vazquez asserted in a joint statement their "support for democratic institutions in Honduras, the legitimate government of President Jose Manuel Zelaya Rosales."

The pair added that they "do not recognize any other authority that emerged from violating the constitutional order in that country."

Cooperation with the U.S., he added, "always involves privatizing natural resources, implementing a neo-liberal model. Even International Monetary Fund credits are set to implement the neo-liberal model."

Morales lamented that Washington has cut off La Paz's tariff exemptions, with the U.S. citing poor counter-narcotics cooperation.

[Source: Agence France-Presse, Montevideo, 23Jul09]

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