"The right to the sea of Bolivia is inalienable and imprescriptible," said President Luis Arce, who led a parade with other government and military authorities to honor the martyr Eduardo Abaroa.
On March 17, 1978, Bolivia broke diplomatic relations with Chile due to the failure of negotiations seeking a solution to the sovereignty over the maritime territory lost at the Battle of Calama. In 2013, Bolivia urged Chile to negotiate this matter before the International Court of Justice (ICJ), but former President Sebastian Piñera refused to do that.
Although the ICJ ruled in 2018 that the Chilean state does not have the legal obligation to negotiate on this matter, Bolivians hope that Chilean President Gabriel Boric prompts diplomatic thaw with their country given his ideological closeness to the Arce administration.
Today In History | February 14, 1879 | #Bolivia ����
The Armed Forces of Chile, backed by the British, occupied Bolivia's port city of Antofagasta. The occupation led to the War of the Pacific, which resulted in Bolivia permanently losing Antofagasta and all of its Pacific Coast. pic.twitter.com/UtypWG1PdB
"Bolivia and Chile have much to contribute to Latin American integration and the construction of a multipolar world, in which there is no single hegemonic nation," Boric stated. However, he clarified that his country does not negotiate its sovereignty.
Arce condemned that the Chilean economy has been strengthened at the expense of the appropriation of the coastline’s natural resources and that Bolivia’s international trade development is made difficult by the impediment of maritime commerce.
"The unjust cloistering has subjected our country to a high cost of transportation to reach overseas markets," he explained, recalling that Bolivia loses the possibility of growing one percent of its gross domestic product annually due to this situation.
139 years ago Chile, supported by Britain, invaded Bolivia's coastal region leaving the country landlocked.