On the eve of U.S. President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration, Bolivian President Evo Morales said he hopes to have respectful diplomatic relations with the United States under its new leader.
"We want diplomatic relations of respect, not of subjugation, blackmail or conditioning," Morales told the newspaper Cambio.
Morales said it was important to foster a culture of dialogue, and that the principles of solidarity and complementarity are the basis for developing a diplomatic relationship with any country in the world.
The Bolivian president asserted that his nation has the right to have agreements with whomever they choose and warned that the Andean nation will not accept blackmail or conditioning from the United States or another country.
The socialist and anti-imperialist Morales has often critiqued U.S. foreign policy, particularly in Latin America where the United States has a well-documented history of intervention.
Bolivia was targeted as part of the so-called Plan Condor, where intelligence services of U.S.-supported South American military regimes coordinated to suppress opposition movements and kill leftist leaders.
In July 2013, Morales’ presidential plane was forced to make a sudden stop in Vienna as it was returning from Moscow, after Spain, France, Portugal and Italy denied access to their airspace. In Vienna, officials inquired whether the plane was carrying Edward Snowden.
Morales accused Washington of being behind the incident and of endangering his life.
The Issue Is Not Trump, It's Us
The former coca farmer has also asserted that U.S. institutions helped foment the 2008 violence in the country's eastern departments which resulted in at least 30 deaths as opposition groups called for the Bolivia to be split.
Although Trump himself has said little about his approach to the Latin American region, the incoming president pledged that he would take a hard stance against Venezuela and Cuba. His choice for Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, had a turbulent relationship with Venezuela during his time as an executive with oil-giant Exxon.