Brazil fires Foreign Minister

August 27, 2013
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Foreign Minister Antonio Patriota Fired

Brazil has made international headlines in recent weeks because of the role reporter David Miranda played in the Edward Snowden NSA leak. However, a new event may be taking it off the front page.

According to a recent article from the Wall Street Journal, Brazil’s foreign minister Antonio Patriota was fired this week after rising diplomatic tension with neighboring Bolivia. This stems from an incident where a Brazilian diplomat helped a Bolivian opposition senator facing criminal charges flee the country.

The senator, Roger Pinto, had been hiding out in Brazil’s embassy after leaking Bolivian documents that allegedly show a connection between drug traffickers and the government. He claims to have received death threats since doing so. Pinto received asylum in June but Bolivian officials did not grant him permission to leave the country.

Word out of Patriota’s camp is that the foreign minister had no knowledge of the plan to extract Pinto and issued a statement that said his department would be investigating the incident. Bolivian officials have called Pinto a fugitive and have said they will seek extradition.

“The controversy illustrates Brazil’s tricky diplomatic role as the economic might of South America’s largest country has grown,” the article reads. “[Bolivian President Evo]. Morales is an ally of Brazil’s leftist government, and Brazil has sought to stay out of Bolivian politics.”

This move should help soothe the feelings between the two countries but it will be important to see how these two countries are able to interact while a solution is worked out.

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