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Edward Snowden is apparently still in Moscow, but Evo Morales's plane leaving Moscow was denied passage over France, Portugal, and apparently Italy, on suspicion that it contained Snowden. (This is how European countries show their gratitude for leaks showing the extent of USG spying on it?) It was forced to land in Vienna, where I'm still not clear on whether it was searched.
President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner posted an outraged, and riveting, series of tweets on the subject a few hours ago; here they are, followed by my poor English translation. Keep in mind that this was being broadcast in real time to her two million followers on Twitter, 5% of the country's population.
Volví de la Rosada. Olivos, 21:46 hs. Me avisan, Presidente Correa al teléfono. "Rafael?. Pasámelo".
"Hola Rafa, cómo estás?". Me contesta entre enojado y angustiado. "No sabés que está pasando?"
"No, que pasa?". Yo en babia. Raro, porque siempre estoy atenta… y vigilante. Pero recién había finalizado una reunión.
"Cristina. Lo han detenido a Evo con su avión, y no lo dejan salir de Europa".
"Qué? Evo? Evo Morales detenido?" Inmediatamente me viene a la mente su última fotografía, en Rusia…
Junto a Putín, Nicolás Maduro y otros Jefes de Estado. "Pero que pasó Rafael?"
"Varios países le revocaron el permiso de vuelo y está en Viena", me contesta.
Definitivamente están todos locos. Jefe de Estado y su avión tiene inmunidad total. No puede ser este grado de impunidad.
Rafael me dice que va a llamar urgente a Ollanta Humala para reunión urgente UNASUR.
Llamo a Evo. Del otro lado de la línea, su voz me responde tranquila: "Hola compañera, como está?". El me pregunta a mí como estoy!
Me lleva miles de años de civilización de ventaja. Me cuenta la situación. "Estoy aquí, en un saloncito en el aeropuerto…"
"Y no voy a permitir que revisen mi avión. No soy un ladrón". Simplemente perfecto. Fuerza Evo.
CFK: "Dejáme que llame a Cancillería. Quiero ver jurisdicción, Tratado y Tribunal al cual recurrir. Te vuelvo a llamar". "Gracias compañera"
"Hola, Susana". No querido, Susana Ruiz Cerruti. Nuestra experta en legales internacionales de Cancillería...
Me confirma inmunidad absoluta por derecho consuetudinario, receptado por Convención de 2004 y Tribunal de La Haya.
Si Austria no lo deja salir o quiere revisar su avión, puede presentarse ante la Corte Internacional de La Haya y pedir…
Siiii!, UNA MEDIDA CAUTELAR. No se si ponerme a reír o llorar. Te dás cuenta para que son las medidas cautelares.
Bueno, sino le podemos mandar algún juez de acá. Madre de Dios! Qué mundo!
Lo llamo a Evo nuevamente. Su Ministro de Defensa toma nota. En Austria son las 3AM. Van a intentar comunicarse con las autoridades.
Hablo con Pepe (Mujica). Está indignado. Tiene razón. Es todo muy humillante. Me vuelve a hablar Rafa.
Me avisa que Ollanta va a convocar a reunión de UNASUR. Son las 00:25 AM. Mañana va a ser un día largo y difícil. Calma. No van a poder.
I got back from the Casa Rosada [the seat of the executive branch]. Olivos [where the presidential residence is located], 9:46 PM. "President Correa [of Ecuador] on the line." "Rafael? I'll take the call."
"Hi Rafa, what's up?" He answers me with a mix of anger and anguish. "Don't you know what's going on?"
"No, what's going on?" I'm struck speechless. Strange, since I'm always alert... and careful. But I'd just gotten out of a meeting.
"Cristina. Evo's been detained in his plane. They're not letting him leave Europe."
"What? Evo? Evo Morales [President of Bolivia] detained?" Immediately his latest photo, in Russia, pops into my head...
together with Putin, Nicolás Maduro and other Heads of State. "But what happened, Rafael?"
"Several countries revoked his permission to fly over, and he's in Vienna," he answers.
They've definitely gone crazy. Head of State, and his plane has total immunity. This level of impunity [a word which here evokes the memory of the last dictatorship, which exterminated some ten to thirty thousand of its political opponents, a crime that wasn't successfully prosecuted until Sra. Fernandez and her late husband did so in their presidencies] cannot be.
Rafael tells me he's going to call Ollanta Humala [president of Perú] urgently for an urgent meeting of UNASUR.
I call Evo. From the other end of the line, his voice answers me calmly, "Hey buddy, how's it going?" He's asking me how I am!
He has the advantage of thousands of years of civilization over me. [Not sure I understood that sentence correctly.] He explains the situation to me. "So here I am, in a little room in the airport…"
"and I'm not going to let them search my plane. I'm not a thief." Simply perfect. Stay strong, Evo.
CFK [Cristina]: "Let me call the State Department. I want to check out which jurisdiction, Treaty and Court to use. I'll call you back." "Thanks, buddy."
"Hello, Susana." No, darling, Susana Ruiz Cerruti. [Cristina is clarifying to the reader that she's not referring to the popular TV show host Susana Gimenez.]) Our expert in international legal matters in the State Department.
She confirms absolute immunity by legal tradition, received [?] by the 2004 Convention and the Tribunal of The Hague.
If Austria doesn't let him go or wants to search his plane, we can present the case before the International Court of The Hague and request…
Yesss! A PREVENTATIVE INJUNCTION. I don't know whether to start laughing or crying. [This is a reference to the President's years-long struggle against preventative injunctions put in place by Argentine courts against her efforts to break up the big Argentine media trusts that are her strongest local political enemies.] You see what preventative injunctions are for.
And, well, if not, we can send him some judge from here. Mother of God! What a world!
I call Evo back. His Minister of Defense takes note. In Austria it's 3 AM. They're going to try to call the authorities.
I speak with Pepe (Mujica) [President of Uruguay, whose legal given name is José]. He's outraged. He's right. It's all very humiliating. Rafa calls me back.
He tells me Ollanta will call a meeting of UNASUR. It's 12:25 AM. Tomorrow will be a long, hard day. Don't worry. This will not stand.
So Cristina's framing this as a diplomatic humiliation, not just for Bolivia, but for Argentina, Uruguay, Perú, Ecuador, and probably all of South America, which is probably right on the money; and she's giving credit to Rafa, and taking some herself, for not taking it lying down. I think the UNASUR meeting has a pretty good chance of resulting in Edward Snowden getting granted political asylum.
I'm very, very proud of Argentina right now. This, not SIBIOS, is the kind of thing I was hoping for when I chose Argentina.
It may be a coincidence, but I'm hearing a lot of jets overhead here in downtown Buenos Aires in the wee hours of the morning, which I'm not used to. Could be related to UNASUR, but wind direction is more likely.