Brazil: Dilma fires foreign minister

Brazil’s Foreign Minister is out of a job, a Bolivian senator has asylum, and the Bolivian government is displeased (emphasis added):
Brazil Fires Its Foreign Minister
Antonio Patriota Lost His Job on Monday Amid Rising Diplomatic Tension with Neighboring Bolivia.

Brazil’s foreign minister, Antonio Patriota, was fired on Monday amid rising diplomatic tension with neighboring Bolivia after a Brazilian diplomat helped a Bolivian opposition senator who faced criminal charges flee the country over the weekend.

The senator, Roger Pinto, took refuge in Brazil’s embassy in La Paz last year, saying he received death threats after making public leaked Bolivian documents allegedly showing collusion between government officials and drug traffickers. Spokespeople for Mr. Morales have denied the allegations. Brazil granted Mr. Pinto asylum in June 2012, but Bolivia didn’t provide permission for Mr. Pinto to leave Bolivia.

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff removed Mr. Patriota in part because she only learned of Mr. Pinto’s extraction after he was already in Brazil, a person familiar with the decision said. Mr. Patriota has been offered a post at Brazil’s U.N. mission, according to a statement from Ms. Rousseff.

Forensic evidence conclusively proves that a majority of the cocaine consumed in Brazil comes from Bolivia (60%).


An additional point of analysis, as several people including Rio Gringa and Paulo Sotero have noted, is that Patriota was never particularly close to Dilma. He was one of the few remaining holdovers from Lula, gradually phased out during Dilma’s term. So this issue could also just be an excuse for a long desired cabinet shuffle by the president.

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2 Responses to “Brazil: Dilma fires foreign minister”

  1. Phineas Fahrquar Says:

    Not that I’m a Dilma fan, but there’s no way she could tolerate that kind of insubordination from Patriota. It almost looks like he was setting up a crisis to get himself fired. Making himself a “hero” for a future run for office?

  2. Fausta Says:

    That’s a possibility, Phineas, particularly considering how Lula apparently is on the upswing . And notice how she didn’t throw Patriota out on the street – she sent him to a plummy job at the UN.