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Bolivian Foreign Minister Discusses the BRICS Alternative to NATO with Russia, China

April 30, 2024 (EIRNS)—Bolivia’s Foreign Minister Celinda Sosa Lunda has just finished a two-day visit to Moscow, followed by a three-day stop in Beijing. Common subjects were discussed in depth in her meetings with Foreign Ministers Sergey Lavrov and Wang Yi. How to deepen bilateral relations through cooperation on economic development was a major theme, with Russia and China exploring how they each can help Bolivia build its infrastructure and industrialize, which the Bolivian government is fiercely intent on doing.

The related subject of how to build the international system based on sovereignty, equality, and non-interference needed for peaceful development, was likewise high on the agendas of these discussions. All three see the world being built around the BRICS as the hope for stopping the U.S.-led NATO’s drive for world hegemony.

Wang told Sosa Lunda that since “China and Bolivia share the same goals of opposing hegemony and bullying by powerful powers and upholding fairness and justice…. The two nations should jointly defend the purposes and principles of the United Nations Charter, and firmly safeguard the common interests of Global South countries,” South China Morning Post reported, citing a Chinese Foreign Ministry statement, sentiments expressed equally in the Bolivian Foreign Ministry’s report.

Sosa Lunda reiterated to both Foreign Ministers her government’s strong interest in joining the BRICS. (Its formal application to become a member was submitted in 2023). Russia, as chair of the BRICS this year, supports Bolivia’s membership bid, Lavrov stated in his joint press conference with Sosa Lunda after their talks.

At that press conference, the danger of NATO expansion into South America was raised. A journalist asked Sosa Lunda to respond to Argentine President Javier Milei’s order that security be beefed up along Argentina’s border with Bolivia, at the same time that he requested Argentina be accepted as a NATO global partner. Referencing the well-known intentions of the U.S. to set up military bases in the region, Sosa Lunda replied: “Of course, our countries do not benefit from this, including NATO [military bases]. This organization does not produce or strive for peace; on the contrary, it provokes insecurity. Our intentions are to strive for peace, and we would like to eliminate conflicts; we do not want to participate in them.”

“We understand our Bolivian friends’ sentiment towards the North Atlantic alliance very well,” Lavrov added. Moving into the Asia-Pacific Region is no longer enough for NATO; “they want to go to Latin America. I think that most countries of the Global Majority and the Global South are aware of the dangers it entails. They realize that NATO countries will pump assets out of them and will use them for their own purposes. Probably, those who prefer to deal with their domestic affairs and provide education for their citizens instead of playing this geopolitical game (which the alliance considers a zero-sum game), do the right thing.”