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Bolivian Leader Welcomes Dialogue with US


Bolivian President-elect Evo Morales says he welcomes dialogue with the United States and forgives the U.S. government for what he calls "so many humiliations."

Morales made the comments Wednesday while visiting South Africa ahead of his inauguration January 22. He said any dialogue that helps end discrimination and poverty is welcome.

Morales did not explain what he meant by "humiliations." But he has made no secret of his plans to end a U.S.-funded coca eradication program at work in his country. Morales campaigned on promises to encourage cultivation of the coca plant, which has traditional uses but also is used to make cocaine.

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez Tuesday said he is sure the U.S. Embassy in Bolivia has already started plotting to overthrow Morales. But an embassy spokeswoman told the Associated Press that the idea is ridiculous.

Some information for this report provided by AP and Reuters.

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