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A top U.S. diplomat this week tried to convince Bolivia’s anti-American president that the Bush administration wants to improve bilateral relations, but the Bolivian leader produced what he cited as evidence that the United States is conspiring against him.

“We agreed that the only conspiracy that’s going to exist in our bilateral relations is one against poverty, inequality and social exclusion,” Thomas Shannon, assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs, said after meeting with President Evo Morales, according to the state-run news service, the Bolivian Information Agency.

However, the agency also reported that Mr. Morales produced what he called evidence of a U.S. plot against him. Washington recalled Ambassador Philip Goldberg last month after rioters attacked the U.S. Embassy.

Call Embassy Row at 202/636-3297, fax 202/832-7278 or e-mail