Bolivian president Evo Morales has accused the United States and the United Nations of conspiring to defame his government in two drug reports. He said criticism over Bolivia's handling of the war on drugs were part of a strategy to falsely link his government to drug trafficking.

Mr Morales said the US was trying to force him to invite American anti-narcotics agents back into Bolivia. The US Drug Enforcement Administration agents were expelled in 2008. At the time, President Morales accused them of aiding his opponents.

Conspiracy theory

Criticism of the president's drug strategy has mounted since the arrest two weeks ago of Gen Rene Sanabria, the former head of the Bolivian anti-narcotics police, on charges of drug trafficking.

President Morales told reporters that if Gen Sanabria was found to have links with drug traffickers "that's his problem and he'll have to defend himself in a court of law".

He said recent reports by the US State Department and a UN drugs watchdog were part of a larger American strategy to discredit the Bolivian government.

"They arrest Gen Sanabria and two days later the International Narcotics Control Board says we've not done enough to reduce coca cultivation, and a few days after that, the US State Department says we've failed in the war against drug trafficking, it makes me think this is part of a US strategy to portray us as a narco-government," he said.

The report by the State Department said Bolivia, along with Burma and Venezuela, had "failed demonstrably" last year to fight the drugs trade.

The International Narcotics Control Board accused Bolivia of money-laundering activities which it linked "primarily to narcotics trafficking, corruption, tax evasion, and smuggling and trafficking of persons."

Article retrieved from BBC News Latin America & Caribbean.