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Tag Archives: Ecuador

‘Infiltrated from all sides’: Bug found in London’s Ecuadorian embassy


A hidden microphone has been discovered in the Ecuadorian ambassador’s office in London, said Ecuador’s Foreign Minister, Ricardo Patino. He denounced the find as yet more evidence of the loss of ethics at an international level in government relations.

“We regret to inform that we have found a hidden microphone in the London embassy,” said Patino at a press conference He added that he had received intelligence that pointed at the origin of the security breach and would reveal it later on Wednesday.

The device itself had been discovered almost three weeks ago on June 16 in the office of the Ecuadorian Ambassador to the UK, Ana Alban, in a routine security check ahead of Patino’s visit.

“I did not bring this up before because I didn’t want my visit to London to hold talks on Julian Assange to be confused with accusations over this surveillance device found in the ambassador’s office,” he told press.

The head of the Ecuadorian Foreign Ministry stated that he would have to consult with President Rafael Correa on the issue and they would require an explanation from the country responsible.

Moreover, Patino clarified that he was not insinuating this discovery had anything to do with the US spy network, revealed by whistleblower Edward Snowden.

Patino went on to voice his concerns that the Ecuadorian government was being “infiltrated from all sides.”

“This is a testament to the loss of ethics at an international level in the relations that we have with other governments,” noted Patino.

During his visit to London, Patino held negotiations with his British counterpart, William Hague, to push for the safe-conduct of WikiLeaks founder, Julian Assange, to Ecuador where he has been granted asylum. Assange has now been holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London for over a year as UK authorities threaten to arrest him if he sets foot outside the diplomatic mission.

The British government refused to grant Assange safe passage to Ecuador and reiterated their commitment to extradite the whistleblower to Sweden, where he is wanted for questioning over accusations of sexual assault.

Ecuador is also currently assessing the asylum request of former CIA employee Edward Snowden, who is held up in Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport. He is currently unable to travel as his passport is invalid.

Washington has issued an extradition order against Snowden under the espionage act and called for international cooperation in returning him to American jurisdiction.

The US threatened the Ecuadorian government with taking away a lucrative customs tax agreement if the Latin American country grants Snowden asylum.

The Ecuadorean government reacted with ire, stating that in the face of “insolence” and “threats,” Ecuador will renounce its trade benefits with the US.


Assange urges US to end “witchhunt”

Al Manar

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange on Sunday thanked his supporters from a balcony at the Ecuadorian embassy in London and called on the United States to stop “witchhunt” against the organization and other whistleblowers.

The 41-year-old Australian received political asylum from Ecuador on Thursday, but was denied safe passage out of Britain. The British police have been stationed outside the Ecuadorian embassy in central London since Assange took refuge two months ago, in a bid to arrest him if he walked out of the embassy.

In his first public appearance since he was granted asylum by Ecuador, Assange thanked his supporters outside the embassy and around the world, and expressed gratitude to Ecuador and other South American countries, as well as to his staff in WikiLeaks and his family.

Assange asked President Barack Obama to “do the right thing.”

“The United States must renounce its witchhunt against WikiLeaks,” he said.

The WikiLeaks founder and former hacker has embarrassed several governments, including the United States authorities, by publishing millions of secret diplomatic cables on the Internet.

He was charged with rape and sexual assault by Sweden in 2010, which he denied, and was arrested in Britain later that year.

Ecuador Follows LA Countries in Recognizing Palestinian State

Al Manar

25/12/2010 Ecuador formally recognized on Friday Palestine as an independent state, following other Latin American countries earlier this month.

President Rafael Correa follows other South American countries and signs “Ecuadoran government’s official recognition of Palestine as free, independent state with 1967 borders,” AFP news agency reported.
Ecuador’s foreign ministry issued a statement explaining that the country’s decision “vindicates the valid and legitimate desire of the Palestinian people for a free and independent state.”

On Thursday, Uruguay announced that it had a plan to in recognize a Palestinian state, and that it would formally do so in January 2011.

Ecuador now joins the list of South American countries that have recognized a fully sovereign Palestinian state on the 1967 borders. In early December, Argentina, Cuba, Brazil, Venezuela and Bolivia declared recognition of Palestine as a “free and independent state.”

Over 130 countries have officially recognized Palestine as a state based on the 1967 borders, the boundaries that existed before Israel captured East al-Quds (Jerusalem), the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip.