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Diplomatic tension between Ecuador and Argentina for asylum to a former Ecuadorian minister sentenced for corruption

2022-12-13T23:58:57.948Z


Argentina granted asylum to the former Minister of Transport and Public Works of Ecuador, María de los Ángeles Duarte, sentenced for corruption in 2020.


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(CNN Spanish) --

There is diplomatic tension between Ecuador and Argentina after the government of Alberto Fernández granted asylum to María de los Ángeles Duarte, former Minister of Transportation and Public Works of Ecuador sentenced for corruption in April 2020. Duarte has pleaded not guilty and has denied the charges against him.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Human Mobility of Ecuador reported on Tuesday that it had summoned its ambassador to Argentina, Gabriel Marcelo Fucks, to "ask him for explanations" about an alleged "ultimatum" that the Argentine government would have given Ecuador to issue a response to the Argentina's decision to grant asylum to former Minister Duarte.

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"Ecuador rejects any attempt to put terms or conditions on an issue that requires a meticulous legal analysis," said a statement from the Ecuadorian Foreign Ministry.

CNN is trying to find out if there is an "ultimatum" from the Argentine diplomatic service to Ecuador, as indicated in the statement from the Ecuadorian Foreign Ministry.

The Argentine diplomatic note that informed Ecuador of the granting of asylum to Duarte was sent on December 1, as confirmed by the Foreign Ministry to CNN.

The Ecuadorian Ministry of Foreign Affairs reiterated that it continues to analyze from the outset the diplomatic note sent by Argentina on the situation of former minister María de los Ángeles Duarte.

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"It (the government) will adopt a decision within the framework of international law, the conventions applicable to the matter and Ecuadorian legislation, which will make it known to the Argentine Republic and to public opinion at the appropriate time," the statement describes.

In April 2020, the Ecuadorian National Court of Justice sentenced former minister María de los Ángeles Duarte to eight years in prison for the crime of bribery in the Bribes 2012-2016 case related to the plot of Odebrecht and other companies.

In that same judicial process, former president Rafael Correa, former vice president Jorge Glas and more than ten former correísmo officials were sentenced.

The sentence was ratified in July 2020.

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In August of that same year, former Minister Duarte failed to comply with two measures ordered in the judicial process.

On the one hand, the periodic presentation before the courts and, on the other, the electronic monitoring device was withdrawn.

Duarte immediately took refuge in the Argentine embassy in Quito and since then he has not left that diplomatic delegation that granted him the status of "guest for humanitarian reasons", as indicated at the time by the Ecuadorian government according to information sent by the charge d'affaires of Argentina in Quito.

The international defense team of former minister María de los Ángeles Duarte sent a statement to CNN stating that Duarte is a victim of political persecution and that she has been detained for more than two years with her underage son at the Argentine embassy. in Quito "unfairly".

"If Ecuador wants to respect its international obligations, it must grant a safe-conduct to this mother and her son," said the statement from Duarte's defense.

According to the Ecuadorian Attorney General's Office, between 2012 and 2016, the government of Rafael Correa set up a criminal corruption structure to receive improper contributions to the Alianza País political movement from Odebrecht and other companies in exchange for the award of million-dollar contracts. .

Odebrecht company officials were not prosecuted in this case, which represented constant claims by former President Correa to the judicial process.

Political asylumCorruptionDiplomacy

Source: cnnespanol

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