Tuesday, February 20, 2024

Ecuador: Oh what a tangled web?


On the heels of the story about the sacked Ecuadorian office cleaner comes this – an inverted Aladdin tale, not new lamps for old but old military equipment for new – and war declared on bananas by the Russians in retaliation. What sort of farce would Tom Sharpe of made of it?

Between 2012 and 2019 Julian Assange, Wikileaks founder, took refuge in the London Ecuadorian embassy fearing arrest and extradition to the USA.

As history shows, that ended in tears and may still result in his being sent to America.

'Free Assange' SOYMB 30 December 2020


‘Ecuador will not supply Ukraine with outdated Russian military equipment, Foreign Minister Gabriela Sommerfeld has said, walking back her government’s previous plans.

Speaking to a group of lawmakers Sommerfeld stressed that Ecuador has been pushing for a “peaceful resolution” of the conflict between Russia and Ukraine that would be based on international law.

“Ecuador will not send any war material to a country that is involved in an international armed conflict,” Sommerfeld said.

In December, Ecuadorian President Daniel Noboa announced Quito's intention to deliver aging Soviet-era equipment to Ukraine in exchange for modern equipment from the US worth $200 million. Sommerfeld argue at the time that the gear in question was “not operational” and that it would be “not illegal” for Quito to dispose of it any way the country sees fit.

The Soviet-made gear in Ecuador’s stocks reportedly includes Mi-17 helicopters and Osa anti-air systems.

Moscow had slammed the plan, saying that it would be a violation of contracts to transfer military equipment to a third party without Russia’s consent. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told Ecuadorian media that Quito had made “a rash decision” under outside pressure.

Shortly after the planned arms transfer was announced, Russia restricted imports of bananas from Ecuador, citing health violations. The Russian food safety watchdog Rosselkhoznadzor has lifted the partial ban saying that five Ecuadorian companies were again allowed to ship bananas into the country.’

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