Foreign relations of Ecuador
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politics and government of
Ecuador is a founding member of the UN and a member of many of its specialized agencies; it is also a member of the OAS. Is also a member of many regional groups, including the Rio Group, the Latin American Economic System, the Latin American Energy Organization, the Latin American Integration Association, and the Andean Pact.
Ecuador's principal foreign-policy objectives have traditionally included defense of its territory from both external aggression and internal subversion as well as support for the objectives of the UN and the OAS. Although Ecuador's foreign relations were traditionally centered on the USA, Ecuador's membership in the OPEC in the 1970s and 1980s allowed Ecuadorian leaders to exercise somewhat greater foreign policy autonomy. Ecuador's foreign policy goals under the Borja government in the late 1980s were more diversified than those of the Febres Cordero administration, which closely identified with the United States. For example, Ecuador was more active in its relations with the Third World, multilateral organizations, Western Europe, and socialist countries.
Ecuador has offered humanitarianian aid to many countries and a supporter of the United Nations and is now contributing troops in the UN mission in Haiti. Ecuador has also been an elective member of the UN Security Council.
In Antarctica, Ecuador has maintained a peaceful research station for scientific study in the British-claimed territory and is a member nation of the Antarctica Treaty.
The Presidency of Rafael Correa in the early 21st century saw a radical change in the country's foreign policy. Traditional ties with the United States grew more acrimonious and there were increased ties with the governments of Russia and Iran.
Relations by country
Australia and Ecuador both maintain diplomatic relations and Ecuador maintains an embassy in Canberra.
Formal relations started on 1980-01-02 and seven month later China set up its embassy in Ecuador. In July 1981, Ecuador set up its embassy in China. Sino-Ecuadorian relations have been advancing smoothly. The two sides maintain high-level political contacts and exchanges in trade, economic progress, science, technology, culture and education. In international affairs, the two countries understand and support each other. In September 2012, the two nations signed a Commercial and Security Agreement to allow Ecuador to sell easily seafood, cocoa and bananas in China, with the Chinese agreeing to ease tariffs on further food items. In the same period China established an $80 million line of credit for Ecuador with the EximBank to help Ecuador build a road to the re-sited Quito airport.
Ecuador's President Rafael Correa withdrew his government's ambassador in Bogotá, Colombia, and ordered troops to the country's border following a Colombian raid against leftist rebels inside Ecuador March 2, 2008. The Colombian director of national police claimed three captured computers from the deceased FARC rebel leader Raúl Reyes document "tremendously revealing" and "very grave" links between Ecuador and Colombian rebels.March 2, 2008. However, Colombia's actions were condemned across the board by all South American nations, with only the US supporting Colombia. For example, Brazil's foreign minister, Celso Amorim, condemned the Colombian incursion into Ecuador. Furthermore, he suggested that Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez recently gave the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia $300 million. Ecuador's president Rafael Correa said March 3, 2008 that a deal to release political prisoners—including former Colombian Sen. Ingrid Betancourt—was nearly complete before the March 1, 2008 Colombian raid into his country. Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez on March 5, 2008 called the announced movement of Colombian forces in Ecuador a "war crime," and joined Ecuador's president Rafael Correa in demanding international condemnation of the cross-border attack. The presidents of Colombia, Venezuela and Ecuador March 7, 2008 signed a declaration to end a crisis sparked when Colombian troops killed a rebel leader and 21 others inside Ecuadoran territory (2008 Andean diplomatic crisis).
On November 16, 2008, the Foreign Minister of Ecuador Maria Isabel Salvador met her counterpart, Pranab Mukherjee, with a close relationship in oil and defence between these geographically distant countries high on the agenda. On the oil front, the new government in Ecuador has reversed the earlier revenue-sharing arrangements with western oil companies and is now keen on striking new partnerships with state-owned ONGC Videsh of India. In the defence sector, Ecuador became the first country to sign a contract for purchasing the Indian made Dhruv helicopters of which one will be for use by its President. The Embassy here has expanded its setup with the appointment of a Military Attache and prospects appear bright for more defence exports as Ecuador has agreed to be the servicing hub in South America for Indian defence equipment.
Ecuador has maintained trade relations with Iran. In December 2008, Iran’s Supreme National Security Council Secretary Saeed Jalili visited Ecuador. Alongside president Rafael Correa he called for greater "South-South" co-operation, a term denoting greater exchange of resources, technology, and knowledge between the global South. Iranian president Ahmadinejad also attended the inauguration of President Correa in January 2007.
Relations with Malaysia covers on political, commercial, cultural and social activities. Both countries are the members of Non-Aligned Movement. Ecuador trade value with Malaysia are worth about US$15 million.
- Ecuador has an embassy in Mexico City and consulates in Monterrey and Tapachula.
- Mexico has an embassy in Quito.
Pakistan is enjoying deep rooted diplomatic, political and economic relations with other Latin American countries. Islamabad considers Ecuador significant to Pakistan’s growing demands of opening up new avenues of cooperation and investment opportunities for businessmen. Both the countries have identity of views on the issue of UN reforms and expansion of the Security Council.
The Paquisha War was a brief military clash that took place between January and February 1981 between Ecuador and Peru over the control of three watchposts. Since the 1990s, Ecuadoran foreign policy has been focused on the country's border dispute with Peru, an issue that has festered since independence. The boundary dispute led to the Cenepa War between Ecuador and Peru in early 1995; after a peace agreement brokered by the four Guarantors of the Rio Protocol (Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and the United States), the Military Observers Mission to Ecuador-Peru (MOMEP) was set up to monitor the zone. In 1998, Presidents Jamil Mahuad of Ecuador and Alberto Fujimori of Peru signed a comprehensive settlement over control of the disputed zone.
The establishment of diplomatic relations between South Korea and Ecuador started on 5 October 1962 and the number of the South Koreans living in the Ecuador in 2011 was about 1,300.
- Ecuador has an embassy in Madrid and consulates-general in Alicante, Barcelona, Málaga, Murcia, Palma de Mallorca and Valencia.
- Spain has an embassy in Quito and a consulate-general in Guayaquil.
Relations between the United Kingdom and Ecuador were traditionally regarded as "low-key but cordial", especially before the election of Rafael Correa; the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visited the country in 2009, as part of a tour celebrating the bicentenary of Charles Darwin. President Correa visited London in the same year, speaking mostly in English at the London School of Economics about the changes his government was making. In 2012, relations came under strain when Julian Assange, founder of the Wikileaks website, entered the Ecuadorian embassy in London and sought asylum; Assange had recently lost a legal case against his extradition to Sweden on charges of sexual assault and rape, but when within the embassy he was on diplomatic territory and beyond the reach of the British police. The United Kingdom Foreign and Commonwealth Office delivered a note to the Ecuadorian government in Quito reminding them of the provisions of the Diplomatic and Consular Premises Act 1987 which allow the British government to withdraw recognition of diplomatic protection from embassies; the move was interpreted as a hostile act by Ecuador, with Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño stating that this "explicit threat" would be met with "appropriate responses in accordance with international law". Assange was granted diplomatic asylum on 16 August 2012, with Foreign Minister Patiño stating that Assange's fears of political persecution were "legitimate".
The United States and Ecuador used to maintain close ties based on mutual interests in maintaining democratic institutions; combating cannabis and cocaine; building trade, investment, and financial ties; cooperating in fostering Ecuador's economic development; and participating in inter-American organizations. Ties were further strengthened by the presence of an estimated 150,000-200,000 Ecuadorians living in the United States and by 24,000 U.S. citizens visiting Ecuador annually, and by approximately 15,000 U.S. citizens residing in Ecuador. The United States assisted Ecuador's economic development directly through the Agency for International Development (USAID) program in Ecuador and through multilateral organizations such as the Inter-American Development Bank and the World Bank. In addition, the U.S. Peace Corps operates a sizable program in Ecuador. More than 100 U.S. companies are doing business in Ecuador. The relations have deteriorated greatly in recent years, since Rafael Correa came to power in Ecuador. Correa has blamed the U.S. for intervening in its internal affairs.
Diplomatic ties trace back to the Spanish colonization of the Americas. With the independence both countries united under the Gran Colombia along with New Granada (then Colombia and Panama). After the dissolution of the Gran Colombia, Ecuador named Don Pedro Gual as plenipotentiary minister with the main task of resolving the debt acquired while part of the Gran Colombia union as well as to establish diplomatic relations with the New Granada and Venezuela. On August 4, 1852 Venezuela sent a diplomatic delegation in Quito and named José Julián Ponce as finance administrator. The relations remained cordial and entered into a second period between 1910 and 1963 with two diplomatic incidents occurring in 1928 and 1955. Ecuador and Venezuela strengthened ties in politics, diplomacy and military.
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- "Ecuador pulls diplomat from Bogota - CNN.com". CNN. March 2, 2008. Retrieved May 2, 2010.
- CNN https://web.archive.org/web/20080921213512/http://edition.cnn.com/2008/WORLD/americas/03/03/ecuador.colombia/index.html. Archived from the original on September 21, 2008. Missing or empty
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- "India to boost oil, defence ties with Ecuador". The Hindu. Chennai, India. November 18, 2008.
- "Correa calls Iran-Ecuador ties strategic". Tehran Times. 8 December 2008.
- "Ecuador swears in new president". BBC News. 16 January 2007.
- "EMBASSY OF ECUADOR IN MALAYSIA STRENGTHENS BILATERAL RELATIONS". Ministerio de Relaciones Exteriores Ecuador. 2011-12-02. Retrieved 2013-01-07.
- "Malaysia, Ecuador can expand trade, says Raja Muda Perlis". New Straits Times. 2012-07-03. Retrieved 2013-01-07.
- New Straits Times Ecuador's petite envoy holds sway 19 Sept. 2012 "Clearly, relations between Ecuador and Malaysia are on an upward trend, which may possibly see a change in the trade balance which is"
- Embassy of Ecuador in Mexico City (in Spanish)
- Embassy of Mexico in Quito (in Spanish)
- Staff writers (25 December 2010). "Ecuador latest Latin country to recognize Palestine". RFI. Retrieved 2010-12-29.
- Ecuadorian embassy in Moscow
- Russian embassy in Quito
- embasy of Ecuador in Madrid (in Spanish)
- Embassy of Spain in Quito (in Spanish)
- Ecuadorian embassy in Stockholm
- Swedish consulate in Quito
- Borger, Julian (20 June 2012). "Ecuador: Latin American country no friend of the US". The Guardian. London.
- Addley, Esther; Woolf, Beatrice (19 June 2012). "Assange seeks refuge at Ecuador 's embassy". The Guardian. London. p. 1.
- Pearse, Damien (16 August 2012). "Julian Assange can be arrested in Ecuador embassy, UK warns". The Guardian. London.
- "Julian Assange: Ecuador grants Wikileaks founder asylum". BBC News. August 16, 2012.