Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs and Human Migration, Xavier Lasso, declared today Ecuador’s “categorical rejection of the accusations made by the British Minister Hugo Swire against Ecuador”, in relation to the case of Julian Assange, in which the British official affirmed that “Ecuador must recognise that its decision to shelter Mr. Assange for more than 3 years has prevented justice taking its proper course”.
Ecuador’s foreign policy representative noted that “from day one [Ecuador] has made its openess to discussion clear”. He recalled however that they only received a positive response two months ago and that the meeting proposed by Ecuador was postponed by the Swedish prosecutor due to its officials being on holiday.
Therefore Minister Lasso affirmed that “it is not acceptable to try to place the responsibility for the lack of progress in this area over the last 5 years on Ecuador.
Moveover, and in direct response to one of the accusations from the UK, Minister Lasso indicated that, if there is an abuse of diplomatic relations, it has been committed by the Government of the United Kingdom, recalling that it not only threatened to “violate the immunity of diplomatic premises” but that it has also maintained an “invasive police cordon” outside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for three years. “The British Government has the sole responsibility for such an invasive and unnecessary police deployment” he said.
Likewise, the Minister recalled that, since the beginning of the case, the Ecuadorian position has been based on a principled position and that, therefore, the unwavering commitment of this country necessarily involves a “solution framed by international law”.
To conclude, Lasso stated categorically that “the Republic of Ecuador will not take lessons from any foreign government, least of all those that are unaware of the institution of political asylum; its legitimacy, attached and enshrined in international law and its humanitarian nature based on the sovereign equality of nations.”