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Wed Aug 8, 2018, 10:24 PM

Ecuador says it is launching security effort with US

PUBLISHED: 15:47 EDT, 2 August 2018 | UPDATED: 17:18 EDT, 2 August 2018

QUITO, Ecuador (AP) - Officials in Ecuador say they are launching a security effort with the United States in a further sign that frosty relations between the two nations are thawing.

Defense Minister Oswaldo Jarrin spoke Thursday in Quito, saying Ecuador is also buying weapons, radar sets, six helicopters and other equipment, but gave no details.

Jarrin says cooperation with the U.S. will include training and intelligence sharing.

It follows a June visit by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, who agreed with Ecuadorean President Lenin Moreno to improve relations.


You know this means the US military base at Manta, which was taken away from US control by progressive Rafael Correa during the presidency of George W. Bush, is going to go right back to U.S. control now that they got the US-serving Ecuadorian President they want running Ecuador. It's clearly at the top of the agenda.

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Reply Ecuador says it is launching security effort with US (Original post)
Judi Lynn Aug 2018 OP
Bacchus4.0 Aug 2018 #1
Judi Lynn Aug 2018 #2
Zorro Aug 2018 #3

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Thu Aug 9, 2018, 01:01 PM

1. There is no US base in Manta, there is an Ecuadorian base in Manta and Ecuador is asking Belgium

to extradite Correa for kidnapping and corruption. Current President Moreno was his former VP.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Thu Aug 9, 2018, 04:33 PM

2. Stroll down memory lane to clear out those cobwebs in unused brains:

Ecuador Targets a U.S. Air Base
By Stephan Küffner/Quito Wednesday, May 14, 2008

When the Colombian military made its controversial incursion into neighboring Ecuador two months ago, it may well have removed more than just a camp full of leftist Colombian guerrillas. The raid may wind up taking out a $70 million U.S. Air Force base as well. On Monday, Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa said he's "convinced" the U.S. aided Colombia in the March 1 attack and reiterated his suspicions that U.S. intelligence agencies had infiltrated Ecuador's armed forces and police — remarks that seem to all but assure that the small South American nation will not renew the lease for the U.S. antinarcotics surveillance base at Manta on Ecuador's Pacific coast. For Correa, "the political costs" of letting the base stay "outweigh the benefits," says Freddy Rivera, a security expert at the Latin American Social Sciences Faculty University in Quito.

Correa, an ally of Venezuela's left-wing, anti-U.S. President Hugo Chavez, has made no secret of wanting to give the Manta base the boot since he became President last year. He views the facility — which the U.S. Air Force calls a Forward Operating Location (FOL) and not a full-fledged military base — as an affront to Ecuadorian sovereignty. Many if not most Ecuadorians agree, if only because of what they consider the questionable circumstances under which it was established in 1999. That year the U.S. failed to reach a deal with Panama on continued use of the Howard Air Force Base for counter-drug operations. So Jamil Mahuad, who was Ecuador's conservative President at the time and was facing unrest over harsh austerity policies meant to reassure foreign investors, let Washington set up at Manta with a 10-year lease that required no rent. (Mahuad was toppled in an indigenous-led uprising just weeks later.)

But the Colombian incursion, which sparked an Andean diplomatic crisis, appears to have given Correa the leverage he was looking for to make sure Ecuador's National Assembly doesn't renew that lease. "I'm convinced that the United States provided information and cutting-edge technologies without which the [March 1] attack wouldn't have been possible," Correa said on a visit to France this week. In addition to breaking off diplomatic relations with Colombia since the March raid, Correa has also alleged that U.S. spies have burrowed into his military and security forces. Last month he purged his top military brass and installed a civilian, Javier Ponce, as his new defense minister. On Monday, Ponce pledged a two-month investigation of Ecuador's intelligence community.

In the town of Montecristi, where a 130-member constitutional assembly is at work writing a new Ecuadorian Constitution, the majority delegates from Correa's party, Acuerdo Pais (Country Accord), are now calling for an "audit" of the U.S. operation at Manta. That would include a probe of the flight of a U.S. Hercules C130 plane that took off the night of Feb. 29 and returned to Manta at 4 a.m. March 1, around the time of the Colombian sortie. Only one hour of activities from that nine-hour flight are logged on file — reflecting a longstanding complaint by Ecuadorian officials that Manta's flight logs are only partially open to inspection by the host country. "There is an information vacuum," says Assemblywoman Tania Hermida, a Correa ally and member of the sovereignty committee. "The situation is so delicate that we need to know its activities over 100% of that [Feb. 29–March 1] period." She adds: "Any concrete proof that the Manta base was involved [in the Colombian attack] would be more than enough reason to close it immediately."


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Response to Judi Lynn (Reply #2)

Fri Aug 10, 2018, 02:18 PM

3. Clear out your own cobwebs

The US spent millions of dollars to improve the Manta civil airport, and established the FOL (actually a hanger or two) at one end to service their aircraft. Ecuador always maintained control over the airport while the US was there.

The citizens around Manta that I spoke with were both grateful for the US presence in their area, and were not supportive of Correa's actions -- which were based on his unremitting hatred for the US, since he blamed the country for his father's suicide.

You should dispense with the constant, clueless FUD.

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