MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, December 9th 2022 - 19:54 UTC

 

 

Wikileaks knocks out second US ambassador in Latam: this time in Ecuador

Wednesday, April 6th 2011 - 06:37 UTC
Full article 15 comments
Ambassador Heather Hodges “persona non grata” Ambassador Heather Hodges “persona non grata”

Ecuador is expelling the U.S. ambassador over a 2009 diplomatic cable released by WikiLeaks in which the diplomat accused the country’s former police chief of corruption.

Ecuador's foreign minister, Ricardo Patiño, Tuesday declared Ambassador Heather Hodges “persona non grata” (an unwelcome person) and asked her to leave the country “in the shortest time possible.”

The U.S. State Department said the expulsion was unjustified and that Washington will examine its options. Spokesman Mark Toner said Ecuador did not specify why she was deemed persona non grata.

Patiño said he met with Hodges on Monday but had not received a satisfactory explanation about the cable. He said it did not mean that Ecuador was breaking relations with the U.S.

The cable, published in a Madrid newspaper on Monday, centers on Jaime Hurtado Vaca, who was Ecuador's national police commander from April 2008 until June 2009.

According to the paper, Hodges says the commander should be stripped of his U.S. visa, alleging he used his position to commit financial crimes, facilitate human trafficking and obstruct investigations of corrupt colleagues.

She said corruption in Ecuador's national police force was “widespread and well-known.”

Hodges is the second U.S. envoy in Latin America to run into difficulty in a host country based on leaked diplomatic cables.

WikiLeaks has divulged thousands of cables from U.S. embassies around the globe and documents related to U.S. military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Last month, the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, Carlos Pascual, resigned after a leaked cable showed that the diplomat doubted the Mexican government's ability to combat that nation's drug war.
 

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • GeoffWard

    “According to the paper, Hodges says the commander should be stripped of his U.S. visa, alleging he used his position to commit financial crimes, facilitate human trafficking and obstruct investigations of corrupt colleagues.”

    Human Traffiking is against the law and automatically denies individuals rights to enter the USA.

    So Ecuador sacks the ambassador rather than the Police Chief . . . . . . always easier to 'shoot the messanger'.

    Equally: “the U.S. ambassador to Mexico, Carlos Pascual, resigned after a leaked cable showed that the diplomat doubted the Mexican government's ability to combat that nation's drug war.”

    This is exactly the sort of information any good ambassador is employed to communicate to his country. This is why countries have ambassadors.

    Apr 06th, 2011 - 11:56 am 0
  • ptolemy

    Though I don't have much doubt about this report and it's facts,.. what scares me is that Wikileaks rules foreign policy now. No one seems to talk about this or Wikileaks agenda. It is also important to note, that at any time in the future, Wikileaks can “wag the dog's tail.”

    Apr 06th, 2011 - 12:59 pm 0
  • GeoffWard

    Ptolemy #2,

    perhaps the USA is thinking to hold leakers incommunicado, in a state of unspoken, permanent torture, without trial, for the rest of those persons' lives.
    It got good practice with Guantanamo and at Abu Ghraibe.

    It would certainly discourage future american leakers.

    But it does behove all other countries to do the same to their first miscreants, in order to shut the door firmly on such behaviour worldwide.

    Only then can we get back to work with our back-channels of communication safe and sound.

    But would we really want to live in this world of Kafka?

    Apr 06th, 2011 - 08:33 pm 0
Read all comments

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!