Venezuela Orders Embassy in Ecuador To Close

Venezuela Orders Embassy in Ecuador To Close

( – Hours after Mexico granted former Ecuadorian Vice President Jorge Glas asylum on April 5, Ecuadorian President Daniel Noboa ordered authorities to raid the Mexican Embassy in Quito to bring Glas into custody. The move has sparked serious backlash from governments worldwide, who claim Ecuador violated a prominent treaty. Now, Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has taken action.

On Tuesday, April 16, Maduro ordered the closure of the Venezuelan Embassy in Ecuador. He made the move as a show of solidarity with Mexico. By law, under the Vienna Treaties, governments consider diplomatic premises globally as foreign soil. As such, they are “inviolable” properties. The Mexican Embassy had hosted Glas, whom Ecuadorian authorities considered a fugitive and convicted criminal, since December.

Noboa accused Mexico of violating the Vienna Treaties first by granting Glas asylum, despite his conviction of “very serious crimes” that the Ecuadorian president insisted weren’t political. Noboa called Glas a “national security threat.” Yet, he hasn’t escaped condemnation. No government has come forward to defend his actions.

Mexico called on the United Nations to suspend Ecuador’s membership until it admits that it violated the country’s sovereignty and apologizes for the raid, a move that Venezuela has backed. Maduro has also ordered his country’s diplomatic personnel to return home “until international law is expressly restored.” According to Fox News, Mexico’s embassy also appeared closed as of Tuesday. The country immediately severed its diplomatic relations with Ecuador and wants to bring the case before the International Court of Justice.

Noboa also failed to appear at a virtual gathering of world leaders, prompting Maduro to say that “he has gone into hiding,” which was something he felt the citizens should know.

Ecuador is currently holding Glas in a maximum-security prison in the Ecuadoran city of Guayaquil. Maduro has demanded that the Ecuadorian government return him to the embassy and recognize his political asylum.

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