US response to Ecuador embassy raid disappoints Mexico

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Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador on Tuesday expressed disappointment that the United States had not been more critical of Ecuador’s raid of his country’s embassy in Quito.

Lopez Obrador noted that President Joe Biden had not personally spoken out against the operation late Friday by Quito’s security forces to arrest a fugitive former Ecuadoran vice president sheltering inside.

He also voiced disappointment at the reaction of Canada, which like the United States is a major trading partner under a North American free trade deal.

Lopez Obrador described the two countries’ statements on the raid as “very ambiguous.”

“We are economic and commercial partners. We are neighbors and their position was very vague,” he said at his regular morning news conference.

Lopez Obrador urged both governments to condemn the raid more forcefully, but said the issue would not undermine diplomatic relations with them.

In a statement issued on Saturday, a State Department spokesman said the United States “condemns any violation of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, and takes very seriously the obligation of host countries under international law to respect the inviolability of diplomatic missions.”

It added that both Mexico and Ecuador were “crucial partners” for Washington and urged them to “resolve their differences in accord with international norms.”

Lopez Obrador lamented that the US statement did not directly condemn the raid, and voiced disappointment that Canada had referred to an “apparent” breach of the Vienna Convention.

Ecuador sent its security forces into the embassy to arrest former vice president Jorge Glas, hours after Mexico granted him political asylum.

Condemnation poured in from regional governments including Nicaragua, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Cuba, Peru and Venezuela.

Mexico quickly broke off diplomatic relations with Ecuador and vowed to file a complaint at the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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