In the midst of the diplomatic crisis that Argentina and Ecuador are going through, the government of Alberto Fernández denied this Thursday having favored the escape to Venezuela of the former Ecuadorian minister María de los Ángeles Duarte Pesantes from her refuge in the Argentine embassy in Quito. Meanwhile, Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Juan Carlos Holguin said that his government hopes to overcome this situation “soon”, which led to the withdrawal of ambassadors.
Read also: The escape of the former minister of Rafael Correa from Ecuador generated a new conflict within the Frente de Todos
Official sources told TN on Thursday that the Argentine ambassador in Quito, Gabriel Fucks, expelled on Tuesday after being considered “persona non grata”, will possibly travel to Argentina this Friday.
The crises left both countries on the verge of diplomatic rupture. The government of Guillermo Lasso accused Argentina of having helped the escape of Rafael Correa’s former minister convicted of corruption and refugee in the Argentine embassy in Quito for two years with her son. Duarte appeared Tuesday in Caracas.
What the Government said about the diplomatic crisis with Ecuador
In her weekly press conference, the spokeswoman for the Presidency, Gabriela Cerruti, said that “the Argentine government, the Argentine Foreign Ministry, has nothing to do with security issues in Ecuador. With which, how it (the leak) happened is something that is beyond us, ”she said.
“Ecuador’s security issues are handled by Ecuador and not by Argentina. That is an issue that those in charge of security will have to answer,” Cerruti replied.
The diplomatic crisis with Ecuador worsens (Photo: EFE)
Duarte, former Minister of Public Works of former President Rafael Correa, surprisingly left the embassy residence in Quito, where she had taken refuge for more than two and a half years to avoid going to prison for an eight-year sentence imposed in 2020 jail for bribery. Next to her was her son, an Argentine national.
The government of Alberto Fernández had granted her asylum, but Ecuador refused to give her a safe-conduct so that she could travel to Buenos Aires without being detained.
Also read: Together for Change asks that Cafiero give explanations in Congress for the escape of the former Correa minister
Duarte’s escape became known on Monday night, but the exact moment in which he left the residence of the Argentine embassy is unknown, as well as the way in which he traveled to Venezuela, where on Tuesday he arrived at the Argentine diplomatic headquarters in Caracas. .
The Ecuadorian authorities asked Ambassador Fucks for clarification on the case and the delivery of the security cameras, but the diplomat refused, according to the Quito version.
The presidential spokesperson, Gabriela Cerruti, together with the president, Alberto Fernández (Photo: Presidency).
One of the hypotheses handled by the National Police of Ecuador is that the former minister left the residence in a diplomatic vehicle, with the “complicity” of the Argentine Embassy.
Relations between Ecuador and Argentina were strained to the point of announcing the expulsion of their respective ambassadors, but the extreme of breaking off diplomatic relations has not been reached.
“(The Duarte case) is a topic of discussion at this time with the beloved Ecuadorian nation, let it pass quickly and we can find a solution,” Cerruti said.
The Ecuadorian foreign minister gives the first signs of détente
Meanwhile, from Quito, the first signs of détente arrived. The foreign minister, Juan Carlos Holguin, said that his government hopes to overcome the diplomatic crisis “soon”.
Also read: The scandal with Quito escalates: Argentina expelled the Ecuadorian ambassador in Buenos Aires
“We hope that this impasse will be resolved soon,” he said in an interview with the Ecuavisa channel.
The minister also warned that “a diplomatic break with Argentina (…) would be a counterproductive measure because of the large number of Ecuadorians we have” in the country and because of the “commercial relations that exist.”