Belgium grants political asylum to former Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa

Photo: EFE

Text: Cuba News Editorial Office

The Belgian government has approved the political asylum of former Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa, according to lawyers who defended the former president and confirmed by Correa himself on his personal Twitter page.

According to the ex-president, a publication from the law firm indicates that Belgium thus recognizes the political persecution of the Ecuadorean government against him.

Correa, having been president of the Central American country between 2007 and 2017, became one of the main opponents of the government of Lenin Moreno, who had been its deputy for years.

According to him, as soon as he came to power, Moreno distanced himself from the political program envisioned by Alianza Pais, a movement to which they both belong.

Wanted to justice

Correa has lived in Belgium since 2017, and his asylum application was launched after court proceedings against him began in Ecuador, in 2018. At the time he was linked to the alleged kidnapping of an opponent, among other charges.

He was also sentenced to eight years in prison and political disqualification for alleged bribery between 2012 and 2016 involving national and international companies such as Brazil’s Odebrecht.

The lawsuit against him indicates that his government received payments to fund the political movement of former president, Alianza Paes, in exchange for awarding contracts worth millions of dollars to companies, the BBC reported at the time of the ruling.

Correa had declared the charges against him false and that he and his supporters had faced police harassment over their anti-government stance as well as the suspension of their political rights just hours before he registered as a presidential candidate in last year’s elections.

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Meanwhile, the Ecuadorean executive has signed an extradition order against him. The President of the National Court of Justice of Ecuador, Ivan Sakesela, announced in an interview with the media Teleamazonas that he had signed an order to start the process of extradition of the former president.

Along the same lines, the current Ecuadorean president, Guillermo Laso, insisted on Twitter that Correa is not subject to political persecution as he calls himself, but simply does not want to face justice.

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