In 2005, the environmental ministry of Ecuador ruled that oil drilling in the park would only be allowed if no roads were built. However, in May 2014, a group of scientists argued that Petroamazonas, a huge oil firm in Ecuador, built a road into the park, violating an environmental impact study. Read more >>
What’s more, seeing his countrymen trade in paper money bearing the images of George Washington, Andrew Jackson and Benjamin Franklin must irk Mr. Correa to no end. A self-described socialist and a staunch ally of former Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and his successor Nicolas Maduro, Mr. Correa frequently rails against Washington. Read more >>
After Ecuador issued a permit to drill for oil in Yasuni National Park in May, there’s already been one of its largest oil spills. On July 2, state-owned oil company Petroamazonas spilled 660,000 gallons of oil into the Amazon, contaminating the Aguarico and Parahuaico rivers where the indigenous Cofan, Secoya, Kichwa and Shuar communities drink, bathe, and fish, reports Amazon Watch. Read more >>
A year after Ecuador passed its controversial media law, the Ley Orgánica de Comunicación (LOC), most of the fears that it provoked as a potential instrument of repression have come true. Freedom House, a US non-governmental organization that supports liberal democracy, since last year has rated Ecuador’s press as “not free” and Internet usage as only “partially free,” but notes an aggravation of attacks on private media under the new law. This will likely continue, as will the double standards in its application, with government controlled-media free to attack real or perceived opponents. Read more >>
Next week, US Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Roberta Jacobson will travel to Ecuador to meet with Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño in the hopes of easing recent tensions between the two countries. Before the dialogue starts, however, Jacobson may want to brush up on her knowledge of 17th century British policy, the source from where Ecuador seems to be taking most of its political cues as of late.
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