Ecuador announces complaint against Mexico at top UN court in diplomatic spat


QUITO, Ecuador (AP) — Ecuador announced Monday it has filed a complaint at the top U.N. court against Mexico over its decision to grant political asylum to a former Ecuadorian vice president, which led to Ecuador’s highly criticized raid on the Mexican Embassy earlier this month.

Ecuador’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement that the complaint at the International Court of Justice cites Mexico’s government because of its move to grant asylum to former Vice President Jorge Glas, who had been convicted of corruption.

Mexico failed to comply with “its obligations not to grant asylum to people who are being prosecuted or on trial for common crimes or have been convicted by competent ordinary courts,” the statement said. The ministry did not immediately provide a copy of the complaint to The Associated Press.

Police raided Mexico’s embassy April 5 and arrested Glas hours after he was granted political asylum in an extremely rare show of force that legal experts, presidents elsewhere in Latin America and diplomats deemed a violation of long-established international accords.

Ecuador argues Glas was wanted for corruption not political reasons, and that the asylum was therefore illegal.

Glas, who was convicted in two corruption cases, had been living at the diplomatic compound in Ecuador’s capital, Quito, since December. He is now being held at a maximum security prison at the port city of Guayaquil.

The court said in a statement that Ecuador “accuses Mexico of unlawfully granting Mr Glas political asylum and of interfering in its internal affairs.”

Security camera video released by Mexico’s government shows that Ecuadorian police scaled the embassy walls and broke into the building. Roberto Canseco, Mexico’s head of consular affairs in Ecuador, tried to keep them from entering, even pushing a large cabinet in front of a door. But police restrained him and pushed him to the floor as they carried Glas out.

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