An Ecuadorean judge ordered the arrest of Colombia’s former Minister of Defense, Juan Manuel Santos, a decision considered daring and ridiculous by analysts and government officials. According to experts, Ecuador is “overlooking it’s responsibility” and conveniently forgetting that it was harboring Farc camps on its territory and instead is focusing exclusively on the military attack against the ‘Reyes’ camp.
In a written statement sent from London, Santos said the order is “one more aggression added to the many certain Ecuadorean authorities have been committing, not against Juan Manuel Santos, but against Colombia”.
Experts also say the order stands in the way of any possible diplomatic reconciliation between the two countries. It’s unclear whether the judge in the province of Sucumbios has universal jurisdiction, otherwise this is simply a “political scandal”.
The judicial order, in this case, depends on any agreements that may exist between the Ecuadorean Government and Interpol. Many feel this is simply a political move and is void of any judicial content, “we don’t see how it could be affirmed that the Colombian Minister committed a crime in Ecuador”.
Attorney General of Colombia, Mario Iguarán, also voiced his opinion and said these decisions jeopardize “good relations between countries”; President Alvaro Uribe and Minister of Justice and the Interior, Fabio Valencia Cossio, also rejected the judge’s ruling and reiterated their support of Minister Santos.
Valencia Cossio said the judge is arbitrarily overstepping the boundaries of his duties. “This shouldn’t be considered illegal when it is meant to fight and attack terrorism”, he said back in March of 2008 in reference to the attack on Reyes’ camp.