Judge rejects Assange human rights violation claims
Quito civil judge Karina Martínez has rejected Julian Assange’s charges that new rules for his asylum at Ecuador’s British embassy violate his human rights. The rules, which the WikiLeaks founder must agree to for the restoration of his internet privileges, put new restrictions on his visitors and prohibit online attacks on other countries. In addition, the rules require him to improve his personal hygiene, clean his bathroom and take care of his cat. The judge ruled that Ecuador has the right to establish rules for asylum.
In a 20-minute statement, broadcast via Skype from London, Assange claimed the internet rules violate his right to free speech and that demands that he clean up after himself and change the kitty litter are insulting. He also charged that the Ecuadorian government is considering turning him over to the U.S. government, a claim that Ecuador’s Foreign Minister José Valencia denied.
Ecuador makes Lonely Planet ‘Top 10’ list
The travel guide Lonely Planet has included Ecuador in its top 10 list for “most affordable adventures.” The list is part of the guide’s “Best in Travel for 2019” designations.
Ecuador is ranked ninth in the list which is headed by the South Nile Valley in Egypt, the Polish city of Łódź and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in the U.S. Lonely Planet recommends Ecuador’s “dazzling Andean landscapes, its colorful colonial cities and the Amazon and the Pacific Ocean coast.” In particular, it said the beaches north of Guayaquil offer “extraordinary bargains for travelers.”
It added that, because of the country’s compact geography, most of the top destinations can be reached within a half-day’s travel.
Escaped communication secretary mocks Moreno
Former Communication Secretary Fernando Alvarado says that his escape from Ecuador was assisted by a “close friend” of President Lenin Moreno. Alvarado’s comment came in a Youtube broadcast that he called “an open letter to the president of Ecuador.” Alvarado removed a court-ordered ankle monitor on October 19 and left the country. Police believe he is currently in Venezuela where he says he has been granted political asylum.
“If I told you who helped me get rid of the shackle and escape, you would not believe it,” Alvarado told Moreno. He added that Moreno is a good man who has “fallen into bad hands,” accepting advice from associates intent on discrediting the government of former president Rafael Correa. As a result, Alvarado said he is subject to political persecution and will continue to “broadcast the truth.”