Noboa praises police-military operations, pushes a ‘yes’ referendum vote; Judge strips former VP Glas of his rights; Papal visit possible in September

Mar 19, 2024 | 0 comments

At a ceremony delivering weapons and bulletproof vests to the National Police, President Daniel Noboa on Monday praised the “recent success” of joint operations between the police and armed forces in combatting organized crime. He also promoted a “yes” vote on referendum questions to strengthen law enforcement.

“The progress is impressive but there is much more work to be done,” Noboa said. “We cannot lower our guard at this critical time and this is why I urge the Ecuadorian people to join me in expressing our resolve at the polls April 21. The National Police and the Armed Forces need our support.”

Former vice president Jorge Glas

Noboa added that the armed forces will continue to support the police in “anti-terrorist” operations when the current 90-day national emergency period ends. “A ‘yes’ vote in the referendum will not only send a message of support to our police and soldiers, but will inform organized criminal groups of our intention to come after them.”

Judge strips former VP Glas of his rights
Cantonal Judge Karly Vargas has revoked the rights of former vice president Jorge Glas, including the right to run for political office. The decision, announced Monday, reverses a 2023 decision that restored Glas’ rights.

“This decision puts in place, once again, all restrictions to Mr. Glas that were applied at his corruption conviction seven years ago,” Vargas wrote. “He is prohibited from serving in any public position and from being a candidate for public office.”

Judge John Rodríguez, whose June 2023 decision also released Glas from prison, has been suspended by the National Judiciary Council and is being investigated for possible corruption.

Glas is currently living in the Mexican embassy in Quito where he took refuge in December, claiming political persecution. Prior to Rodríguez’s release order, Glas was serving a six-year prison sentence for taking bribes from the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht.

Papal visit possible in September
National Assembly President of Henry Kronfle said Monday that there is a possibility Pope Francis will visit Ecuador in September. This visit would be to attend the International Eucharistic Congress in Quito, Kronfle said.

“I met with the cardinal from Barcelona and he told me the Pope is considering attendance at this great international event in Ecuador,” Kronfle said in an interview with Guayaquil’s Sucre radio.

In response to Kronfle’s statements, Quito Monsignor Andrés Carrascosa said it is “too early to even speculate” about a papal visit. “The congress is only in the planning stages and the Vatican has made no firm commitments,” he said. “There are also issues such as the Pope’s health and other engagements that must be considered.”

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