from the wow dept
In response, Ecuador has taken a stand: saying that it's breaking the trade agreement upfront as it doesn't appreciate the attempt by the US to blackmail it in this matter.
President Rafael Correa's government said on Thursday it was renouncing the Andean Trade Preference Act to thwart US "blackmail" of Ecuador in the former NSA contractor's asylum request.Furthermore, they made it quite clear that this is entirely about the US' actions in trying to pressure them about Snowden:
Officials, speaking at an early morning press conference, also offered a $23m donation for human rights training in the US, a brash riposte to recent US criticism of Ecuador's own human rights record.
"Ecuador does not accept pressure or threats from anyone, nor does it trade with principles or submit them to mercantile interests, however important those may be," said Fernando Alvarado, the communications secretary.As the article notes, some of this is surely political. It is a bit of a populist move by the government, and many suspected that the trade agreement was unlikely to be renewed anyway by the US, so in some ways this is an attempt to get out in front of that story and pull something of a "you can't fire me, I quit!" move. Still, it highlights, once again, the way the US bullies smaller countries, and how that can backfire.
"Ecuador gives up, unilaterally and irrevocably, the said customs benefits."