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Edward Snowden

30-year-old American Edward Snowden, a contract employee at the National Security Agency, is the whistleblower behind significant revelations that surfaced in June 2013 about the US government's top secret, extensive domestic surveillance programmes. Snowden flew to Hong Kong from Hawaii in May 2013, and supplied confidential US government documents to media outlets including the Guardian

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Ecuador waives US trade rights after threats made over Snowden case

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 27 June, 2013, 9:14pm
UPDATED : Friday, 28 June, 2013, 4:53pm

Ecuador said on Thursday it was waiving preferential rights under a US trade agreement to demonstrate its principled approach to the asylum request of former American spy agency contractor and whistle-blower Edward Snowden.

US Senator Robert Menendez, chairman of the foreign relations panel, had warned in a statement on Wednesday that accepting Snowden “would severely jeopardise” preferential trade access the United States provides to Ecuador under two programmes that expire next month.

Our government will not reward countries for bad behaviour
US Senator Robert Menendez

“Our government will not reward countries for bad behaviour,” Menendez said.

Snowden is still believed to be hiding at an airport in Moscow, where he flew to from Hong Kong on Sunday, awaiting a ruling on his request for asylum from the South American country. The United States wants him extradited to face charges that he stole and leaked details of secret US government surveillance programmes.

Menendez also called on Russia to stop sheltering Snowden and turn him over to the United States.

Officials on Thursday in Quito also said that Snowden’s case had still not been processed because he had not reached any of its diplomatic premises.

“The petitioner is not in Ecuadorean territory as the law requires,” government official Betty Tola said at an early morning news conference in Ecuador.

Ecuador gives up, unilaterally and irrevocably, the said customs benefits
Fernando Alvarado, Equadorian official

Bristling at suggestions Quito was weighing the pros and cons of Snowden’s case in terms of its own interests, officials also said Ecuador would not base its decision on its desire to renew the Andean Trade Preferences Act with Washington.

“Ecuador gives up, unilaterally and irrevocably, the said customs benefits,” said another official, Fernando Alvarado.

In a deliberately cheeky touch from the government of President Rafael Correa, Ecuador also offered a multimillion donation for human rights training in the United States.

“What’s more, Ecuador offers the United States economic aid of US$23 million (HK$178.4 million) annually, similar to what we received with the trade benefits, with the intention of providing education about human rights,” Alvarado added.

“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.”

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John Adams
Let's propose HK should offer the USA a US$230 Million donation ( 10 x Ecuador) to sponsor training in human rights and application of rule of law !
After all, we have a HK$1.5 Trillion surplus and the US has a US$ multi- Trillion deficit.
“Our government will not reward countries for bad behavior,” .... I cannot believe the sheer arrogance of that statement .
Full marks to Mr Correal and Ecuador !
pandalogic2010
Way to go Mr. Correa!
The world has a new superhero - Rapid Rafael, who stuns the big bully with just sheer sarcasm! :D
HK_eh!
cheeky cheeky cheeky!
the sun also rises
they still think that they are the boss and the World Cops too !
daily
The Americans still think they can call the shots around the world.............what a bunch of friggin idiots!
Camel
So, and now they start to threaten other states if they don't comply to their will and orders. Showing now your ugly face USA? And the USA used to lecture others how to live up to their high moral and standards.
John Adams
I agree 100% with Camel
.
I am disgusted at the way the USA thinks it can bully smaller nations in economic ways.
Whatever happened to "free trade" ?
Whatever happened to integrity ?
The founding fathers must be shuddering in their graves to see what a Frankenstein monster they created
PS: I guess visa-free entry to the USA for HK SAR passport holders will also now never be permitted. ( But let's hope that our own govt does not stoop to such mean and childish methods and make all USA citizens apply for a visa to come to HK as a ti t -for - tat.)
the sun also rises
Mr.Snowden came here on May 20th visa-free and he could stay here as long as 90 days.Of course, the US government might 'punish' us by not encouraging Americans to come here.But it will be just a trivial only ! Nobody cares about it !
the sun also rises
actually,any sovereign states should not bow to pressure or threats form other nations which might be powerful and bossy enough.Even our tiny Hong Kong did not yield to the pressure from Uncle Sam to provisionally arrest leaker-hero,Mr.Snowden and have him extradited to the States complying with the demand of the US government.As Ecuador is much larger than tiny Hong Kong and is a sovereign state, there is no reason it should yield to the pressure from the States.Mr.Snowden should take his refuge or seek political asylum from this nation by asking for a shelter in the embassy of Ecuador in Moscow---which is just 32 km from the airport he is now living in.

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