Ecuador Judge Orders Detention of Former Foreign Minister Connected to Assange

Former FM believed to have fled the country days ago

In the continuation of the post-Assange Ecuadoran crackdown, a judge on Friday signed an order to detain the nation’s former Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino, who is accused of having ties to Assange.

It isn’t clear what Patino is to be charged with, but he is accused of being part of an Assange-related plot and knowing Swedish hacker Ola Bini, who Ecuador also recently arrested. It may not ultimately matter, however, as Patino had the foresight to have fled the country on Wednesday.

Partino has been critical of President Moreno, and that seems to be the center of his move against him.Though his whereabouts are unknown, Ecuador indicated that are putting out an Interpol red notice for his capture.

The Moreno government’s recent handover of Assange was seen as part of an effort to please the US and ensure IMF support. This could easily also be an aspect of that, as Patino was  a big part of the past government’s policies that soured the US on Ecuador in the first place.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.