“Jorge Glas is in poor health and is at risk of suicide,” says Andrés Arauz

Vice President under Rafael Correa, Glas was kidnapped from the Mexican embassy by the Noboa government

June 21, 2024 by Brasil de Fato
Jorge Glas at the National Assembly of Ecuador in 2017 (Photo: ANDES / Creative Commons / Micaela Ayala V.)

The former vice-president of Ecuador, Jorge Glas, is in poor health and is “at risk of suicide” in Ecuadorian prison, said André’s Arauz, a representative of the Citizen Revolution Movement and a former Ecuadorian presidential candidate. Glas has been in prison since he was kidnapped from the Mexican embassy in Quito by the government of Daniel Noboa in April of this year. 

Read more: Ecuadorian police break into Mexican Embassy, arrest former Ecuadorian VP Jorge Glas

“Jorge is in poor health and is also at risk of suicide. We need solidarity and international help. This is not just for his freedom, but for international law to be upheld,” he told Brasil de Fato during the event Power and Prosperity in a Multipolar World at Unicamp on June 20, an event which brought together left-wing leaders from around the world, organized by Progressive International (PI), Transforma-Unicamp, and Phenomenal World.

“We have a person whose life is in danger, who has been kidnapped by the Ecuadorian state, by President Daniel Noboa, and who must be rejected and condemned by the greatest forces at international level.”

During the Correa era, Glas was one of the main leaders of the “Citizen Revolution” project, a coalition of left-wing parties and popular movements that expanded social rights and sought to break with neoliberal economic policy.  

During this period, the Constituent Assembly process led by the Citizen Revolution movement saw the expansion of rights included in the country’s constitution such as expanded rights of the Indigenous population, rights of nature, the promotion of national culture, and the valorization of the country’s sovereignty.

Ecuador also broke with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), renegotiated oil contracts, and helped lead the process to form the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR).

Arauz believes that the reason for Glas’ arrest was his role in coordinating relations between Ecuador and China during the Correa government. “The real reason for his persecution is that he diversified Ecuador’s international economic relations from the United States to the People’s Republic of China. He was the Communist Party of China’s most trusted contact within the Ecuadorian government, and they have never forgiven him for that and continue to persecute him.”

International Court

Considered by former Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Guillaume Long to be the “most arbitrary international act in Ecuador’s contemporary history,” the issue is awaiting a ruling from the International Court of Justice in The Hague, where Mexico has filed a lawsuit for the violation of its diplomatic space.

“Once asylum was granted, the invasion of the Mexican embassy violated all the norms of international law. This shouldn’t be controversial, the International Court of Justice hasn’t ruled yet, but it’s obvious that they’re going to reject it,” says Arauz.

Ecuadorian police used force to raid the Mexican embassy in Quito on Friday and arrest former Ecuadorean vice-president Jorge Glas, who had been seeking refuge there since December 2023.

The raid took place on the same day that Mexico granted Glas political asylum, a decision that deepened the diplomatic tension between the two countries.

This article was translated from an article originally published in Portuguese on Brasil de Fato.