The governments of Colombia and Ecuador have begun work on a new extradition arrangement to fight transnational crime, according to Colombia’s ambassador to Ecuador.
Ambassador Ricardo Lozano said, “we are looking for mechanisms to enable the extradition of Ecuadorians. At the moment, Ecuador can extradite foreigners, but not their fellow citizens…there is the need to implement more formal steps between Ecuador and Colombia,” in an interview with Ecuadorian newspaper El Universo Monday.
“The crime is transnational. An illegal action is planned in Mexico, paid in Colombia and executed in Ecuador,” Lozano added, underscoring the need for his country to be able to extridite its own residents.
In recent months, officials from both governments have emphasised the growing collaboration between the two countries, following a diplomatic crisis in March 2008 when Colombia invaded Ecuador in pursuit of FARC rebels.
On July 3, Ecuadorian Defense Minister Miguel Carvajal highlighted the strong cooperation with Colombia, saying “… we have been able not only to recover to pre-2008 levels in terms of cooperation and coordination. I would say they have deepened even more…”
Tensions between Colombia and Ecuador have thawed since the 2010 election of Juan Manuel Santos, who blamed his predecessor, Alvaro Uribe, for not making enough effort to bolster diplomacy between the two nations.