Ecuador says CIA controls part of its intelligence

Ecuador's president accused the CIA on Saturday of controlling many of his country's spy agencies.

Ecuador says CIA controls part of its intelligence
President Rafael Correa has fired a top intelligence officer and plans to overhaul spy agencies for belatedly informing him about links between Colombian rebels and an Ecuadorean who died in Colombia's raid inside Ecuador last month that sparked a regional crisis.

"Many of our intelligence agencies have been taken over by the CIA," the leftist leader said during his weekly radio show. "Through the CIA, information found here was passed to Colombia to improve their position" in the dispute.

Correa also charged the United States with financing some officers in the Ecuadorean spy agencies.

U.S. Embassy spokesman in Quito Arnaldo Arbesu declined to comment on the charges but said, "We are always willing to work with the Ecuadorean government in any type of issue."

The March 1 raid, which killed a Colombian rebel leader and more than 20 other people, raised the threat of war after Ecuador and Venezuela briefly sent troops to their borders with Colombia. Nerves quickly calmed during a regional meeting a week later.

Correa said he hoped the diplomatic spat would be over soon, but warned of legal actions against Colombia for the killing of the Ecuadorean citizen who was in the rebel camp.

Correa added that Ecuador's decision to sue Colombia in international court over Colombia's anti-drug spraying along its border was in response to the raid.

The suit filed on Monday has once again strained relations between the neighbors who share a 400-mile (600-km) border often crossed by rebels fighting a four-decade war against the Colombian government.

Last Mod: 06 Nisan 2008, 12:15
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