Ecuador president says congress will protect his immunity from trial Bernard Hibbitts at 2:03 PM ET
[JURIST] Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa [official website, in Spanish; JURIST news archive] said in a radio address Saturday that he expected lawmakers in the country's congress to reject a request from Ecuador's Supreme Court to lift his immunity so that a defamation case against him could proceed. Correa said "I have faith that the lawmakers will act in accordance with the law, with justice, and will deny lifting the president's immunity." Ecuador's unicameral National Congress [official website, in Spanish] is currently dominated by Correa supporters after half its members were dismissed and replaced earlier this year in a controversy over a then-pending constitutional referendum [JURIST reports].
The defamation suit against Correa was brought by a former aide to an ex-government minister who leaked a video in which the minister was shown discussing manipulation of bond prices. The minister later said he allowed shooting of the video to document corruption. The leak precipitated a scandal over the government's debt management program [JURIST report], prompting Correa to label the aide a "swine" and "mentally unbalanced." Xinhua has more.
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