Ecuadorean Foreign Minister Addresses Press Freedom, Demonstrations and Texaco Case

On the heels of the anti-government demonstrations that took place throughout the country yesterday, the Foreign Minister of Ecuador Ricardo Patino addressed some of the criticisms levied towards his government in recent months in an interview with Amy Goodman and Juan Gonzalez this morning on Democracy Now.

On charges that the Correa administration is trying to muzzle the press:

We, citizens, have the right of freedom of expression—everyone, not just a few. But us citizens also have the right to receive accurate information that has been verified. And citizens, including politicians or members of the government, we also have the right to honor. All of these elements constitute the thinking in our government.

And some people try to criticize this. Why? Because what we do now—and this did not happen before—is that we respond to the distortions or the omissions that many large television networks commit in Ecuador. And that’s not fair. When they exercise their freedom of expression, we say they have the right—even if they lie. But we also have the right to refute those things that are said, and they don’t like that.

Listen to the rest here, transcript included.

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