Ecuador became a substantial customer of Israel arms exports in the mid-1970s, purchasing aircrafts, missiles, and mortars. Ecuador has remained a frequent and loyal customer of the Israeli defense industry, buying among others missiles, drones, radars and cyber security systems.
The Republic of Ecuador established diplomatic relations with Israel in 1957,Republic of Ecuador Establishes Diplomatic Relations with Israel but has historically voted against Israel within the United Nations (UN) system.Report to Congress on Voting Practices in the United Nations for 2020 Section 406 of Public Law 101-246 (22 U.S.C. §2414a) Additionally, then-President Rafael Correa canceled a scheduled visit to Israel in 2014 in support of Gaza.Ecuador’s president cancels Israel visit in support of Gaza However, President of Ecuador Guillermo Lasso (elected May 2021) became, in May 2022, the first president to visit Israel in Ecuador’s history; during his visit, he pledged to “move toward Israel” in the UN and announced the opening of an innovation office in Jerusalem.Ecuador to move toward Israel at UN, opens Jerusalem innovation office
Coinciding with the country’s period of military government (1972-1979), Ecuador became a substantial customer of Israel arms exports in the mid-1970s, purchasing aircrafts, missiles, and mortars. Since Ecuador’s return to democracy in 1979, Ecuador has remained a frequent and loyal customer of the Israeli defense industry, especially Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI).SIPRI
The Israeli Tactical School has a Counter Terror Academy in Ecuador that provides training in tactical shooting, secret service protection, self defense, and special units using methodologies and consultation by former members of Shin Ben, Mossad, the Israeli Navy, and the Delta Force.Israeli Tactical School Ecuador
Ecuador, along with 25 other nations including Israel, is taking part in Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2022 in August 2022, the world’s largest maritime exercise hosted by the US Third Fleet off the coast of Hawaii and Southern California.Israel taking part in RIMPAC 2022, world’s largest maritime exercise
In 2019, Ecuadorian authorities announced that Israel would be providing Ecuador assistance and support in cybersecurity following a series of cyber attacks on Ecuador.Israel ayudará en ciberseguridad a Ecuador tras 40 millones ataques recientes
In May 2022, President Lasso confirmed that he was seeking help from IAI in combating drug traffickers.Ecuador busca apoyo de Israel para combatir el narcotráfico y la delincuencia
In 2019 Cellebrite and AVP Ecuador organized the “Cellebrite Ecuador 2019 Forum” were they offered visual, and informative learning sessions of new tools and assisted with ongoing investigations.Cellebrite : https://cellebrite.com/en/events/evento-foro-de-cellebrite-ecuador-2019//
Usage of Israeli Arms
IAI Searcher Drones- used by the Ecuadorian NavyUn UAV IAI Searcher de la Armada de Ecuador se estrella en el PacíficoEcuadorian Navy loses IAI Searcher UAV
Elbit Tactical Boats- used by Ecuadorian Army (No. 19 Jungle Brigade) as of 2021 to carry out operations on Ecuador’s border with ColombiaFor the first time, Ecuadorian Army using tactical boats made by Israel’s Elbit
Human Rights Violations
In the twenty-first century, Ecuador has been censured by human rights groups for numerous human rights violations.
As of 2022, activists for a variety of causes have alleged mass video surveillance by the Ecuadorian government, including through technologies manufactured by Israeli companies. In addition to surveillance, protesters and human rights defenders have faced repression and other human rights abuses.‘We Are Living Under Constant Video Surveillance in Ecuador,’ Says Activist Anaís Córdova
Amnesty International has called on the last three presidents of Ecuador to end the heavy-handed repression of protests by indigenous, trade union, social, and human rights organizations: current President Guillermo Lasso, in June 2022;Ecuador: Repression of protests is causing a human rights crisis then-President Lenín Moreno in October 2019;Ecuador: Authorities must end repression of demonstrations immediately and then-President Rafael Correa in August 2015.Ecuador: Dozens injured at nationwide protests Additionally, the Amazon Rainforest (and its indigenous inhabitants) has been under threat by companies and the Ecuadorian authorities for several decades;Ecuador: Authorities and companies threaten the Amazon and its Indigenous Peoples the Amazon’s defenders– particularly indigenous women activists, including Patricia Gualinga, Ola Bini, and Margoth Escobar–have also faced oppression and even violence.Ecuador 2021
Between December 2020 and May 2022, at least 390 people were killed in Ecuador’s prisons due to overcrowding, gang violence, corruption, and impunity; following a 9 May 2022 massacre at the Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas prison (in which at least 44 prisoners were killed), Amnesty International called on President Guillermo Lasso to address the structural causes of Ecuador’s prison violence crisis.Ecuador: In light of new prison massacre, authorities must address structural causes