Wednesday, May 07, 2008
Back in Quito, political analyst Simón Pachano cannot foresee a scenario in which the Manta base might be allowed to stay open.
Unlike his predecessors, Correa is enjoying unprecedented popularity. And his aggressive anti-American and anti-Colombian stance plays well in this nation accustomed to taking a back seat in regional politics.
In exchange for using the base free of charge for 10 years, the United States agreed to expand and update the airstrip, and cooperate with Ecuador on counter-narcotics initiatives.
The fact that the 1999 deal was never approved by Ecuador's full legislature -- only that body's International Affairs Committee -- has made it a political target, Pachano said.
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