An Israeli delegation visits Ecuador to advise the government on security and purchase of weapons

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The experts hold meetings with military authorities and officials from the government of Guillermo Lasso

An Israeli delegation visits Ecuador to advise the government on security and arms purchases

Members of the Armed Forces and the National Police are advised by Israeli experts. (Ministry of Defense)

A delegation of Israeli experts is in Ecuador to cooperate on security matters with the Forces Armed< /b> and the Police Nationalfrom the country. The objective of the delegation is to guide the members of the public force in the elaboration of a security equipment acquisition plan.

Until this Wednesday, November 9, the experts will attend to three work tables, of weapons, equipment and technology, with police and military.

In an interview with the local television station Teleamazonas, the Minister of the Interior , John Zapata, pointed out that the government maintains dialogue with “an important group of people linked to defense and security activity.” The goal is to determine who will be the suppliers for Ecuador's security forces.

According to Zapata, in the case of the National Police, between 45% and 70% of acquisitions of equipment will be carried out bilaterally with Israel.

An Israeli delegation visits Ecuador to advise the government on security and weapons purchases

The Ecuadorian Police graduated 10,000 new members, according to the Interior Minister, John Zapata. (REUTERS/Santiago Arcos)

These actions are part of the government's plan to strengthen the Armed Forces and the National Police, two institutions that “have been weakened,” according to Zapata.

Among the weapons that Ecuador will buy are long arms – whose barrel measures 31 cm and its total length is 61 cm – to combat members of organized crime who also occupy this type of firearms.

For Zapata, cooperation with Israel allows the government “two things: transparency, which is essential, above all also prices and times. And what we cannot do with them will have to be found, perhaps the United States. And the other to do via executive decree, emergency and special regime”, according to El Universo.

An Israeli delegation visits Ecuador to advising the government on security and weapons purchases

The Armed Forces also participated in the workshops with the Israeli delegation. (SNAI)

The Secretary of State also announced that, in addition to purchases with Israel, the government allocated USD 28 million to purchase uniforms, another USD 36 million for vests, USD 110 million for the construction of six community policing units and 100 community police units. In addition, USD 6 million will be used to purchase more than 120 intelligence vehicles.

The operational capacity of the National Police was also strengthened, according to Zapata, by the incorporation of 10,000 of the 30,000 police officers that the government of President Guillermo Lasso offered to graduate during his administration. “That is important, it not only means more, because these personnel have to have adequate equipment, which is what we are doing with vests, uniforms,” the minister told El Universo.

< p class="paragraph">In May 2022, Guillermo Lasso paid an official visit to Israel. The objective of the trip, in addition to strengthening the relationship between the two nations, was for the countries to work together on security, innovation, entrepreneurship and investment. Lasso is the first Ecuadorian president to visit that country.

An Israeli delegation visits Ecuador to advise the government on security and arms purchases

Ecuadorian President Guillermo Lasso was received by Jonathan Peled, Deputy Director General of Israel for Latin America during his visit to Israel.

During the visit, Lasso met with his counterpart Isaac Herzog. The main theme of the meeting was security cooperation.

In addition to Israel, Ecuador seeks the support of the United States in its fight against drug trafficking and crime organized transnational.

At the end of October it became known that the government of Ecuador wants the United States to donate USD 5,000 million to finance the comprehensive security strategy promoted by the administration of Guillermo Lasso. The Ecuadorian president has been emphatic that this amount is required to combat drug trafficking and transnational organized crime.

An Israeli delegation visits Ecuador to advise the government on security and weapons purchases

The president of Ecuador, Guillermo Lasso, met with General Laura Richardson, commander of the United States Southern Command, who visited the Latin American country for a Security Summit in September.

Diego Ordóñez, head of the National Secretariat of Public and State Security, assured in an interview with Ecuavisa that the government has been managing these funds with the United States for more than a year. According to Ordóñez, the proposal for the financing and support to equip the security forces was delivered to the Department of Defense, the Southern Command of the United States and the Department of of State.

Ecuador has become a key point for cocaine trafficking to Europe and the United States. According to the US Bureau of International Narcotics Affairs, the country's main seaport is the logistics hub for drug shipments to various countries around the world.

Including the Bureau's latest report of the United Nations on Drugs ranked Ecuador as the third country in the world that seized the most cocaine during 2021. Most seizures take place in ports, since traffickers contaminate the containers that will be exported with drugs.