Following the arrest of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange at the Ecuadorian Embassy in London after President Lenin Moreno rescinded the diplomatic asylum Ecuador granted Assange in 2012, Ecuador plummeted off the list of top ten asylum destinations for journalists.
"Remind me not to go to Ecuador next time I opt to exercise my press freedoms and need asylum from the U.S. government as a result," commented news reporter John Hamilton of Boston. "I guess Russia's where it's at."
While some have criticized Moreno's rescission of Assange's asylum as a clear breach of faith and arguably even of the Ecuadorian Constitution, Moreno insisted that the revocation of Assange's asylum was nothing personal. "It just wasn't working out for us," he said. "It happens."
When pressed as to how he could betray the trust of a journalist and publisher to whom Ecuador had even gone so far as to grant citizenship in 2017, Moreno admitted that the decision to make Assange an Ecuadorian citizen had been made rather hastily, under questionable circumstances. "The citizenship thing was a little impulsive," he said. "Honestly, we were both a little drunk."
Although Ecuador is no longer an asylum hot spot for journalists looking for a defender of press freedom and First Amendment rights, Moreno emphasized that his country remains a top-notch tourist destination. "We've got beautiful beaches," he said. "Please, everyone, come visit."