ObtainingEcuadorian nationality for a foreigner is usually accompanied by a long wait.Facundo Martínez, a 33-year-old Argentinian, who had to wait four years for theprocess, tells that.
The naturalization letter was obtained on December 27 of last year. Of this, the player of the Catholic University because knew from his teammates when they started sending him congratulations through social networks, when he was in Buenos Aires, his hometown.
Martínez recalls that the request had been presented at the offices of the Foreign Ministry more than four years ago and there they had offered him that it would not take more than 20 days to respond to his request. He has been living in the country since 2009.
The midfielder is grateful to the president, Lenín Moreno, who ended up nationalizing him Ecuadorian through Executive Decree, for special or relevant services, in consideration with his contribution in football and social support.
According to the Deputy Minister of Human Mobility, Santiago Chávez, the procedures depend on the type of request to obtain a naturalization letter, since the procedures are different. The Foreign Ministry records in the last five years that Colombia (1,527), Spain (1,052), Cuba (820), the United States (654) and Venezuela (262) are the main applicants for Ecuadorian nationality.
Between 2017 and 2018, 903 foreigners have been nationalized: 300 last year and 603 in the last 10 months, the increase is double. This is because 260 Cubans who asked to be naturalized for five years got this benefit this year. In these two years 337 nationalizations have been granted to Cuban citizens, 102 to Colombians, 63 to Americans and 50 to Venezuelans.
The majority of cases were processed as letters of naturalization and marriages and de facto unions, which are the channels contemplated by the Human Mobility Law that has been in force since last year.
The adoption of the Ecuadorian nationality occurs after fulfilling the requirement of a residence of at least three years. There is also naturalization by marriage or de facto union for two years, which is the minimum time contemplated in the requirements for the nationality process.
The diplomat Hernán Holguín, former Secretary of Migration Affairs, observes that none of these conditions was applied to the Australian hacker Julian Assange, who was isolated six years ago at the Embassy of Ecuador in London. “The process was crooked,” he said.
Assange also obtained the Ecuadorian nationality at the end of last year, but in his case the process took less than three months. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs granted it on December 12, 2017, 15 days before the publication of a regulation that allows applications for naturalization in embassies abroad.
“From now on I feel Ecuadorian, it’s a great country, I want to contribute to the country’s growth, freedom of expression and the press,” argued the founder of WikiLeaks to access nationality, according to the minutes of the interview conducted that month.
Although five years ago he had referred to Ecuador as “an insignificant country”, during a dialogue with CNN. In the interview with a diplomat from the Foreign Ministry, Assange was able to expand more on the origin of his surname and of WikiLeaks.
Holguín believes that there are sufficient reasons for the nationality granted to Assange to be reversed, but Foreign Minister José Valencia has reiterated that this must be decided by “the corresponding instances.”
Theformer Secretary of Immigration Affairs maintains that the procedure must bereviewed by the Presidency and the Attorney General’s Office. Assange’s lawyer,Baltasar Garzón, said during a visit to Quito that his client is “aspecially protected person” because he has an Ecuadorian nationality andcontinues as an asylee. (I)