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The Embassy of Ecuador to the United States commends President’s Obama’s Executive Action on Immigrants, which will provide thousands of Ecuadorians living in the United States with the opportunity to continue to live, work, and contribute to the country alongside their families and children.

The Government of Ecuador is committed to protecting and promoting the rights of our citizens at home and abroad, and the Embassy and our consulates across the U.S. are responsible for giving a voice to the nearly one million Ecuadorians live in the United States and who deserve a system that is fair and that safeguards their rightS. Today’s announcement helps achieve this goal.

For years, U.S. efforts to achieve immigration reform have been carefully watched in Latin America, the source of the majority of unauthorized immigrants to the U.S. The current system is broken across the board, including for the majority of the 11 million unauthorized immigrants who have been settled in the U.S. for more than a decade.

The path to true and lasting bipartisan immigration reform remains long and painstaking, but today’s measure is a crucial first step in recognizing the human element in immigration.

Ecuador now has a net negative emigration rate. More people are coming to our country than leaving due to our robust social and economic development. But this does not mean we can ignore the plight of those who have sought to join their families in the United States. For its part, Ecuador will continue to take a proactive role in providing support for Ecuadorians who have immigrated to the U.S., including providing technical training grants, educational assistance to Ecuadorian immigrants abroad, an working with local governments in key cities to co-finance technical educational and vocational training. Through these initiatives and others, we are enabling a more robust, educated, and valuable work force for both the U.S. and Ecuador.

We hope that the U.S. continues to work for comprehensive, bipartisan immigration reform that will protect all whose journeys bring them to this great country.