Libel Case Pits Ecuador’s President Against Newspaper

By: CNN

(CNN) — Court proceedings began Tuesday in a high-profile libel lawsuit that pits Ecuador’s president against one of the nation’s largest newspapers.

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa is seeking $80 million in damages from El Universo newspaper and its staff. He also wants a judge to impose three-year prison sentences on the newspaper’s directors and its former opinion editor.

A judge is scheduled to rule Friday in the case, which has drawn international attention from press-freedom advocates, who say Correa aims to crack down on critics by restricting the media.

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