Ecuador bans journalist from traveling to testify at human rights assembly in Washington, D.C.

Journalist Wilson Cabrera, whose community radio station was closed by the Ecuadorian government, was prohibited from traveling to the United States by judicial order, reported the newspaper El Universo.

Cabrera planned to attend the 143rd Assembly of the Inter American Court of Human Rights in Washington, D.C., when minutes before he was to board his plane in the capital Quito, immigration authorities notified him that a restriction order prohibited him from leaving the Andean country, according to the newspaper El Comercio.

According to the country's immigration laws, travel bans are issued when an individual is in the middle of a legal process but El Universo could not find any open cases against the journalist.

Cabrera is the owner of the radio station The Voice of Esmeralda Oriental Canela in the southern city of Macas, which was closed in April 2011. The journalist was traveling to Washington, D.C. to denounced the Ecuadorian government's refusal to reopen the radio frequency and attacks on freedom of expression in the province of Morona Santiago.

Representatives of the newspaper El Universo and investigative journalists Cristian Zurita and Juan Carlos Calderón, all facing trials for publications, however, were allowed to leave to participate in the Assembly, reported El Universo.