Protests in Ecuador: The president declares a state of emergency in three regions

Protests in Ecuador: The president declares a state of emergency in three regions
Protests in Ecuador: The president declares a state of emergency in three regions

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I promise to defend our capital and defend the country. It forces me to declare a state of emergency in Pichincha [où se trouve Quito, la capitale]Imbabura and Cotopaxi from midnight tonighthe said in a televised speech.

The state of emergency allows the president to mobilize the armed forces to maintain order, suspend the rights of citizens or impose curfews.

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The protest movement was launched on Monday by the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador, the largest organization of indigenous peoples, which specifically called for a reduction in fuel prices.

Since the beginning of the week, access to two major supply markets in the capital Quito has been blocked, as well as many highways in 15 of the country’s 24 provinces.

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Indigenous people make up one million of Ecuador’s 17.7 million inhabitants.

The organization had already led violent demonstrations in 2019 (11 dead) and participated in uprisings that brought down three presidents between 1997 and 2005.

The Ecuadorian president received a small delegation of indigenous representatives on Friday to try to quell the crisis that has left 43 protesters and police officers injured and has led to 37 arrests.

On Friday night, the conservative president, who has been in power for a year, also announced a bonus increase from $50 to $55 for improve the difficult situation of the poorest families, as well as various aids to farmers.

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