Sunday, 20 September 2020

Ecuador president Moreno leaves Quito amid growing unrest

With protests escalating in Ecuador, President Lenin Moreno has moved his administration out of the capital Quito to the port city of Guayaquil. Moreno claims his predecessor, Rafael Correa, is attempting a coup.

As thousands of anti-government protesters poured into Ecuador’s capital Quito, the nation’s president, Lenin Moreno, moved to the southern port city of Guayaquil and announced he was facing an attempted coup.

Nationwide protests, including road blocks, looting and escalating clashes, first started earlier this week in response to the government’s decision to cancel key fuel subsidies.

Members of the nation’s indigenous tribes traveled to the city for a march on the Quito presidential palace on Tuesday. Protesters braved police tear gas and some briefly broke into the empty congress building, while elsewhere roads were blocked and transport came to a halt.

- paying the bills -

Protesters seized two oil installations and state oil company Petroecuador warned that one-third of the country’s production could be lost if protests continue.

In other parts of the Andean country, protesters vandalized shops and vehicles during running street battles with riot police.

Moreno blames Correa, Maduro

In a Monday evening address from Guayaquil, Moreno pledged to stick to the subsidies decision. Moreno also accused his exiled predecessor Rafael Correa of trying to oust him with help from Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro.

“Maduro and Correa have begun their destabilization plan,” Moreno said, appearing together with his top military chiefs.

- paying the bills -

On Tuesday, his government said it would be open to mediation by the United Nation or the Catholic Church to overcome the crisis. Moreno’s secretary, Juan Roldan, also said that 570 people have been arrested due to the protests.

Correa slams ‘liars’ in Moreno’s government

Talking to reporters in Belgium, Correa denied accusations that he was planning a coup and that he was in cahoots with Venezuela’s Maduro.

“They are such liars … They say I am so powerful that with an iPhone from Brussels I could lead the protests,” he told the Reuters news agency.

“People couldn’t take it anymore, that’s the reality,” he added.

Ex-president Rafael Correa now lives in Belgium

Correa faces multiple charges in Ecuador, including corruption and abuse of power. He said he would only go back if there was a political shift in the country.

- paying the bills --

“I would have to be a candidate for something, for example, vice president,” he said.

IMF demands austerity

Ecuador is facing an economic crisis and was forced to seek a $4.2-billion (€3.8 billion) loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) last year. The canceling of the fuel subsides plays a key role in complying with the IMF’s terms.

However, Moreno’s austerity program is unpopular among his voters, says Ximena Zapata of the Hamburg-based GIGA Institute for Latin American Studies.

“It punishes the poorest parts of the population and favors the small percentage of the wealthy, mostly private banks and businesspeople,” she told DW.

Related Articles

South America ignores Europe and reopens as virus peak nears

(AP) — South American countries on Monday began easing COVID-19 restrictions...

Four Costa Ricans back from Ecuador tested positive for covid-19

Four of the 40 Costa Ricans who arrived on April 29...

MOST READ

Fire truck that was in the 9-1-1 attack is in service in Costa Rica

(QCOSTARICA) A fire truck that was in the 9-1-1 attack on the Twin Towers, in New York, is on Costa Rican soil and continues...

COVID-19 Costa Rica: 1,378 new cases for Sept 16

(QCOSTARICA) The Ministry of Health reported 1,378 new cases of the COVID-19 on Wednesday, September 16, bringing the total of confirmed cases to 59,516. The...

U.S. Citizens Living in Costa Rica Can Vote in This November’s General Election

(QCOSTARICA) In a press release from the United States Embassy in San Jose, Costa Rica, citizens living in Costa Rica can vote in the...

Luggage scam: Airport police alert hoteliers and tourists

(QCOSTARICA) Authorities of the Ministry of Public Security ask the owners of hotels and related rental sites to take preventive measures against the "luggage"...

Victim of sexual abuse in Cartago: “this has to stop”

(QCOSTARICA)  "I was walking and pushing my six-month-old son's stroller and my 11-year-old daughter was riding a bicycle. As I stop to get the...

Funeral homes in times of pandemic: the painful challenge of the last goodbye to the COVID-19 deceased

(QCOSTARICA) A young man observes crying from the gate of the cemetery the moment in which his mother is buried. He is an only...

Let's Keep This Going!

To be updated with all the latest news and information about Costa Rica and Latin America.

Log In

Forgot password?

Forgot password?

Enter your account data and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Your password reset link appears to be invalid or expired.

Log in

Privacy Policy

Add to Collection

No Collections

Here you'll find all collections you've created before.