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FORMER Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa insists that democracy will prevail in the Latin American country despite the government waging “lawfare” in a bid to block his candidacy in the 2021 election.
The left-wing leader, who is currently living in Belgium, spoke exclusively to the Morning Star.
He warned that US influence is undermining democracy in Ecuador and across the region as it fears a loss of influence and access to resources.
He described Mr Moreno’s tenure, which saw the return of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), as “the biggest betrayal in Latin American history” after rolling back all the policies and social gains made under the Correa government.
Mr Moreno’s approval ratings have dropped as low as 3 per cent according to polls.
Poverty is now a reality for many Ecuadorians who are angry over a deepening economic crisis and the government’s disastrous handling of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Mr Correa warned of US interference in Ecuador, saying that “the US government will intervene in order to stop any change,” only believing in democracy as long as it doesn’t weaken its influence.
But now they have resorted to more “sophisticated means,” he said, as opposed to the 1970s when the US backed a string of coups and military dictatorships to overthrow democratically elected governments in Latin and South America that threatened its interests.
He said attempts to block him and his party, Compromiso Social, from standing in the elections were a form of “lawfare” similar to that experienced by former Brazilian president Lula, who was jailed in a case marred by allegations of collusion between senior prosecutors and judges.
In April a court sentenced Mr Correa to eight years in jail in absentia on bribery charges, which he denies, insisting the claims are merely an attempt to block his candidacy.
On the eve of the verdict leaked emails showed alleged collusion between the judge and chief prosecutor.
Mr Correa warned of a “coup d’etat” after Mr Moreno’s government changed the electoral law so that any candidate wishing to stand has to register in person, which he said was impossible and unconstitutional.
Compromiso Social has been given 10 days to appeal against the decision to block it from standing in the elections, but Mr Correa said that it was likely to fail as Mr Moreno and his supporters have taken control of all elements of the state and judiciary.
But he remained hopeful for the future of Ecuador and the region insisting that “democracy will prevail” pointing to mass support for progressive parties and leaders across the region.
Read the full interview with Mr Correa in next week’s Morning Star in which we discuss Julian Assange and US imperialism, and watch the video recording on the website.
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