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Ecuador rocked by protests for eighth day in a row

Indigenous protesters descend on Quito demanding Guillermo Lasso's resignation

THOUSANDS of indigenous protesters descended on the Ecuadorian capital Quito this week as they demanded the resignation of right-wing President Guillermo Lasso. 

Ecuador has been rocked by eight days of protests which were expected to continue yesterday amid growing anger over rocketing fuel prices. 

Mr Lasso extended a state of emergency covering six provinces and introduced a night-time curfew in the capital as he seeks to quell the protests. 

“With this decision, the welfare of citizens is safeguarded in the face of violence. At the same time, the rights of those who demonstrate peacefully are protected,” a government statement said.

But the government response has been criticised with Mr Lasso mobilising the country’s armed forces against protesters. 

On Sunday, police took control of an indigenous community centre in Quito to prevent it being used as a base for the demonstrations. 

It had previously been used to shelter anti-government protesters in 2019 demonstrations that saw at least 11 killed and thousands injured but forced the government to back down over plans to scrap fuel subsidies. 

Ecuador has been hit by rising levels of inflation, unemployment and poverty, with the cost of diesel almost doubling since 2020.

The country had previously had been crippled by reforms imposed by the International Monetary Fund in return for a $6.5 billion (£5.3bn) loan negotiated by Mr Lasso’s predecessor Lenin Moreno.

Petrol prices have risen from $1.75 to $2.55 (£2.11) a gallon, which Conaie argues impacts disproportionately on indigenous people, who make up about one million of Ecuador’s 17.7 million population.


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