Ecuador cracks down on protesters over austerity & IMF loan, President moves govt from capital (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

Ecuador cracks down on protesters over austerity & IMF loan, President moves govt from capital (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

Chaotic mass demonstrations are underway in Ecuador
following a spate of austerity cuts tied to a recently implemented
IMF deal. Police have unleashed tear gas on protesters, while the
government has declared a state of emergency.

By Monday, some 477 people had been arrested after five days of
heated demonstrations, in which protesters blocked roads and
clashed with police on the streets of Quito. 

The demonstrators – many of them indigenous peoples – met a
forceful police response, including tear gas, billy clubs and
armored vehicles, with officers pursuing protesters on horseback
and motorbike.

Continúa la represión del “gobierno del
diálogo”. Cuánto tiempo más el país debe soportar esta
conmoción social? Su temor es cada vez más evidente, la violencia
es su respuesta!

— Marcela Holguín (@marcelaholguin)
October 7, 2019

President Moreno announced on Monday evening that he would no
longer govern from Quito, and would instead relocate to the
southwestern city of Guayaquil, hoping to avoid the brunt of the
demonstrations. Late last week, he hoped to end the gatherings with
a 60-day national emergency decree, temporarily rescinding press
freedoms and the right to public assembly, but the marches have not

6:42 pm. The situation in Ecuador continues
to be tense. Military trucks arrive at the presidential palace.
Social movements are on the streets. President Lenín Moreno is
nowhere to be found. @telesurenglish

— Estefanía Bravo (@EbravoteleSUR)
October 7, 2019

The days of rage were prompted by a package of spending cuts
introduced by the Moreno administration last week, particularly its
elimination of state fuel subsidies. The fuel prices more than
doubled, taking a disproportionate toll on poor and indigenous

The new economic measures come in preparation for a $4.2 billion
loan deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) approved in
March. IMF loan agreements often require recipient nations to
reform internal economic policies before they are

Así está
el pueblo en la calle siga los detalles por @teleSURtv

— Madelein Garcia (@madeleintlSUR)
October 8, 2019

On Monday, as protesters made their way toward Quito’s
presidential palace, where Moreno was expected to give an address,
officials and journalists were suddenly ejected from the building
by the military, reportedly as a security measure. Some were caught
up in the massive police parameter around the palace, which
included barbed wire and fences, and left stranded for some time
with no way to leave.


Militares evacuaron esta tarde a los funcionarios y periodistas del
Palacio de Carondelet por seguridad. ►

— El Universo (@eluniversocom)
October 7, 2019


periodistas estamos en la calle, en las inmediaciones
del Palacio de Gobierno. Militares desalojaron la Presidencia porq
hay manifestaciones acercándose. En este momento, los periodistas
no tenemos ningún tipo de seguridad para salir @eluniversocom

— Gladys Rivadeneira (@GYRivadeneira)
October 7, 2019

While security forces continued to build up defenses around the
palace, where
armored vehicles
could be seen arriving late on Monday.

The president also slammed the protests as a “coup attempt”
carried out by “corrupt” lawmakers affiliated with his
predecessor and one-time ally, Rafael Correa and Venezuela’s
Nicolas Maduro.

¡Con alegría y entusiasmo!, así recibe la
gente de Quito a la marcha del Movimiento Indígena que avanza a
Quito desde el sur del Ecuador, vamos a lucha con respeto y unidad
con los sectores que se suman a la lucha por los derechos de todos
los ecuatorianos#SomosConaie

— CONAIE (@CONAIE_Ecuador)
October 7, 2019

Despite the crackdown, the protests show no sign of fading.
Indigenous groups say they expect around 20,000 more demonstrators
to arrive in Quito by Tuesday, many of them voyaging from southern
parts of the country to partake in the protests. Videos have
appeared on social media showing throngs of protesters as they
marched toward the city. 

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