ECUADOR: HIDE AND SEEK


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As reported in the 8 October Trends Journal, thousands of Ecuadorian workers, indigenous people, and students took to the streets to protest rampant government corruption and lack of employment.  

Last February, Ecuador’s President, Lenín Moreno, made a deal with the IMF for a $4.2 billion loan.

As part of the deal, he issued some $1.4 billion in government cutbacks, which have deepened hardship among the general public. 

Protestors took to the streets and are rioting over government measures that canceled fuel subsidies and weakened labor protections… while generous tax breaks were offered to corporations. 

They’re demanding a repeal of the austerity measures and the resignation of President Moreno. 

In response, Morena decreed a state of emergency, suspending civil rights and allowing authorities to seize public and private property.

With protests escalating out of control and turning more violent, rather than face the consequences or address the public’s concerns, President Morena exited the capitol Quito, moving government headquarters to safer quarters… the coastal city of Guayaqui.

As of last week, over 1,000 arrests of demonstrators had been reported.

And on Saturday, 12 October, Morena declared, “I have ordered the Armed Forces Joint Command to immediately undertake all the necessary measures and operations,” Moreno said. “We are going to restore order in all of Ecuador.”

PUBLISHER’S NOTE: After 11 days of demonstrations, “necessary measures and operations” failed and protestors prevailed. 

“Comrades, this deal is a compromise on both sides,” Moreno said. “The Indigenous mobilization will end and Decree 883 will be lifted.”

Bowing to the escalating protests, late Sunday, President Moreno pledged to withdraw from an IMF-backed program that raised fuel prices. The agreement with indigenous leaders, which still has important details to work out, puts in place a new economic policy of government spending cuts and taxes to increase revenues.

PUBLISHER’S NOTE: What has been made clear in Ecuador is “Power to the People” can prevail. But currently in the U.S. and other “developed” nations, a “What can we do?” helpless/whiney mentality is the mantra. 

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