At least one killed in unrest in Ecuador during national strike - ombudsman

Ecuador Between cynicism and opportunism we still have dignity

Protesters in Ecuador fought a running battle with security forces Wednesday in a second day of violent demonstrations over a fuel price hike that forced the government to suspend most of the country's deliveries of crude.

Anti-government demonstrator stands in the middle of tear gas during clashes with police in Quito, Ecuador, Friday, Oct. 11, 2019.

Ecuador, which exited the OPEC global oil cartel last week citing economic constraints, produced more than 500,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) - which was worth some $4.6 billion in exports in the first six months of the year. Though Correa has denied any involvement in Ecuador protests, the critics relate it with the past where his supporters were always critical of President Lenin Moreno, speculating that the allegations could be true to some extent.

"With the blood of our brothers, we won't negotiate", indigenous leader Jaime Vargas declared in a speech to the crowd.

The government has agreed to cut public spending as part of it loan deal agreed with the International Monetary Fund in March, which allows Ecuador to borrow $4.2bn (£3.4bn).

The officers, including a woman, were put on display before an angry crowd at Quito's House of Culture which indigenous groups have occupied since arriving in the city last weekend.

He denied reports that police had used excessive force he said they had followed "strict protocols [which were] drawn up under global norms". Thousands of protesters are calling for a repeal of austerity measures as the country's president Lenín Moreno refuses to step down. Correa is dismissing as "nonsense" allegations that he is plotting with Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro to destabilize the current Ecuador government amid violent unrest sparked by fuel price hikes.

He also offered to free up resources for those hit hard by the rise in fuel prices.

The unrest has threatened to inflict wider damage on an already weakened economy.

Ecuador's main oil pipeline, which runs from the Amazon region to Balao port on the Pacific ocean, has stopped operating because mainly indigenous protesters disrupted production facilities, the energy ministry said.

Ecuador, which exited the OPEC global oil cartel last week citing economic constraints, produced more than 500,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) - which was worth some $4.6 billion in exports in the first six months of the year.

Ecuador's defence minister, Oswaldo Jarrín, said the army was seeking to "restore, order, peace and tranquility" on Wednesday as widespread protests took place across the country.

Demonstrations broke out after increases of up to 120 percent in fuel prices came into force on October 3. More than 700 people have been arrested and more than 400 wounded, according to authorities.

In Washington, a senior United States official backed the allegations and voiced hope that all sides in Ecuador would sort out their differences peacefully. It said two people had died in accidents linked to the violence across the country.

Moreno drew fresh support Thursday from neighbours Peru and Chile, after seven other Latin American countries - including Argentina, Brazil and Colombia - warned against any attempt by Maduro and his allies to "destabilise" Ecuador.

"We also reject all actions meant to destabilize our democracies on the part of the Nicolás Maduro regime and those who seek to extend the influence of his nefarious government project to the democratic countries of the region", the statement added.

In an interview with The Associated Press, Correa called for a new election to solve the crisis.

"There's no coup here".



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