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The president of Ecuador, Lenín Moreno, led a dialogue table with indigenous representatives on Sunday to end eleven days of violent demonstrations against rising fuel prices in the Andean country.
The meeting began with a minute of silence for those killed in the protests (seven, according to the Ombudsman's Office), and in a conciliatory tone among the participants but with the indigenous firmness at their request to withdraw the decree that eliminated the subsidies.
ELIMINATION DEROGATION SUBSIDIES
Moreno insisted that the elimination of the fuel subsidy will benefit the population, especially the poorest, and strengthen dollarization, in force since 2000. And encouraged to find a formula for the money generated by the Subsidy elimination is directed at the poorest.
But the president of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (Conaie), Jaime Vargas, insisted on repealing decree 883 that eliminated subsidies and was the trigger for the protests. "We are millions who now ask you to bet on peace, for stability, for the recovery of the country. Repeal this decree 883 and let's look together for that horizon of prosperity, social justice, equity, social peace," he said.
The indigenous leader also showed his hope that a "definitive and lasting" solution will be found, but warned that if that is not fulfilled they will remain "firm, united and with the unyielding commitment to defend" the people, so they are "willing to make all possible sacrifices. "
If at this time the repeal of the decree is decided, "he said, " the country calms down completely in all territories. "
BELT ENCOURAGES THE WAVE OF VIOLENCE
The beginning of the dialogue followed the protests that arose again this Sunday in the center of Quito and different neighborhoods in the south of the capital, despite the curfew that reigns in the city since Saturday and has been partially respected.
Throughout the morning there were thousands of citizens who took to the streets without being arrested by security forces, which led the Joint Command of the Armed Forces to suspend that condition between 11:30 and 20:00 local (16.30 and 01.00 GMT) . After noon, thousands of protesters gathered again in the Arbolito park to confront law enforcement.
The ruler congratulated the indigenous people for having detached those who wanted to take advantage of their "fair protest" to generate chaos and the "terrible" situation that the country has reached. "You are not responsible for what has happened these days," he told the Indians before blaming the violence on people related to former President Rafael Correa (2007-2017).
During the talks, which are held under the auspices of the Episcopal Conference and the United Nations System in Ecuador, Moreno noted that in the acts of violence systems used by the FARC in Colombia were used and considered that it is no accident that in fact "They are money from drug trafficking."
For the Ecuadorian Foreign Minister, José Valencia, the violence registered was part of "a preconceived plan to cause chaos, disorder, force an alteration of the democratic order." "The violent demonstrations throughout the country, but very particularly in Quito, are something unprecedented. Ecuador had never experienced anything similar," he said in an interview with Efe.
And he said that "it is not the indigenous protest simply. It is true that there are economic demands from indigenous associations, but the indigenous themselves have unmarked themselves from such violent acts, looting, attacks on buildings such as the State Comptroller's Office, media , to people who pass by. "
DIALOGUE AND RECONCILIATION
The United Nations resident coordinator in Ecuador, Arnaud Peral, congratulated the desire for dialogue, peace and reconciliation because "Ecuador has suffered greatly in recent days." "The time has come for reconciliation, the time to rebuild a path of peace and leave violence, hatred behind," he said before inviting to look for the points that unite and not those that divide.
On behalf of the Ecuadorian people, Luis Cabrera, vice president of the Ecuadorian Episcopal Conference, congratulated for the social sensitivity and the decision to face the great current challenges: "Let's be brave, let's bet on La Paz!"
TRANSPARENCY, DISCLAIMERS AND EXCEPTION STATUS
In a dialogue broadcast live on television, Vargas asked the head of state to transparent the agreements reached with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), in which framework subsidies were eliminated.
He complained about the lack of dialogue of the ministers in the last year and in particular, called for the separation of government ministers, María Paula Romo, and Defense, Oswaldo Jarrín for the "excessive violence" against the people in the protests.
At the negotiating table, the indigenous leader Abelardo Granda, asked Moreno to repeal the state of emergency, effective since last October 3 in the metropolitan area, when the demonstrations broke out.
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