indigenous protesters do not yield to government proposals

indigenous protesters do not yield to government proposals

Ecuador’s government on Thursday authorized indigenous people who have been protesting for 12 days to occupy the House of Culture in Quito, a traditional meeting place for indigenous people, as a gesture of goodwill to start a dialogue that still does not seem to be paid. strength.

Thousands of indigenous people occupied that space in the afternoon, which served as the basis for the October 2019 riots that put then President Lenín Moreno in trouble after his decision to partially withdraw a state fuel subsidy.

The Minister of Government, Francisco Jiménez, said that the government of Guillermo Lazo invited “to immediately start the dialogue that leads us to respond without delay to the aspirations of peace and prosperity.”

In exchange, the government asked for the clearing of blocked roads in the north-central part of the country to bring food and medicine to the virtually paralyzed cities.

However, far from ending the protest, the indigenous movement gained strength and the statements of the president of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities (CONAIE), Leonidas Iza, became high-sounding.

“It has to be clear that we are not here to kill people, we are not here to kill people, so that other opportunists come, fall and continue to govern and our demands have not been met,” said Iza.

After listening to their leader, the community members went to the National Assembly and tried to take it by force, and there again the police had to intervene.

Although the building was empty, there were clashes with sticks and stones, and the officers responded with a barrage of tear gas.

The churches also called for dialogue and suggested agreeing on a truce and a neutral zone where they can circulate to provide food to the population.

“Logically, the parties will have to negotiate and set the concrete, specific conditions in which those areas that we propose can be enabled,” said Monsignor Luis Cabrera, president of the Episcopal Conference and representative of the churches’ table.

Salvador Quishpe, assembly member of the Pachacútik Indigenous Movement, denounced other legislators who were followers of former President Rafael Correa of ​​having other pretensions.

“Behind the windows they are planning to overthrow the government and so that Correismo wants to put its president of the republic, taking advantage of the struggle and sacrifice of the mobilized indigenous people,” said the deputy.

The protests, initially peaceful, have turned violent since Monday, with attacks on private property, looting of small businesses, attacks on public vehicles, including ambulances, and private ones, whose drivers were extorted to let them pass.

On June 14, CONAIE began a national protest demanding a reduction in the price of gasoline from $2.55 to $2.10 a gallon, the fixing of prices by decree for agricultural products, and an increase in the budget for education. intercultural, as part of an agenda of 10 demands.

It is estimated that since then Ecuador has suffered losses of around 200 million dollars.

[Con información de AP]

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