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Volume 6, Issue 38

From the week of June 26, 2022

So who is Leonidas Iza, the president of the Conaie?

So who is Leonidas Iza, the president of the Conaie?

The name Leonidas Iza became relevant in the national strike of October 2019. Since then, his political profile has been on the rise, and now he is one of the main opponents of the Guillermo Lasso government. The arrest of Leonidas Iza, after leading the first day of mobilizations in the framework of the national […]

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Pichincha Prefecture refused to clear road where soldiers were ambushed

Pichincha Prefecture refused to clear road where soldiers were ambushed

The Ministry of Transport and Public Works reportedly asked the Pichincha Prefecture at least 3 times to clear the Mitad del Mundo-Río Blanco highway. The Middle of the World-Río Blanco Road has been blocked for several days by protesters who support the national strike, despite the fact that the Prefecture has been asked to enable […]

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Lasso will decree another state of emergency if anarchy and violence return

Lasso will decree another state of emergency if anarchy and violence return

The president, who held an interview with CNN, faces a request for impeachment in the Assembly. Ecuadorian President Guillermo Lasso, in an interview with CNN this past Saturday, said that once they managed to recover peace, he repealed the state of emergency decree “so that everyone who is concerned has the peace of mind that […]

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Conaie’s demands and the Government’s responses

Conaie’s demands and the Government’s responses

From the beginning of the indigenous mobilizations on June 13, 2022, the Government and Conaie have both presented their arguments for and against the national strike. There has also been a lot of confusion as to what Conaie has demanded and how the government has responded to those demands—or if the Government agreed to any […]

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A conspiracy theory isn’t always wrong

A conspiracy theory isn’t always wrong

Well, I had hoped that I wouldn’t be talking about this ‘national strike’ any longer (the finger quotes are because calling this protest a strike is like calling a fish a hammer). I had hoped that sense could win out and that the people in charge of both sides would not play a political game, […]

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Pachakutik assemblyman: “My family was intimidated to force me to vote for removal of Lasso.”

Pachakutik assemblyman: “My family was intimidated to force me to vote for removal of Lasso.”

The legislator says that since the Saturday morning, videos have been circulating online with people saying that they will go looking for the assembly members house by house. Rafael Lucero, an assemblyman from Pachakutik, says that his daughter and grandchildren were intimidated on Saturday, June 25th by people who were looking for him to pressure […]

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Volume 6, Issue 37

From the week of June 19, 2022

Sate agrees to cover 50% of urea cost, to increase Human Development Bonus, but rejects increased fuel subsidies

Sate agrees to cover 50% of urea cost, to increase Human Development Bonus, but rejects increased fuel subsidies

Starting July 1st, more than 100,000 farmers will receive subsidized urea to prevent the high cost of this fertilizer from continuing to affect production costs and prices. The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock indicated on Monday, June 20, 2022, that it will allocate $27 million in this subsidy, which consists of covering 50% of the […]

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How Ecuador ended up in another national strike: gas prices were always the main issue

How Ecuador ended up in another national strike: gas prices were always the main issue

The price of fuel has been, for a year, the main disagreement between the indigenous movement and President Guillermo Lasso. The first efforts to reach an agreement on gasoline prices were in June 2021, but the negotiation broke down in November, and the tension has been escalating since. The national strike facing the government for […]

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Five of the Conaie demands that Lasso agreed to will increase the budget by $518 million

Five of the Conaie demands that Lasso agreed to will increase the budget by $518 million

Five of the eight government promises to meet the requests of the indigenous movement will require additional spending within the 2022 State Budget. Five of the eight measures announced by President Guillermo Lasso on June 17th imply an expense of $518.3 million for the State. In response to the 10 demands made by the indigenous […]

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Armed Forces pledges support for Lasso government

Armed Forces pledges support for Lasso government

Early on Tuesday morning, June 21st, Ecuador’s Minister of Defense, General Luis Lara, gave a press conference in which he said that the Armed Forces offer their support to President Guillermo Lasso. This came after 9 days of national strike in which violence has escalated to levels that had only been seen in the demonstrations of October 2019. General Lara was […]

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When is enough, enough?

When is enough, enough?

This is a democracy here in Ecuador. Right? Because it sure doesn’t seem like one when 6.2%* of the population can shut down the entire country. The indigenous population of the country is 1.1 million; there are 17.7 million people in the country. [CONAIE, who is leading the current protests is composed of three regional […]

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‘Ready to Kill’–Ecuador’s teen Sicarios murder for twenty dollars

‘Ready to Kill’–Ecuador’s teen Sicarios murder for twenty dollars

A country once described by a US Drug Enforcement Agent as the “United Nations” of organized crime, Ecuador is witnessing its largest rise in violent deaths in a decade. Ecuador registered 2,000 murders in 2021, an increase on the 1,400 registered in the previous year. As of April this year, the country had already witnessed […]

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Volume 6, Issue 36

From the week of June 12, 2022

Minister of Health says Covid-19 is at “endemic levels” in Ecuador

Minister of Health says Covid-19 is at “endemic levels” in Ecuador

The Minister also said that the cases of people who need hospitalization or who die from the disease have not increased.  Ximena Garzón, Minister of Health, said that currently Covid-19 “has endemic levels in Ecuador.” According to the Minister, although the cases have increased in recent weeks, they are mild and moderate symptoms. Hospitalization and mortality levels have not […]

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In first 5 months of 2022 there were 118 gender-related deaths of women with 53 femicides

In first 5 months of 2022 there were 118 gender-related deaths of women with 53 femicides

Between January and May 2022, there were 118 gender-based violent deaths of women. In Ecuador there is a femicide every 30 and a half hours. The Feminist Alliance for the Mapping of Femi(ni)cides in Ecuador published a report on femicides in the first 5 months of 2022. In this period, there were 53 femicides in the country. It is necessary to […]

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Start thinking of another plan

Start thinking of another plan

I’m sitting here scrolling thru the news from Ecuador and I have to say I’m worried. Those of you who lived in Ecuador in 2019 will understand why this national strike is setting off my alarm bells. That “protest” stranded many people throughout the country. Others, I included, were trapped trying to get somewhere urgently. […]

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State budget improves, government will give more money to GADs

State budget improves, government will give more money to GADs

The increase in the budget has been possible due to the growth in tax revenues. The Decentralized Autonomous Governments (GAD) —municipalities, prefectures, governorates and parish councils— will receive more money from the State. The Ministry of Economy and Finance announced on the morning of June 7th that in the second quarter of 2022 —which runs from May […]

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Key points of law passed by the Assembly that regulates ‘the legitimate use of force’

Key points of law passed by the Assembly that regulates ‘the legitimate use of force’

The law was approved with 104 votes, amid questions. With 104 votes in favor, the National Assembly approved the Organic Law that Regulates the Legitimate Use of Force. The law states that its objective is to regulate the progressive, adequate, and proportional use of force by “law enforcement officers” —including the National Police, the Armed Forces, and prison guards— “in […]

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Volume 6, Issue 35

From the week of June 06, 2022

Almost 10% of Ecuadorian families live in overcrowding

Almost 10% of Ecuadorian families live in overcrowding

In the provinces of Orellana and Morona Santiago, overcrowding exceeds 19%, the highest percentage in Ecuador. In addition to that, 14% of houses in the country have structural damage. Living in precarious conditions continues to be a problem for thousands of Ecuadorians. A recent study by the Ecuadorian Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INEC) reveals […]

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Do we really need more police and military in Ecuador?

Do we really need more police and military in Ecuador?

Ecuador is experiencing a frightening increase in violent crime and the government intends to resolve it with more police and military personnel. At the inauguration ceremony of the military high command at the Eloy Alfaro Military High School, on May 31, 2022, in Quito, President Guillermo Lasso said that his government will incorporate more troops into the Armed […]

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Ecuador ranks fifth in South American road deaths

Ecuador ranks fifth in South American road deaths

Ecuador is looking to reduce its traffic accident rate in half by 2030. The Ecuadorian Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INEC) reports that traffic accidents are among the 10 main causes of death in Ecuador. And the World Bank says that the mortality rate in traffic accidents in Ecuador is 20 deaths per 100,000 inhabitants. […]

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Inflation reached 3.38% in May 2022, according to the INEC

Update to: Inflation reached 2.89% in April 2022, according to the INEC Published: Volume 6, Issue 31 The cities in which consumer prices increased the most in May are Manta, Cuenca and Santo Domingo, according to the National Institute of Statistics and Censuses (INEC). The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose and stood at 3.38% in […]

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A new hearing for the ‘habeas corpus’ of Jorge Glas has been scheduled for June 14th

Update to: Glas released from prison after serving only 4 years for three different felony crimes Published: Volume 6, Issue 27 The former vice president was released on April 9th but returned to prison because the first ruling of the Manglaralto judge was declared null. Judge Soledad Manosalvas, of the Pichincha Specialized Judicial Unit for […]

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Sometimes life isn’t fair

Sometimes life isn’t fair

I’m back in Boston. Been here for two weeks. I will leave in another week. My wife’s cousin is here, she is 38 years old, and she has a serious brain tumor. And I’m her healthcare agent (i.e., medical proxy). Her situation is not good, and without going into detail I’ll share that I came […]

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South America’s unknown ancient path

South America’s unknown ancient path

Connecting the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, a 4,000-kilometer trail created by indigenous people over millennia is now beginning to reveal its mysteries to the world. Overripe star fruits and guavas stuck to the soles of my boots in a sweet, fermenting mess as I strolled out of the sleepy town of Peabiru. I had travelled […]

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Ecuador awaits Belgium’s response to the extradition request of Rafael Correa

Update to: Court requests extradition of Correa, Belgium granted him asylum Published: Volume 6, Issue 29 The request for the extradition of the former president of Ecuador Rafael Correa is already in Belgium, where the former president has refugee status and whose authorities, according to his lawyer, have already announced that they will not collaborate with the […]

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Volume 6, Issue 34

From the week of May 29, 2022

Updates: 06-29-2022

Update to: Peru president forced to install third cabinet amid criticism and resignationsPublished: Volume 6, Issue 18Peruvian prosecutor investigates Pedro Castillo for corruption crimes The president of Peru is being investigated for ‘criminal organization, influence peddling and aggravated collusion.’ Prosecutor Pablo Sánchez expanded the investigation against the president of Peru, Pedro Castillo, for the alleged […]

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SRI Director General replaced by Lasso disciple

SRI Director General replaced by Lasso disciple

The Internal Revenue Service (SRI) reported that Francisco Briones assumed the position of Director General of the tax administration Francisco Briones is the new Director General of the Internal Revenue Service (SRI). Since May 2021, Briones had been serving as Deputy Secretary General of the Cabinet. Briones is an economist from the Escuela Politécnica del […]

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More than 80% of Ecuadorians disapprove of National Assembly efforts

More than 80% of Ecuadorians disapprove of National Assembly efforts

The Cedatos polling company conducted 2,020 interviews in 19 cities across the country. The approval ratings of the National Assembly have plummeted in slightly more than one year of work. According to the polling firm Cedatos, at the beginning of this administration, on June 5, 2021, the Assembly had a 42.1% approval rating, but as of […]

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Government insists that there will be a popular consultation in 2022

Government insists that there will be a popular consultation in 2022

The Minister of Government, Francisco Jiménez, said that it will be done this year. The Minister of Government responded with a seriousness in tune with his navy-blue suit and his white and light blue striped tie. “We are going to implement it. We hope to do it in the course of this year,” said Francisco Jiménez last […]

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Ecuador announces the ‘2025 road plan’

Ecuador announces the ‘2025 road plan’

$5.2 billion would be invested to repower and improve Ecuador’s highways One of the greatest concerns across the country in recent years is the deterioration of Ecuador’s highways. According to the Ministry of Transport and Public Works, less than 13% of the country’s roads are in very good condition; 44% are rated as “good.” However, on the remaining […]

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Bored to have you back

Bored to have you back

Our friends are moving back to Ecuador from Poland. They moved there a few years ago after leaving Ecuador for Spain; they didn’t like it there so then they went to Italy. Didn’t like that either. So, they went to Poland—because she’s from there. They’ve been there a few years. And they did kind of […]

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Volume 6, Issue 33

From the week of May 22, 2022

Chile is one of six countries leading the production of green hydrogen, the “energy of the future”

Chile is one of six countries leading the production of green hydrogen, the “energy of the future”

Hydrogen (H2) is the most abundant element in the universe and could be the key to “decarbonizing” the planet. Scientists have made it clear: if we want to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, we must find a way to stop global temperatures from rising further. The challenge is immense. Temperatures are already 1 degree […]

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Craft beer brands grew 20% in Ecuador during the pandemic

Craft beer brands grew 20% in Ecuador during the pandemic

Over the last two years, capacity restrictions and the closure of bars and restaurants drove consumers to the craft beer market. About 250 craft beer brands are produced in Ecuador, says Katherine Gárate, administrator of the Association of Craft Breweries of Ecuador (Asocerv). That number is 20% higher than the number of craft beer brands […]

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Demand for wind energy in Europe leads to deforestation in the Amazon

Demand for wind energy in Europe leads to deforestation in the Amazon

The blades of the wind turbines, made of balsa wood, pose a paradox; renewable energies can cause great social and environmental impact What does the deforestation of balsa wood in the Ecuadorian Amazon rainforest have to do with the generation of wind power in Europe? These two activities, apparently so far apart, have a perverse […]

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Go outside or read a book

Go outside or read a book

“I am free from the distractions constantly arising in civilized life from social claims. Nature offers unceasingly the most novel and fascinating objects for learning.” – Alexander con Humboldt Friedrich Wilhelm Heinrich Alexander von Humboldt (September 14, 1769 – May 6, 1859) was a German polymath, geographer, naturalist, explorer, and proponent of Romantic philosophy and science. He was […]

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President Lasso’s first report to the nation

President Lasso’s first report to the nation

At noon on Tuesday, President Guillermo Lasso —received with applause and wearing the presidential tricolor sash around him— gave his first report to the nation in front of more than 500 people in the National Assembly. His discursive agenda was varied: he raised vaccination, which has already exceeded 80% of immunization in the Ecuadorian population as […]

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Volume 6, Issue 32

From the week of May 15, 2022

According to investment banks Ecuador won’t need to issue external bonds in 2022

According to investment banks Ecuador won’t need to issue external bonds in 2022

The good economic environment leaves room for an increase in public spending in the second half of 2022, say Barclays and Bank of America. Ecuador will not need to issue debt bonds on the international market in 2022, due to the rise in oil prices, a good macroeconomic performance and the support of the International […]

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Ministry of Tourism suspends draft regulation for ‘Airbnb’ properties

Ministry of Tourism suspends draft regulation for ‘Airbnb’ properties

Proposal for rules for leasing real estate for tourist use, released on Tuesday, May 10th, generated support and criticism, acknowledges Minister Niels Olsen. The draft of the Regulation for the Leasing of Properties for Tourist Use that the Ministry of Tourism disclosed on Tuesday, May 10th, was suspended due to lack of consensus, the Minister of Tourism, Niels Olsen, reported […]

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A big lie continues

A big lie continues

Wow, gasoline in the US hit $4.11 a gallon in the US last month. Imagine what that does to the average American’s ability to spend on other critical items like food, utilities and other forms of transportation. I’ve read a lot about the anger this is generating back ‘home.’ And from the political cartoons, this […]

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Leader of the Latin Kings gang gunned down in Quito

Update to: Bloody riot in Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas prison leaves 44 dead Published: Volume 6, Issue 31 He was 46 years old and ran a gastronomic service business in Quito , together with “brothers” from the organization. Manuel Zúñiga or ‘King Majestic’ served as president and legal representative of the Latin Kings in Ecuador. Manuel Zúñiga or ‘King Majestic,’ his partner and his […]

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IMF to give Ecuador $1.7 billion dollars more by end of 2022

IMF to give Ecuador $1.7 billion dollars more by end of 2022

The first disbursement in June will be of $1 billion dollars. Ecuador will access a new disbursement of one billion dollars by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that “the authorities would use for budget support.” The money will come after it is approved by the IMF’s executive board, according to a statement from the multilateral. By the end of the year, the […]

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Three arrested in murder investigation of pyramid scheme perpetrator ‘Don Naza’

Three arrested in murder investigation of pyramid scheme perpetrator ‘Don Naza’

Three people were arrested for the alleged murder of Miguel Ángel Nazareno, known as Don Naza, the founder of the illegal money pyramid scheme called Big Money. Nazareno was found dead in Amaguaña, a rural parish in Quito, in mid-April of this year. According to the Police, Nazareno died from a gunshot wound in his left thigh. Last Wednesday, the Ministry of the Interior announced that […]

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Ministry of Agriculture and BanEcuador propose debt refinancing for small banana growers

Update to: 2022 is shaping up to be a complex year for the banana sector Published: Volume 6, Issue 27 The Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG) and BanEcuador presented a proposal to ease the financial pressure faced by banana producers due to the war between Russia and Ukraine, which has affected fruit exports. The proposal outlines […]

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Volume 6, Issue 31

From the week of May 08, 2022

Bloody riot in Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas prison leaves 44 dead

Bloody riot in Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas prison leaves 44 dead

Another day, another bloody riot in the Ecuador prison system. This time the scenario played out early Monday morning at the Bellavista Rehabilitation Center in Santo Domingo de los Tsáchilas prison. The Prosecutor’s Office has confirmed 44 inmates died in the riot that began at 12:30 a.m. Monday. From Israel, where he arrived for an […]

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Ecuador becoming a key transit connection for cocaine shipments to Europe

Ecuador becoming a key transit connection for cocaine shipments to Europe

During the first four months of 2022, at the national level, more than 85 tons of drugs have been seized nationwide in Ecuador: double what was registered last year. More than half of the seized substances were already in the containers, about to leave for North American and European ports. In the balance of 2021, […]

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Photo caption: Tadpoles of the marsupial frog were released in protected areas of the Bicentennial Park in Quito.

Photo caption: Tadpoles of the marsupial frog were released in protected areas of the Bicentennial Park in Quito.

In danger of extinction, the marsupial frog returns to Quito Of five species of frogs that once existed in the Ecuadorian capital, three no longer exist. Approximately 200 marsupial frog tadpoles were reintroduced into protected areas in Quito’s Bicentennial Park, where the old airport used to be, in the north of Quito. On Saturday morning […]

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Zone 8 Commander says “We are concerned about the amount of weapons entering the country”

Zone 8 Commander says “We are concerned about the amount of weapons entering the country”

In a recent interview, the Police Commander of Zone 8, Víctor Zárate also questioned why the Police should guard people under house arrest instead of patrolling the streets. General Víctor Zárate, Commander of Zone 8, made up of Guayaquil, Durán and Samborondón, says that the Police are wasting resources in guarding people under house arrest, […]

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Los Choneros and Los Lobos may become the next big drug cartels

Los Choneros and Los Lobos may become the next big drug cartels

The so-called ‘cockroach effect’ adds to the mutation of the hegemonic gangs that seek to become cartels. In the middle of everything is the operation of microtraffickers, who compete for space. The Minister of the Interior, Patricio Carrillo, says that all the linked acts of violence, especially in Guayaquil, as well as the strengthening, in […]

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The Court of Justice of Guayas revokes habeas corpus to alias ‘JR’

Update to: Alias ​​’JR’ house arrest under habeas corpus cancelled Published: Volume 6, Issue 30 The Specialized Chamber of the Guayas Provincial Court of Justice revoked the habeas corpus issued in favor of Junior Roldán, alias ‘JR,’ second in command of the Los Choneros criminal gang. With this decision, ‘JR’ must remain in the Guayas […]

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But it’s safe here!

But it’s safe here!

Wow, I saw a draft of this week’s edition of The Cuenca Dispatch, and it seems like it could be called the “Annual Crime Edition.” But I guess as stuff happens, it has to be written. And this week, the gangs seemed to have jumped to the front pages. And there wasn’t even a story […]

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Inflation reached 2.89% in April 2022, according to the INEC

Update to: Inflation, driven by transportation, reaches 2.71% in February, Published: Volume 6, Issue 22 The cities where consumer prices increased the most, in annual terms, are Cuenca, Santo Domingo and Manta. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose and stood at 2.89% in April 2022, compared to the same month in 2021, according to the […]

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Volume 6, Issue 30

From the week of May 01, 2022

Cuenca to push for popular consultation defining Turi as a “locals only” prison

Cuenca to push for popular consultation defining Turi as a “locals only” prison

Over the years, the Cuenca prison ceased to be regional and became national. From the model with which it was conceived, it has become a prison that houses ringleaders and high-risk prisoners who come from all over the country. That prison has not been exempted from gang disputes and inmate murders, a worrying situation in a […]

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Eight Minister’s and one Secretary resigned from Lasso’s cabinet in the first year of his term

Eight Minister’s and one Secretary resigned from Lasso’s cabinet in the first year of his term

Most resignations occurred in April 2022. In its first eleven months, President Guillermo Lasso’s government has had nine ministers and secretaries resign. At least 5 of those were in April 2022, a few weeks before President Lasso celebrates a year (on May 24th) in office. Mae Montaño, Minister of Economic and Social Inclusion The first Minister to go, […]

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If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be

If the world were perfect, it wouldn’t be

“It’s déjà vu all over again.” Yogi Berra said that. He said a lot of “Yogi-isms” over the years. Like, “You can observe a lot by watching.” Or “Nobody goes there anymore. It’s too crowded.” He was one heck of a ball player and certainly a character. And I got to meet him once. I […]

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Lasso accuses Correa and Nebot of manipulating the Assembly

Lasso accuses Correa and Nebot of manipulating the Assembly

 According to Lasso, the two want to “destabilize Ecuadorian democracy.” “Mr. [Rafael] Correa and Mr. [Jaime] Nebot together, these twins from the first day of my government are seeing how they destabilize Ecuadorian democracy,” said President Guillermo Lasso. According to him, former President Rafael Correa and former Mayor of Guayaquil, Jaime Nebot, —two of the most important […]

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New Minister of Energy and Mines will try to tackle Lasso’s oil production goals

New Minister of Energy and Mines will try to tackle Lasso’s oil production goals

Vice minister Vera replaces Juan Carlos Bermeo who only lasted 11 months in the role. Xavier Vera Grunauer is a civil engineer from Guayaquil. He was the Deputy Minister of Energy and Mines until Thursday, when President Guillermo Lasso installed him as head of that ministry, replacing Juan Carlos Bermeo Calderón. Bermeo, who had held the position since June 2021, […]

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State of exception decreed in Guayas, Manabí and Esmeraldas putting soldiers and police in the streets

State of exception decreed in Guayas, Manabí and Esmeraldas putting soldiers and police in the streets

The measure includes a curfew in certain parishes and special operations by the Police and the Armed Forces Making international news, President Guillermo Lasso announced that there will be a 60-day state of emergency in Guayas, Manabí and Esmeraldas. The objective of the state of exception, Lasso said, is to try to combat the criminal gangs that dominate those provinces. Lasso made […]

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Alias ​​’JR’ house arrest under habeas corpus cancelled

Update to: Judge who granted habeas corpus to Los Choneros leader dismissed by the Judicial Council Published: Volume 6, Issue 29 Junior Roldán, alias ‘JR’, will have to go to a hospital. This was ordered on Thursday by the judge of Penitentiary Guarantees, Carlos Cedeño. The magistrate decided to revoke the house arrest of the […]

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Volume 6, Issue 29

From the week of April 24, 2022

Judge who granted habeas corpus to Los Choneros leader dismissed by the Judicial Council

Judge who granted habeas corpus to Los Choneros leader dismissed by the Judicial Council

Lawyer Pedro Moreira only lasted five months as judge of the Guayaquil Penitentiary Guarantees Unit. The plenary session of the Judicial Council decided to dismiss the now former judge Moreira on Monday, April 25, 2022. It did so after Moreira used a controversial ‘habeas corpus’ ruling to grant house arrest to Junior Roldán Paredes, alias JR, one of the leaders […]

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Lasso says he will not allow the siege of criminals ‘assisted’ by corrupt judges in Ecuador

Lasso says he will not allow the siege of criminals ‘assisted’ by corrupt judges in Ecuador

President Guillermo Lasso, said this Sunday that he will not allow the siege of criminal gangs that have generated a wave of insecurity in the country, aided by judges who, according to him, have abused their hierarchy to favor criminals. “I will not allow Ecuador to become a State besieged by drug gangs aided by […]

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Lasso insists on an investment law with public-private partnerships

Update to: Guillermo Lasso: ‘I must govern without considering that the National Assembly exists’ Published: Volume 6, Issue 25 The investment law is still in the plans of the national government. This was indicated by President Guillermo Lasso, in his weekly press interview on April 26, 2022. The President said that his first two paths […]

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Court requests extradition of Correa, Belgium granted him asylum

Court requests extradition of Correa, Belgium granted him asylum

Belgium has granted political asylum to former Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa, who has an executed sentence of eight years in prison for the crime of bribery in the Bribery case—which he maintains is an act of judicial persecution. The former president’s Belgian lawyer, Christophe Marchand, confirmed the news on April 22, 2022, the same day it was learned that […]

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Dive boat sinks causing diesel fuel spill in Galapagos

Dive boat sinks causing diesel fuel spill in Galapagos

A diesel spill is being controlled in Galapagos. Around 8 a.m. on Saturday, April 23, 2022, a diving boat sank in Academia Bay, on Santa Cruz Island — the most populated island in the insular province. The boat’s sinking caused a diesel spill in the area where the accident occurred. According to the Ministry of Environment, Water and Ecological Transition, personnel […]

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Monsters do exist

Monsters do exist

It’s early summer here. The locals call it rainy season, but to me, it’s early summer. The mornings are crisp and cool, and the birds wake early at 6:00 a.m. to start their day. I tend to lounge in longer than that, though their tweets (the original tweet) get louder quickly and demand that I […]

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Ernesto Weisson, one of the ‘Miami Boys’, pleads guilty in the United States

Update to: Ecuadorians’ investment firm defrauded South America’s wealthy out of over $350 million Published: Volume 6, Issue 18 The founder of the massive Biscayne Capital scam, used to pay bribes to officials in Ecuadorian corruption cases, plead guilty to the charges of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. The first of the ‘Miami Boys’ to […]

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Volume 6, Issue 28

From the week of April 17, 2022

Chinese car sales dominate Ecuador market share and grow dramatically in first quarter 2022

Chinese car sales dominate Ecuador market share and grow dramatically in first quarter 2022

The market share of the Ecuadorian-assembled automotive industry has fallen significantly since 2015. Vehicle sales in Ecuador’s first quarter of 2022 registered a growth of 21.6%, compared to the same period in 2021, according to data revealed by the Association of Automotive Companies of Ecuador (Aeade). The car business is growing significantly in the country, amid a greater […]

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Don’t spill that water glass

Don’t spill that water glass

Today I was talking to my friend Wayne. We were both remarking on how much easier our lives are here than in the US and expressing shock at how expensive everything has gotten there. It’s easier to see your glass as half-full when you go back there. For lots of reasons. But certainly lately because […]

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National Court asks the Constitutional Court to review the application of habeas corpus in Ecuador

Update to: Glas released from prison after serving only 4 years for three different felony crimes Published: Volume 6, Issue 27 The president of the National Court of Justice (CNJ), Iván Saquicela, sent a document to the Constitutional Court for the authorities of the two entities to meet with the aim of discussing the application of ‘habeas corpus’ in Ecuador. The request, which bears the […]

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Ecuador and Argentina sign declaration on Celac, Trade and Venezuela

Ecuador and Argentina sign declaration on Celac, Trade and Venezuela

President Alberto Fernández spoke of resuming diplomatic relations with Venezuela while President Guillermo Lasso indicated that his government ‘will analyze the issue.’ Venezuela was one of the high points of an interesting meeting between the presidents of Ecuador, Guillermo Lasso and Alberto Fernandez, from Argentina. After the meeting, which lasted almost two hours, both leaders […]

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Justice Commission challenges constitutionality of ‘abortion for rape law’ with its own lawsuit

Justice Commission challenges constitutionality of ‘abortion for rape law’ with its own lawsuit

Assemblywoman Johanna Moreira said that this was “the way we are going to continue the fight” for victims of sexual violence. The Justice Commission of the National Assembly will present a claim of unconstitutionality against the law of interruption of pregnancy in cases of rape when it is published in the Official Registry. This bill entered into force by the […]

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Tropical plant thought to be extinct rediscovered in Ecuador

Tropical plant thought to be extinct rediscovered in Ecuador

Scientists from the University of Miami found Gasteranthus extinctus in the Centinela mountain range A team of researchers from the University of Miami visited Ecuador in search of a tropical plant that had been thought to be extinct for nearly 40 years, Gasteranthus extinctus. Biology professor Kenneth Feeley encouraged graduate student Riley Fortier to join an […]

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TSA ruling on mask mandates affects flights to and from Ecuador and US

TSA ruling on mask mandates affects flights to and from Ecuador and US

The Transportation Security Administration (TSA) of the United States has indicated that it will no longer enforce the use of masks in public transport and transportation centers after a court ruling ordered by a Florida judge. The requirement to wear masks within public transport applied to planes, trains and other means of transport due to […]

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Volume 6, Issue 27

From the week of April 10, 2022

Spanish investigation says bribes were paid to get Quito metro contracts

Spanish investigation says bribes were paid to get Quito metro contracts

The alleged irregular payments were revealed by the Spanish media outlet El Confidencial. A Spanish consortium allegedly paid bribes of at least $1.2 million to Ecuadorian officials to secure a consultancy contract for the construction of the Quito Metro. This was revealed last week by an investigation published in the Spanish newspaper El Confidencial. The Spanish Anti-Corruption Prosecutor’s Office “has […]

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Spain’s National Police dismantle drug operation with roots in Ecuador

Spain’s National Police dismantle drug operation with roots in Ecuador

During the operation, four people linked to container import companies from Ecuador were arrested and a total of 3,500 kilos of cocaine, 250,000 euros in cash and seven high-end vehicles were seized. Last week agents of Spain’s National Police, in a joint operation with Customs Surveillance of the Tax Agency, dismantled a criminal organization dedicated […]

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2022 is shaping up to be a complex year for the banana sector

Update to: Exporters buy 685,000 clusters of bananas from producers in first week of plan to affront loss of sales to Russia and Ukraine Published: Volume 6, Issue 25 The drop in Ecuador’s banana exports occurs after four years of upward trend, according to data recorded by the Central Bank. The banana sector, the second […]

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Sick of being sick

Sick of being sick

I’ve been sick for the last 6 days. I had been in Denver for a week and then travelled to Florida to visit my mother before I returned to Ecuador. I started feeling sick the day after I got here. Out of caution I’ve taken 4 at-home Covid tests and they have all been negative. […]

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Pastaza province, Indigenous groups collaborate on forest conservation

Pastaza province, Indigenous groups collaborate on forest conservation

Pastaza province, located in Ecuador’s Amazon, has implemented a $52 million sustainable development plan working with Indigenous nations that includes their ancestral practices, knowledge, and life plans. The plan relies on curtailing dependence on oil and mining projects for economic development and implementing chakras, an ancestral agroforestry system, and conservation projects to boost food security […]

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Government imports banana plants resistant to the fungus Fusarium R4T

Update to: $8 million more to be invested to prevent arrival of Fusarium tropical race 4 Published: Volume 6, Issue 22 The National Institute of Agricultural Research (Iniap) will validate the plants, through a process of agronomic evaluation, adaptability and performance. The Government imported 4,620 banana plants of the Cavendish somaclonal variety, which is a […]

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Lasso’s partial veto of the rape abortion law will go to the Constitutional Court

Lasso’s partial veto of the rape abortion law will go to the Constitutional Court

Assembly members and constitutional experts have divided opinions on whether the Legislature has the power to refer the veto to the Court.  The plenary session of the National Assembly decided to send to the Constitutional Court President Guillermo Lasso’s partial veto of the law of interruption of pregnancy in cases of rape. However, constitutional experts are divided on whether […]

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