On Wednesday, Stephane Dujarric, the spokesperson for the United Nations Secretary Antonio Guterres, called on the Ecuadorian State to respect the right to protest and guarantee adequate judicial processes for all those detained during the ongoing demonstrations against President Guillermo Lasso.
In a statement read from New York, he called for "to lower tensions and to seek ways of dialogue," emphasizing the need for the Lasso administration to act in accordance with international human rights standards.
His recommendations occur after it became known that Leonidas Iza, the president of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE), was arbitrarily detained in the early hours of Tuesday. He remained without charge for almost 24 hours until he was released on "parole."
The release of the CONAIE leader, however, has not diminished the outrage of the citizens. Since Tuesday afternoon, dozens of trucks and cars have been entering the capital city with Indigenous farmers and workers from other provinces.
Ecuador enters its third day of national mobilization against the disastrous economic policies of Guillermo Lasso's government.— Kawsachun News (@KawsachunNews) June 15, 2022
Major roadblocks have shut down several key transit areas. At the southern end of Quito, trucks filled with people head into the city to protest. pic.twitter.com/TvFY1jc5uR
On Wednesday morning, the protesters were gathering in neighborhoods in the south of Quito such as La Villaflora and Guajalo, from where they blocked roads and streets in rejection of the neoliberal policies applied by the Lasso administration.
“Yesterday we had to free our leader but the fight continues. The national strike is indefinite... This strike belongs to the Ecuadorian people. It does not belong to comrade Iza,” said Manuel Caizaguano, an Indigenous citizen who came from Saquisili.
The truckers' union also joined the national strike and used their vehicles to close the southern access to the capital city. Besides demanding a review of the payment of tolls, carriers demand a reduction in food and fuel prices.
#Ecuador | Indigenous organizations from Cotopaxi province are trying to enter Quito and head toward El Arbolito park, during the third day of the national strike due to the lack of action by President Guillermo Lasso's administration.— teleSUR English (@telesurenglish) June 15, 2022