Ecuador declares state of emergency over drug trafficking crimes

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On Saturday April 1, Ecuadorian President Guillermo Lasso officially announced new measures to combat insecurity in his country, in particular the authorization of the possession and carrying of civilian weapons for self-defense.

The use of pepper spray for self-defense is also permitted. In addition, the Head of State stressed that the manufacture, registration and possession of homemade weapons are prohibited and that private security guards will assist the National Police in their surveillance and security tasks by carrying their weapons. at their place of work.

Lasso announced the new measures after several violent incidents over the past few days, including murders, the finding of a decapitated human head in a park, and numerous robberies, including a bank robbery at a busy shopping mall in daylight in the coastal city of Guayaquil.

This week, in the same city, criminals kidnapped a man and released him hours later on a street with an explosive device on his body. one of the cities most affected by crime. It took more than three hours for bomb disposal teams to defuse the explosive device taped to the man’s vest and left leg, an unprecedented episode in Ecuador.

The president, who has declared a state of emergency in Guayaquil and other areas three times in the past year to tackle high crime rates, did not say how long the new one would last. measure.

Catherine Mills Avatar