46. Ecuador - Quito - Political UnrestOctober 6, 2019 in Ecuador ⋅ 🌧 54 °F
The road blockades that had delayed us leaving Coca for Quito had been just the beginning of a nationwise protest that had picked up momentum over the last few days.
Earlier in the month, the Gov't had announced an end to fuel subsidies that caused a dramatic increase in gas prices. The transportation industry went on strike for a day, and their cause was supported by the indigenous people (60% of the population of Ecuador), who insisted that the gov't reverse the subsidy elimination. (BTW - the elimination of subsidies was part of a deal with the IMF to obtain a $4B loan)
Over the last few days, the indigenous have converged on Quito, marching, waving flags, blowing horns, and engaging in violent clashes with the policia and military. Gov't buildings have been barricaded and fortified with police presence, but the gov't has since fled the city, moving to Guayaquil.
We, on the other hand, are stuck here. There's no way to get around the roadblocks. So we wait, and watch. While there is much activity in the area we are staying in, we are safe in our hotel, and are judicious when ranging outside.Read more