Statement from the Network in Defense of Humanity

The Network of Intellectuals, Artists and Social Movements in Defense of Humanity categorically expresses its repudiation of the violent repression and the worsening political persecutions being deployed by the government of Ecuador, and urges President Moreno to restore democratic validity at all levels.

Mr. Moreno’s government must immediately cease the dictatorial course it has taken. Under the protection of the declaration of a state of emergency on October 3, the government has militarized the country, established a curfew in strategic areas and public buildings, and violently repressed demonstrators and anyone expressing opinions other than neoliberal ones. An unprecedented record of hundreds of people arrested, dozens injured and at least five dead, gives an account of the levels of violence unleashed against the people. We are particularly concerned about the attacks that have affected minors and even newborns, which have occurred from incursions into hospitals in Quito.

The Network urges respect for the right to freedom of thought and expression and an end to media censorship and aggression against journalists. Facts such as the raid on the Universal Pichincha Radio station, arrest warrants against journalists, intimidation of media and communicators must cease.

We call on the Ecuadorian executive to immediately suspend the political persecution and incitement to hatred, expressed by President Moreno himself, with accusations without evidence against leaders of the Movimiento Revolución Ciudadana, such as those he has made against former President Rafael Correa and leaders Ricardo Patiño, Virgilio Hernández and Paola Pavón, whom he accuses of trying to destabilize his government.

We urge international organizations, the UN Human Rights Commission, the Rapporteur on Indigenous Peoples, the Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression, all human rights organizations and democratic governments to redouble their actions to promote the urgent return to democratic institutions in Ecuador.

The UN High Commissioner for Human Rights must urgently deploy all possible mechanisms to urge the government of Moreno to release more than 600 people arrested for demonstrating and some 100 leaders arrested or threatened. Repression against indigenous peoples, peasants, settlers, women and other persecuted persons must also cease immediately.

The Network also reminds Mr. Moreno that the peaceful mobilizations being carried out on a massive scale by the Ecuadorian people have to do, according to their own spokespeople, with the imposition of a neoliberal package and compliance with unconstitutional conditions imposed by the IMF, and not with the supposed involvement of other presidents or countries in the region. We call on the government of Ecuador to abide by international law and its protocols in its dealings with other countries and governments, with special care given to respecting and maintaining Latin America and the Caribbean as a Zone of Peace.

October 9, 2019

Network in Defense of Humanity

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