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National strike paralyzes Ecuador on Seventh Day of Protests
by Harvey Goldberg
Thursday Oct 10th, 2019 2:30 PM
The strike dramatically impacted Cuenca on Wednesday. Streets were largely deserted of vehicle traffic. There was no taxi or bus service. Police and army officers blocked off the central square in downtown Cuenca. A huge march of workers, students, and indigenous people gathered before noon. Things calmed down during mid-day, but in the evening there were running battles between protesters and security forces, which responded by lobbing teargas canisters.
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Photo: Marchers on Wednesday in Cuenca, Ecuador protest against President Lenin Moreno's austerity measures.
October 9, 2019

CUENCA, ECUADOR - Ecuador was paralyzed Wednesday by a nationwide strike, protests, and road blockades. Protests and strikes have convulsed the country since President Lenin Moreno decreed austerity measures a week ago.

Quito, the nation's capital, was a central focus of attention yesterday, as indigenous-led marches converged on the city. A strike brought the city to a standstill. Businesses were closed and there was no taxi or bus service. Workers and students joined indigenous protesters in marching through the central district of Quito.

There were numerous reports of some protesters clashing with security forces. As many as six people have been reported killed and over 700 arrested. Human rights groups have condemned the government's use of force as excessive..

President Moreno announced that his government was in talks with indigenous leaders, but those leading protests in the streets denied any negotiations and said the strike and protests will continue indefinitely until their demands are met.

President Moreno's decree included a dramatic increases in fuel prices, a 20 percent reduction in the pay of government employees, and other labor reforms. The measures were pushed for by the International Monetary Fund and supported by Ecuador's capitalists. Protest leaders say Ecuador's poor and working class can not afford the increases.

The strike dramatically impacted Cuenca on Wednesday. Streets were largely deserted of vehicle traffic. There was no taxi or bus service. Police and army officers blocked off the central square in downtown Cuenca. A huge march of workers, students, and indigenous people gathered before noon. Things calmed down during mid-day, but in the evening there were running battles between protesters and security forces, which responded by lobbing teargas canisters.

Outside of the central district of Cuenca, the city was eerily quite. There was extremely little traffic and most stores were closed. Those that remained opened had their gates up with entrances left ajar, ready to lock down at a moment's notice.
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Video of scenes from protests in Cuenca, Ecuador on October 9, 2019: https://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2019/10/10/18827186.php
§Marchers confront fences in Cuenca, Ecuador
by Harvey Goldberg Thursday Oct 10th, 2019 2:30 PM
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Cuenca's central square, Parque Calderon, where government offices are located, where fenced off too prevent protests there.
October 9, 2019
Cuenca, Ecuador
§Protesters marching through downtown Cuenca, Ecuador
by Harvey Goldberg Thursday Oct 10th, 2019 2:30 PM
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A huge midday march drew workers, students, and indigenous.
October 9, 2019
Cuenca, Ecuador
§Protesters blocked many streets in Cuenca, Ecuador
by Harvey Goldberg Thursday Oct 10th, 2019 2:30 PM
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October 9, 2019
Cuenca, Ecuador
§Much of Cuenca was deserted on Wednesday in Cuenca, Ecuador
by Harvey Goldberg Thursday Oct 10th, 2019 2:30 PM
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Away from the protests in central Cuenca, most thing were shut down and the streets were largely empty. This was the scene on Avenido de las Americas, a major artery usually full of traffic.
October 9, 2019
Cuenca, Ecuador

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