Weekly Report - 12 May 2022 (WR-22-19)

ECUADOR: Gangs undeterred by state of exception

Two weeks into the state of exception declared by President Guillermo Lasso in three coastal provinces, the events capturing public attention in Ecuador have not been the major security rollout but a string of gruesome killings that laid bare the escalating violence gripping the country. A prison massacre, the murder of a high-profile defence lawyer, and the discovery of four tortured bodies all point to the intensification of the Ecuadorean drug wars and raise questions as to whether the militarisation of public security via states of exception is set to become the new norm.

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