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One Dead, Six Arrested over Assassination of Ecuadorian Presidential Candidate Fernando Villavicencio

HeadlineAug 11, 2023

In Ecuador, one suspect is dead and six others have been arrested in connection with the assassination of Ecuadorian presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio. Officials said all suspects in custody are Colombian and alleged members of a drug trafficking group. Ecuador is now under a nationwide state of emergency while authorities continue to search for the possible mastermind behind Villavicencio’s assassination. This is Ecuadorian Defense Minister Luis Lara.

Luis Lara: “The Armed Forces have begun the immediate deployment of their troops throughout the national territory so that there will be an Armed Forces presence in every city, in every town. They will remain there until the conclusion of the electoral process. Citizens have the guarantee that the Armed Forces will provide the necessary security for the polls. The vote of Ecuadorians will be the best response to the mafias and their allies.”

Villavicencio’s murder has thrown Ecuador into further disarray after President Guillermo Lasso dissolved the opposition-led National Assembly in May, blocking efforts by lawmakers to impeach him over accusations of corruption and embezzlement. Meanwhile, Ecuador’s snap elections are still scheduled for next Sunday, August 20, though several presidential and other candidates have suspended their campaigns.

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