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Ecuador in Turmoil as Drug Lord Escapes Prison, Armed Men Take Over Live Broadcast

HeadlineJan 10, 2024

Ecuador’s President Daniel Noboa on Tuesday declared “a state of emergency” and “internal armed conflict” as drug trafficking violence continues to soar. Noboa’s announcement came a day after one of Ecuador’s most notorious drug lords escaped from prison, and as hooded and armed men interrupted a live TV news broadcast, taking the staff hostage. Noboa designated at least 20 drug trafficking organizations as terrorist groups, authorizing Ecuador’s military to do whatever it takes to suppress the crime factions.

Adm. Jaime Vela: “From this moment, all terrorist groups identified in the presidential decree is a military target. The present and the future of our homeland is at stake. And any act of terror will make us give in. We will not step back nor negotiate. Public good, justice and order can’t ask for permission or bow their head in front of terrorists.”

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