Ecuadorian President denounces "coup attempt"

12:11, October 01, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa said late Thursday that he was "kidnapped" in a military hospital of Quito and the police protest was a coup attempt.

The president called himself "practically captive" in a telephone interview after being surrounded and kept from leaving Police Hospital of Quito where he sought treatment after being exposed to tear gas by rioting police officers protesting against a law that would cut their benefits.

Correa and his government have not been able to carry out affective actions to stop the protests, which began early Thursday morning when the policemen occupied the first Regiment Quito, one of the main police quarters.

The protest was joined by some troops and policemen, who have blocked highways in Quito, Guayaquil, Cuenca and other cities. About 150 members of the Ecuadorian Air Forces (FAE) also shut down the international airport of Quito.

Despite that, the army commanders have expressed support to Correa. The armed forces commander, Gen. Ernesto Gonzalez, declared the military's loyalty to Correa at a news conference later Thursday.

He also called for dialogue between the police and supporters of President Correa and a review or suspension of the law that provoked the protest.

The government declared a state of emergency, putting the military in charge of public order, suspending civil liberties and allowing soldiers to carry out searches without a warrant.

About 800 police officers in Quito joined the protest. At least one person was killed and more than ten injured in the clashes between police and supporters of President Correa, the Security Ministry said.

Ecuadorian Foreign Minister Ricardo Patino was also injured and sent to a hospital.

About 50 people were injured during the clashes, AFP quoted a Red Cross spokesman as saying.

Schools shut down in Quito and many businesses closed early.

In the wake of the riot, Latin American leaders on Thursday expressed their support to President Correa.

Brazilian Foreign Minister Celso Amorim phoned his Ecuadorian counterpart Ricardo Patino to express "Brazil's total support and solidarity with president Correa and the Ecuadorian democratic institutions."

Argentine President Cristina Fernandez said that "the government of Argentina strongly rejects the rebellion of the Ecuadorian military and police forces, which endanger its democratic institutions."

【1】 【2】


  • Do you have anything to say?


Special Coverage
  • Premier Wen Jiabao visits Hungary, Britain, Germany
  • From drought to floods
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Chinese Navy soldiers hold an evening party marking the upcoming 62nd National Day aboard Chinese Navy hospital ship "Peace Ark" in the Pacific on Sept. 28, 2011. The Chinese National Day falls on Oct. 1. (Xinhua/Zha Chunming)
  • Photo taken on Sept. 30, 2011 shows the crowd at the plaza of Beijing Railway Station in Beijing, capital of China. The railway transportation witnessed a travel peak with the approach of the seven-day National Day holidays on Friday. (Xinhua)
  • A man wearing high-heel shoes takes part in the 3rd annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, an event when men literally walk in women's shoes to raise awareness about ending violence against women, at Yonge-Dundas Square in Toronto, Canada, Sept. 29, 2011. (Xinhua/Zou Zheng)
  • Photo taken on Sept. 29, 2011 shows a cargo ship in danger on the sea near Zhuhai City, south China's Guangdong Province. Cargo ship Fangzhou 6 of Qingzhou of southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region lost control after water stormed into its cabin due to Typhoon Nesat on the sea near Zhuhai Thursday, leaving 12 crew members in danger. Rescuers rushed to the ship and saved them by using a helicopter. (Xinhua)
  • Actress Gong Li poses for L'Officiel Magazine. (Xinhua Photo)
  • Demonstrators from the Occupy Wall Street campaign hold placards as they march in the financial district of New York September 29, 2011. After hundreds of protesters were denied access to some areas outside the New York Stock Exchange on September 17, demonstrators set up a rag-tag camp three blocks away. Zuccotti Park is a campground festooned with placards and anti-Wall Street slogans. The group is adding complaints of excessive police force against protesters and police treatment of ethnic minorities and Muslims to its grievances list, which includes bank bailouts, foreclosures and high unemployment. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
Hot Forum Discussion