As New Protests Loom, Ecuador Social Movements Announce March to Support Gov’t

August 7, 2015

ecuador_protests__2015.jpg_1718483346The support comes as one indigenous group is planning an anti-government march. Ecuadorean social and indigenous movements have announced a march in support of the government of Rafael Correa on Aug. 12, in the capital city of Quito.

The march has been called against a backdrop of recent right-wing destabilization attempts.

The demonstration will be held in the same week as actions by professional organisations, trade unions and some indigenous groups opposed to the left-wing Correa government.

Next week’s actions follow a wave of protests sparked by right-wing politicians, opposing the government’s attempts to make the wealthiest pay more in taxes as it tries to tackle inequality.

Many of the protests turned violent and the demands soon moved from being solely about the tax increases to an open call for the ousting of the Correa government, whose mandate was reinforced with a 57 percent victory in the 2013 presidential election and a huge lead over the nearest rival.

Rodrigo Collaguazo, a member of the Ecuadorean parliament and a representative of the Coordinator of Social Movements body said Thursday that the march defending the government will end outside the presidential palace and later meet the head of state, as part of the government initiated national dialogue on the proposed economic measures.

In the face of the predominantly right-wing protests, a process of national debate over the reforms is underway, which will form the basis of a preliminary report in September.

Collaguazo added that campesinos “will defend democracy and the dialogue,” something that was reaffirmed Saturday when it was announced nearly 1,000 social movements, groups and civil society organizations support the national dialogue.

Monica Mosquera, a representative of a women’s collective, also backed the dialogue calls, announcing, “We support the battle of ideas, but not violent confrontation supported by the sectors opposed to the government”

The Network of Teachers for an Education Revolution, which brings together thousands of teachers in the country, also backed the call for dialogue and acknowledged the progress made in education, training, scholarships and other benefits for the long excluded under the Correa government.

Numerous indigenous organisations have come out in support of the government and against a separate Aug. 10 mobilization, planned by indigenous group Conaie, against the government. They have accused the organisation, once a central part of Ecuador’s progressive movement but now much diminished, of aiding the Right.

Source: teleSur