PanamaTimes

Thursday, Apr 18, 2024

Ecuador mayor killed amid anti-gang state of emergency

Ecuador is grappling with heightened gang violence, which has claimed the life of Brigitte Garcia, the 27-year-old mayor of San Vicente, alongside her municipality’s communications director, Jairo Loor.
Both were found dead from gunshot wounds inside a vehicle, under mysterious circumstances suggesting the shots came from inside the car, as per the national police.

This incident comes amidst Ecuador's state of emergency, initiated by President Daniel Noboa to combat gang-related violence following the escape of a notorious gang leader, leading to increased military presence and control over prisons.

Despite the government’s efforts, including the "Phoenix Plan" aiming to drastically reduce violence through numerous operations, arrests, and drug seizures, the country still faces significant security challenges.

Recent developments include an army patrol ambush near the Colombian border, resulting in casualties, and a bomb scare at a professional soccer game in Latacunga, highlighting the ongoing danger despite governmental action.

As Ecuador strives to maintain security, the assassination of Mayor Garcia marks a significant blow in its fight against organized crime, signaling the persistent threat gangs pose to the nation's stability.
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