Admiral Jorge Gross, chief of Joint Task Force 2 of the Ecuadoran Armed Forces, said that the armed forces are gradually taking control of the situation in the country. He announced that during the five days of the state of emergency his task force will have the responsibility to maintain order in the Ecuadoran territory.
The Armed Forces of Ecuador announced this Thursday that the armed forces are gradually taking control of the nation after the attempted coup d’état caused by a police protest in the country.
“There is more calm. We are doing joint planning. We have Guayaquil (the center of Ecuador) under control, and order and security are gradually being restored,” said Admiral Jorge Gross, chief of Joint Task Force 2.
The admiral announced that during the next five days, the duration of the state of emergency, the task force under his command will maintain control of the situation, for which he asked the institutions of Ecuador for the greatest possible cooperation.
“During these five days, maintaining control will be my responsibility, to fulfill which I ask all the institutions for their fullest cooperation,” he said.
Gross said that all the forces are directed to “reestablish and hand over the political command again” to President Rafael Correa “as rapidly as possible.”
He added that the Ecuadoran military “are absolutely clear that he [President Correa] is in charge.”
This Thursday, some members of the Ecuadoran police took over Regiment No. 1, the largest police headquarters of Quito, by force, in protest against the refusal to veto the Public Service Law which contemplated changes in benefits and promotions in return for higher wages.
The president of Ecuador, Rafael Correa, who visited Regiment No. 1 in order to attempt a dialogue, was forced to abandon it after revolting policemen hurled tear gas grenades at him.
Facing this, Correa condemned these violent police protests as being part of an attempt at a coup d’état which had been prepared for months by the opposition and called on the police forces who serve the country to retreat to their headquarters.
Almost as soon as the insurrection began the high military command of Ecuador expressed its loyalty to the head of state.
“The Armed Forces, as determined by the Constitution, is an institution to protect the rights, guarantees, and freedoms of Ecuadoran citizens. . . . We respect the state of law,” declared General Ernesto González, head of the armed forces.
In his statements González assured that the uniformed officers will abide by the state of emergency, decreed for five days in the country, for which he asked “all our citizens to collaborate in this task so the state can return to normality.”
The original article “Fuerzas Armadas ecuatorianas anuncian restablecimiento paulatino del orden en el país” was published by TeleSur on 30 September 2010. Translation by Yoshie Furuhashi (@yoshiefuruhashi | yoshie.furuhashi [at] gmail.com).