Ecuador Protests 2019
The Ecuadorian government has subsidized fuel for the last forty years, making gas prices roughly $1.86/gallon. However, in recent news, with intention to eliminate the country’s debt, Ecuadorian president, Leinin Moreno, terminated the controversial subsidy. As a result, a nationwide protest broke out, led by the indigenous population of the Andean country.
Over a two week period, the country went into lockdown with roadblocks covering almost every road, violent protests in Quito and city curfews making it extremely difficult to move throughout the country. Wildcards, co-founder Jes Stockhausen witnessed this event while stranded in the capital working through a month-long motor repair. Naturally, he couldn’t help but explore the protest action and witness this historic event.
Overnight, it became a battle zone; street fires and burning tires, city destruction, petro bombs, brick throwing and over 15,000 angry indigenous from the amazon, mountains and coast, stormed the city to dispute the decision. You could feel the “power of the people.” After two full weeks of mayhem, seven deaths and thousands of dollars worth of damage, the government reinstated the gas subsidy, reversing their decision. The indigenous respectfully ended the protest, shaking hands with the law enforcement and cleaning up before heading back to their homes. It was a wild uprising to witness and a great learning experience for Jes as he makes his way from Alaska to Argentina.
Here is a small collection of photos from the experience.