World, Americas

Ecuador’s interior minister dismissed

Maria Paula Romo accused of allowing harsh police intervention during anti-government protests in 2019

Sinan Dogan   | 25.11.2020
Ecuador’s interior minister dismissed

BOGOTA

Ecuador’s National Assembly censured and dismissed Interior Minister Maria Paula Romo on Tuesday for allowing harsh police intervention against thousands of anti-government protesters in October last year.

According to local media, deputies of the National Assembly approved the motion with 104 "yes" votes against 18 "no" votes and 12 abstentions.

Speaking on the decision, Romo said: "I fulfilled my duty to preserve the security of citizens and peace, within legal and constitutional responsibilities."

She was accused of allowing police to use expired tear gas canisters that endangered people’s lives during the 11 days of anti-government protests in Quito over the removal by President Lenin Moreno’s administration of fuel subsidies on Oct.16, 2019 and other economic policies in a bid to obtain a loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Data from the Ombudsman of Ecuador showed that the excessive use of police force caused at least 11 deaths and left 1,340 people injured.

Over 1,200 people were detained, including 57 foreign nationals.

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