National Strike Planned for Ecuador Wednesday

Indigenous people who traveled from their communities arrive by foot to join anti-government protests in Quito, Ecuador, on Monday. Photo by AP Photo/Dolores Ochoa via Newscred

An ongoing series of strikes could lead to public disruptions in Ecuador on Wednesday. According to a travel alert by the U.S. Embassy, indigenous groups, workers’ unions, social organizations and some transportation groups have called for a national strike on Wednesday, October 9, which the Embassy said will likely involve marches heading toward the historic center of Quito and the presidential palace. Protests could take place in other cities and towns as well. 

“We urge all U.S. citizens to consider their safety foremost and to reconsider travel within and between cities and provinces,” the Embassy said in a written statement. “We also urge U.S. citizens to ensure they have adequate supplies of water, food, and fuel.”

Last week the protests began over President Lenín Moreno’s decision to end a $1.3 billion subsidy on fuel, blocking roads in Quito and smaller cities across the nation, the New York Times reports. A blockade on traffic to Quito International Airport also caused a number of flight delays and cancellations. President Moreno declared a state of emergency over the strike, allowing the country’s armed forces to dismantle the blockades. 

On Friday, a number of major transportation unions called an end to the strike, according to Bloomberg, following the arrest of nearly 400 protestors. 

Despite the end of the strike by many transportation unions on October 4, the U.S. Embassy warns that other organizations are still calling for a strike Wednesday. Travelers are advised to register for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive safety updates. 

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