15 dead, 21 injured in Ecuadorian prison riot
Over 10 people are dead in the latest brutal incident in the Ecuadorian prison as authorities fail to contain the violence.
According to a statement from the SNAI, the agency that reports on Ecuador's prison systems, the Cotopaxi prison in Latacunga has left 15 inmates dead and 21 injured, following an earlier announcement that tactical units were trying to keep the facility under control.
Ecuador has witnessed seven major violent outbreaks in this prison, one of the largest in the country and containing 4,300 prisoners that have been linked to drug trafficking, leading to the deaths of more than 400 inmates since February 2021.
#Cotopaxi #Ecuador🇪🇨- Inmates seen attempting to escape at the #CPLCotopaxi No. 1. prison in #Latacunga as rioting brakes out, police tactical teams from the National Police and the Armed Forces responding according to SNAI (🎥@magacastal) pic.twitter.com/epbS3gzgvw— CyclistAnons (@CyclistAnons) October 4, 2022
Ecuador recorded the confiscation of 210 tons of drugs last year, mostly cocaine, while suffering from almost double the murder rate of 2020, at 14 per 100,000. In light of that, Ecuador's President Guillermo Lasso launched the country's first inmate census in August to improve the prison living conditions, but still, authorities have not been successful at preventing the violent episodes which are often executed with knives and involve beheadings.
In April of this year, 20 inmates were killed in a violent outbreak in El Turi Prison in Cuenca, and a month later in May, 44 were dead and 108 escaped the Bellavista prison in Santo Domingo de los Colorados.
According to official estimates, most of the country's 35,000 prisoners are members of gangs linked to drug activity, as Ecuador serves as a departure point for drug shipments, mainly to the US and Europe.