This Wednesday January 10 a Day of Struggle was held throughout the country, which was initially called by the student organizations (FESE - secondary school students - and FEUE - university students) and the JRE (Revolutionary Youth of Ecuador) and was joined by the organizations of the Patriotic Front.
In the morning, large student marches were held and there were also large concentrations of teachers from the National Teachers Union (UNE). In all the marches members of the PCMLE [Marxist-Leninist Communist Party of Ecuador], the MPD [Popular Democratic Movement], and the Popular Front were present with their banners. The marches united in the center of the cities, around the government house in Quito and the government houses in the provinces.
The police did everything possible to prevent the marches, although they had been authorized. Not only did the police arrest students, but they entered home in various neighborhoods to arrest those who had fled the repression.
In Quito, the marches went to the Presidential Palace to deliver a proposal of alternative measures that would recover more than $11 billion that had been handed over to the rich or who have avoided paying taxes. With the antipopular measures the government would recover little more than $1 billion, but these measures are a test of the class character of the government and its submission to the IMF.
The demonstrators surrounded the center of Quito and dozens of them, headed by Luis Villacís, Chair of the Popular Front and spokesperson of the Patriotic Front, managed to break through the police lines and enter the Grand Plaza. There they held a continuous meeting against the government, while inside the Palace the President of the Republic received the Ambassadors to the country, the heads of the Armed Forces, the Police and the Catholic Church.
Villacís was accompanied by leaders of the UNE, FESE, FEU, Ecuadorian Confederation of Women for Change, Stalin Vargas (representative of the MPD) and other leaders of the Popular Front. They stayed in the Plaza until the police, reinforced by several units, threw them out.
In Guayaquil Street, the historic center of Quito, a leaflet bomb of the Group of Popular Combatants (GCP) exploded. When the police tried to stop a suspect, the people prevented them. This same solidarity action has taken place in defense of students pursued in demonstrations.
In Guayaquil, the action of the students of the state university was important. They opposed the attitude of its rector, an accomplice of the repression and the government in trying to prevent the protests. The students pointed out that the rector, León Roldós, "speaks of university autonomy in order to raise the costs of education, the fees, to expand measures to prevent free access, but for him it is not a matter of autonomy when the police enter the university to attack the students, especially those of the left and of popular origin".
In the afternoon, new united marches took place in all the cities in which popular, neighborhood and union organizations from various private and public enterprises took part. This is important because it shows the continually greater incorporation of popular organization in the days of struggle and creates greater interest in the United Assembly of the People of Ecuador that will take place this Saturday, January 13 starting at 9 AM at the Central University of Quito.
The strength of the popular struggle of January 10, headed by the Popular Front and the Patriotic Front, extended to the rural and urban areas. After this there will be new actions against the measures of the bourgeois and pro-imperialist government of Noboa. In the struggle, the discussion for the need for a revolutionary popular government is growing, towards which the Ecuadorian people should advance.
January 10, 2001
Newspaper En Marcha
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