Ecuador police amnesty opposed

Country's president says leniency towards officers who caused unrest over bonuses "will tear us apart as a society".

    At least 10 people were killed in last month's unrest as police officers clashed with Correa's supporters [File: AFP]

    Ecuador's president has rejected calls by opposition legislators to give amnesty to police officers implicated in last month's uprising.

    Rafael Correa was injured when he was teargassed as he tried to address officers of the South American nation who had mutinied over plans to strip them of promotion bonuses.

    During his radio programme Dialogue with the President on Saturday, Correa said: "Amnesty for those who mistreated the president of the republic, who wanted to break democracy, who killed unarmed civilians [and] fellow officers, soldiers ... this will tear us apart as a society. The only thing left is to apply the law."

    He also called for the immediate dismissal of the director of the police hospital where he was rushed after the teargas incident. There he was surrounded by protesting officers for hours during the September 30 unrest until he was rescued by army commandos.

    Some 104 police officers are facing disciplinary action that could result in their firing and some are being investigated for possible criminal charges.

    In addition, 153 air force personnel are under investigation over the closure of the airports in Quito, Ecuador's capital, and Guayaquil during the uprising.

    Ten people were killed and 274 wounded during clashes when striking officers clashed with supporters of the president and the commandos who rescued Correa.

    Opposition legislators have raised the idea of granting amnesty to officers involved in the uprising, although they have not presented any specific proposals.

    SOURCE: Agencies


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