It was in Guayaquil and it is the second so far in June on the streets of the Ecuadorian city hardest hit by crime linked to drug trafficking.
At least six dead and six wounded left a new armed attack this Monday in Guayaquil, the second so far in June in the streets of the Ecuadorian city hardest hit by crime linked to drug trafficking.
It was parently a settling of scores between gangswhich left “as a regrettable result, six people dead and six people injured, who are now stable,” the police chief of the southern district of Guayaquil, Colonel Marcelo Castillo, told AFP.
Two weeks ago, five people died, including a policeman, and another eight were injured when three men opened fire inside a house in Guayaquil (southwest).
These types of attacks have become frequent in Ecuador, mainly in this port city, in the midst of a war for power between drug gangs. Numerous groups dispute the markets and drug routes in the streets and prisons, leaving a trail of corpses.some dismembered and hung from bridges.
Castillo pointed out that during the early hours of Monday in a populous neighborhood in the south of Guayaquil, more than a dozen people were “on the public highway libando” when “a black vehicle arrives and about four or five people get out.” to fire shots.
“They are pure retaliation for previous acts of violence. They kill each other mercilessly“, he added.
Clashes between drug trafficking groups have led to bloody massacres in the country’s prisons, which to date They leave more than 420 prisoners dead since February 2021.
Ecuador, located between Colombia and Peru -the world’s largest producers of cocaine-, seized about 100 tons of drugs during the first half of 2023, compared to just over 200 tons in 2022 and the annual record of 210 tons in 2021.
The police chief specified that one of those killed in the new armed attack has “a (criminal) record for illicit association in 2022”, while one of the wounded was involved in drug trafficking.
“There are people who are outside the law and criminal groups already have them as targets,” said the colonel, noting that they were found at the crime scene “132 ballistic indications between long weons and short weons”.
In April some thirty armed men opened fire in the middle of an artisanal fishing port that left a balance of nine people dead. Authorities specified that the attack that occurred in Esmeraldas (northwest and on the border with Colombia) was due to disputes between gangs over that strategic area.
That same month, in Guayaquil, a dozen people -including a 5-year-old girl- they were riddled while watching a football match.
Just as violent deaths have also escalated kidnpings and extortions in the once peaceful Ecuador, where the homicide rate went from 14 per 100,000 inhabitants in 2021 to 25 last year. The authorities estimate that the country with 18.3 million inhabitants, there are more than 13 criminal organizations.