Ecuadorean President Guillermo Laso declared a state of emergency in prisons on Thursday after at least 22 people were killed and 60 injured in riots.
Lasso announced a “complete restructuring of the prison system”. From now on the army will control access to the prisons, and the police will be deployed in the prisons.
In February, 79 people were killed in one day in a battle between gangs for control of the country’s major prisons.
Ecuador has about sixty correctional centers with a capacity of 29,000 places. But the prisons are extremely overcrowded, with a current holding population of about 38,000. They are guarded by 1,500 guards, while, according to experts, 4,000 are needed for proper and safe operation.
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