(PatrioticPost.com)- A state of emergency in Ecuador’s prison system has been called after a brutal battle among gang members in a coastal prison erupted. It resulted in 116 people being killed and a further 80 injured.
Authorities have described the incident as the worst-ever outbreak of violence in a prison in the country, with at least five of those who died having been beheaded.
President Guillermo Lasso issued a state of emergency on Wednesday which gave the government increased powers to control the riot. Police and soldiers were deployed inside of the prisons to return the institutions to order. The decree came only a day after violence broke out at the Litoral penitentiary in Guayaquil that government officials believe was linked to international drug cartels who were fighting to take control of the facility.
President Lasso spoke during a press conference and appeared visibly shaken by what had happened. He described how the situation had become “bad and sad” but that he was unable to guarantee that the authorities had successfully regained control of the prison facility.
He spoke about how the nation’s prisons are becoming a focus for drug cartels fighting to maintain their territories, but committed with “absolute firmness” to take back control of the facility and to stop the trend of violence from spreading to other prisons in the country.
Some disturbing photographs, which we will not reproduce here, are being shared on social media showing dozens of dead bodies laying on the floor in prisons that look like scenes from horror movies. Prisoners are understood to have spent days fighting each other with knives, guns, and even bombs.
According to regional police commander Fausto Buenano, some dead bodies were even recovered within the prison building’s pipelines.
Colonel Mario Pazmino, formerly the head of Ecuador’s military intelligence, said that the incidents show that transnational organized crime has “permeated the structure” of the nation’s prisons.
If this happened once, how can they possibly stop it from happening again?