A Prison Riot in Ecuador Leaves 11 Injured

On Wednesday, a prison riot broke out in Ecuador’s coastal city of Guayaquil that left at least 11 inmates and police officers injured. According to the SNAI prison authority, this was just days after a deadly riot at another jail. On Monday, relatives of inmates were waiting outside of a prison in Ecuador to find out if their loved ones were among the dead following a different riot that left at least 15 prisoners killed and 33 injured.


Ines Iguasni, a 33-year-old housewife, was trying to find out what happened to her husband, who she said was to have been released the day of the riot.

Iguasni said over shouts of other prisoners’ family members, “I’ve been here since yesterday when they said there was a shooting. I haven’t heard anything since then. How are so many weapons brought in if they search us (every time we visit?).” 

She said, “We are afraid that something is still happening in there.” 

Prosecutors said that they were working to identify the dead. 

According to the Andean country’s SNAI prison authority, violence has been prevalent in Ecuador’s prison system since early last year, with close to 373 killed in clashes since February of last year. 

Police are remaining within Guayaquil’s Penitenciaria prison in order to establish order, according to SNAI on Twitter. 

The Twitter account said, “The official report from authorities shows six prisoners and five police officers have been injured.” They also added that the prison itself had been damaged. 

Police also said that officers were injured by firearms while trying to get everything under control. 

This same prison was also the scene of Ecuador’s worst prison riots which left 122 prisoners dead in September 2021. 

The government connects the violence to gangs fighting over territory and drug-trafficking routes. 

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights has said Ecuador’s prison system suffers from state abandonment, inconsistent policy, and poor living conditions. 

The prisons house some 33,500 inmates and exceed maximum capacity by 11.3%, official figures showed.

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