The National Comprehensive Care Service (SNAI) told the public on Monday that at least six inmates were injured following a new brawl between inmates at the Cotopaxi No. 1 prison in the city of Latakunga, center of the Ecuadorian Andes. Liberty, in charge of control of prisons.
According to SNAI, law enforcement agents are still trying to gain full control over several wings of this maximum security prison, which has already been the scene of massacres among inmates.
Even several internet portals ran rumours about the alleged murder of a civilian accused of leading a drug gang, though officials have not confirmed it.
A unified command of several state institutions set up in that prison specified that members of the fire department and the ministry of public health treated five injured inmates, including a woman, while another was shifted to a detention center.
According to the SNAI report, units from the police, the Ministry of Health, the Fire Department, the Ecuadorian Institute of Social Security (IES) and support teams of the armed forces have acted during the emergency.
After reporting the alert at the Cotopaxi No. 1 Deprivation of Liberty Center, SNAI coordinated the activation of ‘all security protocols to protect (protect) the security of the prison center’ with the police.
Sensing recorded incidents among prisoners, tactical police teams entered penitentiary facilities to try to gain complete control of the prison, while military teams guarded the surroundings.
According to images of people traveling along a road near the prison, several inmates took shelter on the roof of the building to try to escape the problems lodged inside.
Similarly, it was rumored on social networks that some inmates of the Mahila Pavilion had warned of incidents and feared that violence would eventually affect them directly.
Ecuador’s prison system is in jeopardy due to frequent clashes between gangs of prisoners, among other factors affecting the generation of episodes of violence, overcrowding, budget constraints.
Ecuador has 36 prisons that hold more than 32,000 prisoners, and in some of them more than 400 prisoners have been murdered since 2020 in various conflicts between criminal gangs that dispute internal control of prison centers.
After the encounter, in separate searches of the police, the police have found various types of firearms including rifles as well as white weapons and a huge amount of bullets.
On 20 September, Ecuadorian police reported the arrest of three members of that organization on charges of involvement in the offense of smuggling ammunition when they allegedly tried to bring about 500 bullets into the Cotopaxi prison.