It’s hard to determine exactly what went down on September 30 of 2010, a day in which the Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa went to the “Regimiento Quito” to solve the police insurrection. After a heated speech, and gestures that including throwing a tie and saying with a defiant tone, “Here I am, kill me if you want!”, afterwards he spent more than 10 hours in the police hospital, when he left the building –and until today- he claims he was kidnapped, and that it was a coup attempt. However, that was the day the democracy, because the people went to the streets to defend the constitutional government.
However, the government position has remained unchangeable since that time, much like in the political sector of the opposition as well as some citizens sectors, the speech was totally different. How can it be a kidnapping, since during all the time that Rafael Correa remained in the police precinct he was giving orders as a President, in what moment does one wonders when was the democracy in danger, According to several ministers of the State the loyalty of the FF.AA. maintained his support to the government on that same day (30-IX-10).
Now the denomination of 30-S belongs exclusively to the central government for any type of publicity, be it in business or commercial administration, until May 10 of 2022, which was a bleak day for Ecuador. Not just for the uncertainty produced by, what the opposition qualifies reckless, the visit of the Ecuadorian president in the police headquarters, or by what the ruling understood as a presidential obligation, if not by the four dead, dozens of wounded and prisoners it left. For the government it was the “rescue” of Correa, for others it was the “retreat” with a high price, due to the crime and looting wave, mainly in Guayaquil, who took advantage of the absence of the police.
Even after 24-months have transpired of an event, that without doubt left an unforgettable mark in the mind of the Ecuadorians, and the international perspective, which has not avoided making comments. There are no certainties; despite the judicial investigations most of the cases have made small progresses. While the deaths of the policemen Froilan Jimenez and Edwin Calderon, and the military men Jacinto Cortez and Darwin Panchi, remain a mystery, the authors of those shootings are still at large.
The police rebellion, that contaminated a military group in the Air force Base in Quito, without any mayor consequence, this was a way to protest against the Bill of Public Service, set by the President, which removed some economic benefits to the officials. Despite it, the government interpretation of it was different: there was a conspiracy and the objective was the fall of Correa.
For that, Fidel Araujo, the retired major of the army and former director of Sociedad Patriotica (SP) was seen near the mutiny; afterwards he was accused of being an instigator, for that he was imprisoned, then released only to continue in a judicial battle. The same occurred with the Director of the Police Hospital,Coronel Cesar Carrion, was appointed as guilty for the assassination attempt, but the he was declared innocent by the justice three times, afterwards he was reinstated into the police force, but requested to be discharged, he still awaits its fulfilment, Carrion has been issued with several legal measures again. Coronel Rolando Tapia, former chief of the Legislative escort, was sentenced to three years in prison along five policemen of lower rank, for not protecting the Assembly and stopped the entering of government legislators. Five days after the insurrection, the Assembly declared the state of exception, which is still ongoing, and delegate the security of the Armed Forces, thus breaking a ruling tradition since 1960, in which classes and police officials had to keep the safety of the legislative headquarters.
The independent press (not the one of the State) qualified by the regime as a “political actor” in this and other cases, played a vital role in the 30-S subject and its defenders confirmed that without it some injustices would have never been known. In any case, article published on February 6 of 2011, by El Universo Newspaper, “No to the lies” by the (now former) opinion editor, Emilio Palacio, stated that “The dictator should remember that with the pardon, in the future a new president, maybe an enemy of his, could take you to court for giving the order to open fire at will and without previous warning against a hospital full of civilians and innocent people. The crimes against humanity won’t be forgotten,” after this article, a trial was made against the journalist and the newspaper, in which a judge ordered the payment of 40 million dollars to President Correa, along with the imprisonment of the directors of the newspaper and of Palacio himself. A pardon, not forgotten, to the fines on behalf the chief of State, and the political asylum of Palacio, granted by the United States.
There is still a lot material from this subject, even more so are the points of view, and that in this September 30, reassures that the 30-S was a coup attempt and breaking the democracy, but the people detained it, the government will make sure to say this. 30-S was nothing more than a sad show, orchestrated by the president who likes to show himself as someone pride and brave, while at the same time ‘a victim’. The opposition will insist that the democracy was never in danger, asking the Ecuadorian people, the country and the world that once and for all they know the truth, for now that’s a lot to ask. ET