Gunmen Storm Ecuadorian TV Station, Live on Air

( – Ecuador used to be a pretty peaceful South American country. That’s no longer the case. The government is now at war with drug gangs, and that was evident on a live television broadcast recently.

On January 9, an armed gang stormed the TC Televisión studio in the city of Guayaquil during a live television broadcast. The men brandished explosives and firearms. They took the people in the studio hostage. The gunman assaulted and threatened the employees who were working.

The National Police of Ecuador responded to the television station with specialized units. Authorities arrested more than a dozen gang members and saved the employees.

The same day the gang took over the TV station, the new Ecuadorian president, Daniel Noboa, signed an executive decree that declared an “internal armed conflict.” The newly inaugurated leader identified two dozen gangs and labeled them terrorist organizations.

The US Department of State issued a statement about the violence in the country. According to the press release, there were more than 100 prison guards being held hostage across the nation. The US is sending diplomats to the country in the coming weeks to see what America can do to help Noboa respond to the threat posed by the narco-terrorist gangs.

Noboa announced plans for two high-security prisons in the country. It appears the president is following the lead of El Salvador’s President Nayib Bukele, who built a high-security prison and then rounded up gang members and incarcerated them. The Central American country has thrived now that its streets are safe.

Noboa told his citizens that the country “cannot cede in the face of these terrorist groups.” For the average citizen, it’s a terrifying time. Ecuadorian Americans in the US are telling stories about their family members being trapped in fear. One of the biggest gang leaders in the country, Adolfo Macías Villamar, recently broke out of jail.

The government has now imposed a national curfew.

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