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Ecuador’s presidential candidate shot dead

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Quito: Fernando Villavicencio, Ecuador’s candidate for the presidential election later this month, was killed on Wednesday in an armed attack following a political rally held in Quito, the country’s capital, Ecuadorian President Guillermo Lasso confirmed.

“My solidarity and condolences to his wife and daughters. Because of their memory and their struggle, I assure you that this crime will not go unpunished,” Lasso said through his account on the social network X, formerly known as Twitter.

The security cabinet will meet at the Carondelet Palace, the seat of government. Diana Atamaint, president of the National Election Council, and Diana Salazar, the state attorney general, as well as officials from other national authorities, were asked to attend the meeting, said the president.

“Organized crime has come a long way, but the full weight of the law is going to fall on them,” he added.

The incident occurred in the middle of an electoral campaign and 11 days before the presidential election scheduled for Aug. 20, in which Lasso’s successor and 137 members of the country’s National Assembly will be elected.

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