October 9, 2019. Quito, Ecuador – We publicly denounce that yesterday, October 8th 2019, during the protests and mobilizations of thousands of people in the city of Quito, especially from the indigenous movement, 83 people are currently detained irregularly in the special ops police station of Intervention and Rescue Group (GIR) of the National Police in the southern neighborhood of Pomasqui.

The human rights organization that sign this alert have received information from various sources and have verified that 83 people, including adolescents, were detained in the area of the National Assembly around 1pm. In an unnecessary use of police force and repression, they were detained for around 7 hours in the underground floors of the National Assembly, and with the implementation of a curfew imposed by Executive Decree No. 888 yesterday, were transferred in buses to GIR in Pomasqui, were they remain detained.

The detention is irregular in that it occurs in a police station outside the city and not within the Judicial Detention Unit of Pichincha located at Avenida Patria and 9 de Octubre just a few blocks from the National Assembly. We also denounce that at the Judicial Detention Unit of Pichincha, judges on the night shift and early morning shift refused to receive a constitutional writ of habeas corpus that human rights lawyers attempted to present.

We denounce these irregular detentions that seriously violate the rights of access to justice and due process, especially the rights to be informed on the motive of their detention, to communicate with lawyers of their choosing (public defenders or private) or with family members, and against the prohibition of confinement and detentions in places unauthorized for those purposes, as recognized in articles 75 and 77 of the Constitution of the Republic of Ecuador.

Finally, we raise an alert concerning the risk that could be produced through cruel, inhumane, and degrading mistreatment during their detention, as has been verified in other detentions realized between the 3rd and 6th of October of 2019, and we demand that sentencing hearings are not held in unauthorized locations and without proper guarantees to the right of defense of these persons.

From October 3 to 7 2019, 676 detentions have been registered in the country, according to data from Ecuador’s Ministry of Interior. Read our report on the situation of human rights in Ecuador during the state of emergency, published on October 7, 2019 – Available in Spanish only.