“Let’s give a shout out to those people in Ecuador that are standing up against what the IMF are doing to their economy and their people”
15 October 2019
U.K. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn and Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders have both sent messages of solidarity to the recent anti-IMF protests in Ecuador, which have succeeded in forcing the government to scrap a controversial austerity decree.
“Let’s give a shout out to those people in Ecuador that are standing up against what the IMF are doing to their economy and their people,” said leftist opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn, whilst at a rally with supporters, in anticipation of an upcoming election.
Progressive presidential candidate Bernie Sanders also celebrated the movement in Ecuador. “I applaud Ecuador’s Indigenous-led grassroots movements who stood up to repression and blocked the IMF’s austerity agenda. Economic elites keep pushing austerity worldwide, making life unbearable for working people. The U.S. should stop supporting this,” Sanders said in a tweet.
Both Sanders and Corbyn have fiercely opposed austerity drives in their own countries. With Sanders highlighting growing inequality in the U.S. and calling for universal, publicly funded healthcare.
Meanwhile, Corbyn has made nationalization of public utilities and investment in public housing a central theme in the run-up to a possible election that many are expecting to be held after the due date for Britain’s withdrawal from the EU on Oct. 31
The anti-austerity movement in Ecuador, led by Indigenous groups, succeeded in forcing the government to scrap decree 883 which withdrew fuel subsidies, and which protesters say would have triggered a huge rise in the cost of living. The decree was issued as part of an economic package in line with recommendations from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as part of a $4 billion-loan deal.
However, though the government was forced to back down on the decree, they have doubled down on accusations that former leftist President Rafael Correa had orchestrated the uprising and has begun arresting the leaders of his party.