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Ecuador’s highest court rules new state of emergency unconstitutional

From Andina Garces:

On January 2, 2021, Ecuador’s highest court ruled the new state of emergency decree of December 21 2020 unconstitutional. The Constitutional Court held that the reasons for the invocation of emergency powers – the allegation of increased “contagion” of Covid 19 and the future possibility of a new UK virus strain – were not sufficiently compelling to justify a one month state of emergency applying to the entire country. 

The court ruled that narrower measures tailored toward protecting public health are available using non-emergency governmental procedures, and furthermore that a new state of emergency cannot be declared based upon future not current conditions nor can it be based on the same set of facts used to justifiy the earlier states of Covid-related emergency last year, the last of which expired in August.  

Although called a state of “exception,” that is Ecuador’s particular language for a state of national disaster which gives the President extraordinary powers to curtail citizens’ constitutional rights including freedom of assembly and freedom of movement both of which had been restricted until yesterday’s ruling. The Court’s decision which was reported to have been signed six days ago, was not released until the evening of January 2.

The front page article and the text of the full decision is in the Ecuadorian newspaper of record El Comercio today, January 3, 2021. The following link may or may not work anymore but the newspaper’s website (below) should bring up this morning’s article or at least a follow up.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1A_VDK9aHV1cS1XTepwsXFw-fmuvZkOGP/vie
General link: www.elcomercio.com 

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