The Government of Ecuador advances with the constitutional reform so that the Armed Forces participate in the fight against drug trafficking
To achieve this, they process a constitutional amendment
Currently, for the Ecuadorian military to participate in support of the National Police, the president must declare a state of emergency. (SNAI).
Luis Lara, Secretary of Defense of Ecuador, accompanied by the military high command, appeared before the Amendments Commission of the National Congress to present a proposal for partial constitutional reform related to the participation of the Armed Forces in combat operations measures to contain drug trafficking and organized crime.
The minister of this portfolio has repeatedly emphasized that the Armed Forces They will not carry out or replace police operations, but rather the Armed Forces will complement the National Police within the scope of the powers of each of these public security bodies and as established by law. He added that the reform is intended to prevent the executive from constantly resorting to issuing decrees of a state of emergency because it restricts other fundamental rights.
The purpose of the amendment is to grant the President of the Republic the power to mobilize the armed forces without having to declare a state of emergency. However, the mobilization decree would only be enabled after there is a request for support made by the National Police. Minister Lara pointed out that, with the amendment, it would be the police who would classify the situation as need in an event of extreme need.
Defense Minister Luis Lara (Ministry of Defense).
General Lara emphasized that the Armed Forces will not carry out police operations because they are not empowered to do so, he insisted that they will do so within the scope of their powers and with the sole intention of collaborating collectively with the National Police in containing the crime. transnational crime.
The senior official said that Congress is primarily responsible for providing the tools to restore peace by approving legislation that provides the broader guarantees to protect citizens from the threat of drug trafficking and international crime.
Drug trafficking and transnational crime are threats to the public security of the State, according to government authorities. (Ecuador Police)
The Head of the Joint Command of the Armed Forces, General Nelson Proaño He emphasized that the main mission of the Armed Forces is to protect sovereignty and territorial integrity, but that, nevertheless, in various emergency situations, the Armed Forces help the national police in their operations to protect this same sovereignty from transnational threats. He said that, in 2022, during the state of emergency decreed by the President of the Republic, five events were held in different provinces, of which nine decrees were issued. Without the reform, the Armed Forces regularly assist the police only in matters associated with the control of arms, ammunition and explosives.
Regarding human rights education, Proaño pointed out that this This area of knowledge is part of military doctrine and is included in all military training institutions, as well as in security procedures update and improvement courses. Today the armed forces carry out continuous education and training plans in human rights. Proaño ensures that as a State security body they are prepared and trained to support the National Police in various operations.
The Occasional Amendment Commission is expected to present its first report on the constitutional reform proposed for the second week of February.