Shooting at birthday party in Ecuador leaves 6 dead, 6 others injured

(MENAFN) According to reports from local media on Wednesday, a tragic incident unfolded in Duran, one of Ecuador's most crime-ridden cities, as armed attackers unleashed gunfire on attendees at a birthday celebration, resulting in the deaths of at least six individuals and leaving another six wounded. The assault took place on Tuesday night within the Abel Gilbert district of Duran, situated in the coastal province of Guayas in the southwest region of the country.

Preliminary investigations suggest that the victims, including the 23-year-old honoree of the birthday gathering, had no prior criminal records, indicating that they were innocent bystanders caught in the crossfire of senseless violence. The shocking attack has sent shockwaves through the community, highlighting the pervasive threat posed by organized crime in the region.

The incident comes against the backdrop of Ecuadorian President Daniel Noboa's declaration of a "state of internal armed conflict" in the country earlier this year, prompted by a surge in violence attributed to criminal syndicates associated with drug trafficking. In response to this escalation, security forces have been mobilized to dismantle 22 criminal organizations identified by the government as "terrorist" entities.

The grim reality of violence in Ecuador is underscored by statistics revealing Duran's alarming homicide rate, which exceeded 145 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in 2023, ranking among the highest in the nation according to official figures. This tragic event serves as a stark reminder of the urgent need for comprehensive measures to address the root causes of violence and enhance public safety across the country.



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