The Ecuadorean government seat was moved to the port city of Guayaquil, amid protests against the economic measures announced by President Lenin Moreno in Quito.
The president made the announcement on national radio and television from the coastal city, to where he traveled along with Vice President Otto Sonnenholzner and Defense Minister Oswaldo Jarrin.
The decision was made at a highly tense time in the country, with widespread strikes and demonstrations as a result of the announcement of a package of tax and labor reforms on October 1, most of which will negatively impact low-income people.
In his speech, the head of State repeated that he will not reverse his decision to end subsidies on extra gasoline and diesel, the main measure to have caused social movements, unions and university students to take to the streets.
'The elimination of the subsidy is a historic decision that takes hundreds of millions of dollars away from smugglers (?) That decision assures that the economy is sound and dollarization is protected,' Moreno argued.
He insisted that although it may seem tough, his government 'did the right thing for the country.'
In his message to the nation, Moreno claimed that acts of violence and looting reported over the past five days of mobilizations, 'show a political intention to destabilize the government and break the established democratic order.'