Demonstrations have continued in Ecuador following President Rafael Correa's announcement that he has decided to temporarily suspend the inheritance tax bill and law for capital gains. This decision comes after the protests and opposition violence last week.
President Correa said the temporary withdrawal of the bills seek to create stable conditions for the arrival of Pope Francis on July 5.
At the opposition protest, Social Christian Party legislator Cristina Reyes told teleSUR English, "We want to government to withdraw the bills definitively, and also that they do not just threaten us with temporary withdrawals, just to calm the waters for the visit of Pope Francis. As citizens we deserve respect, no matter what political convictions we may have."
Opposition leaders have said they are not willing to debate the bills, but rather want them completely discarded. Member of the opposition Marcelo Larrea solicited forms from the National Electoral Council on Tuesday to being organizing a popular referendum. President Correa can only be removed from office with the signatures of 15 percent of voters.
"We have received a petition to revoke the office of the president of the republic. We have given him the paperwork to collect and present to us 1,741,990 signatures. But apart from this they have to prove that the president of the republic has not carried out his term in the way he proposed,” said Rene Mauge of the National Electoral Council.
Defenders of the Citizen's Revolution, on the other hand, have shown that they are open to debate these bills, which the government has assured will not affect the middle class or the poor. Carlos Baca of the September 30 Never Again Collective has said that his group and other social movements are organizing door-to-door brigades to promote dialogue, as well as national forums.
"I am inviting everyone to learn about these bills. To come to these forums,” said Baca. “These will be forums where citizens, legislators and other authorities will inform the public of what is the Law of Wealth Redistribution and capital gains in Ecuador."
Pro-government demonstrators have shown themselves willing to debate the inheritance tax and capital gains law to reach a national consensus. Despite this, the opposition has remained uncompromising as they continue to protest until these bills, which seek to redistribute wealth, are off the table.