After a rally, a presidential candidate was fatally shot (image)

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59-year-old anti-corruption crusader, Fernando Villavicencio has been shot dead.
The popular Ecuadoran presidential candidate was killed while leaving a rally in the nation’s capital on Wednesday, prompting President Guillermo Lasso to declare a state of emergency and blame the assassination on organised crime.
He had complained of receiving threats before he was murdered as he was leaving a stadium in Quito after holding a campaign rally, officials said.
Lasso declared a two-month state of emergency early Thursday following the assassination but said general elections slated for August 20 would be held as scheduled.
“Outraged and shocked by the assassination of presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio,” the president said in a statement on X, formerly known as Twitter, blaming the killing on “organised crime.”
“For his memory and for his fight, I assure you that this crime will not go unpunished.”
Villavicencio was the second most popular candidate in the presidential race, according to recent opinion polls.
“The Armed Forces as of this moment are mobilised throughout the national territory to guarantee the security of citizens, the tranquility of the country and the free and democratic elections of August 20,” Lasso said in a YouTube address.
The president also declared three days of national mourning “to honour the memory of a patriot, Fernando Villavicencio Valencia.”
 
“This is a political crime that acquires a terrorist character and we do not doubt that this murder is an attempt to sabotage the electoral process,” he added.
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