Ecuador proposes referendum to restore political stability Jamie Sterling at 12:15 PM ET
[JURIST] New Ecuadorian President Alfredo Palacio [official profile, in Spanish] announced Wednesday that a referendum will be scheduled in the next six months in an effort to stabilize the country's political situation. The referendum is expected to ask voters such questions as whether or not the current presidential system should be replaced by a parliamentary government. Ecuador has been plagued with governmental problems in recent years, with three presidents ousted from office since 1997. In April, the country's Congress forced former President Lucio Gutierrez out of office [JURIST report] for charges of corruption and abuse of power after dismissing the entire Ecuadoran Supreme Court and declaring a state of emergency; Gutierrez has since fled to Brazil, where he has been granted asylum [JURIST report] despite calls for him to stand trial. Reuters has more.
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