Ecuadorean presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio has been shot dead at a political rally in Quito Wednesday night.
According to reports, Villavicencio was shot to death by gunmen at a political rally in Quito, less than two weeks prior to the Ecuador elections.
Villavicencio (59) was shot several times as he left the rally at a high school in Quito. He was taken to a nearby clinic however he was pronounced dead on arrival.
A police officer was also injured in the attack. The gunmen also launched a grenade towards Villavicencio’s group. The grenade however did not explode.
Villavicencio was a member of Ecuador’s National Assembly before it was dissolved in May. He was one of the leading candidates in the first round of voting set to be conducted on August 20 to succeed Ecuador President Guillermo Lasso.
Ecuador is facing record levels of gang violence, with drug trafficking getting out of control, as people prepare to vote for the polls.
During the election campaign, the candidates focused on rising violence in Ecuador. Guillermo Lasso called the snap elections after dissolving the National Assembly and avoiding impeachment.