QUITO, Ecuador — The Ecuadorian government and the country’s main indigenous group reached an agreement on Thursday to end 18 days of often violent strikes that had brought the country to a virtual standstill.
The agreement, which includes lower fuel prices and other concessions, was signed by government minister Francisco Jiménez, indigenous leader Leonidas Iza and head of the Episcopal Conference, Bishop Luis Cabrera, who acted in as mediator.
The deal says gasoline prices will drop 15 cents to $2.40 a gallon and diesel prices will also drop by the same amount, from $1.90 a gallon to $1.75.
The agreement also sets limits on the expansion of oil exploration areas and prohibits mining activity in protected areas, national parks and water sources.
The government now has 90 days to provide solutions to the Aboriginal group’s claims.
“Social peace can only be achieved, hopefully soon, through dialogue with special attention given to marginalized communities, but always with respect for the rights of everyone,” Cabrera said.