EFEQuito

The battle between Ecuador's government and the indigenous movement mounting protests about the soaring cost of living appeared to reach a deadlock Wednesday, with President Guillermo Lasso having withdrawn from church-mediated talks and a bid by his opponents in Congress to impeach him falling short.

For the last 17 days, demonstrators mobilized by the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (Conaie) have shut down roads, set fire to police cars and blocked a fuel convoy escorted by the security forces.

It was after the death of a soldier early Tuesday in the confrontation involving the convoy that Lasso pulled out of a dialogue with Conaie leader Leonidas Iza.

His government will not return to the table until Iza is replaced by "legitimate representatives of all the peoples and nationalities of Ecuador," the president said Wednesday, as Conaie held a peaceful march in Quito.

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