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Ecuador lawmakers propose unlimited presidential terms

Ecuadoran lawmakers proposed constitutional amendments to allow unlimited presidential terms, following a request from incumbent Rafael Correa.

QUITO: Ecuadoran lawmakers proposed constitutional amendments on Thursday to allow unlimited presidential terms, following a request from incumbent Rafael Correa.

National Assembly President Gabriela Rivadeneira, a member of Correa's ruling PAIS Alliance party, presented the list of 17 amendments.

"Ecuadoran society demands we, as legislative representatives, have a constitution in accord with the development of the new homeland," Rivadeneira said, referring to the initiative requested by Correa, a prominent figure of Latin America's far left.

In office since 2007, the 50-year-old leader was re-elected in February 2013 for a four-year term, the last he is currently allowed under law.

The constitutional court has 45 days to rule on the initiative, which also aims to lower the minimum age for a presidential candidate from 35 to 30.

Ecuador's constitution, which was adopted by referendum under Correa in 2008, only allows two consecutive terms for public office, including the president.

Correa had long claimed he had no intention of running for a third term, but last month asked the national assembly to modify the constitution to allow unlimited terms.

Following a major upset for his party at local elections, including losing the mayorship of Quito, Correa in March for the first time suggested he could run again in 2017, in a bid to block the momentum of the right.

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