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Knife attack leaves two dead in Ecuador campaign

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa suspended his campaign for re-election Tuesday after two supporters were knifed to death at a rally, officials said.

An unidentified suspect was taken into custody at the scene of the attack Monday in a packed stadium in the town of Quininde, 200 kilometers (120 miles) northwest of Quito.

An amateur video aired on local media showed a man armed with a large knife pushing into a crowd of Correa supporters, and attacking them at random before attempting to flee.

The victims -- Aurelio Vivero, 28, and Gregoria Poroza, 63 -- were pronounced dead after being rushed to a clinic in a nearby town. A man and three women also were injured in the attack.

Correa, who is the favorite in the February 17 elections, visited the injured and grieving relatives.

"This is an isolated act by a demented man," Correa told reporters, saying the assailant apparently was a drug user who "in a state of complete alienation began slashing right and left."

Correa's campaign director Galo Mora said Correa decided to suspend the campaign "out of respect for the victims of this attack."

jm/vlk

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130205/knife-attack-leaves-two-dead-ecuador-campaign-0