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Ecuador’s presidential elections will head to a runoff in October after Sunday’s first round yielded no clear winner, a vote overshadowed by the rising violence in the country and the assassination of a main contender, the Financial Times reported Monday.

Preliminary results showed leftist candidate Luisa González leading the race with 33 percent of the vote, while her centrist rival Daniel Noboa came in second with 24 percent.

González is backed by the party of former president Rafael Correa, who is currently living in Belgium following a 2020 corruption conviction in Ecuador. She has vowed to return the country to the peace and prosperity that existed during Correa’s administration, with lower homicide rates and reduced poverty, according to Quartz.

Noboa, a 35-year-old businessman from one of Latin America’s wealthiest families, presents himself as the “employment president” and said he would create jobs, lower taxes and expand international free trade agreements.

Both will compete in a second round of voting on Oct. 15.

Sunday’s vote followed the dissolution of parliament by President Guillermo Lasso which triggered early elections. At the time, the former banker was facing impeachment charges by the opposition-controlled legislature over alleged embezzlement related to contracts signed before his tenure.

But the elections have been marred by ongoing violence and insecurity in the South American nation, which has seen narco-trafficking groups fighting for control of drug routes in recent years. Weeks before the vote, Ecuadorians witnessed the assassinations of three politicians, including the center-right candidate and journalist Fernando Villavicencio, who was known for his fight against state corruption.

While the country’s security situation will be the main issue of the October runoff, analysts told the FT that it will also bring up the political legacy of former President Correa.

Correa’s presidency was marked by a notable departure from Ecuador’s strong ties with the United States. His administration also secured nearly $18 billion in loans from Chinese banks and engaged in outspoken criticism of political opponents, journalists, and dissenting voices. At the same time, his policies lifted millions out of poverty.

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