Riot police, protesters and smoke in Quito. Photo: Martin Bernetti/AFP via Getty

Violent protests continued in Ecuador today, 2 days after President Lenín Moreno fled the capital and moved government operations to a port city.

Driving the news: Moreno is standing by the policy that sparked the unrest — the termination of a popular, but costly fuel subsidy.

  • "In one chaotic scene, protesters swarmed onto the top of a riot control vehicle that stopped in an alley. They pounded on its armored plating and reinforced windows with clubs and stones until the occupants accelerated away through clouds of smoke and tear gas," AP reports.
  • "Moreno knew his decision — by presidential decree — would provoke outrage. No previous government had dared to do it," per the Economist, which contends the step was necessary due to IMF terms and economic mismanagement by Moreno's populist predecessor, Rafael Correa.
  • Correa on Thursday denied he's planning a coup from self-imposed exile in Belgium.

What to watch: Only 2 Ecuadorian presidents have completed full, 4-year terms over the past 27 years. Two others have been toppled by riots.

Go deeper: Ecuador's gas price protests show why it's hard to phase out fuel subsidies

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Photo: Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images

The Supreme Court said Thursday that it will not block Rhode Island's move to ease its requirements for absentee voting during November's election.

Why it matters: The decision is a loss for Republicans, who had requested an emergency order as the state is expected to begin mailing out its ballots.

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Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

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Driving the news: On Wednesday, both companies said that if a court doesn’t overturn or further pause a new ruling forcing them to reclassify California drivers as employees, they’ll suspend their services in the state until November’s election, when voters could potentially exempt them by passing a ballot measure.

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Israel Prime Minister Netanyahu, Trump and UAE Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed. Photo: Artur Widak/NurPhoto; Samuel Corum; Odd Andersen/AFP via Getty Images

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Why it matters: This is a major breakthrough for Israel, which lacks diplomatic recognition in many Middle Eastern countries but has been steadily improving relations in the Gulf, largely due to mutual antipathy toward Iran.