QUITO, Feb. 6 (Xinhua) -- Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa has resumed his reelection campaign for the Feb. 17 poll following fatal attacks on two of his supporters at a rally Monday.
"In the name of the victims, today more than ever, we will continue despite the pain caused by this tragedy, but with hope and optimism to continue building our new country," Correa said at a rally Wednesday in the northern province of Carchi, on the border with Colombia.
The stabbing deaths of two people at a campaign stop in the coastal province of Esmeraldas, which Correa called an "isolated" crime without "political motivation", led him to cancel other rallies Tuesday that had been organized by his ruling coalition PAIS Alliance.
At Wednesday's rally in the town of Mira, which was attended by thousands, Correa called on followers to support his "people's revolution."
"In all corners of the country, you can see the works. Many good things are happening and if we continue like this, we will attain development. The country will not turn back," Correa told the crowd.
He also criticized the tactics of his political rivals, especially Alvaro Noboa, whom he claimed was distributing "gifts" in a bid to "buy" votes.
A recent survey released Wednesday by the Center for Research and Specialized Studies (CIEES) had Correa the current clear leader for the first round of voting, with 56.3 percent support.
The survey had former banker Guillermo Lasso a distant second with 20.6 percent of the vote, and former president Lucio Gutierrez with a scant 5.8 percent.
In fourth place was former Correa cabinet member Alberto Acosta, with 5.2 percent, while Noboa, a banana grower and businessman, was fifth with 4.3 percent.
Under Ecuador's election law, to secure victory in the first round, a candidate must capture either a majority of the vote or a plurality of more than 40 percent with a margin of at least 10 percentage points over the second-place candidate. Failing this, a run-off will be held.