Sep 12, 2018

Guatemalan protests intensify

Protesters blocked the entrance to Guatemala's Congress yesterday, effectively stopping a vote on a bill that would give lawmakers the power to oversee the process of stripping politicians of their immunity. (El Periódico) Over two-thousand police officers were deployed today to surround Congress, where lawmakers are expected to pass the measure. (El Periódico)

But La Hora reported a heavy military presence on the streets as well, in conjunction with a protest called by CODECA and university students against President Jimmy Morales and his measures against the U.N. anti-graft commission -- part of a week long series of demonstrations in favor of the CICIG. (See yesterday's post.) Human rights prosecutor Jordan Rodas said the army deployment was incorrect and intimidatory for anti-government demonstrators. (La Hora)

More from Guatemala
  • The former mayor of Quetzaltenango, Jorge Rolando Barrientos Pellecer, was detained yesterday. The Public Ministry and the CICIG said he led a graft network responsible for charging up to 40 percent kickbacks on 122 public works contracts. A total of 16 people were detained yesterday in relation to the case, despite the absence of CICIG head Iván Velásquez who was barred from entering Guatemala last week by Morales. (El Periódico and La Hora)


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