Severity: Warning Alert

Security: Activists to hold a motorcade protest from the Obelisk to the National Palace of Culture in Guatemala City, Guatemala, from 1130 March 28.

This alert affects Guatemala City

This alert began 28 May 2020 08:46 GMT and is scheduled to expire 28 May 2020 23:59 GMT.

  • Event: Protest
  • Location(s): Guatemala City (map)
  • Start Time/Date: 1130 March 28
  • Impact: Heightened security, localized traffic disruptions, possible clashes

Summary
Activists have called for a motorcade protest from the Obelisk to the National Palace of Culture, in Guatemala City, from 1130 May 28. The action is to protest the lockdown measures implemented by President Alejandro Giammattei to curb the spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Organizers have urged participants to join the protest using their vehicles and bicycles to ensure physical distancing. The demonstration is likely to draw large numbers of people.

Police will almost certainly deploy to monitor the protest. Low-level clashes between police and demonstrators are possible if demonstrators block roads with their vehicles and if police attempt to disperse the rally. Localized disruptions are highly likely along the protest route.

Background and Analysis
The protest was organized after President Giammattei threatened to place the country under a total lockdown if the number of new COVID-19 cases continuously exceeded 500 per day. Protesters are claiming that the total lockdown would be a violation of their freedom. Authorities are currently enforcing a 1700-0500 weekday shutdown, with a total lockdown only on weekends. The government tightened the movement restrictions on May 15 in response to an increase in local disease activity.

Advice
Avoid the protest. Allow additional time to reach destinations in Guatemala City May 28. Abide by the directives of the local authorities. If violence breaks out, leave the area immediately and seek shelter in a secure location.


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