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Guatemala Hit With Massive Anti-Government Protests Amid Corruption Scandal

© REUTERS / SANDRA SEBASTIANA demonstrator holds up a painting of Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei during a protest to demand the resignation of Giammattei and Attorney General Maria Porras, in Guatemala City, Guatemala July 29, 2021
A demonstrator holds up a painting of Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei during a protest to demand the resignation of Giammattei and Attorney General Maria Porras, in Guatemala City, Guatemala July 29, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 30.07.2021
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MEXICO CITY (Sputnik) - Thousands of protesters took to the streets in Guatemala to demand the resignation of President Alejandro Giammattei and Attorney General Maria Porras over the firing of a well-known anti-corruption prosecutor, Juan Francisco Sandoval.
According to the social media footage and local news, thousands of people took to the streets across the country. Road blocks and processions have been reported in several municipalities of the capital and the country's second largest city, Quetzaltenango, as well as in the departments of Quiche, Zacatepequez and Esquintla. Among the protesters are representatives of indigenous peoples, students, entrepreneurs, doctors, farmers and members of various public organizations.
On July 23, Porras announced the decision to remove Sandoval from the office of the head of the Special Prosecutor's Office Against Impunity, or FECI, over alleged abuse of power and "selective justice." Sandoval, in turn, has claimed he was fired for investigating corruption cases linked to Giammatei and some senior officials in his administration. The president denied being involved in corruption.
The United States condemned the decision and said it had "lost confidence in the Attorney General and their decision and intention to cooperate with the US government and fight corruption in good faith."
The largest anti-government rally in Guatemala in the recent years took place in November 2020, when protesters set fire to the congress building following budget approval.
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