- BBC World News
The protests in Paraguay against the government’s management of the pandemic ended this Friday in violent clashes.
The security forces launched rubber bullets and tear gas protesters in downtown Asunción, while a group of people broke down police barriers, set fires and threw stones at officers, local press reported.
The altercations left a score of wounded and turned the historic center of the capital into a kind of battlefield, in the midst of the growing indignation of the population due to the increase in coronavirus cases and the lack of medicines and vaccines.
“It is a pity that the young people have exceeded themselves and destroyed what was a civic party“Interior Minister Arnaldo Giuzzio told the Telefuturo news channel.
“They were people who were only with the intention of destroying and not building a civic environment,” he considered.
The citizen demonstration began peacefully in the afternoon and was joined by a large number of young people, with national flags and protest banners in front of Congress.
The protest occurred after manifestations of teachers and medical personnel that this week they came out against the government.
These groups protested the return to classes in the midst of the escalation of infections and the lack of medicines in hospitals, respectively.
This Friday, the main claim of the protesters was repeated on numerous banners: the resignation of President Mario Abdo Benítez for his management of the pandemic.
“Out Marito!” Could be read on various posters, in reference to the name by which the president is popularly known.
On the same Friday morning, Health Minister Julio Mazzoleni had announced his resignation after meeting with Abdo Benítez.
“We have agreed together that I leave the post of the Ministry of Public Health so that the peace that is needed can really be generated. to be able to face this challenge“Mazzoleni said in statements to state television.
Paraguay was one of the countries in the region with the greatest success in containing the coronavirus in the first half of 2020 despite the fact that Latin America became one of the global epicenters of the pandemic.
However, infections have intensified in recent weeks, leading to a collapse of health centers.
As of March 6, 3,256 deaths and 164,310 cases had been registered, according to data from John Hopkins University.
Added to this is the delay in the arrival of vaccines to the country: for now only 4,000 doses have been received de la rusa Спутник В.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.