Guatemala CAFTA Protests: Two protesters killed as "free trade" trumps freedomSan Francisco Bay Area 18 Mar 2005 01:00 GMT
3/16/2005 A national strike called by various social and popular organizations that are opposed to the ratification of the trade accords with the United States. During protests in Colotenango, Huehuetenango Tuesday March 15th, a group of campesinos and teachers were violently repressed by the military. At least two protesters were killed and over 10 were seriously injured. Reports confirm that one of the protesters, Juan Lopez, was killed by a bullet to the head. Three of the wounded who were in serious condition in the hospital were taken out by the National Civil Police (PNC) with the pretext of transferring them to the Institute of Social Security (IGSS). But it has been confirmed that the compañeros have not actually been taken to this assistance center. The protests and the National Strike in opposition to CAFTA in Guatemala continued into Wednesday. The administration of President Berger maintains its position against the protestors, citing the loss of 70 million Quetzales or the equivalent of almost $10 million dollars in exports and imports as a result of the roadblocks and national strike on Monday.