News Alerts

23 Jul 2019 | 03:26 AM UTC

US: Police fire tear gas to disperse protesters in San Juan July 22 /update 9

Puerto Rico News Alert

Riot police fire tear gas to disperse protesters near La Fortaleza in San Juan on July 22; clashes between security forces and demonstrators possible

TIMEFRAME expected from 7/22/2019, 12:00 AM until 7/25/2019, 11:59 PM (America/Puerto_Rico). COUNTRY/REGION San Juan (Puerto Rico)

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Event

Riot police in San Juan reportedly started firing tear gas to disperse crowds gathered around La Fortaleza at approximately 23:00 (local time) on Monday, July 22. Thousands of demonstrators refused calls from police officials to leave the area after marching through the city earlier in the day. According local media sources, protesters had thrown some small objects over police barricades near La Fortaleza, but the rallies throughout the day had remained peaceful. Protesters are now reportedly being pushed out of the area by police. Isolated clashes between security forces and demonstrators are possible in the coming hours.

Hundreds of thousands of Puerto Ricans began marching through the city at 09:00 on Monday. Major highways were blocked, causing significant traffic and commercial disruptions as the protesters called for Governor Ricardo Rosselló to resign. Similar protests related to the ongoing crisis are likely throughout Puerto Rico, and particularly in San Juan, in the coming several days and weeks.

Context

Similar protests demanding the resignation of Governor Rosselló have been held throughout Puerto Rico since July 13. The protests were called following a scandal involving hundreds of pages of leaked texts between Rosselló and his cabinet members containing misogynistic and homophobic language Despite admitting to writing the messages, Rosselló has refused to resign.

The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has also implicated members of Rosselló's cabinet in fraud, conspiracy, and other corruption-related investigations.

Advice

Individuals in San Juan are advised to monitor developments to the situation, avoid all protests as a precaution, and obey all instructions issued by the local authorities.

 

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