Heightened security measures and transportation disruptions are to be expected in San Juan and other urban centers across Puerto Rico through Friday, August 2, amid sustained anti-government protests against the administration of Governor Ricardo Rosselló. Protests have been reported outside the Capitol building on Thursday, August 1, ahead of the scheduled resignation of Rosselló on Friday at 17:00 (local time). Further demonstrations are likely in the lead-up to Rosselló's resignation and the possible appointment of Pedro Pierluisi as Puerto Rico's next governor. Clashes between protesters and security forces cannot be ruled out.
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. Rosselló refused to resign until July 24, when he stated he would leave office on August 2. Pedro Pierluisi Urrutia was named Secretary of State on July 31 by Rosselló and will face a legislative vote to confirm his appointment as the island's next governor. Anti-government groups and the Puerto Rico Senate leader have rejected Pierluisi's appointment amid corruption allegations.
Protests have continued with the aim of opposing the proposed interim governor due to accusations of corruption, just as the outgoing governor and some of his cabinet. The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has also implicated members of Rosselló's cabinet in fraud, conspiracy, and other corruption-related investigations.
Individuals in San Juan, and Puerto Rico more generally, 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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