From Cuba to Colombia to Guatemala—countries with very different political contexts—people have taken to the streets in recent times to demand change. What do these countries have in common?
The common factor that seems to have pushed citizens of these countries to the brink is poor management of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This past July, people in Cuba expressed, in an unprecedented wave of protests, their frustration over the scarcity of food and medication. This was a symptom of growing malaise over the government's handling of the pandemic, in addition to external factors such as US sanctions and demands for more political freedom on the island. What is the state of things in Cuba right now, beyond the ideological divisions?
In Colombia, a national strike has been in effect since May, led by various sectors of society. Protests by an impoverished Colombian citizenry against an increase in taxes soon went viral on social networks thanks to reports of extreme police violence. Today news of the Colombian strike no longer makes international headlines, although it is still ongoing. What is happening in Colombia now?
Guatemala has some of the lowest vaccination rates in the hemisphere, but that's not because people don't want to be vaccinated. Protests led by indigenous groups have shaken the Central American nation whose government has been accused of mismanaging the pandemic and failing to deal with the devastating effects of climate change, amid allegations of corruption. Why aren't we hearing about what's going on in Guatemala?
Join us to gain a better understanding of why people in these countries have risen up in defense of their lives on August 25 at 15:00 GMT, for the next episode of our Global Voices Insights live webinar series. The session will be conducted in Spanish and is free and open to the public. Register below to receive a reminder about the event:
The session will feature the following panelists:
- From Guatemala, Paulina González, Maya Tz´útujil Ancestral Authority and First Carrier of the Council of Elders and Third Carrier of Ajpop Tinaamit, from the department of Sololá.
- From Colombia, Diego Armando Hernández Álvarez, student of Social Communication-Journalism, social activist, and co-founder of Des-Igual, an alternative communications platform.
- From Cuba, Lynn Cruz, actress, producer, playwright and director of Teatro Kairós, where she directed the play El Regreso (2011), Los Enemigos del Pueblo (2017), Patriotismo 36-77 (2018). She is currently preparing the production Sala-R. In 2018, she was barred from working as an actress within Cuban institutions due to her political opinions.