On 18 May 2020, clashes broke out between police officers and protesters in the El Bosque neighborhood of Chile’s Santiago metropolitan region. The officers used water cannons and tear gas to disperse the protesters, who staged the demonstration despite coronavirus-related restrictions prohibiting public gatherings. The protest began on Avenida Nueva Imperial on the border with the impoverished La Pintana neighborhood to denounce the lack of food and other essential resources, as well as the government’s lack of assistance during the community’s four-week-long quarantine. In response, President Sebastian Piñera promised to deliver more than 2.5 million food baskets to homes. No arrests or injuries occurred during with the protest.
In El Salvador, the Supreme Court on 18 May suspended President Nayib Bukele’s coronavirus-related state of emergency, which he extended for an additional 30 days on 16 May without congressional approval. The Supreme Court noted that the suspension was temporary, pending a more complete review, and urged Bukele to work with lawmakers to draft a revised order. Bukele stated that he would abide by the order and propose a new plan on 19 May.