At approximately 1300 local time (1900 UTC) on 16 October 2023, a group of unidentified gunmen opened fire on protesters manning a roadblock near the Orizaba Crossing in the town of Malacatán, San Marcos department. The gunfire killed one protester and injured three others. Police officers later arrested 11 people in connection to the shooting in the nearby community of La Montaña and confiscated four firearms and two pickaxes. There have been additional reports of unidentified armed individuals intimidating demonstrators at roadblocks in recent days.
In a related development, Guatemala’s minister of the interior resigned after he was accused by the Public Ministry of failing to use force to fully remove blockades from roadways across the country. As of the latest reports, there are at least 12 blockades in place across Guatemala, one of which is located along Petapa Avenue in Guatemala City’s Zone 12. Demonstrations are likely to occur later in the day as supporters of President-elect Bernardo Arévalo are expected to gather in the capital city to demand the resignation of the attorney general and the head of the Public Ministry