Guatemala’s Congress has approved the government’s declaration of a state of emergency for 22 municipalities in the country’s northeast after three soldiers were killed in an ambush by alleged drug traffickers near the border with Belize.
The measure approved Saturday by lawmakers allows police and the military to detain suspects in those jurisdictions without arrest warrants. The emergency declaration also imposes a night-time curfew, while restricting the right to protest and hold large meetings.
Guatemala serves a trans-shipment location for Colombian cocaine headed to the United States.
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