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Reacting to the police response to protests in Puerto Rico triggered by allegations of corruption and the publication of a private chat with discriminatory comments by Governor Ricardo Roselló Nevares, members of his cabinet, and contractors, which resulted in the governor’s resignation, Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas director at Amnesty International, said:

“We have received reports that police responded to the protests with excessive use of force, including the indiscriminate use of tear gas and rubber bullets.”

“The new authorities in Puerto Rico must prioritize the investigation of the police response to the recent protests and take all measures to fully guarantee the right to freedom of expression. Never again must the authorities repress social protest.”

Amnesty International has repeatedly expressed concern about the excessive use of force against peaceful protests in Puerto Rico caused by discontent over the inadequate attention paid to the damage caused by Hurricane Maria and the precariousness of the economic, social and cultural rights situation on the island.

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