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Right-Wing Candidate Alejandro Giammattei Wins Guatemala Presidency

HeadlineAug 12, 2019

In Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei of the ultraconservative Vamos party won the presidency after a runoff vote Sunday, where he faced off against former first lady Sandra Torres. He got 58% of the vote, with just 42% of eligible voters casting ballots. Giammattei, a former head of Guatemala’s prison system, ran on a law-and-order platform, promising to bring back the death penalty and deploy soldiers to the streets. He has been accused of money laundering, ties to drug traffickers, and extrajudicial killings.

Giammattei has said he wants to modify the controversial immigration deal signed last month between President Trump and outgoing President Jimmy Morales. The deal requires asylum seekers heading to the U.S. border to apply for asylum in Guatemala instead of at the U.S.-Mexico border, and would primarily affect Honduran and Salvadoran migrants.

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