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Guatemala’s Otto Pérez Molina has 70 percent approval, poll finds

GUATEMALA CITY – President Otto Pérez Molina’s administration, which marks one year on Monday, has 70 percent approval from the public according to a survey by the daily La Prensa Libre.

The poll, conducted ​​from Jan. 3-8 by local firm Prodatos, found that 70 percent of citizens support the work of Pérez Molina, while 30 percent disapprove. The percentage of support remained almost unchanged in the last six months. In July, the president had a 69 percent approval rating.

The newspaper noted that Pérez Molina’s approval rating is the highest ever achieved in the last four governments in Guatemala.

Pérez Molina took office on Jan. 14, 2012, and on Sunday, he celebrated his first year with a mass gathering in a popular area in the north of the capital, occupied for three months by the military and police to counter violence.

The president did not attend Congress Monday to present his annual report on his administration’s accomplishments, opting instead to send the document, which is permitted by law.

Even with positive figures, 59 percent of those polled considered public insecurity as the main problem in the country. Violence causes an average of 16 deaths per day in Guatemala, one of the highest rates in Latin America.

Regarding the Guatemalan economy, 24 percent said that it is worse than a year ago, mostly due to the high cost of basic goods and unemployment.

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