ASUNCIÓN, Paraguay — Protesters clashed with the police in Paraguay’s capital, Asunción, late on Friday as anger over the government’s handling of the coronavirus crisis boiled onto the streets and forced the resignation of the country’s top health official.
Security forces fired rubber bullets and tear gas at hundreds of demonstrators who had gathered around the Congress building, while protesters broke down security barriers, burned road barricades and threw stones at the police.
The protests broke out amid growing outrage as coronavirus infections hit record levels and hospitals verged on collapse throughout Paraguay.
Mario Abdo Benítez appointed Dr. Julio Borba, a vice minister. Mr. Borba told reporters he would begin tracking down medicine and supplies immediately.
Paraguay is posting record numbers of cases daily, according to a Reuters tally, with 115 infections per 100,000 people reported in the last seven days. The country has vaccinated less than 0.1 percent of its population, according to Reuters data.