How U.S. fast-food joints are helping to supersize protests in Guatemala


“McDonald’s supports Guatemala and closes its restaurants today,” read a statement posted on Twitter yesterday by the fast-food company’s Guatemala City franchise.

With this statement, McDonald’s joins Domino’s Pizza and other American fast-food franchises are temporarily shutting their doors in what they say is a show of support for protests demanding the resignation of President Otto Pérez Molina over allegations of corruption.

A spokesperson from Domino’s Pizza corporate in the United States told Fusion all of their franchises in Guatemala are locally owned. Fusion reached out to McDonald’s headquarters for comment but did not receive a response by the time of publication.

“Like you, we are in love and committed with the vision of a new Guatemala,” reads an official statement posted on Facebook by Domino’s Pizza in Guatemala. “Our pizzerias will be closed because Guatemala is worth it. We want peaceful and transparent elections.”

Burger King also closed shop, releasing its own statement. “Guatemala is the King!,” they posted on their Twitter handle. “United for a Guatemala free of corruption!”

A Burger King spokesperson did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Guatemala’s congress is currently evaluating whether to strip President Pérez Molina of his political immunity to face an official investigation following last week’s arrest of his former vice president and closest political ally.

On Thursday, thousands of Guatemalans returned to the streets for a day of reinvigorated protests. The demonstrations are expected to continue through the weekend.

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