Two People Shot Dead at Protest Against First Quantum Mine in Panama

In Panama, two individuals participating in an anti-government protest were fatally shot on Tuesday, as confirmed by authorities. These tragic incidents have further exacerbated the social tensions that have been mounting in recent weeks. 

The unrest initially began with public outrage over a controversial mining contract signed with the Canadian company First Quantum Minerals (TSX: FM), and it has since evolved into broader discontent with the government.

State prosecutors have reported the arrest of one person in connection with these deaths, although no additional details about the individual were provided. Local media reports have identified the alleged shooter as Kenneth Franklin Darlington Salas and the Association of Teachers of Panama (ASOPROF) has stated that the alleged shooter is a US citizen, but these details have not yet been confirmed by the authorities.

The ongoing street protests have resulted in significant disruptions, including roadblocks that have caused daily losses of up to $80 million for local businesses. As a result of the protests, schools across the nation have remained closed for over a week, and more than 150,000 medical appointments have been missed.

Despite official appeals to cease the protests, unions representing construction workers and teachers have pledged to continue their demonstrations until the controversial First Quantum contract is annulled. 

Related: First Quantum Craters 27% As Panama Puts Future Of Cobre Panama Mine To Referendum

The contract, which was signed into law on October 20, grants First Quantum a 20-year mining right with the possibility of a 20-year extension, in exchange for $375 million in annual revenue for Panama. However, protesters maintain that the terms of the new contract are unacceptable.

Information for this story was found via Reuters, X, and the sources and companies mentioned. The author has no securities or affiliations related to the organizations discussed. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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