Guatemalan police offer protection for tourists visiting holy shrine

GUATEMALA CITY — The National Civil Police (PNC) said that the protection of national and foreign tourists visiting the Cristo Negro, in the Guatemalan city of Esquipulas, is being beefed up.

During the month of January and mainly on the 15th, Day of the Black Christ, thousands of faithful from Central America and Mexico fill the basilica, located 222 kilometers east of the Guatemalan capital, EFE news agency reported.

The PNC said agents of the Tourism Security Division (DISETUR) are patrolling to protect pilgrims and their property.

The operations, which began two days ago, will conclude on January 19.

According to the police, these actions are aimed at reducing the rates of violence and ensuring peace during the activities organized these days by the Catholic Church.

“We want to minimize the rate of robberies and thefts to visitors in places of tourist attraction in the municipality of Esquipulas”, assured the head of the DISETUR, Erick Tórtola.

Source: EFE news agency

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