World Country Guatemala

About the world country Guatemala, its location, size, population, and who is in power.



Location: Straddling Central America, southeast of Mexico. Size: 42,042 sq. mi. (108,889 sq. km.). Population: 7,377,000 (41.4% Indian, 58.6% Ladino).

Who Really Rules: Guatemala is governed by the military, the wealthy landowning class, and the growing urban industrial elite. A small number of families own most of the land, producing coffee, cotton, sugar, bananas, and meat for export. The urban working class and the majority of the people who work in agriculture (when they work at all) are impoverished. Conditions are particularly bad for the non-Spanish-speaking Indian population.

Since the late 1960s the U.S. has trained and armed Guatemala's security forces to fight recurring guerrilla movements. In addition to openly sanctioned repression, right-wing death squads with links to the government have killed more than 20,000 people since 1966.

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