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When the medicine seems to be worse than the disease it is supposed to cure

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A view from my rooftop in Casco Viejo, Panama City, June 2020

The lockdown that we are experiencing here in Panama is taking toll on our morale. More and more people seem to be getting frustrated, or even depressed. For last 5 days, no a single day has passed without protests. The residents of the country find it increasingly difficult to survive the imposed restrictions. The feeling that I have is that while the society understands the seriousness of the pandemic, it also asks itself how to cope with challenges caused with loss of income and ability to survive. Paying bills, putting food on the table, ensuring that the basic needs are provided is already bad enough, but apparently other problems surface too. The national newspapers and Internet news services keep on highlighting the increase of suicide, domestic violence, petty crime, but also serious crimes such as homicides and looting. What is happening is worrying and is extremely tangible, as my own acquaintances living in Panama are affected. On daily basis I keep on receiving increasing pleas of help - financial and emotional. It is time that the authorities recognise it and deal with it with the same enthusiasm as the fight the actual COVID-19.

As things in Panama and elsewhere of Latin America appear to be dramatic, there are some first signs of things getting better in Europe. Today, the European Union has announced that the internal borders between the Member States of the EU will be abolished as of 15th June! Moreover, the EU is working towards opening its external borders too. This process will take some more time, and will be gradual, but it is such a relief to learn that things seem to be going in the right direction at last.

Poland in the same time is gearing up its campaign for the presidential elections. Sadly, the level of the discussion is not very constructive, and focuses on undermining your counter candidates rather than presenting your arguments on why one should vote for you. Not that it was unexpected, but sad nevertheless. We need to endure a little bit over two weeks of this madness.