From Impunity to Justice and Back Again in Guatemala


Guatemala’s future hangs in the balance, teetering between accountability and impunity. Pro-military members of Guatemala’s Congress have been pressing for an amnesty law that would free war criminals. Evidence in a national police archive that establishes their wrongdoing is at risk of being sealed. Last month, the current President of Guatemala, who was under investigation for receiving illicit campaign funds, succeeded in shutting the doors of the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), a UN-backed commission that, for over a decade, has been working to dismantle corruption at the highest levels. The head of CICIG, Iván Velásquez, has alleged that its closure is due to “a parallel power structure [that has] captured the justice system and other institutions in Guatemala.” This story is part of an ongoing battle for the rights to the history of Guatemala.

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