Justice in Guatemala

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Former President and General Guilty

Guilty General


Former president and military commander José Efrain Ríos Montt was convicted of genocide and crimes against humanity against the indigenous Mayan Ixil population during Guatemala’s Civil War in the 1980s. This is remarkable news for the cause of justice because in Guatemala officials have seldom been found guilty for crimes committed. The importance of the verdict should not be understated: “This was the first time that a former head of state has been tried for genocide in clearly genuine national proceedings. Despite the many obstacles, its success shows the importance of justice being done nationally, even when the odds are long. It is a great leap forward in the struggle for justice in Guatemala and globally.” It remains to be seen whether this is a true breakthrough for the rule of law in Guatemala.




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