by Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International
Guatemala has a historic unsettled debt regarding the quest for justice for crimes under international law and other serious human rights violations committed during the 1960-1996 armed conflict. Today, more than twenty years later, the country faces another major challenge to ensure access to justice and to effectively combat impunity in the country.
It was recently announced that the activities of the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) had ended; that the CICIG Commissioner, Iván Velásquez, was banned from entering the country; and that visas for several CICIG staff members had been denied or revoked, among other measures. These were just the most recent efforts by the Guatemalan authorities to undermine and hinder the work of one of the key institutions in the struggle for truth and justice.