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Guatemala: Human rights must take precedence in appointment of Attorney General

    April 25, 2018

    The efforts of the Attorney General’s Office to fight rampant impunity and protect human rights in Guatemala must continue and even increase, Amnesty International said today, ahead of the appointment of the new Attorney General and Head of the Public Prosecutor’s Office.

    “President Jimmy Morales must appoint an Attorney General who guarantees prompt and effective justice for all, and who complies effectively with Guatemala’s international human rights obligations,” said Erika Guevara-Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

    “This is a critical moment in Guatemala’s modern history. There cannot be any backwards steps in the fight against impunity which the country has been tackling.”

    President Morales is responsible for choosing between six candidates who hope to assume the post of Attorney General and Head of the Public Prosecutor’s Office for the next four years. The decision must be made by 17 May at the latest, when the current Attorney General Thelma Aldana Hernández’s term comes to an end.

    Amnesty International highlighted the key role which the Public Prosecutor’s Office has played throughout recent years in the investigation of emblematic cases of human rights violations in the armed conflict in Guatemala, including enforced disappearances, sexual violence against women and genocide. The appointment should be made with a view to guaranteeing the continuation of the investigations of these serious cases, with the aim of prosecuting the perpetrators.

    For more information or to arrange an interview, contact Elizabeth Berton-Hunter, Media Relations 416-363-9933 ext 332

    Further information:

    Guatemala: Trial of military personnel for disappearances and sexual violence, ray of hope for victims (News, 3 March 2017) Available in Spanish only

    Guatemala: Major human rights challenges still pending: Amnesty International submission for the UN Universal Periodic Review, 28th session of the UPR Working Group, November 2017 (Report, 1 March 2017)