The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) included Guatemala on its list of countries where the organization denounces “severe violations” of human rights, according to the 2021 Annual Report published on June 2. The Central American nation now joins Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua.
Though identifying “progress and challenges” concerning human rights in the Americas, the IACHR — which works under the Organizations of American States (OAS) — sees state actions that “weaken judicial independence” and “question the fight against impunity and corruption” in Guatemala, mostly due to the judicial crisis led by Prosecutor General María Consuelo Porras.
According to the new report, the Guatemalan judicial system under Ms. Porras — with the blessing of President Alejandro Giammattei’s government — has been causing a “progressive weakening of democratic institutions.” So far, over 15 judges and prosecutors have fled the country, reportedly under threat.
Despite the critics, Mr. Giammattei recently appointed Mr. Porras to a new four-year term. The persecution inside Guatemala has drawn criticism from the U.S. and the European Union.
- Read more about judicial struggles in Guatemala.