Ríos Montt to Face Second Genocide Trial for the Dos Erres Massacre

A judge in Guatemala has determined that there is sufficient evidence to send former Guatemalan dictator Efraín Ríos Montt to trial for the case of the Las Dos Erres massacre. This is the second trial Ríos Montt will face in which he is charged with genocide and crimes against humanity.

According to Guatemala’s Historical Clarification Commission, the Dos Erres massacre took place over three days in early December 1982 and was carried out by a counterinsurgency unit known as the Kaibiles. At the time, Rios Montt was de facto president and commander-in-chief of the army.

Over 200 residents of Las Dos Erres, a newly settled community in Peten, were killed in the massacre. Soldiers raped girls and women before killing them. They bludgeoned villagers, including children, to death and tossed many into a community well.

Forensic investigators exhumed 162 bodies from Las Dos Erres. Of these, 67 were children under the age of 12.

In 2011, four soldiers were sentenced to 6,060 years each in this case; another was sentenced the following year as well.

You can read the full piece by Jo-Marie Burt here on the International Justice Monitor website.

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Categories: Genocide, Guatemala, Human Rights, Indigenous peoples, Justice, Land, Military, Rios Montt, Violence

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