February 25th marked the 21st anniversary of the presentation of the UN-sponsored Historical Clarification Commission Report for Truth and Reconciliation. The report, Guatemala: Memory of Silence, documented the crimes that the Guatemalan state committed against its own people during the Internal Armed Conflict (1960-1996). The report concluded that there were over 200,000 deaths, over 45,000 disappearances, and more than 1.5 million internally displaced people. The Guatemalan armed forces were responsible for 93% of these atrocities.
Julio Gómez released from pre-trial detention; continues to be criminalized
On January 26th, Maya Chuj ancestral authority and water protector Julio Gómez Lucas was en route to Chiantla, Huehuetenango when the police detained him without an arrest warrant. After the state rescheduled his trial and moved him between jails multiple times, Mr. Gómez had his first declaration hearing on February 1st.
Giammattei signs law that threatens NGO’s work
On February 27, President Giammattei signed into law Decree 4-2020, formerly known as Bill 5257 or the NGO Law. Guatemalan social movements as well as national and international organizations have pointed out that this initiative is antidemocratic, regressive, limits political rights, and threatens people who work in the defense of life.
Spring 2020 speaking tour – “Ancestral Movements: Indigenous Territory and Migration”
You can read the full Solidarity Update, here, on the NISGUA site.