The Alliance For Reform (Alianza Por Las Reformas) recently issued a statement condemning state violence directed against those civil society actors fighting against systemic corruption and human rights abuses. Any errors in translation are mine.
We Reject The Criminalisation Of Critical Voices
We express our deep concern at the increase in attacks and criminalisation against legal practitioners, journalists and human rights defenders.
Democracy in Guatemala is at its worst point in the last thirty years. The empowerment of criminal groups following the departure of CICIG and the co-optation of the justice system has provoked a systematic harassment of all voices critical of the regime of corruption and impunity.
The Public Prosecutor’s Office has been corrupted to the point where its purpose has regressed, inventing cases against people who fight against impunity and seek transparency, while protecting the most powerful politicians and corrupt businessmen. In view of this, we reiterate: Consuelo Porras must resign.
Examples abound: the repression in El Estor, mounting criminal proceedings against journalists, failing to close spurious investigations against activists, and, most recently, issuing arrest warrants against protesters for painting the wall of Congress. Little by little, the shamelessness increases and the Prosecutor’s Office resumes the old practices of promoting authoritarianism in order to crush dissent.
In these times, the unity of society is indispensable. We must stop this regression and defend the few democratic values we have left, such as the freedoms of expression, of association, of protest, and access to justice.
In addition, we alert the international community to the increase in authoritarian practices aimed at maintaining control of state institutions in order to perpetuate a regime that greatly expands crime, violence, poverty and migration.
GUATEMALA 30 NOVEMBER 2021
The Alliance For Reform (Alianza Por Las Reformas) is a coalition of 40 civil society organisations, plural and democratic, which was created in 2017 to promote and influence the different reforms necessary for a fairer country. It brings together various groups specialising in justice and human rights, urban collectives, international institutions and centres of analysis and thought.
You can read more about them, in Spanish, here, Alianza Por Las Reformas.