Guatemala: Goodbye, CICIG

Arguing that it is time to "strengthen State institutions," President Morales has announced that he will not renew the mandate of the International Commission against Impunity, whose term expires in a year.

Monday, September 3, 2018

"ltr">The controversial decision by the Guatemalan government, which was announced over the weekend, is based, according to Morales, on the idea that after ten years of work by the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), the time has come to transfer its capabilities over to the State.

Prensalibre.com reports that "...The president said that last year the UN had already been notified of concerns that the State of Guatemala had regarding the irresponsible actions of the commission and many of its members, violating our laws and inducing people and institutions to participate in acts of corruption and impunity.  Selective justice has been used to intimidate and terrorize the citizenry, judicial independence has been violated, aiming to manipulate justice, actions that threaten the presumption of innocence and due process, human guarantees protected by our law and international law', added the president."

Morales added "..."I have exhausted all diplomatic processes and always acted in good faith, but we have not seen that good faith on the part of the United Nations Organization. After 11 years, the time has come to transfer the capacities that were taken on, that the CICIG has, to the corresponding Guatemalan institutions."

The announcement comes a year after the Public Ministry and the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) presented a request for a preliminary hearing against President Morales for alleged illicit electoral financing. 

This is not the first time that Morales has tried to remove the CICIG and its representatives from the country. In August of last year, the president ordered the removal of the leader of the Commission, Iván Velásquez, from the country, but the Constitutional Court permanently suspended the president's order.  See "Guatemala: Revolt for President Morales" and "Corruption, impunity and politics"



More on this topic

The Post-CICIG Era Begins

September 2019

Twelve years after having settled in Guatemala and after multiple struggles for the non-renewal of its mandate, from today the International Commission against Impunity is no longer operating.

In August 2007, the Congress of the Republic approved the creation of the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), which arrived in the country with the mission of investigating criminal structures operating within government institutions, work done in association with the Public Prosecutor's Office.

Guatemala: CICIG's Withdrawal Impact

January 2019

For Moody's, the withdrawal of the International Commission against Impunity weakens efforts to improve the rule of law in a country with high levels of corruption.

For Moody's, President Morales' decision to end the mandate of the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) is a setback for the country because corruption is still widespread and institutions are still fragile.

Setback Step for UN in Central America

January 2019

Arguing that "it has violated human rights in Guatemala through selective and partial justice", President Morales decided to end the mandate of the United Nations International Commission against Impunity.

After more than ten years of the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), the Morales administration announced in 2018 that it would not renew the agreement with the United Nations that establishes the foreign institution dedicated to criminal investigation.

Guatemala: Setback for President Morales

August 2017

The Constitutional Court has suspended, in definitive from, the order given by President Jimmy Morales to expel the leader of the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala from the country.

"... Acting without the accompaniment of his ministers, as ordered by the Constitution, inconsistency in the dates and non use of the process to resolve disputes established in the agreement between the Government of Guatemala and the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (Cicig) are the main reasons why the Constitutional Court (CC) yesterday ordered the definitive suspension of the expulsion from the country of Iván Velásquez, head of the Cicig."

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