Setback Step for UN in Central America

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.

Tuesday, January 8, 2019

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.

See "Guatemala: Goodbye, CICIG"

According to the agreement between Guatemala and the United Nations, CICIG must withdraw from the country in September 2019. However, to accelerate its withdrawal, the Guatemalan government finalized the agreement and set a 24-hour deadline for the Commission to cease functioning. The deadline is the afternoon of January 8th.

During a conference by President Morales on January 7, he explained that "... CICIG has infringed Guatemalan law, international law, the United Nations Charter of Human Rights and all international human rights treaties."

Morales added that "... CICIG has violated the human rights of Guatemalans and foreigners in Guatemala through selective and partial justice.

The United Nations Secretary-General, António Guterres, said that "... The United Nations has been exchanging constructively with the Government of Guatemala at several levels over the past sixteen months, in accordance with Article 12 of the Agreement Establishing CICIG. The Commission's mandate will end on September 3, 2019. Until that date, we expect the Government of Guatemala to fully comply with its legal obligations under the Agreement.

In the statement issued by Guterres, he calls for "... respect for international commitments to ensure the protection of both international and national staff of CICIG.”

Concerning the issue, the Coordinating Committee of Agricultural, Commercial, Industrial and Financial Associations (Cacif) stated "... the decision of the Government of Guatemala is within the framework of its competencies, but that the term must be followed by effective measures to ensure the fight against corruption and impunity.



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.

CICIG Agreement Suspended

January 2019

After President Morales decided to end the mandate of the International Commission against Impunity, the Constitutional Court suspended the Guatemalan government's decision.

On January 7th, the Guatemalan government finalized the agreement between the Central American country and the United Nations, and set a 24-hour deadline for the Commission to cease functioning.

Guatemala: Goodbye, CICIG

September 2018

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.

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.

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