EU Sanctions Guatemala’s Attorney General for Undermining Democracy and the Rule of Law

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By LatAm Reports Editor

The sanctions of the European Union are for actions that undermine democracy and the rule of law in Guatemala.

On Friday, February 2, the European Union sanctioned Guatemala’s Attorney General, María Consuelo Porras Argueta, for her attempts to prevent the inauguration of the president, Bernardo Arévalo de León, who took office on 14 January.

The sanctions also affect the head of the Special Prosecutor’s Office against Impunity (FECI), José Rafael Curruchiche Cacul; Judge Fredy Raúl Orellana; the prosecutor of FECI Leonor Eugenia Morales Lazo; and the Secretary General of the Public Prosecutor, Ángel Arnoldo Pineda Ávila.

According to the European Union, restrictive measures were imposed restricting travel and freezing assets in the European Union.

It is noted that the Council of the European Union sanctioned the five people for undermining democracy and the rule of law or the peaceful transfer of power in Guatemala.

The persecuted are responsible for undermining democracy, the rule of law and the peaceful transfer of power in Guatemala, reads in a statement.

Listed persons are subject to an asset freeze and EU citizens and businesses are prohibited from making funds available to them. People are also subject to a travel restriction, which prevents them from entering or transiting through EU territories, the document is mentioned.

It is explained that this Friday’s decision follows the adoption, on 12 January 2024, of a specific framework for restrictive measures in support of democracy and a peaceful and orderly transfer of power in Guatemala.

The framework was adopted before the inauguration of the democratically elected President Bernardo Arévalo on 14 January 2024, attended by High Representative Josep Borrell, reads in the information.

When I traveled to Guatemala City, I did so knowing that the presence of numerous international guests would not only send a strong message of support for democracy in Guatemala, but also a strong signal to the obstructionists that circumventing democratic processes would not be tolerated by the government, the international community. The EU is ready to take further steps to hold those responsible accountable, explained Josep Borrell, High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

The communication mentions that the European Union remains fully committed to supporting democracy in Guatemala and is ready to work closely with the new government of President Bernardo Arévalo on key issues of mutual interest, such as strengthening the rule of law, improving sustainable and inclusive economic development and promoting social justice.

This article has been translated from the original which first appeared in Presna Libre