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News > Guatemala

Elites Seek to Prevent Arevalo's Inauguration in Guatemala: EU

  • Guatemala's President-elect Bernardo Arevalo (C), 2023.

    Guatemala's President-elect Bernardo Arevalo (C), 2023. | Photo: X/ @LATAMProg

Published 21 September 2023 (17 hours 4 minutes ago)
Opinion

A regime of corruption and impunity is accelerating a process towards authoritarianism, SEED party secretary said.

On Thursday, the European Union (EU) expressed its concern about legal actions in Guatemala that seek to prevent the inauguration of Bernardo Arevalo, who was elected President in the June 25 elections.

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Guatemala: President-Elect Arevalo Suspends Transition Process

“We have many concerns about the attempts to undermine and remove credibility from the electoral results,” said Duccio Bandini, the deputy head of the Division for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean of the European External Action Service (EEAS).

During a session of the Eurochamber's Delegation for Relations with the Central American Countries, he pointed out that “legal processes going beyond the electoral process itself” have been launched.

“We must be very attentive to what comes after the official end of the electoral process, because there are procedures whose goal is avoiding the presidential inauguration in January,” Bandani stated, emphasizing that the transition process is occurring amid institutional degradation in Guatemala.

“Everything that is happening reflects the pressure, as well as the control of a part of the judicial apparatus, by external elites,” he said, denouncing the existence of a “climate of persecution and intimidation,” which is evident through social networks.

MEP Jordi Cañas, the head of the EU electoral observation mission, assured that the elections occurred impeccably thanks to the “commitment of citizens and their defense of democracy.”

Through a videoconference, Samuel Perez, who is the secretary of the Seed Party that supported Arevalo's presidential candidacy, assured that the Guatemalan elites are carrying out a coup d'état through legal manipulation.

“Over the last decades, a regime of corruption and impunity has been consolidated in our country. Besides entailing negative social, economic, and political consequences, it has accelerated a process towards authoritarianism,” he said.

Last week, the European Parliament's plenary session criticized the Guatemalan Prosecutor's Office for trying to reverse the result of the elections in which Arevalo won with a clear victory.

More specifically, the MEPs denounced the raids by the Prosecutor's Office against the Superior Electoral Court, the opening of boxes with votes cast in the elections, the seizure of computer material related to the transmission of electoral results, and the arbitrary arrests of lawyers , journalists, and human rights defenders.

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