MIL-OSI USA: Congresswomen Ramirez, Torres Call for Secretary Blinken to Support Fight Against Corruption in Guatemala

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Source: United States House of Representatives – Representative Delia Ramirez – Illinois (3rd District)

Washington, D.C. — Today, Congresswomen Delia C. Ramirez (IL-03) and Norma J. Torres (CA-35)  – the only two Guatemalan-American members of Congress –, urged Secretary of State Antony Blinken to support President of Guatemala Bernardo Arévalo’s request for the Organization of American States (OAS) to send an impartial observation mission to monitor the selection process for justices to the country’s highest courts. According to a letter sent by the representatives, the OAS observation mission would help the Guatemalan government preserve democracy, support Guatemaltecos in their fight for good governance for all, and protect the integrity of Guatemala’s judicial system.

“In recent years, Guatemala has faced a significant erosion of its democracy and the rule of law, threatening Guatemalans’ ability to thrive in their home communities. Despite the January 2024 inauguration of President Bernardo Arévalo, who pledged on the campaign trail to restore the rule of law and combat corruption, persistent challenges related to access to justice and impunity remain pressing issues. We echo concerns from Guatemalans and the international community that the co-optation of the justice system in Guatemala continues to be an impediment to good governance and restoring democracy, including legitimizing unlawful actions by the Attorney General and the Constitutional Court that jeopardize the rule of law,” the Members of Congress wrote.

 “We believe it is critical that you join Guatemala in supporting the OAS in creating an oversight mechanism made up of international independent experts to monitor the selection process of judges to prevent the Courts from being infiltrated by compromised individuals. We appreciate the strong support this Administration has demonstrated for democracy and look forward to working with you to see what more the United States can do to partner with the people of Guatemala during this pivotal time as they fight against corruption and for democracy and the rule of law.”

Full letter HERE.