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Efraín Ríos Montt Found Guilty of Genocide and Cri mes Against Humanity

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  • Cort Greene
    Efraín Ríos Montt Found Guilty of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity Written by Renata Avila On 11 May 2013 @ 0:28 am | *No
    Message 1 of 1 , May 10, 2013
      Efra�n R�os Montt Found Guilty of Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity

      Written by Renata Avila On 11 May 2013 @ 0:28 am | *No

      In *Breaking News*, *Citizen Media*, *Digital Activism*, *English*, *
      Guatemala*, *History*, *Human Rights*, *Latin America*, *Law*, *Spanish*, *War
      & Conflict*, *Weblog*

      Guatemalan de facto dictator Efra�n R�os
      [1] was declared guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity. After
      organizing and fighting in courts for
      [2], Guatemala's Ixil Maya
      [3] achieved justice.

      The verdict was live-tweeted and streamed

      While R�os Montt was declared guilty and sentenced to 80 years in prison,
      former Intelligence Director Jos� Mauricio Rodriguez Sanchez was declared

      Rios Montt ruled Guatemala from March 1982 to August 1983 during the
      country's 36-year civil war. As Xeni Jardin explains in
      [5]: �The 86-year-old former General and head of state was charged with
      the crimes over a counterinsurgency campaign in 1982-1983 that resulted in
      the deaths of 1,771 Maya Ixil.�
      [image: Rios Montt Genocide Trial Day

      Rios Montt Genocide Trial Day 26. Photo by James Rodriguez of MiMundo.org,
      used with permission.

      Guatemala's indigenous were severely impacted by the war; they lost land,
      houses, animals, crops, and had to live in hiding in the mountains. After
      the war the country offered little opportunities.

      Today, the Ixil communities are among the poorest in the country, with up
      to 77% living in poverty [es].
      [7]In Guatemala, where up to 40% of the population is indigenous, eight out
      of 10<http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/TOPICS/EXTPOVERTY/EXTPA/0,,contentMDK:20207581~menuPK:443285~pagePK:148956~piPK:216618~theSitePK:430367,00.html>
      [8] indigenous peoples are poor. Furthermore, racism impacts their
      education and employment<http://www.ipsnews.net/2012/01/guatemala-native-people-suffer-racism-in-employment/>
      [9] opportunities.

      In spite of their poverty, the survivors were not asking for reparations
      -they were asking for justice, as Mr. Benjam�n Jer�nimo, plaintiff of the
      genocide case, told the tribunal in theclosing
      [10] of a very complex trial which Amnesty International summarized in ten

      Genocide was committed, crimes against humanity were committed and today,
      100 witnesses came to tell the truth, to ask for justice for all that we
      suffered, publicly� We are not looking for vengeance, we are looking for a
      true peace with justice, with respect, with equality, with dignity, that is
      why we are here.

      It takes more than ten hours to travel in public transport from the Ixil
      region to Guatemala City, where the trial took place. In spite of their
      modest income and the distance, members of the Ixil community were present
      in the courtroom every day, as photo records by James Rodriguez of
      [6] and the coverage by Xeni Jardin <https://twitter.com/xeni> [12] in Boing
      Boing <http://boingboing.net/tag/genocide> [13] show. Xeni live
      [12] the final verdict from the courtroom.
      [image: Picture by James Rodr�guez, Mimundo.org used with

      Picture by James Rodr�guez, Mimundo.org used with permission.

      A video <https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOIJ1-7LDQs> [14] explaining all
      the evidence leading to the charges was aired this week by PBS in the
      United States, generating debate about president Reagan's involvement.
      [15]The article �The Final Battle: Rios Montt's Counterinsurgency Campaign:
      U.S. and Guatemalan Documents Describe the Strategy Behind Scorched Earth�
      by The National Security Archive

      R�os Montt's scorched earth tactics are documented in a collection of
      Guatemalan army records created in July and August 1982, connected to
      Operation Sof�a � a series of counterinsurgency sweeps through the Ixil
      region to kill EGP combatants and destroy their �base of support� (the Maya
      Ixil population). The Operation Sof�a documents were given to the National
      Security Archive in 2009 and the Archive in turn provided them as criminal
      evidence to the prosecutors in the genocide case.

      The trial has been an example of open justice, with translation available
      for the Ixil peoples during the entire trial, unrestricted access to press
      and a strong interaction in social media.

      Parallel to the debate in court, a conversation -a battle of ideas and
      facts- took place online.

      Netizens used the hashtags
      [17], #genocidegt <https://twitter.com/search?q=%23genocidegt&src=typd>
      [18] and #sihubogenocidio<https://twitter.com/search/realtime?q=%23sihubogenocidio&src=typd>
      [19] (�yes, it was genocide�), and there were livestreams
      [20] (audio), here<http://ajrguatemala.org/content/cuenta-regresiva-para-el-inicio-de-la-transmisi%C3%B3n-y-el-fallo-del-tribunal-en-caso-por>
      [21] (audio) andhere. <http://www.ustream.tv/channel/4615721>[22]

      There are also netizens who deny that there was a genocide, and they are
      using the hashtag
      [23] (�there was no genocide�) to share their views.

      During the trial citizens all over the world took a pledge and shared a
      photo <https://www.causes.com/actions/1740392-support-justice-for-genocide-in-guatemala>
      [24]showing their support for justice.

      International volunteers from
      [10], Peace Brigades International <http://www.pbi-guatemala.org/>
      [25], Collectif
      Guatemala <http://www.collectifguatemala.org/>[26]and other NGOs worked
      and supported families of survivors during the trial. They also produced
      content in English and French to share with the world.

      After thirty years, this landmark verdict materializing the spirit of
      the Genocide
      Convention <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genocide_Convention> [27] and the
      enforcement of crimes against
      [28] is an insurance for each and every human being, as it sets a
      precedent for current conflicts around the world. It is a ray of hope for
      entire villages labelled as �the enemy� in
      [29], for the suffering of the
      [30]in Myanmar, and for all the conflicts to come.

      Furthermore, it also marks a new beginning for an inclusive Guatemala,
      embracing and learning from the values and differences of 24 nations,
      starting with the lessons of courage, patience and non-violent struggle for
      justice taught by the Ixil. As Salvadoran digital journal El Faro said, the
      Ixil peoples already achieved a victory
      [image: Photo via @xeni: "Juana Sanchez Toma, Ixil rape victim whom we
      interviewed for @newshour. 'I dreamed of justice. And now here it

      Photo via @xeni: �Juana Sanchez Toma, Ixil rape victim whom we interviewed
      for @newshour. �I dreamed of justice. And now here it is.'�

      Article printed from Global Voices: *http://globalvoicesonline.org*

      URL to article: *

      URLs in this post:

      [1] Efra�n R�os Montt: *http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Efrain_Rios_Montt*

      [2] years: *

      [3] Ixil Maya indigenous: *

      [4] streamed [es]: *http://tv-online.in/guatevision-live*

      [5] BoingBoing: *

      [6] Image: *

      [7] with up to 77% living in poverty [es]. : *

      [8] eight out of 10:*

      [9] employment: *

      [10] closing arguments: *

      [11] ten facts: *

      [12] Xeni Jardin: *https://twitter.com/xeni*

      [13] Boing Boing: *http://boingboing.net/tag/genocide*

      [14] video: *https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dOIJ1-7LDQs*

      [15] Reagan's involvement. : *

      [16] adds: *http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB425/*

      [17] #riosmontt: *https://twitter.com/search?q=%23riosmontt&src=typd*

      [18] #genocidegt: *https://twitter.com/search?q=%23genocidegt&src=typd*

      [19] #sihubogenocidio: *

      [20] here: *http://paraqueseconozca.blogspot.com/*

      [21] here: *

      [22] here. : *http://www.ustream.tv/channel/4615721*

      [23] #nohubogenocidio: *

      [24] a pledge and shared a photo : *

      [25] Peace Brigades International: *http://www.pbi-guatemala.org/*

      [26] Collectif Guatemala : *http://www.collectifguatemala.org/*

      [27] Genocide Convention: *https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genocide_Convention

      [28] crimes against humanity: *

      [29] Syria: *

      [30] Rohingya: *

      [31] already achieved a victory [es].: *

      [32] Image: *https://twitter.com/xeni/status/333014536716169216*

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