Saturday, May 18, 2013

IRCT welcomes sentencing of Rios Montt

IRCT welcomes sentencing of Rios Montt

The IRCT welcomes the successful prosecution and sentencing of Guatemala's former military leader Efrain Rios Montt. Rios Montt was found guilty of genocide and crimes against humanity and jailed for 80 years.

Enforced hunger, systematic rape and forced displacements were all used as tools of war against the Ixil indigenous group in the country. Rios Montt was convicted of ordering the deaths of 1711 people of the group.

In what represents the first time a former head of state has been found guilty of genocide in his or her own country, Rios Montt was handed 50 years for genocide and 30 for crimes against humanity.

Joost Martens, IRCT Secretary-General said: “I commend the people of Guatemala for the important step towards justice and against impunity, through the outcome of the trial of Efrain Rios Montt on charges of massacres, torture and rape. This ruling will help restore human dignity and will help ensure that the atrocities committed against the indigenous peoples of Guatemala are not forgotten. I believe that the strength of this result will also encourage and help other people to find solutions to the causes of their suffering.”

The IRCT welcomes this move and congratulates the prosecutors for this ground-breaking result.

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