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Arévalo says that Guatemala experienced “a coup d’état in slow motion” and foresees “measures” against the prosecutor

He appreciates Spain’s support for the “civic feat” at the end of an official visit

The president of Guatemala, Bernardo Arévalo, has claimed that the Central American country has overcome “a coup d’état in slow motion” as a result of the successive challenges of the Prosecutor’s Office against his party, the Movimimiento Semilla, and against the results of the last elections, although he has warned that some of those responsible still remain in their positions and it will be necessary to take “measures.”

Once the “threat” was resolved, which even delayed his inauguration as president in January, Arévalo feels “responsibility”, first of all towards the population that gave him “the vote of confidence” at the polls and also towards an international community that came out en bloc to support him, to the detriment of the theses headed by the attorney general, Consuelo Porras.

Arévalo has stressed in an interview with Europa Press that some of those responsible for this “coup d’état” are still in the institutions, in a veiled allusion to the attorney general, with whom the president initially tried to build bridges.

Now, and given the prosecutor’s refusal to participate in meetings with the Government under “spurious legal arguments”, he has left the door open to other “measures”, without going into details. “Any measure we adopt will be within the framework of the law,” he clarified.

International sanctions – from the EU and the United States, among other actors – now weigh on Porras, something from which Arévalo has distanced himself. They are, he has said, “government decisions.”

INTERNATIONAL SUPPORT

The Guatemalan president has thanked countries like Spain for their support in this “civic feat”, the last stop on a tour that has also led him to hold meetings in recent days with senior officials from France, the European Union and the United Nations, among others. .

He aspires to respond to “hope” with “concrete measures of change”, so that there are, for example, “just institutions” in Guatemala and at the same time a palpable improvement in issues of development, education, health or infrastructure.

Arévalo, who has confirmed invitations for Spanish authorities to visit Guatemala soon – in the absence of “formalizing” them – has pointed out that the international community is invited to this process, in which he hopes that “ethics and politics are not divorced.” .

In fact, he has recognized that it would be a “failure” if, once his mandate ended, “he had not reestablished confidence in political institutions enough to prevent the corruption to which (Guatemala) had become accustomed” from resurfacing in future periods.

The fight against corruption is, in fact, one of the great challenges of the new Government of Guatemala, to the extent that, in the words of Arévalo, it is “a problem spread throughout all State institutions, including the society”.

Arévalo has framed within these efforts the purging of “ghost” employees in public institutions, the fight against nepotism or the creation of a new National Commission against Corruption.

In terms of insecurity, another of its great challenges, it has recognized the need to combat drug trafficking, organized crime and extortion, a context that it nevertheless considers different from that of El Salvador — “although we share phenomena such as gangs” — , so in his opinion the same recipes as those of the Nayib Bukele Government would not fit.

“EXPLORE” INTEGRATION

Arévalo sees room to continue strengthening ties with other countries in the region, despite the fact that in Central America he has admitted that there is a “dissonance” with Nicaragua. In this sense, he hopes that the upcoming meetings of different forums, starting with that of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), will allow progress to be “explored.”

“We need to generalize something that involves all the different countries,” admitted the Guatemalan president, who highlighted the role of the Organization of American States (OAS) as an institution capable of “contributing to the validity of democratic processes” in the Western Hemisphere.

The OAS is a framework open to the United States, a country with which Arévalo hopes to continue working regardless of who may live in the White House after the November elections. He has argued that in the “process of rescuing democracy” in Guatemala he received support from politicians from both major American parties.

In relation to the open political crisis in Venezuela, which must hold presidential elections this year, the president of Guatemala has offered to “come” at times “when there are openings to allow democratization”, without directly assessing the current scenario of tensions between the Government of Nicolás Maduro and the opposition.

“The politics of my government will be based on the principle that democracy must be protected and promoted in all countries of the world. We believe in freedom of expression, we believe in the full validity of Human Rights, we believe in the freedom of political participation and, in that sense, we will be willing to support the democratization processes that exist anywhere in the world,” he summarized.

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