1.                 The IACHR’s practice of following up on its reports on the human rights situation in member states is aimed at evaluating the measures adopted by the states to comply with the recommendations made by the IACHR in its reports. This practice is based on the functions of the IACHR, the principal organ of the OAS responsible for the protection and promotion of human rights, contemplated in Articles 41(c) and d of the American Convention, in concordance with Articles 18.c and d of the Statute and Article 57(h) of the Rules of Procedure of the Commission.


2.                 The initiative of evaluating compliance with the recommendations contained in such reports in a separate chapter of the IACHR’s Annual Report dates back to 1998 and the Report on the Situation of Human Rights in Ecuador (1997).  Subsequently, in its 1999 Annual Report, the IACHR included follow-up reports on compliance with its recommendations contained in the reports on Brazil (1997), Mexico (1998), and Colombia (1999).  In its 2001 Annual Report, the IACHR mentioned that the follow-up report on compliance with the recommendations for the Paraguay, Peru and the Dominican Republic.


3.                 The reports included in this Chapter attempt to evaluate the measures taken to comply with the recommendations put forward by the IACHR in its reports on Paraguay (2001), Peru (2000), and the Dominican Republic (1999). To that end, the three aforementioned states were asked to provide all the information they considered pertinent, in accordance with the above-mentioned provisions. Apart from the official information received or obtained from sources accessible to the public, the Commission also used documents and reports from global organs for the protection of human rights, as well as information culled from civil society organizations and the media.






1.       On April 6, 2000, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter “the Commission” or “the IACHR”) adopted its Fifth Report on the Situation of Human Rights in Guatemala (hereinafter “the Report on Guatemala” or “the Fifth Report”). In that report the Commission focused its attention on the State’s basic challenge of meeting the commitments entered into under its Constitution, its international and regional obligations, and, in particular, the Global Agreement on Human Rights. With that aim in mind, it analyzed the human rights situation since the signing of the Agreement on Firm and Lasting Peace, economic, social, and cultural rights, the administration of justice, the right to life, the right to personal integrity, the right to personal liberty, the situation faced by detainees, the right to freedom of thought and expression, the right to political participation and the electoral process, the rights of indigenous peoples, the rights of the child, the rights of women, and the human rights of those uprooted by the armed conflict. In accordance with its conventional and statutory powers, the Commission drew up a series of recommendations intended to help the Guatemalan State ensure all the individuals under its jurisdiction full enjoyment of these protected rights and freedoms.


2.       The Fifth Report was the IACHR’s first thorough analysis of the human rights situation in Guatemala since the signing of the Firm and Lasting Peace in 1996. It was within the context of that inestimably important act for the protection of human rights in Guatemala that the Commission examined the significant progress made and the vital challenges that remain pending in the implementation of the national agenda of peace and reconciliation and the consolidation of a participatory democracy. The Commission assessed the major steps forward taken through the energetic action of institutions of both the State and civil society. These include the cessation of the systematic human rights violations perpetrated by the State as part of its national policy during the conflict, the opening up of vital new spaces for political participation, the involvement of previously excluded sectors of civil society in the development and implementation of public policy, the initiation of a process of demilitarization, and the first determined steps toward establishing the truth about the fundamental violations that were both a cause and a consequence of the conflict.


3.       This follow-up report analyzes the degree to which the recommendations made by the Commission in each of the chapters of its Report on Guatemala have been put into practice.


4.       On January 14, 2002, the Commission asked the State to furnish information on its compliance with the recommendations contained in the Report on Guatemala. The Commission reiterated this request in a communication of November 8, 2002.


5.       On December 18, 2002, the IACHR adopted a draft follow-up report; this was duly transmitted to the State, along with a one-month deadline for it to submit its comments. On January 13, 2003, the State of Guatemala sent its comments on the draft, most of which have been incorporated into this report.




6.       In Chapter I of the Report on Guatemala, the Commission reviewed the main legal and institutional mechanisms intended to protect human rights, in light of the crucial role that they play. Whereas in the legal arena it analyzed constitutional guarantees, as regards the institutional mechanisms in place it studied the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government, the ombudsman’s office, the Supreme Electoral Tribunal, the National Civil Police and the army, and the pending redefinition of their respective roles. Aware that the root causes of decades of armed conflict could only be tackled through changes aimed at establishing a participatory democracy–the indispensable prerequisite for effective enjoyment and observance of human rights–the Commission made the following recommendations to the State:


1.     Further fortify the resources and support provided to the public entities charged with protecting and promoting human rights and investigating human rights abuses, most particularly the Office of the Human Rights Ombudsman, and the institutions charged with the administration of justice.


2.    Amplify the dissemination of the peace accords throughout the country, including in the respective indigenous languages, in writing and by radio.


3.    Take decisive action to separate the functions of the Army and National Civil Police, in conformity with the roles assigned in the peace accords, and to further strengthen the capacity of the latter to meet the demands of protecting the security of its citizenry.


4.     Adopt the measures necessary to ensure that both the military and civilian intelligence services are subject to due congressional oversight.


5.    Amplify the dissemination of the Report of the Commission for Historical Clarification, especially the conclusions and recommendations, including through programs designed to teach national history in the schools.


6.     Adopt concrete measures to fully effectuate the recommendations of the Commission for Historical Clarification, including first and foremost, the establishment of the Foundation for Peace and Harmony which will be responsible for implementing those recommendations.


7.     Amplify opportunities for State officials to receive information and training concerning the obligations of the State within the inter-American human rights system, and under international human rights law generally.


          7.       As regards funding for the bodies charged with promoting and protecting human rights, information provided by the State indicates that Guatemala’s National Congress increased the allocation given to both the ombudsman and the judiciary in its 2003 national budget. The Commission was told that in the budget approved by Congress for 2003, the ombudsman’s office was allocated Q40 million and the judiciary Q600 million. The Commission acknowledges the State’s efforts to increase the funding given to those institutions. However, the Commission was also informed that in the 2002 budget the judicial system’s total allocation was reduced by 12 percent and, in addition, a series of delays in transferring those funds had led to the elimination of the technical reserve used by the judiciary to cover its salary bill and to buy basic supplies for its operations. The Commission therefore urges the State to comply in full and on a timely basis with the budget assignments earmarked for the judicial branch of government.


8.       In its comments on the report, the State explained that although the transfer of funds might have been irregular, the situation–which affected several sectors–was the result of difficulties in obtaining those resources, which in itself represents a challenge that the State faces in complying with the Peace Accords.


          9.       With respect to institutional strengthening, the information furnished by the State indicates that the judiciary is working to modernize the justice system and, as a result of the institutionalized peace, has set up a series of committees to study, analyze, and propose mechanisms for strengthening justice.  In its comments the State noted that the increased budget of the Public Prosecution Service, the National Civil Police, and the judiciary will allow their modernization needs to be addressed; this is a process in which the judiciary has been at the vanguard, with the creation of the Justice Sector Coordinating Office, the task of which is to ensure heightened cooperation among the agencies of the law.


          10.     As regards the Public Prosecution Service (MP), the Guatemalan government reported the creation of the Special Prosecutor for Crimes against Journalists and Trade-Unionists and the Prosecutor for Human Rights. In turn, Guatemala’s attorney general reported that the agency’s resources were precarious and that as a result, the Public Prosecution Service could maintain a presence in only 10 percent of the country’s territory, with one prosecutor for every 75,000 inhabitants, each one of whom is in charge of an average of 1,546 cases. The Commission believes that the success of measures aimed at overcoming impunity in the field of human rights depends on the strength of the mechanisms used to conduct investigations. It thus applauds the appointment of Special Prosecutors for human rights and for journalists and trade-unionists and the attorney general’s efforts to secure the resources needed for a comprehensive restructuring of the Public Prosecution Service; it further urges the State to provide it with the funding needed to achieve that goal.


          11.     With respect to the second recommendation, information supplied by the State indicates that the Peace Accords have been disseminated, including their translations into several indigenous languages, with particular emphasis on the interior of the country. The Commission commends the State’s commitment toward continuing its sustained and constant dissemination of the Peace Accords.


          12.     As regards the third recommendation–separating the functions of the army and of the National Civil Police (PNC)–information provided by the State indicates an absolute separation of the functions of these two bodies. However, MINUGUA reports that in contravention of the spirit of the Peace Accords, the army’s role in law-and-order matters and other spheres of government has expanded. [1] The Commission notes with concern not only the fact that the army continues to participate in criminal investigations, particularly cases related to drug trafficking and organized crime, but also the orders whereby regional police chiefs have been instructed to share their daily reports with the army in their respective regions. [2] The Commission urges the Guatemalan State to fully comply with the Peace Accords and, specifically, to work toward a conclusive separation of the tasks of the army and those of the National Civil Police in maintaining law and order and pursuing criminal investigations.


13.     In its comments on the report, the State insisted that the army’s allocated duties included nothing in the field of law and order; it did, however, admit that from time to time, at the request and under the coordination of the Interior Ministry, it does provide the National Civil Police with support. Although the State claims that the Public Prosecution Service is responsible for directing criminal investigations, in that Article 2(3) of the Organic Law of the Public Prosecution Service requires it to “direct the police and other state security forces in investigating criminal acts,” the Commission believes that by its very nature the army cannot be charged with judicial investigations and it insists on the comments and recommendation set forth in the preceding paragraph.


          14.     The information furnished by the State indicates that the PNC’s capacity has been strengthened and trained, in accordance with the ability of the State to do so and with the assistance of the international community. The government said that with the passage of the 2003 budget, the police will be strengthened financially and technically in order to meet the task of protecting the citizenry. In connection with this, the Commission was informed about a reduction in the budget of the National Police Academy [3] and, in light of this, it urges the State to supply the resources and support needed to enable it to continue its task of providing police officers with education and professional training.


15.     In its comments document, the State said that the year 2003 budget provides financial and technical support for the PNC Academy, with a budget increase of some Q11 million. In addition, to strengthen their training and provide a deeper knowledge base, the duration of the basic course for aspiring PNC officers was extended from 6 to 11 months.


          16.     Regarding the fourth recommendation, dealing with oversight of the intelligence services, the information furnished by the State indicates that measures for guaranteeing oversight of civilian and military intelligence are provided by different legal instruments and by a number of different agencies, including the ombudsman’s office, MINUGUA, the Public Prosecution Service, the courts, and the public administration itself through the internal mechanisms of the Secretariat for Strategic Analysis and of the armed forces. As regards specific parliamentary supervision, the State explained that the Congress of the Republic performs that function through impeachments and interpellations. Since the information furnished by the State deals with the congressional determination of political responsibilities and not with a mechanism for the permanent oversight of the civilian and military intelligence services, and since information has been received indicating that no such oversight has yet been established, nor have any initiatives been taken in that direction, the Commission urges the State to comply in full with the terms of this recommendation.


          17      The Commission has no information regarding the fifth recommendation, about the further dissemination of the Report of the Commission for Historical Clarification (CEH).


          18.     With respect to the implementation of the CEH’s recommendations, the Commission was informed about the creation of the National Redress Program by the Multi-Institutional Agency for Peace and Harmony and the High-Level Commission as a sample of the major joint effort being made by civil society and the government to comply with the CEH’s reparations recommendations. This program has been designed as a process that includes a series of policies, projects, and actions intended to repair, redress, restore, indemnify, and dignify the victims of the armed conflict. It was presented to the President of the Republic, who, according to information provided by the State, referred it to Congress with the appropriate legal initiative for passage into law. The Commission applauds the work of civil society and the government in drawing up the National Redress Program, and it urges the State to adopt it and put it into practice in the near future.


          19.     With regard to the creation of the Foundation for Peace and Harmony, the State reported that it had complied with that recommendation by approving a Governmental Agreement, which failed to satisfy the aspirations of civil society. The Commission therefore calls on civil society and the government to work together, just as they did in preparing the National Redress Program.


20.     With respect to the seventh recommendation–training for government officials about the State’s obligations under the inter-American system–the State reported on a series of seminars sponsored by the Presidential Coordinating Commission for Executive Human Rights Policy (COPREDEH) for raising awareness about the main international instruments that deal with basic rights. These training seminars have been offered to prosecutors from the MP, prison guards, members of the National Civil Police, and officers and specialists from the Presidential Guard.


21.     In its comments on the report, the State told the IACHR that during 2000 and 2001, training on human rights issues and international humanitarian law was given to 3,735 individuals, including officers, specialists, cadets, and soldiers. It also reported on a series of training efforts, most notably the program carried out in conjunction with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) that trained 637 PNC officers stationed in the departments of Cobán, Salamá, Quiché, Sololá, San Marcos, Huehuetenango, Chimaltenango, Retalhuleu, Sacatepéquez, Suchitepéquez, and Zacapa.


22.     The Commission deems the dissemination and training activities carried out by the State to be of crucial importance, and it urges it to expand those efforts to cover the largest possible number of government employees, particularly those responsible for law enforcement.




23.     In Chapter III of its Report on Guatemala, the Commission addressed the issue of economic, social, and cultural rights and presented the Guatemalan State with the following recommendations:


1.     Continue to make every effort to reach the goals set in the peace accords, to ensure an equitable distribution of wealth, and to provide the State with additional resources for financing public investment and social spending.


2.     Duly comply with the Fiscal Pact and implement proper mechanisms to prevent tax evasion.


3.     Continue to work in conjunction and constructively with the representatives of civil society, in pursuit of social justice and sustainable development for the present and future generations in facing the different problems and challenges that lie ahead.


4.     Expand the efforts underway for supporting and funding the implementation of the recommendations of the Commission for Historical Clarification intended to repair the damage caused by the human rights violations that occurred during the armed conflict.


5.     Ratify the Inter-American Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities.


          Distribution of Wealth and Social Spending


24.     With regard to the first recommendation in Chapter III of the Report on Guatemala–pursuing the goals set in the peace accords in order to ensure equitable distribution of wealth–the Commission was informed about the launch of the Economic Action Plan on June 11, 2002. The IACHR understands that sustained economic development is essential for ensuring public investment and achieving social goals. It also hopes that this Action Plan will be a part of the State’s commitment toward setting the foundations for increased sustainable economic growth, with the participation of all sectors of Guatemalan society.


25.     In its comments on this follow-up report, the State said, without specifying a period, that the National Fund for Peace (FONAPAZ) had executed 1,171 investment projects in the areas of health care and social assistance, education, culture and sport, water and sanitation, housing, environment, food security, productive economic development, and rural development.


26.     According to the information sent by the Guatemalan State, the Plan’s pursuit of sustainable economic development rests on three basic pillars, which will allow its results to be sustainable over time. The first of these pillars is the Poverty Reduction Strategy (ERP) at the municipal and departmental levels. The second is economic liberalization, intended to encourage a more competitive and efficient domestic market. The third covers the consolidation of economic stability.


27.     The State also reported that the Action Plan includes specific projects and actions intended to encourage productive investment, stimulate economic activity, create jobs, and improve competitiveness within the domestic economy.  The State’s comments also indicate that FONAPAZ is planning to execute three major programs during 2003: the Program to Combat Extreme Poverty, Rural Development, and Developing Human Settlements throughout the metropolitan region.


28.     The Commission notes that to attain the goal of economic and social development in the country, the Plan’s implementation must take place within a transparent and law-abiding framework; that the concessions process must be based on legality and equal participation; and that all the branches of government must be involved to create the legal framework essential for the Plan’s success.


29.     The Commission notes that even though access to education is one of the issues covered by the Peace Accords, Guatemala’s current situation shows that this commitment is still far from becoming a reality. According to April 2002 figures from MINUGUA, Guatemala has Central America’s highest illiteracy rate and Latin America’s second highest figure for female illiteracy. [4] Additionally, according to the latest Human Development Report from the United Nations Development Programme, the department of Quiché has the highest level of poverty in the country and the lowest level of education, which underscores the relationship between poverty and education. [5]


30.     In its comments on the follow-up report, the State said that as part of its policy to promote equality within the education system, the school-age population has been provided with easier and more timely access to classrooms, leading to increased enrollment figures at all educational levels. There had been an increase in the children enrolled in basic education: the Comprehensive Attention Project for Children aged zero to six (PAIN) catered for 27,990 boys and girls during 2002, giving an 8.2 percent increase over the 2001 figure. At the preschool level, the school-age enrollment (5-6 years) was 15.9 percent higher than in 2001, with a total of 334,773 children in that age group; and primary education reported growth of 4.3 percent over the 2001 figure, for a total of 2,056,924 pupils. At the secondary school level, the State indicated that improvements were taking place in both the basic and diversified cycles: the basic cycle catered to 411,357 pupils, for a 10.2 percent increase over the 2001 level, while the diversified cycle covered 193,611 pupils, 10.8 percent more than the previous year.


31.     The State also reported that it had strengthened its basic literacy program as part of its education coverage and its physical education programs, as well as its parallel or nonschool subsystem, which is taught through special programs and modules on the radio.


32.     The State also furnished information about the content of its education reforms, which aim at improving the quality of education, decentralizing the country’s education policy, and improving its school infrastructure. The Commission appreciates the information furnished by the State on this matter and it commends these efforts to overcome the high levels of illiteracy that have characterized Guatemala in the past. However, in light of the figures submitted by the State and those reported by the UNDP, the IACHR believes that the current education challenge facing the State is to expand access to public higher education, in order to benefit less wealthy students. [6]


33.     The Commission understands that education is a basic strategic tool for human development, and it commends the implementation of the education reform project, the national literacy program, the program to ensure universal primary education, and the decentralization of the education administration. [7] However, the IACHR notes that compared to the goals set in the Peace Accords, the levels of investment in education are still far too low. The Commission urges the Guatemalan State to allocate the financial resources necessary for the country to attain the progress in education it requires.


34.     The Commission applauds the State’s increased investment in the area of health. [8] However, the IACHR laments the increase in the number of malnourished people. According to figures from the World Food Program, hunger affects 115,000 people in the country, of whom 59,635 are severely malnourished children and 6,000 are in a critical state. [9]


35.     In its comments on this follow-up report, the State said that in compliance with the spirit of the Peace Accords and the mandate established in the Constitution, the government’s priorities were to improve health conditions and to provide special attention for mothers and babies, indigenous people, and the migrant population. It also noted that the causes of disease and death are related to poverty and that they lead to deficiencies that translate into acute respiratory infections and diarrhea-related diseases associated with malnutrition, environment, rural areas, ethnic origin, and gender; and it gave a list of the actions carried out in order to prevent and treat those diseases and conditions. [10]


36.     Additionally, the State reported that 20 hospital units and 58 nutritional recovery centers had been installed to tackle severe malnutrition among children. It also provided information about the creation of the Program of Farm Promoters for Development and Peace, and about the establishment of a Commissioner for Food Security.


37.     As regards spending, in May 2002 MINUGUA reported that the army’s budget had outstripped the targets set down in the Peace Accords and warned that this increased military expenditure was undermining funds that should be earmarked for social spending, particularly in the fields of health, education, and law and order. [11] The Commission notes with concern that despite the international community’s warnings about keeping the military budget within the limit of 0.66 percent of GDP set in the Peace Accords, in October 2002 the Guatemalan Congress authorized an additional transfer of Q160 million, taken from the public debt fund and reallocated to the Ministry of Defense, after the ministry had already received an additional allocation of Q238.7 million in the first semester of the year. The Commission points out that increased military spending does not reflect the needs of the armed forces at a time of peace and has negative repercussions on the social pact.


38.     The State’s comments on this follow-up report indicate that the army’s budget for the year 2003 was reduced to a total of Q950 million, a figure lower than the total for 2002.


39.     In connection with the Report on Guatemala’s fifth recommendation, the Commission applauds the efforts to implement health care programs for disabled people through the Ministry of Public Health and Social Assistance, which has a project for providing disabled members of society with health care. The Commission notes that the State has ratified the Inter-American Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities, [12] which establishes additional principles that are consistent with the general purpose of the Law on Attention for Persons with Disabilities and are intended to protect the right of disabled people to exercise their basic rights and freedoms, without discrimination. However, to date Guatemala has not deposited the relevant instrument with the OAS General Secretariat, and the Commission consequently urges the State to do so.


40.     Finally, the Commission calls on the State to continue working to attain social justice and sustainable development for the present and future generations in facing the different problems and challenges that lie ahead.


Fiscal Pact


41.     In the 2002 Progress Report, the Guatemalan government stated that the implementation of the FISAT system had allowed better oversight of tax payments and improved measures to combat tax evasion and avoidance. It also reported that as a part of its coordinated onslaught against delinquent taxpayers, in February 2002 the SAT, with support from the PNC, had implemented a program of fiscal operations.


42.     The State also reported that the Fiscal Pact Follow-up Committee (CSPF) has new members–economists with wide-ranging experience with and knowledge of tax matters–who, together with the Ministry of Public Finance, gave their opinions on possible amendments to the Tax Code.


43.     In addition, the State reported its adoption of rules and resolutions relating to the Law on Banks and Financial Groups. In its progress report, the State noted that June 2002 saw the enactment of the four laws completing the basic legal framework for financial reform, in conjunction with the laws on free foreign-exchange dealings and on money- and asset-laundering, which together make up the reforms of the legal framework governing monetary and financial affairs.


44.     The Commission notes that progress was made with the fiscal reforms launched in 2000, and it congratulates the State for its efforts in tackling tax evasion and avoidance, as the Commission had recommended. The Commission also applauds the strengthening of the CSPF, the enactment of financial legislation, and the launch of the Economic Action Plan. However, the Commission points out that the reforms have not been comprehensive and that concrete steps forward with their implementation have been both few and superficial.


45.     In its comments on the report, the Guatemalan government said that on the contrary, one essential feature of those laws was their comprehensiveness and depth. It explained that the process of reflection and analysis that took place throughout the 1990s revealed the need for a thorough and far-reaching reform of financial legislation, meaning a complete overhaul of the laws governing the central bank, monetary laws, banking laws, etc., whereby the banking system, banking oversight, and monetary policy were strengthened and modernized, in accordance with international standards and best practices.


46.     The Guatemalan government is aware that achieving the goal of tax revenues equal to 12 percent of GDP is of vital importance to the country’s development. However, this goal has not yet been reached. The Commission understands allowing the country to develop requires effective tax reform–one that does not lose sight of the principles of justice, equality, and progressiveness, or of the commitment of civil society in meeting its tax burden.  In its response to this report, the Guatemalan government said that it shared the IACHR’s view and was making efforts to attain those goals.




47.     The Commission notes that on November 5, 2002, the Multi-Institutional Agency for Peace and Harmony and the High-Level Commission presented the President of the Republic with the National Redress Program (PNR), in compliance with the recommendations issued by Commission for Historical Clarification in its report “Guatemala: Memory of Silence.” The Commission commends the joint efforts of civil society and the government in setting guidelines for the national reparations policy and in designing a process that includes projects and actions aimed at repairing, redressing, restoring, indemnifying, assisting, rehabilitating, and dignifying the victims of the armed conflict. [13]


48.     According to information furnished by the State, the President of the Republic submitted the PNR to Congress for approval, together with the corresponding draft legislation. The bill provides for the creation of the National Redress Commission, which is to operate as an autonomous agency charged with coordinating, implementing, and promoting the actions needed to enforce the Program, which was designed to be implemented over a period of no less than ten years.


          49.     The Commission notes that for the purposes of the Program, all those individuals who suffered, either directly or indirectly, individually or collectively, violations of the following human rights are considered victims: forced disappearance, extrajudicial killing, torture, forced displacement, forced recruitment of minors, sexual violence, violations of children’s rights, and massacres. Identifying the program’s beneficiaries will be the job of the Technical Victim Assessment Unit provided for in the PNR.


50.     According to the information supplied by the State, the program demonstrates the political will of the Guatemalan government to compensate and restore the dignity of the armed conflict’s victims and to alleviate the polarization that arose from the mobilization of former PAC members claiming a supposed right to compensation.


51.     As regards this latter issue, the Commission notes its deep concern about the reemergence of groups of former members of the Civil Self-Defense Patrols (PACs). According to information received by the Commission, the regrouping of patrol members has become a new cause for insecurity and instability in rural areas and is seriously threatening the Peace Accords, the reconciliation process, and the rule of law. As the Commission has said on repeated occasions, the PACs were a tool used to control and repress the civilian population during the country’s armed conflict, serving as informers, in searches, counterinsurgency operations, detentions, interrogations, torture, and extrajudicial killings. The Commission therefore urges the State to take the steps necessary to stop former patrol members regrouping and to refrain from any official action that could encourage them to reorganize.


52.     In its comments on the follow-up report, the government of Guatemala stated that although the Civil Self-Defense Patrols had been dissolved, a spontaneous grouping of former patrol members, exercising the right of free association guaranteed by the Constitution of the Republic, had organized itself in order to secure recognition of the services they rendered to the nation during the armed conflict. The State said that individuals who had participated in human rights violations would receive no benefits of any kind. It also clarified that at no time had it in any way encouraged the reemergence of these groups and that it could not restrict these individuals’ freedom of association since the country’s laws were not affected.


53.     Finally, the Commission urges the Guatemalan State to pass the legislation creating the National Redress Commission and to implement the National Redress Program, in a framework of strict compliance with the recommendations of the Commission for Historical Clarification intended to restore the victims’ dignity and to guarantee that the human rights violations and acts of violence associated with the armed conflict do not reoccur.


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[1] MINUGUA, Thirteenth Report on Human Rights, paragraph 7, October 2002.

[2] Ibid.

[3] Prensa Libre,Funcionario de Minugua: PNC no logra consolidarse” [Minugua Official: Police Cannot Consolidate], November 10, 2002.

[4] Data from the Verification Report, Education: A Condition for Peace, United Nations Verification Mission in Guatemala. April 2002, p. 18.

[5] The average level of schooling among the poor is almost two years, compared to an average of 5.4 years among those who are not poor; women, indigenous people, and the rural poor report the lowest average levels of schooling. Figures from Debate magazine, June 2002, 2nd Series No. 19, p. 9.

[6] In its 2002 Human Development Report, the UNDP says that although there was an increase in the net rate of schooling at the preschool and basic levels, the vast majority of pupils in public primary schools lack the opportunity of continuing with their studies.

[7] Data from the June-July 2002 Progress Report, Follow-up Matrix of Issues Identified by the Consultative Group, February 2002, submitted to the IACHR by the government of Guatemala.

[8] Health investment rose from 0.88 percent in 1995 to 1.34 percent in 2000, according to figures in the UNDP’s 2001 Human Development Report. Data from the magazine Crónicas of Minugua and the United Nations system, No. 53, January 31, 2002.

[9] Data from Revista Domingo, the weekly magazine of Prensa Libre, No. 1099, June 23, 2002, p. 5.

[10] The State reported the following progress in its comments:

100 percent of the country’s children are receiving attention for epidemic diseases such as measles, polio, and human rabies; 99.99 percent of the population are receiving care to prevent dengue and malaria; 2,840,609 people with Chagas disease are receiving attention; 100 percent of the population are receiving attention to prevent cholera; 854,840 children are receiving oral rehydration therapy, thus saving them from death by diarrhea-induced dehydration; 2,564,520 sachets of oral rehydration salts have been provided as treatment; the lives of 27,840 boys and girls have been saved from acute malnutrition; 756,250 children aged from 6 to 36 months are receiving vitamin A supplements; 195,000 children are receiving specific treatment for malnutrition and 14,152 aged from 6 to 23 months are receiving iron-based anemia treatment; 13,680 under-fives have been saved from death in nutritional recovery centers and units; 2,552 Guatemalans have been saved from death by tuberculosis.

[11] MINUGUA, Status of the commitments of the peace agreements relating to the armed forces, May 2002.

[12] Thirteenth Report on Human Rights of the United Nations Verification Mission in Guatemala for the period July 2001 to June 2002.

[13] National Redress Program, Chapter III.