Law Society statement…
We presented a statement on Tanzania to the United Nations and NGOs as part of the universal periodic review (UPR) pre-sessions.
The president of the Republic of Guatemala, Jimmy Morales.
We’re concerned about the harassment and acts of intimidation against Ramón Cadena Rámila, a human rights lawyer and representative of the International Commission of Jurists in Guatemala.
We understand that a group of armed men ransacked Mr Cadena’s house in Guatemala City on 15 August 2016. His family was forced to stand outside while the raid was carried out.
Mr Cadena is a key witness in the trial of former president Efrain Rios Montt, who is being indicted for alleged offences relating to genocide committed during the civil war.
Mr Cadena is also supporting activists in the La Puya community in their stance against an American gold mining company planning to operate in Guatemala despite criticisms of its operations’ legality.
We’re concerned to hear that attacks against human rights lawyers have intensified since the arrest of former military officers in January 2016 for alleged crimes against humanity.
We condemn the attacks and are concerned that the recent attack to Mr Cadena’s property reflects a pattern of systemic intimidations and harassment carried out against human rights lawyers.
We urged the Guatemalan authorities to make sure that:
January 2016 – former military officers are arrested for alleged crimes against humanity
August 2016 – Mr Cadena’s home is raided by armed men