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Weekly Report - 01 August 2019 (WR-19-30)

GUATEMALA: Morales defies top court as crisis looms again

“A critical moment for rule of law in Guatemala.” This was the response by the respected US think tank Washington Office on Latin America (Wola) to the recent announcement that the US and Guatemalan governments had reached a deal whereby Guatemala would serve as a “safe third country”. As well as leaving human rights groups questioning how Guatemala, which suffers from insecurity and corruption, could act as a ‘safe country’ for asylum seekers, the deal, which will last for two years and can be renewed, also flies in the face of a ruling by the constitutional court (CC) announced mid-July [WR-19-28] against such an agreement. President Jimmy Morales’ refusal to heed the CC’s ruling comes as the top court is facing attacks from other sectors, leaving some warning that democracy could be under threat.

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