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Weekly Report - 16 July 2020 (WR-20-28)

GUATEMALA: Election of top judges risks institutional clash

A stand-off between Guatemala’s constitutional court (CC) on the one hand and the supreme court (CSJ) and 160-member unicameral legislature (one of the country’s least trusted institutions) on the other, over the election of 13 justices for the CSJ and 135 appellate magistrates has reignited fresh concerns about the state of democracy in Guatemala. It has even led figures like human rights ombudsman Jordán Rodas to urge President Alejandro Giammattei to invoke the Inter-American Democratic Charter, adopted by the Organization of American States (OAS), of which Guatemala is a signatory, amid concerns that the rule of law could be at stake.

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