OAS Holds Extraordinary Meeting to Address Concerns about Guatemalan Political Situation
The Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS) held its seventh extraordinary meeting on Monday, December 4, to discuss the ongoing political situation in Guatemala. The meeting was called to address concerns about recent undemocratic actions in the country, particularly the decision by the Congress of the Republic to remove the pre-trial right of judges from the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE).
During the meeting, the representative of the United States to the OAS, Francisco Mora, presented a draft resolution to the Permanent Council. The resolution is aimed at addressing the increased attempts to undermine democracy in Guatemala and the rejection of electoral results.
Mora emphasized that it is a more serious draft resolution, given the escalating attacks on democracy in Guatemala. He stated that he has been in discussions with a large number of delegations to reach a consensus on the declaration, although he did not provide specifics.
The actions of the Congress of the Republic in overruling the TSE judges have raised concerns among OAS member countries, with representatives from several nations expressing their worries during the meeting. The Guatemalan authorities have faced criticism for intensifying attacks against democracy, despite previous warnings and resolutions from the OAS.
The Guatemalan Foreign Minister, Mario Búcaro, defended the actions of the Congress and stated that the transition process in the country is peaceful and democratic. He dismissed the concerns raised by other member countries about the ongoing political situation in Guatemala.
Representatives from Costa Rica, Canada, Bolivia, and Colombia also expressed their concerns about the attacks on democracy in Guatemala. They warned about the potential repercussions and long-term consequences of the actions undermining the democratic process.
Additionally, Secretary General of the OAS, Luis Almagro, presented a report on the observation and transition missions. Almagro highlighted the orderly transfer of power and the desire of President Alejandro Giammattei for the newly elected officials to take office on January 14. However, he also expressed regret over the actions of the Public Ministry, which include accusations against the elected presidential duo.
The meeting highlighted the growing concern among OAS member countries about the state of democracy in Guatemala and the potential impact of recent events on the country’s future relationship with the rest of the world. The discussions underscored the need for collective action to preserve and consolidate democracy in the region.