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Tension in Guatemala: Urgent meeting of foreign ministers due to the delay in Arevalo's inauguration

Tension in Guatemala: Urgent meeting of foreign ministers due to the delay in Arevalo's inauguration

Bernardo Arevalo, President-elect of Guatemala

Bernardo Arevalo The oath must be taken at the National Theater however The ceremony was postponed because Congress, controlled by parties linked to outgoing President Alejandro Giammattei, is keeping the certification process on hold. Of elected and re-elected representatives.

Parliament has been unable to agree on the election of a new board and is debating whether to declare Arevalo's party “independent”, under a court order suspending the Similla Movement Party.

If MPs are declared “independent”, they cannot join the board of directors or chair parliamentary committees.

According to the constitution GuatemalaThe presidential handover must take place at 4:00 pm (10:00 pm GMT), even if there is no formal swearing-in ceremony.

The opening ceremony was supposed to have already begun.

Given this irregular situation, Advisors who attended the inauguration ceremony They were summoned for an urgent meeting by the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Worship of Costa Rica, Arnoldo Andre, revealed the Colombian President, Gustavo Petro.

“Representatives have a responsibility to respect the popular will expressed at the ballot boxes. There is an attempt to violate democracy through irregularities, pettiness and abuse of power. “The Guatemalan people and the international community are watching.” Arevalo stated.

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Uncertainty gripped the situation in Parliament, while hundreds of Arevalo's supporters gathered around Congress to protest these delaying maneuvers.

Nine heads of state were invited to attend the event, including King of Spain Felipe VIChilean presidents, Gabriel Borek; colombia, Gustavo Pietroand panama, Laurentino Cortizoamong others, in addition to the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell.

Earlier, the Constitutional Court of Guatemala, the country's highest court, ruled so on Sunday Simela Movement Party, to the president-elect, Bernardo Arevalo de Leonpending.

The decision was confirmed by several sources It leaves the Semilla movement without the possibility of being part of the Congress Governing Council For the period 2024-2025.

Similarly, The ruling stipulates that the 23 deputies of the Arevalo de León political group must be independent for the period 2024-2028.Without a political party, though, in 2023, the same court has already ordered that all officials elected in the previous year's elections hold office as they were elected.

Constitutional Court of Guatemala

The suspension stems from a criminal order dated July 12, issued by Judge Freddy Orellana, whom the US State Department accuses of subverting justice and corruption.

The criminal case in which Orellana is accused dates back to the case of forged signatures in the founding of the Simela movement in 2018.

Since Arevalo de León came in second place in the presidential elections in June 2023, The Public Prosecutor's Office (Public Attorney's Office) in Guatemala has launched a prosecution to prevent the 64-year-old academic from seizing…Like the deputies of the Similla movement.

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The Guatemalan Congress suspended Arevalo de León's party in August, but that decision caused the head of the legislature, Shirley Rivera, to be sanctioned by the United States as well.

On September 1, Arevalo de León accused Prosecutor Consuelo Porras and Criminal Judge Orellana of attempting a “coup” to prevent him from taking office on January 14.

Porras' judicial actions have caused mass protests and road blockades by residents demanding his resignation since October, and Arevalo de Leon has warned that he will be asked to resign starting tomorrow.

The president-elect must be sworn in on Sunday for a four-year term, replacing current President Alejandro Giammattei.

“What they are doing here is delaying the inauguration of Congress in its tenth legislative session because they do not want to give Arevalo the property.”Castillo, of the National Unity of Hope (UNE) party, led by former first lady Sandra Torres, which was defeated by Arevalo de León in the 2023 elections, told reporters.

The new Guatemalan Congress for 2024-2028, composed of 160 deputies, must be sworn in on Sunday in order to then make way for the inauguration of President-elect Bernardo Arevalo de León.

“The coup is being prepared” Castillo, a lawmaker opposed to the government currently headed by Alejandro Giammattei, added.

Amid the tension in the legislature, the president-elect assured in messages on his social networks that “the constitution will be respected and there will be a change of government” in Guatemala.

“My commitment to Guatemala is stronger than ever. We will advance and they will not be able to stop us,” Arévalo expressed in a message on X (formerly Twitter), in which he thanked former Uruguayan president Pepe Mujica for his greetings.

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