Monitoring Guatemalas Montt Genocide Trial


"Terror and impunity." These are the first words Iduvina Hernandez says when she is asked to describe Rios Montt, the former Guatemalan head of state now awaiting partial retrial for genocide.

During the trial of former dictator Rios Montt, Hernandez assumed the task of monitoring proceedings and regularly reporting news to the many illiterate villagers in rural indigenous communities of Guatemala.

In this photo, taken on day 26 of the trial, Iduvina Hernandez (seated on right) and fellow activist Marylena Bustamente listen to testimony given by Montt (in foreground). Two days later, on May 11th 2013, the court sentenced the former president to 80 years in prison for genocide and crimes against humanity.

Later that month, the Guatemalan Constitutional Court struck down Montt's conviction and ordered all proceedings from the last several weeks of the trial redone. For more on the trial, see this excellent site.

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