For the first time in world history is a former head of state on trial for charges of genocide in his own country. Guatemala’s former dictator General Rios Montt is in court.
Guatemala’s 26th president General Efrain Rios Montt took the presidential office following a military coup on March 23rd 1982 and was deposed by his Minister of Defence Oscar Humberto Mejia Victores on August 8th 1983. He ran unsuccessfully as a candidate of the Guatemala Republican Front in the 2003 elections. In 2007 he became a member of the Congress and enjoyed legal immunity. When his immunity ended with his term in 2012, charges of genocide and crimes against humanity were brought against him on January 26th. Montt’s military regime is known for mass killings, rape and torture. Those against the case claimed that this was not genocide but a bloody phase of the civil war.
By İrem Göl
You can read the rest of the article on our issue of February

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