30 years imprisonment for ex-paramilitaries for sexual violence


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Women hug outside the Supreme Court in Guatemala City. © Moises Castillo/AP/dpa

Five ex-paramilitaries have now been sentenced for their atrocities during Guatemala’s civil war. Their war tactics included the enslavement and ongoing rape of indigenous women.

Guatemala City – In Guatemala, five former paramilitaries have been sentenced to 30 years in prison for the systematic rape of 36 indigenous women during the civil war.

A Guatemala City court ruled Monday’s verdict after two weeks of trials that the men had committed crimes against humanity. They said they enslaved and continuously raped their victims between 1981 and 1985 as a tactic of war.

The survivors from the Mayan community of Rabinal, the Achí people, had been fighting for justice for more than a decade. They were represented by three Mayan lawyers. The verdict was the second on the use of sexual violence during the civil war. Activists hailed it as historic.

In the civil war in the Central American country that lasted from 1960 to 1996, the perpetrators belonged to the so-called Civil Self-Defense Groups (PAC). They were recruited from the rural population in the early 1980s to join forces with the army to fight left-wing guerrillas. dpa


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