DICTATOR IN THE DOCK Ep #6: A Trial of Two Languages

 

In spite of the suspension of the oral debates, over 100 witnesses for the prosecution testified– many Maya Ixil, who testified in their own language.

See the controversy that arose in the midst of the trial when there was disagreement over the interpretation of the language.

 

Episode 6:  A Trial of Two Langauges 

 

A pesar de la suspensión de los debates orales, más de 100 testigos de la acusación declararon – muchas Maya Ixil, quien testificó en su propia lengua.

Vea la polémica que surgió en medio del juicio cuando había desacuerdo sobre la interpretación de la lengua.

Capítulo 6:  Un Jucio en dos idiomas

 

DICTATOR IN THE DOCK Ep #5: The Price of Justice

On Tuesday, April 23rd, the Guatemalan Constitutional Court stopped the trial of General Efraín Rios Montt.  There may be no verdict.  But the voices of the Ixil Maya will be heard: they call for JUSTICE.

 Skylight will continue releasing the footage of this trial, the TRUTH cannot be silenced.  

THE PRICE OF JUSTICE:  


El martes, 23 de abril, la Corte de Constitucionalidad guatemalteca detuvo el juicio del general Efraín Ríos Montt. 
Es posible que no habrá una sentencia. Pero las voces de los Ixil Maya se escucharán: exigen justicia.

Skylight continuará publicando las imágenes de este juicio, la verdad no puede ser silenciada.

El PRECIO DE LA JUSTICIA:

 

NOTA ACLARATORIA: El CC no ha “anulado” el juicio (CLARIFICATION: The CC has not “annulled” the case)

NOTA ACLARATORIA EXCELENTE EN EVENTOS DE HOY por Kate Doyle

Hoy el Tribunal Constitucional sembró el caos y la confusión en un estudio que el pasado viernes (19 de abril) era probablemente dos o tres días lejos de su fin. Los únicos pasos que quedan estaban escuchando el testimonio de cualquier testigo restantes la defensa pudo reunir, y escuchar los alegatos finales de la acusación y los abogados defensores.

 

Es imposible resumir con precisión lo que sucedió sin tener acceso a la decisión de CC. (Debería estar disponible en una hora.) La primera conferencia de prensa del CC hoy fue tan incoherente que la prensa se ​​quejó y tuvieron que convocar a una segunda. Dos cosas importantes que va a pasar mañana, que le ayudará a aclarar las cosas: CALDH realizará una conferencia de prensa a las 10 am para explicar cómo van a responder a los últimos acontecimientos, y la oficina del Fiscal General hará algún tipo de declaración en el mismo sentido.

 

Mientras tanto, lo que yo entiendo de la lectura de la prensa, mensajes de Twitter, mensajes de la nueva OSJI monitor de Lisa Laplante, y correos electrónicos de algunos de los grupos de interés es la siguiente:

 

1 – El CC no ha “anulado” el juicio: que todavía no se ha pronunciado sobre la legalidad del movimiento de anular por el juez Patricia Flores.

 

2 – El CC no ha descartado juez Barrios. El papel del tribunal en el caso Barrios ha sido suspendido hasta que Patricia Flores puede pronunciarse sobre el estado de pruebas de la defensa. Puede ser suspendido por un máximo de diez días.

 

3- El CC ha ordenado Barrios que envié el caso a Flores en menos de dos horas y luego Flores tiene 24-48 horas para resolver la pregunta técnica y limitada de que la evidencia de la defensa fue incorporada apropiadamente y como incorporarla.

 

4- El decisión de remitir el caso a Flores puede significar un reverso de la prueba al punto anterior. Por el momento no está claro por qué o en qué punto.

 

5. El CC juzgó que el derecho de Rios Montt para una defensa fue violado y necesita ser restaurado. Como un resultado el CC concedió apelación provisional a Ríos Montt por su falta de representación de un abogado en el día inicial del juicio (19 de Marzo), en que, según él, lo dejó en un estado de “indefensión”. El CC tendrá que pronunciarse sobre los meritos de ese apelación en las próximas semanas.

 

6. Según al Plaza Pública, el CC resuelve 6 problemas y próximas continúa trabajando en los problemas pendientes. No está claro lo que son pero el CC producirá más resoluciones al final de la semana o el lunes.

 

7. La prensa reaccionó en una manera que no fuera profesional. Especulación eran en sus sitios web vestidos como “noticias” y luego la información se fue cambiando sin retracción de sus anteriores declaraciones. Una excepción notable fue la Plaza Pública.

 

EXCELLENT CLARIFICATION ON TODAY’S EVENTS by Kate Doyle:

Today the Constitutional Court sowed chaos and confusion in a trial that last Friday (April 19) was probably two or three days away from its conclusion. The only steps remaining were hearing the testimony of whatever remaining witnesses the defense could muster, and hearing the closing arguments of prosecution and defense lawyers.

It is impossible to summarize accurately what happened without having access to the CC decision. (It should be available within the hour.) The first press conference held by the CC today was so incoherent that the press complained and they had to convene a second one. Two important things will happen tomorrow that will help clarify matters: CALDH will hold a press conference at 10am to explain how they plan to respond to the latest developments, and the Attorney General’s office will make some kind of statement to the same effect.

Meanwhile what I understand from reading the press, Twitter posts, messages from the new OSJI monitor Lisa Laplante, and emails from some of the stakeholders is the following:

1- The CC has not “annulled” the trial: it has not yet ruled on the legality of the move to annul by Judge Patricia Flores.

2- The CC has not dismissed Judge Barrios. The Barrios tribunal’s role in the case has been suspended until Patricia Flores can rule on the status of defense evidence. It can be suspended for up to ten days.

3- The CC has ordered Barrios to send the case back to Flores within two hours and Flores then has 24-48 hours to resolve the limited and technical question of whether defense evidence was incorporated properly and how to incorporate it.

4- The decision to return the case to Flores may signify a rollback of the trial to some earlier point. Not clear why or to what point, yet.

5- The CC found that Rios Montt’s right to defense was violated and needs to be retored. As a result the CC granted provisional appeal to Ríos Montt for his lack of attorney on the opening day of the trial (March 19), which, he claims, left him in a state of “indefensión.” The CC will have to rule on the merits of that appeal down the road.

6- According to Plaza Pública, the CC resolved 6 issues and continues to work on 7 outstanding issues. Not clear what they are but the CC will produce more resolutions by end of the week or Monday.

7- Almost across the board, the press reacted to swiftly unfolding non-events in a staggeringly unprofessional way, throwing speculation onto their websites dressed as “news” and then later changing the information without actually retracting their previous statements. A notable exception was Plaza Pública.

DICTATOR IN THE DOCK Ep #2: Unspeakable Cruelty

CRUELIDAD INIMAGINABLE (version español):

Episodio 2 de nuestra serie sobre el juicio por genocidio del general Ríos Montt, donde un testigo Ixil Maya testimonio de los horrores cometidos por las tropas del gobierno en su pueblo hace 30 años.

 

UNSPEAKABLE CRUELTY (English Version):

Episode 2 of our Dictator in the Dock series on the genocide trial of General Ríos Montt, where a Maya Ixil witness testifies to the horrors committed by government troops in his village 30 years ago.

 

 

Rios Montt Interview: “I Control the Army”

 

April 16th, 2013:  Filmic evidence entered as evidence in Guatemalan Genocide trial.

 

I went to Guatemala in 1982 to make my first feature-length documentary When the Mountains Tremble. Rigoberta Menchú, the protagonist, lays out what was happening from the Mayan perspective – why they were fighting, what they were fighting for, and how the civilian population was being viciously targeted by the Army in a scorched earth counter-insurgency campaign backed by the United States.

Rigoberta Menchú copy

After Peace Accords were signed in Guatemala in 1996, a Truth Commission uncovered evidence that “acts of genocide” had been perpetrated by the State. This occurred during the bloody tenure of General Efraín Ríos Montt, the President and Head of the Armed Forces from 1982 – 1983, a period when the civilian massacres spiked. Yet whenever the possibility of seeking justice for Ríos Montt’s horrific crimes came to the fore, the General and his legal defense made excuses. Their primary assertion was that the General hadn’t known about it, nor had he ordered it. They ascribed the massacres to “rogue” elements in the Army.

13469350881346858785granito

In 2003, I went to Guatemala to present the first public screening of When the Mountains Tremble at the University of San Carlos in Guatemala City.  In the audience that night was an international attorney. She approached me afterwards and asked whether I had kept all of the filmic outtakes from When the Mountains Tremble.  She was investigating a genocide case, and two of the generals in When the Mountains Tremble were part of that investigation – General Efraín Ríos Montt and General Benedicto Lucas García.  Could I go and find the entire interviews I’d done with the Generals? Could I find all of the film of military missions including aftermaths of massacres?

And so we embarked on a kind of archeological dig through 25-year-old outtakes of 16mm negative film and ¼ audio recording tape, the raw materials of When the Mountains Tremble. Miraculously, I and my Skylight Pictures partners—Paco de Onís, the Producer, and Peter Kinoy, the Editor—had kept all of the outtakes in a warehouse in the swamplands of New Jersey.

The lawyers were as surprised as we were when they saw the outtakes.. In 1982, I had asked:

“What would you say to the charges that it’s the Army that is massacring (Mayan) peasants in the highlands? Is there repression on the part of the Army?”

Ríos Montt responded, “There is no repression on the part of the Army. Our strength is in our capacity to make command decisions. The Army is ready and able to act, because if I don’t control the Army, then what am I doing here?”

My filmic evidence helped prove the prosecution’s command responsibility liability theory: Ríos Montt ordered the targeted killings.

 

See the full journal entry here:  skylight.is/journal

DICTATOR IN THE DOCK Ep #1: The people v. Ríos Montt

ANTICIPANDO LA JUSTICIA 

Momentos Destacados: Primer día: 19 de marzo 2013

Puntos destacados del ensayo de José Efraín Ríos Montt por crímenes de lesa humanidad y genocidio.

_______________________________________________________________

ANTICIPATING JUSTICE 

Day One:  March 19th, 2013

Highlights from the trial of José Efraín Ríos Montt for crimes against humanity and genocide.

Highlights from Genocide Trial

Tragaluz ha estado filmando el juicio del general Efraín Ríos Montt desde el primer día. Queremos que el mundo esté presente durante este momento tan importante en la historia de Guatemala.

A partir del lunes, 15 de abril de Skylight lanzará resúmenes filmados desde dentro del juicio por genocidio. Estas películas se publicará 2-3 veces por semana durante la duración del jucio.

Los testimonios individuales de cada día también se encuentra en este archivo público, vamos a publicar enlaces a medida que estén disponibles. Hasta entonces, por favor consulte este archivo de la memoria pública o compartir su propia historia.

En solidaridad,

El equipo de Skylight

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Skylight has been filming the trial of General Efraín Rios Montt since day one.  We want the world to be present during this important time in Guatemalan history.

Starting on Monday, April 15th, Skylight will be releasing highlights filmed from inside the genocide trial.   Highlights will be release 3 times per week for the duration of the trial.

Individual testimonies from each day of the trial will also be housed in this public archive, we will post links as they are available.  Until then, please explore this archive of public memory or share your own story.

In solidarity,

The Skylight Team

 

 

Trial of Efraín Ríos Montt begins

 

The long awaited trial of General Efraín Ríos Montt begins today, March 19, 2012. The Guatemalan dictator will be the first head of state to be tried for genocide in genuine proceedings in his own country’s justice system.

Ríos Montt and another ex-General, José Mauricio Rodríguez Sánchez, are going to trial on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity for massacres committed against nearly 2000 Maya-Ixil civilians during a brutal scorched-earth military campaign conducted in 1982.

Stay informed:

The Open Society Justice Initiative – in collaboration with the National Security Archive, the International Center for Transitional Justice, and Plaza Publica – will post about the trials daily in the special blog they launched:  www.riosmontt-trial.org

Watch LIVE

Listen LIVE

Read the New York Times article that gives background on the trial and makes reference to Skylight’s 1982 interview with Ríos Montt that is being used as evidence in the case (above).

Watch Granito and When the Mountains Tremble free on POV

ADD YOUR GRAIN OF SAND, YOUR ‘GRANITO’ FOR JUSTICE IN GUATEMALA: 

Your voice can make a difference! Click here to send an email calling on U.S. Ambassador to Guatemala Arnold Chacon to attend the genocide trial and demonstrate the U.S. commitment to ending impunity. It’s the least we can do.

Write now to Amabassador Chacon

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El largamente esperado juicio del general Efraín Ríos Montt comienza hoy, 19 de marzo de 2012. El dictador de Guatemala será el primer jefe de Estado en ser juzgado por genocidio en los procesos genuinos en el sistema de justicia de su propio país.

Ríos Montt y otros ex-General, José Mauricio Rodríguez Sánchez, van a juicio por cargos de genocidio y crímenes contra la humanidad por las masacres cometidas contra los casi 2000 Maya-Ixil civiles durante una brutal campaña de tierra arrasada militar llevada a cabo en 1982.

Manténgase informado:

El Open Society Justice Initiative – en colaboración con el Archivo de Seguridad Nacional, el Centro Internacional para la Justicia Transicional, y Plaza Pública – colocaremos sobre los juicios a diario en el blog especial que lanzaron: www.riosmontt-trial.org

Ver en vivo

Escuchar en vivo

Lea el artículo del New York Times que pone en antecedentes sobre el juicio y hace referencia a 1982 Skylight entrevista con Ríos Montt que se utiliza como prueba en el caso (arriba).