Press Releases Guatemala: Statement by High Representative Josep Borrell on the latest developments in Guatemala

Guatemala: Statement by High Representative Josep Borrell on the latest developments in Guatemala

The European Union unequivocally condemns today’s attempts to nullify the results of the general and presidential elections in Guatemala, based on spurious allegations of fraud.

An EU Election Observation Mission observed the entire electoral process, at the invitation of the Guatemalan authorities.  It concluded that the elections were transparent and well organised, and found no basis whatsoever to allege fraud.  Other international and national election observation missions reached similar conclusions. Bernardo Arévalo of the Movimiento Semilla (MS) party emerged as the indisputable winner. This outcome was officially certified by the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), the highest electoral authority in the country.

Today’s events are the culmination of efforts that have been unfolding over the past month, and that have been denounced by the EU and other international partners.  These latest actions and statements of the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Guatemala represent an attempt at a coup d’etat, spearheaded by politically motivated prosecutors.  They constitute a violation of Guatemala’s constitution, the rule of law, the electoral process and the most basic principles of a democracy, including the fundamental principle of the separation of powers.  They show contempt for the clear will of Guatemala’s citizens as expressed at the ballot box on 25 June and 20 August. Accountability should be sought for those obstructing a democratic transition.

These continued attempts to overturn the outcome of the elections will have a strong negative impact on Guatemala’s relations with the EU.  The EU has agreed in principle and is ready to adopt a framework allowing for targeted restrictive measures against those responsible for these actions.  The EU calls on the Guatemalan authorities to defend the electoral process, the constitutional order of the country, its international reputation, and the rule of law by rejecting these unacceptable attempts to overturn the outcome of the elections.

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