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Stories from and

Holy Week in Antigua, Guatemala

Alfombras (carpets), processions, and floats –AntiguaDailyPhoto shares a series of photo posts on Holy Week traditions in Antigua, Guatemala.

Former Guatemalan Dictator On Trial

Rios Montt's lawyer and others believe that the trial is a “political lynching” […] It doesn't matter if the guerrilas were going to turn “Guatemala into another Cuba;” the rape, torture, starvation and murder of civilians who might or might not have supported the guerrillas is just indefensible. But Rios Montt now has the opportunity to defend his actions and those of the officers who carried out orders on his and the state's behalf.
Mike Allison in Central American Politics refers to the trail against Guatemala's former military dictator Efraín Ríos Montt, which began today, March 19, 2013.

Two Coins for the Boatman

From Guatemala, Fe de Rata‘s blogger Juan Pablo Dardón, lists his plan [es] for the end of times:

I woke up early and put two golden coins
one for each shoe […]
two coins I'm telling you
when meteorites fall down and all this gets open as an orange […]
I'll put one in each eye
as I put my armas behind my head
that gets open as an orange […]
the boatman has work to do
and deserves to be tipped

Blogging Contest Focuses on Child Development

The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has announced its first contest for bloggers, which will focus on issues related to child development.
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Guatemala: Soldiers Arrested Over Totonicapán Killings

Blogger Nic Wirtz says that the arrest of eight soldiers after the clashes in Totonicapán -which left at least 8 indigenous protestors dead- is “the first test of Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina's mano dura (iron fist) approach to restoring law and order.”
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Guatemala: Profiting from Catastrophes

Kevin from the Guatemala Solidarity Network blog points readers to an article by Danilo Valladares published in Inter Press Service about “‘big disaster business’ – profiting from catastrophes.”

In a country as vulnerable to natural disasters as Guatemala, a “state of public calamity” is frequently declared – to the joy of contractors, which find a good opportunity to line their pockets.

Central America: Upcoming “Camps” for Young Cyber-Activists

Rising Voices is partnering with Hivos and Dialogía in two “camps” for young people using digital media for social change. The workshops, called “Activistmo” [es], will be held in Nicaragua and Guatemala during September and October. Young people from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Nicaragua and Guatemala between the ages of 18-25 can apply [es] until August 31.

 

Guatemala: Anti-Mining Activist Shot

The blog Guatemala Solidarity Network and James Rodriguez from Mi Mundo report on the attempted murder of anti-mining activist Yolanda “Yoli” Oquely Veliz. The Guatemala Human Rights Commission/USA condemns the shooting and invites citizens to sign a petition “to call on the Guatemalan Government to investigate this crime and prosecute those responsible.”

Guatemala: Community Leader Dies in Clashes in Santa Cruz Barillas

The blog Asamblea Departamental por la Defensa del Territorio- Huehuetenango [es] published an urgent statement about the death of Santa Cruz Barillas community leader Andrés Francisco Miguel and attacks on other community leaders who oppose the construction of a hydroelectric dam. Today, May 3, the BBC reports: “The Guatemalan government has declared a state of siege in the town of Santa Cruz Barillas following clashes over the death of a community leader.”

Intercontinental Cry Will Launch Spanish Edition

Ahni announces the upcoming Spanish edition of Intercontinental Cry [es], which will go live on March 31, 2012. “The main objective of IC Espanol is, of course, to provide Spanish readers with the same news that our English readers have come to expect from us; what I consider to be essential news on the global indigenous movement.” Find out about more languages on the IC Translation Project Facebook page.

Photos: Day One in Trial of Former Guatemalan Dictator

Rios Montt Genocide Trial. Guatemala, Guatemala. March 19, 2013. Photo by James Rodriguez, used with permission.

Rios Montt Genocide Trial, Guatemala. March 19, 2013. Photo by James Rodriguez, used with permission.

Documentary photographer James Rodriguez shares a photo essay with “images from the first day of the historic trial against former de facto dictator Efraín Ríos Montt and former Intelligence Director José Mauricio Rodriguez Sanchez. Ríos Montt and Rodriguez Sanchez are charged with Genocide and crimes against humanity during the civil war in Guatemala (1960-1996) against the Ixil Mayan people”.

Guatemala: Audience on Genocide Case

From Guatemala, blog Coordinación Genocidio nunca más [es] urges citizens to attend the historical court audience, where José Efraín Ríos Montt and José Mauricio Rodríguez Sánchez face trail for abuses against human rights during military rule in that country.

Ibero-America: Free Software Assessment Report 2012

The recently released Free Software Assessment Report 2012 shows the opinion, assessment and preferences of more than 5,000 people from Spain and Latin America. The study published in its fourth edition is promoted by PortalProgramas and supported by a number of experts and collaborators [es]. The report aims to contribute to a better understanding, use and dissemination of free software in Latin America. The summary of the study can be accessed online [es] and more information can be found on the report's conclusions for 2012 [es].

Strong Quake Hits Guatemala

A strong 7.4 magnitude earthquake struck off Guatemala's Pacific coast on Wednesday, November 7, 2012. Twitter user Roberto Touchez (@RobertoTouchez) shares this image from San Marcos, Guatemala.

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Guatemala: Petition Demands Justice for Totonicapán Victims

The Guatemala Human Rights Commission has released a petition [en, es] to “demand justice for the massacre in Totonicapán, Guatemala,” where 8 were killed and more than 35 injured when combined armed forces violently removed indigenous demonstrators from Cuatro Caminos, a well-known road intersection in Guatemala.

With the pain of the recent genocide still fresh in the historic memory of indigenous communities, it is extremely concerning that acts of state violence are once again taking place in Guatemala against indigenous people who seek to exercise their legitimate rights to free speech and peaceful protest.

Guatemala: “Threatened for Reporting the Truth”

“I denounced the activities of a masked group of vigilantes who were terrorizing the local population at night. It wasn’t the first time I had written about their crimes, but this time I named names.”

Anna-Claire Bevan in LatinaLista quotes Guatemalan journalist Lucia Escobar, who was “forced into hiding last October after she wrote an opinion piece in the national newspaper El Periodico about a social cleansing group operating in her hometown of Panajachel, 150 kilometres from Guatemala City.”

Guatemala: Microsoft and the University of San Carlos

Blogger Josue Ortega [es] attended a university event which invited students to develop a project to help communities with very little access to technology. However, students were told to develop the project using only Microsoft technology. One of Ortega's friends inquired about using open licenses, but the idea was immediately rejected. Ortega concludes his post saying that authorities continue to sell education to companies that only contaminate it and hinder knowledge.

Guatemala: A ‘Guatemaltequismo’ A Day

Mario Cordero from Diario Paranoico [es] has opened a wikispace [es] where he posts one ‘guatemaltequismo’ (word that is used in Guatemala) per day. Mario also set up a Facebook [es] page where he shares that day's ‘guatemaltequismo’.

Guatemala: Photos of Holy Week in Antigua

AntiguaDailyPhoto posts a slideshow with photos of Holy Week in Antigua, Guatemala taken by Leonel [Nelo] Mijangos.

Ibero-American Blogging Competition Asks Teens: “What are you reading?”

The Organization of Ibero-American States invites teens ages 12 to 15 to enter a blogging competition about reading. The sign up [es] deadline is May 31, 2012, and judges will consider blog posts written until July 31. The winner from each participating country will receive an iPad. Visit the official website [es] and follow the hashtag #questasleyendo [es] (“what are you reading”) to find out more about the contest.

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