Statement on the situation in Guatemala

Statement by Minister for Foreign Affairs Margot Wallström and Minister for International Development Cooperation Isabella Lövin.

The Swedish Government regrets the decision to expel the Commissioner for the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG), Ivan Velásquez, which was taken by the country's President Jimmy Morales on Sunday. Under Commissioner Velásquez's strong and active leadership, the Commission has had a central role in efforts to counter corruption and strengthen the rule of law in Guatemalan society.

Sweden is the second largest donor to the CICIG, whose work is now held up as a model in the region and globally. Support to the CICIG is a central component of Swedish development cooperation with Guatemala, which partly aims to strengthen civil society in the country and promote a strengthened democracy and increased respect for human rights.

It is of the utmost importance that Guatemala's government protects the rule of law and fundamental democratic principles in this situation. We stand united with large sections of the international community in our intention to continue to support the democratic forces in Guatemala and to strengthen respect for human rights.