CICIG Report on on Players Involved in the Illegal Adoption Process in Guatemala since the Entry into Force of the Adoption Law is now available in English.
EXCERPT FROM CICIG'S REPORT ON GUATEMALA ADOPTIONS:
Latin America is one of the most unequal regions in the world, with one of the highest rates of violence, which affects mainly women and children. In Guatemala, people aged 0-17 represent more than half the total population.
Although significant progress has been made, Guatemala has not been able to ensure that children can live free from violence and protected against all forms of abuse or exploitation. Impunity, and thus violence, are marking the lives of children and adolescents in Guatemala.
For years, many children have been stolen, missing and/or kidnapped for trafficking under the irregular guise of adoption; their mothers were threatened, deceived or even punished in their communities. An example of the consequences of impunity is the fact that in 2007, 60% of lynchings in Guatemala concerned alleged abductions of children.
This problem is one of the main concerns of the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (known by its Spanish acronym as CICIG).
That was precisely why, to support the considerable efforts made by UNICEF in this area, the “Agreement for Cooperation on Studies on Children and Adolescents” was signed to continue supporting the work of UNICEF and institutions responsible for child protection and investigation of crimes committed against children and adolescents in connection with Guatemalan clandestine organizations and illegal security bodies.
That is the context of this study. It sets out the results of investigations conducted by the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) of all domestic and inter-country adoption proceedings conducted during the transition period that started on 31 December 2007 with the entry into force of the Adoption Law and of the first ones processed under the regulations of the new law. The Adoption Law of Guatemala contains the principles enshrined the Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-Country Adoption (Hague Convention), ratified by Guatemala.
Reducing violence and impunity in this type of crimes requires not only strong political will in the criminal and investigative area, but also that this will be exercised by all the institutions responsible for the comprehensive protection of children and adolescents.
That is why CICIG presents specific recommendations and hopes that they will be followed in keeping with the national and international obligations of each State institution in charge of the comprehensive protection system in favor of Guatemalan children and adolescents.
Finally, I thank all the officials of Guatemalan institutions who cooperated with CICIG by providing information for this study and thank all my colleagues at the International Commission against Impunity who worked with great professionalism and commitment in the preparation of this report. Guatemala deserves a country worthy of its children, without violence and with institutions that can be trusted.
After publication of this document, Prensa Libre reported on April 26, 2011 that Senator Mary Landrieu called into question the legitimacy of the reports finding. http://www.prensalibre.com/noticias/Cicig-detalles-senadora-Landrieu-criticas_0_470952933.html. In repsonse, CICIG published the following press release demanding an explanation from Senator Landrieu:
An excellent analysis of the situation can be found at REFORM Talk Blog:
Editorial Note: Yesterday's publication of this blog mistakenly omitted the text of CICIG Press Release which was added 5/5/2011
Ethics, Transparency, Support
~ What All Adoptions Deserve.