Saturday, March 7, 2009

Court Papers Disappeared

The prosecution began the process of investigation to determine what happened to two of the alleged military plans to be submitted to the court for investigation, but that mysteriously disappeared.

The investigations were in the Fiscalía de Delitos Administrativos (Office of Administrative Offenses), which is also the complaint filed last week by more than 28 social organizations against Abraham Valenzuela, Minister of Defense, for not having delivered the plans to the judge, thereby breaching the order by the Constitutional Court (CC), who ordered the delivery of those documents.

The prosecution must examine the conduct of Valenzuela and if they deem it appropriate, request a preliminary request against him because he is protected by immunity. The first step is to determine who was directly responsible for these processes.

Last Wednesday, the minister went before the second judge of Criminal Court of First Instance, where only two military plans were delivered: Firmness and Strength, and said that he was unaware of the plans named Sofia and Operation Ixil, so the judge rescheduled the date of delivery.

That night, before traveling abroad, the minister told President Álvaro Colom that the last two plans "disappeared".

One of the documents that was expected at the hearing was the Plan Sofia, an offshoot of the Plan Victoria, in which countermeasures were designed for use in northern Quiché. The plan was conceived in July of 1982, four months after Rios Montt came to power.

According to archives of the Historical Clarification Commission, the military plan was drawn by order of then Chief of Staff of the Army, General Hector Lopez Fuentes. In February 2002 he stated that the Ministerio Publico received direct orders from the de facto head of state, Ríos Montt, and the deputy minister of defense during that administration, Humberto Mejia Victores.

Lopez was the creator of the Plan Victoria 82, aimed at directing counterinsurgency operations and ideological warfare, to locate, capture, or destroy subversive groups to ensure peace and security of the nation, in Quiché, Huehuetenango, Quetzaltenango, San Marcos, Solola and Petén.

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