Over the past year, Guatemalan human rights defenders have been subject to repeated and serious attacks and threats. On April 29, 2002, a member of the Rigoberta Menchœ Foundation, Guillermo Ovalle de Le—n, was shot to death in a restaurant next to the foundation's office in Guatemala City. In July, two men assaulted one of the foundation's lawyers in front of the same office. There is a widespread consensus that such actions are being carried out by clandestine groups with possible links to unnecessary public security forces and organized crime.
January 31, 2003