The UK calls on Guatemala to guarantee the safety of Jose Ruben Zamora

UK ordered on Wednesday, August 3, Guatemala Ensuring the personal safety of the famous journalist Jose Ruben Zamora Marroquín, A major critic of the government was arrested on 29 July.

“We urge the Guatemalan authorities to ensure due process and their personal safety,” Tariq Ahmed, Britain’s Minister for Press Freedom at the British Foreign Office, said in a press release.

The official’s message was shared with journalists and on their social networks By the British Ambassador to Guatemala and Honduras, Nick Whittingham.

Ahmed also expressed his “concern” about the “arrest” of the “prominent journalist”, recalling this “Freedom of the press, freedom of expression, and the rule of law are vital in healthy democracies.”

Zamora Marroquin, was arrested last Friday at his home, after a search that lasted nearly 8 hours, On charges of money laundering, money laundering intent, extortion, and influence peddling.

Zamora Marroquín Publications and Newspaper In the past decade, hundreds of acts of corruption have surfaced in the government of Otto Pérez Molina and his deputy, Roxana Baldeti (2012-2015), but also in the administrations of Jimmy Morales (2016-2020). The current president is Alejandro Giamatti.

The journalist was arrested five days after it was published. Strong accusations of corruption by a number of officials and former officials in the Giamatti government, In the Sunday morning section.

Read also: “A serious setback for freedom”: the association slams “extreme intimidation” against the independent press in Guatemala

The 66-year-old engineer appeared before a judge on Wednesday in his first statement, while his lawyers said they were able to see the file against him for the first time until Tuesday. Five days after his arrest.

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The session has been suspended again It should continue next Monday.

Zamora Marroquín received in June 2021, from the hands of the King of Spain, Felipe VI, the Distinguished Media Award in Iberian America, As part of the King of Spain Awards for International Journalism.

The Prosecutor in charge of the case against Zamora Rafael Korosić Sanctions were imposed by the United States last July with a ban on entry to its territory, After being accused of “apparently creating false cases” against those who exposed corruption in Guatemala.

At least 24 former Guatemalan prosecutors and judges are in exile Because, as they denounced, they suffer from “judicial persecution” by the current head of the Public Prosecution Office, Consuelo Porras, which the United States has also imposed on sanctions since 2021.

The Secretary-General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, announced today, Tuesday, He said he was “worried” about the journalist’s arrest, The same applies to the legal actions taken by the government of that country against its judicial officials.

Criminal prosecution ‘must stop’

The Global Network of Independent Media (IPI) has invited the Guatemalan authorities To release Jose Ruben Zamora, boss Newspaper, The “hero” of this entity.

We urge the authorities to do so Stop abuses against journalists in criminal proceedings.

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