At a glance
BPS has supported institutions mandated to deal with Guatemala’s violent past. After engaging with the National Reparations Programme, we have supported a range of activities implemented by non-state actors: most prominently, the initiative for a virtual museum of historic memory.
Guatemala’s 36 years of internal armed conflict between the state and guerrilla movements have ended with the peace agreements in 1996. Since then, the country continues to face the challenge of confronting past atrocities and the criminal structures that benefited from them. Transitional justice in Guatemala has been strong on the truth-seeking dimension, and less so on the prosecution/justice, the guarantees of non-repetition and the reparations side. The latter has been under the aegis of the National Reparations Programme that, after a rocky start and many politically motivated changes, is still under pressure to deliver more than the selected monetary reparation to individuals. While both the Catholic Church at the national level as well as an internationally initiated truth commission have revealed the dimensions and structures of the massacres and persecutions, Guatemalan society has not dealt comprehensively with its past. Especially the younger generation continues to experience silence or biased information on what has happened and how it influences the present.Top
Since 2007, BPS in consortium with COMO Consult has provided advice and implemented capacity building efforts for institutions involved in dealing with the past in Guatemala. This is conducted within the GTZ Programme PCON (Guatemala Peace Process Support Programme).
The National Reparations Programme is mandated with both individual and collective reparations to the survivors. Initially, our support was focused on organisational advice and capacity building around issues of psychosocial accompaniment. Subsequently, the focus shifted to help prepare the base for a unified National Victims Registry and support the initiative for a virtual museum for historic memory by the Center for Regional Research in Mesoamerica (CIRMA) to be launched in 2010. This internet-based museum, displaying many original documents, allows different groups to get to know different perspective of Guatemala’s history since the 19th century and, thereby, challenges some prevailing narratives. This makes it a crucial tool in civic education, both inside and outside the educational system.
|Presentation of the Virtual Museum for Historic Memory (in Spanish)||Guatemala||Centro de Investigaciones Regionales de Mesoamérica||2009|
|Report of the Joint Evaluation of the National Reparations Programme and its Support Programmes of GTZ and UNDP (in Spanish)||Guatemala||Berghof-COMO-PNUD GTZ/PCON for-PNR||2007|
|Opinion Poll on Reconciliation and Reparations in the Metropolitan Area of Guatemala City (in Spanish)||Guatemala||Berghof-COMO/ GTZ-PCON and PNUD for PNR||2007|