Brazil’s Lula warns United Nations of coup risk in Guatemala

Brazil’s Lula warns United Nations of coup risk in Guatemala
Brazil’s Lula warns United Nations of coup risk in Guatemala

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Nevin Al Sukari - Sana'a - Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva addresses the 78th Session of the U.N. General Assembly in New York City September 19, 2023. — Reuters pic

NEW YORK, Sept 19 — Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva warned world leaders at the United Nations today of the prospect of a coup in Guatemala, backing US concerns about risks to democracy in the Central American nation after last month’s election.

“In Guatemala, there is a risk of a coup, which would impede the inauguration of the winner of democratic elections,” Lula told the UN General Assembly.

Last week, the top prosecutor’s office in Guatemala raided electoral facilities and opened sealed ballots from the election, in which anti-graft candidate Bernardo Arevalo and his Semilla Party overwhelmingly came out on top. Prosecutors allege irregularities in the registration of Semilla members ahead of the vote, which the party has denied.

The US ambassador to the Organisation of American States, Francisco Mora, urged Guatemalan authorities on Monday to end their “intimidation efforts” targeting election officials and members of Arevalo’s party.

Mora called the raid “an assault on the rule of law.”

Arevalo last week suspended his participation in the transition of power until “necessary institutional (and) political conditions are reestablished.” — Reuters

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