Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dead Lawyer's Video Accusation Causes Chaos in Guatemala

Tensions are heating up
in Guatemala after President Alvaro Colom was accused of ordering the murder of Guatemalan lawyer Rodrigo Rosenberg. Rosenberg represented Khalil Musa, a man who had been at odds with the Colom administration and was also recently murdered. After Rosenberg's own death, police found a video testimonial recorded by Rosenberg just days before he was shot to death, in which he accuses the President and his followers of killing him, as well as Musa and his daughter.

The video, which was released by the police at his funeral, shows Rosenberg sitting in the office of journalist Mario David Garcia talking straight into the camera. He calls out Colom and and Colom's Cabinet chief by name. "If you are hearing or seeing this message," says Rosenberg, "it's because I was assassinated by President Álvaro Colom, with the help of Mr. Gustavo Alejos and Mr. Gregorio Valdez."

He goes on to say:

"I was a 47 year old Guatemalan, with 4 beautiful children, with the best brother one could ask of life, with wonderful friends, and with an overwhelming desire to live in my country, but I could not have lived with myself without rebelling, arming myself with valor and denouncing the real reasons for the deaths of Mister Khalil Musa and his daughter Marjorie Musa before all the Guatemalans who have principles and values, without regarding the consequences, and understanding that my life was in danger, I wanted to leave behind this testimony, should something come to happen to me, as it unfortunately did."

Since the video's release, copies have spread widely across the internet and have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times on YouTube. Guatemala has gone into a state of unrest, and though President Colom denies the charges, thousands of people all over the country are protesting and demanding that Colom resign.

Below is a version of Rosenberg's video with English subtitles. Full transcript in English can be found here.


Anonymous said...

President Colom is a dirtbag, yes. Oh wait, he's a politician, so no surprise here.

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