OHCHR-Guatemala seeks to engage national stakeholders towards establishing a broad human rights agenda. It performs a wide range of activities, including carrying out human rights monitoring, providing technical assistance to State institutions and civil society, and issuing an annual report by the High Commissioner on the activities of the Office to the Human Rights Council.
Based on its monitoring activities, the Office obtains solid information to support its programmes and projects. Regular monitoring includes key human rights issues: justice and fight against impunity; security; non-discrimination, with a specific focus on the rights of indigenous peoples, including in the context of extractive and energy development activities, and women; human rights defenders and journalists; economic, social and cultural rights; and business and human rights.
OHCHR-Guatemala has drafted eleven annual analytical reports on its activities to the Human Rights Council. These reports assess the general human rights situation and the legal, political and institutional framework on human rights in the country, as well as provide specific recommendations to State authorities and other relevant stakeholders. OHCHR’s reports have become a reference, a source of information and even an advocacy tool for national actors in Guatemala and the international community, contributing to place key human rights issues on the political agenda.
OHCHR-Guatemala substantially contributes to the promotion of legal and institutional reforms to ensure increased consistency with international human rights standards. In particular, the Office undertakes activities to promote legal and other reforms in order to ensure an independent, impartial and transparent justice system.
OHCHR-Guatemala also contributes to strengthening the knowledge and awareness of human rights standards of a wide variety of State agents including judges, magistrates of the Supreme Court of Justice and the Constitutional Court, Prosecutors (particularly the Human Rights Section of the Public Prosecutor’s Office), Government ministries and the National Human Rights Institution. Similar assistance is provided to Congress, where the Office formally participates in discussion tables providing technical advice and recommendations on the application of human rights standards.
OHCHR-Guatemala implements technical programmes aimed at combating discrimination and strategic litigation to guarantee the rights of indigenous peoples and in this context provides capacity building to empower indigenous authorities and organizations to defend their rights.
OHCHR-Guatemala also promotes the strengthening of the capacity of key civil society actors to claim for their rights and make a better use of international protection mechanisms. In this regard, the Office is providing technical assistance concerning the adoption of a comprehensive public policy to protect human rights defenders in consultation with civil society.
OHCHR-Guatemala has locally released more than 100 publications, including investigations, reports, international standards materials, guidelines and promotional bulletins regarding a wide range of human rights. The Office continuously works on promoting human rights education, and has also cooperated with the media to inform and raise awareness on human rights issues of special concern.