Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo hosts Freedom House delegation in Guatemala

Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo hosts Freedom House delegation in Guatemala
13 Mar 2024

Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo hosted the event "Freedom in the World: What's happening in Central America?" for the presentation of the report "Freedom in the World 2024" prepared by Freedom House. The event took place on Tuesday, March 12 at a prestigious hotel in the capital.


In his inaugural speech, the president of Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo, Dr. Dionisio Gutiérrez, called for the formation of leadership for the political rescue of the region: "In Latin America there are stories that hurt, but if we want to save the future, we must return to the path of the Republics of laws not of men, the elites must invest in building democracies with solid and independent institutions and the academy must train a new generation of technocrats and political leaders who are up to date with the times".

Photograph by Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo

"We must design and implement a development model based on civil liberties that facilitate the construction of successful nations, on private property that encourages investment and the creation of opportunities, on the free market," said Gutiérrez.

The report was then presented by Freedom House's Vice President for International Programs, Gerardo Berthin. The "Freedom in the World" report is an annual assessment of political and civil liberties around the world, providing a detailed analysis of the human rights situation in different countries and regions.

Photograph by Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo

"Various methods of electoral manipulation have been identified before, during and after the vote. The findings of the Global Freedoms report showed that in Guatemala and Thailand, attempts were made to prevent the winners of the election from taking office," explained Berthin.

The event concluded with a panel discussion moderated by Dionisio Gutiérrez with experts from the institution, distinguished for their experience and commitment to the promotion of democracy and human rights around the world.

"The penetration of cartels and criminal organizations pose threats to democracies, but also these threats have other dimensions. We have cybersecurity and disinformation issues that undermine electoral processes," said Michael Chertoff, former Secretary of Homeland Security.

In addition, we were honored to have the presence of the former President of Bolivia, Jorge Tuto Quiroga. Quiroga's experience and leadership enriched the discussions on the specific situation of freedoms in the Central American region. "Right now, Guatemala has extraordinary opportunities to build a wall of prosperity with the United States. But in order to see the dawn, we must first reach an agreement," said the former president.

Photograph by Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo

In the days prior to the event, the delegation, composed of members of the Board of Directors of Freedom House and the former president of Bolivia, Jorge Tuto Quiroga, met at the National Palace with the President of the Republic, Bernardo Arévalo. Subsequently, part of the delegation went to the Congress to meet with the president of the Congress, Nery Ramos. They also visited journalist José Rubén Zamora at Mariscal Zavala. 

Photograph by Daniel Hernandez-Salazar/Gobierno de Guatemala

Photograph by Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo

These high-level meetings allowed for a constructive exchange of ideas and perspectives, with the objective of strengthening the joint commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights in the region. Government authorities expressed their commitment to democratic values, stressing the importance of dialogue and international cooperation in this effort. They also thanked Freedom House for its work in the defense of political and civil liberties around the world.

Meetings were also held with leaders from various sectors of Guatemalan society, from academia and think tanks, the private sector, congressmen, indigenous authorities, journalists and human rights defenders, with whom they exchanged views on the current situation and the future of the country.

Photograph by Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo


In this way, Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo and Freedom House reaffirm their commitment to the defense of fundamental freedoms and the strengthening of democratic institutions around the world.

The delegation consisted of:

Michael J. Abramowitz, president, Freedom House
Dionisio Gutiérrez, president, Fundación Libertad y Desarrollo, and trustee of Freedom House
Michael Chertoff, former Secretary of Homeland Security and trustee of Freedom House
Cater Lee, Vicepresident of News and Content, Spectrum News, and trustee of Freedom House
Mark Goodman, president and CEO, Colorado Nut Holding Company and trustee of Freedom House
Norman Willox, CEO of Bluewater International and trustee of Freedom House
Jorge Tuto Quiroga, former president of Bolivia and former trustee of Freedom House
Tom Kahn, professor at American University and Freedom House trustee
Nicole Bibbins Sedaca, Executive Vicepresident, Freedom House
Gerardo Berthin, Vicepresident of International Programs, Freedom House


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