Firm And Lasting Peace Agreement
Guatemala, 29 of December of 1996
That with the subscription of this Agreement will come the end to more than three decades of armed confrontation in Guatemala, and concludes a painful stage of our history.
That through the last years the search of a political solution to armed confrontation has generated new spaces for dialogue and understanding within the Guatemalan society.
That from this day forward begins the task to preserve and consolidate peace, which must unite the efforts of all Guatemalans.
That for this goal the country has, with the Peace Agreements, an integral agenda oriented to overcome the causes of the confrontation and to set the bases for a new development,
That the fulfillment of these Agreements constitute a historic commitment, which cannot be resigned,
That for the knowledge of the current and future generations, it is convenient to gather the deep sense of the Peace Agreements,
the Government from the Republic of Guatemala and the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity (URNG) agree to the following:
1. The Peace Agreements express consensus of national character. They have been guaranteed by the different sectors represented in the Civil Society Assembly and other external entities. Their progressive fulfillment must satisfy the legitimate aspirations of Guatemalans and, at the same time, to unite the efforts of everyone for the sake of these common objectives.
2. The Government reaffirms its support to the principles or norms oriented to guaranteeing and protecting the full observance of human rights, as well as its political will to make them have the respect they deserve.
3. The population uprooted by the armed confrontation has the right to freely reside and live in the Guatemalan territory. The Government pledges to ensure their return and resettlement, in safe and dignified conditions.
4. It is a right of the Guatemalan population to fully know the truth on the human rights violations and the violence acts occurred in the internal armed confrontation setting. To establish the facts with all objectivity and clarity will contribute to the strengthening of the national conciliation and democratization process in the country.
5. The recognition of the identity and rights of the indigenous population is fundamental for the construction of a nation with a multiethnic, multicultural and multilingual national unity. The respect and exercise of political, cultural, economic and cultural rights of all Guatemalans, is the base of a new cohabitation that reflects the diversity of its nation.
6. The firm and lasting peace must be consolidated on a participative socioeconomic development oriented to the common good that answers all the needs of the population needs. This development requires social justice as one the pillars of national unity and solidarity, and of sustainable economic growth as a condition to attend the social demands of the population.
7. It is fundamental for the achievement of social justice and economic growth the effective participation of citizens of every sector in society. It is the duty of the Government to broaden this participation possibilities and strengthen as a counselor of social reconciliation and conflict resolution. For this purpose the Government is required to increase tax collection and to give priority to public expense for social investment.
8. In the search of growth, the economic policy must be directed to prevent socioeconomic exclusion such as unemployment and impoverishment and to optimize the benefits of economic growth for all Guatemalans. The elevation of the standard of living, health, education, social security and training of the population, constitute the premises to have access to the sustainable development of Guatemala.
9. The Government and the organized sectors of society must join forces for the resolution of agrarian and rural development matters, which are fundamental to resolve the situation of the majority of the population living in the rural areas, and which is the most affected by poverty, iniquities and the weaknesses of national institutions.
10. The strengthening of civil power is an indispensable condition for the existence of a democratic regime. The end of the armed confrontation offers the historic opportunity to renovate the institutions so that, in an articulate manner, they can guarantee Guatemalan citizens the freedom, justice, security, peace and the personal integral development. The Army of Guatemala must adapt its duties to a new period of peace and democracy.
11. The URNG incorporation into legality in conditions of security and dignity constitute a factor of national interest, which responds to the objective of conciliation and the perfecting of a democratic system with no exclusions.
12. The constitutional reforms included in the Peace Agreements, constitute the substantive and fundamental basis for the conciliation of the Guatemalan society in the setting of a democracy, democratic cohabitation, and the full observance and strict respect of human rights.
13. Elections are essential for the transition Guatemala is currently living toward a functional and participative democracy. The perfecting of the electoral regime will allow to solidify the legitimacy of public power and to ease the democratic transformation of the country.
14. The implementation of the national agenda derived from the Peace Agreements, constitute a complex, long-term project requiring the will to fulfill the commitments acquired and the involvement of Governmental organizations and the different social and political national forces. This determination supposes a strategy that realistically gives priority to the gradual fulfillment of the commitments, in a manner in which a new chapter of democratic development and cohabitation opens in the history of Guatemala.
I. VALIDITY OF THE PEACE AGREEMENTS
15. To this Firm and Lasting Peace Agreements are attached all subscribed Agreements based on the Framework Agreement on Democratization for the Search of peace through political means, subscribed in the city of Querétaro, México, on July 25, 1991 and from the Framework Agreement for the resumption of the Negotiation process between the Government of Guatemala and the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity, subscribed in Mexico city on January 10, 1994. Those Agreements are:
- Global Agreement on Human Rights, subscribed in Mexico city on March 29, 1994;
- Agreement for the Resettlement of Population Uprooted by the Armed Confrontation, subscribed in Oslo, on June 17, 1994;
- Agreement on the Establishment of the Commission for the Historical Elucidation of Human Rights Violations and Violence Acts that have caused the suffering of the Guatemalan population, subscribed in Oslo on June 23, 1994;
- Agreement on the Identity and Rights of Indigenous Population, subscribed in Mexico city on March 31, 1995; - Agreement on Socioeconomic Aspects and the Agrarian Situation subscribed in Mexico city on May 6, 1996;
- Agreement on the Strengthening of Civil Power and the Army’s role in a Democratic Society subscribed on Mexico city on September 19, 1996;
- Agreement on the definitive Cease Fire subscribed in Oslo on December 4, 1996;
- Agreement on Constitutional Reforms and Electoral Regime subscribed in Stockholm on December 7, 1996;
- Agreement on Bases for the Incorporation of URNG into legality subscribed in Madrid on December 12, 1996;
- Agreement on the Chronogram for the Implementation, Fulfillment and Verification of the Peace Agreements subscribed in Guatemala city on December 29, 1996.
16. With the exception of the Global Agreement on Human Rights, which was valid from the moment of its subscription, all Agreements integrated to the Firm and Lasting Peace Agreement will have full and formal validity from the moment this Agreement is signed.
17. At the culmination of the historic negotiation process for the search of peace through political means, the Government of Guatemala and the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unity put into record their recognition to the national and international efforts that have contributed to the conclusion of the Firm and Lasting Peace Agreement in Guatemala. They remark on the roles played by the National Reconciliation Commission, the Constitution, the Civil Society Assembly and the intervention by the United Nations. They also value the accompaniment of the Group of Countries Friends of the Guatemalan Peace Process conformed by the Republic of Colombia, the Kingdom of Spain, the United States of America, the Mexican United States, the Kingdom of Norway and the Republic of Venezuela.
IV. FINAL DISPOSITIONS
First. The Firm and Lasting Peace Agreement is valid from the moment of its subscription.
Second. The broadest divulgation of this Agreement will be carried out, specially through the education official programs.