The President of Mexico Wishes to Pardon Former Guerilla Leader
The President of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador (AMLO), has expressed his desire to pardon former guerrilla leader César Montes, who is currently detained in his native Guatemala. In a press conference, AMLO stated that Montes is a leader who participated in Guatemala and is accused in that nation, and that he wishes to seek with Guatemala that Montes be pardoned and granted asylum in Mexico.
Guatemala, however, has asked AMLO not to intervene in the matter. The candidate for the presidency of Guatemala, Zury Ríos, issued a strong message to the Mexican government, asking AMLO not to intervene, as Montes is “a criminal.” Ríos added that in Guatemala, Guatemalans decide “and no one else.”
Who is César Montes?
Julio César Macías López, better known as César Montes, was arrested in Mexico in 2020 for his alleged participation in the murder of three Guatemalan Army soldiers in 2019. According to Central American authorities, Montes is the intellectual author of the murder. However, Montes claims that the Army actually attacked the population and his group responded, and the situation got out of control. He did admit, though, that members of his organization were the ones who executed the soldiers.
Montes began to gain fame in Guatemala in the early 1960s as one of the founders of the Rebel Armed Forces (FAR), the country’s first guerrilla organization. He was the leader in 1966, but later left the country and disassociated himself from the guerrilla.
Currently, Julio César Macías López is over 70 years old and faces a sentence of 175 years for the crimes of homicide and attempted murder.