1997 - 1998
WHY USAID/OTI WAS IN GUATEMALA
In December 1996, 30 years of violent turmoil in Guatemala ended with the signing of a peace accord that established immediate plans for the demobilization and initial incorporation of the rebel forces, the Unidad Revolucionaria Nacional Guatemalteca (URNG), and reduction of the Guatemalan army. USAID/OTI began its Guatemala program in January 1997 to help Guatemala successfully transition from conflict to peace and stability.
USAID/OTI'S ROLE IN GUATEMALA
USAID/OTI's primary objective in Guatemala was to provide emergency support to facilitate completion of the demobilization process within the tight timeframe set up by the accords.
- USAID/OTI was one of the first donors to pledge support for an ambitious retraining program for 1,722 ex-combatants of the Guatemalan government's Mobile Military Police units as part of the downsizing of the national military.
- USAID/OTI supported a collaborative response to demobilization and incorporation needs. This response covered the construction of the demobilization camps and was extended to include coverage of other activities, including microenterprise grants to ex-combatants.
- USAID/OTI funding helped resettle families who had been internally displaced deep into the mountains, due to fighting between the army and the guerrillas. USAID/OTI also provided small infrastructure improvements on the lands where these families were settled.