Waldemar Barrera is the regional representative, in the Human Rights Ombudsman’s Office, of Procuraduría de los Derechos Humanos (PDH) located in the city of Izabal. The PDH is the main state institution mandated to protect human rights and is financially supported by international governments and inter-governmental organizations that support the peace process in Guatemala. Staff from a number of regional PDH offices have increasingly been targets of an apparently systematic pattern threats and intimidation over the past two years in reprisal for their work.
On April 4th 2003, unidentified individuals broke into Mr. Barrera’s car and stole his briefcase containing PDH documents. Two days later, the PDH offices in Puerto Barrios were raided. No charges have been laid and no suspects have been identified.