35+ Years of Freedom of Information Action

Guatemalan Police Archive

From Silence to Memory: A Celebration of the Report of the Historical Archives of the National Police


National Security Archive's Kate Doyle speaks at the ceremony for the release of the report, "From Silence to Memory: Revelations of the Historical Archive of the National Police" in Guatemala City, Guatemala on June 7, 2011.

“From Silence to Memory” Guatemalan Historical Archive of the National Police Report Published
June 2011

The Guatemalan Police Archives


On July 5, 2005, officials from the Guatemalan government's human rights office (PDH - Procuraduría de Derechos Humanos) entered a deteriorating, rat-infested munitions depot in downtown Guatemala City to investigate complaints about improperly-stored explosives. During inspection of the site, investigators found a vast collection of documents, stored in five buildings and in an advanced state of decay. The files belonged to the National Police, the central branch of Guatemala's security forces during the war - an entity so inextricably linked to violent repression, abduction, disappearances, torture and assassination that the country's 1996 peace accord mandated it be completely disbanded and a new police institution created in its stead.

Recovery of the Guatemalan Police Archives- An Update


An update on the Guatemalan Police Archive. National Security Archive’s Kate Doyle visits the archive repeatedly, working closely with the Guatemala Human Rights Ombudsman and his staff on the ongoing recovery effort and investigation of the massive record collection.