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Guatemalan ex-ruler found guilty of genocide

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Guatemalan ex-ruler found guilty of genocide
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Guatemala City: A Guatemalan court has convicted former ruler Efrain Rios Montt on charges of genocide and crimes against humanity, sentencing him to 80 years in prison.

A three-judge tribunal on Friday issued the verdict after the nearly two-month trial in which dozens of victims testified about horrific atrocities.

Prosecutors said Rios Montt must have had knowledge of the massacres of Ixil, indigenous people of Mayan descent living in Guatemala, when he ruled the country from March 1982 to August 1983 at the height of its 36-year civil war.

"The defendant is responsible for masterminding the crime of genocide," Judge Jazmin Barrios said. "The corresponding punishment must be imposed."

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