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Guatemala president-elect, deputy facing death threats: rights body

FILE PHOTO: Guatemalan presidential candidate Arevalo closing campaign rally

(Reuters) -The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights asked Guatemala to provide more protections for President-elect Bernardo Arevalo and Vice President-elect Karin Herrera, it said on Thursday, citing "serious and urgent" risks to their wellbeing.

In a statement, the commission said the threats include two plots against the politicians' lives. In response, the government said it has already reinforced security, and called on the IACHR to be "prudent."

Anti-corruption candidate Arevalo won Guatemala's presidential runoff on Sunday by a landslide after an effort to disqualify his party and sideline his candidacy.

Before the runoff, Arevalo said he expected attempts to prevent him from taking office should he win.

The IACHR, an autonomous organ of the Washington-based Organization of American States, said it formally requested the Guatemalan government to take precautionary measures to protect the lives of Arevalo and Herrera.

The commission cited two plans against Arevalo and Herrera's lives, including one that had been alerted by Guatemalan prosecutors, without giving further details.

The IACHR, noting that Guatemalan authorities had told them Arevalo and Herrera have a "broad protection scheme" that the state has reinforced, asked the government to report on actions it has taken to investigate the threats.

The government, in a statement, said it had provided "all necessary protection measures".

"The commission must always speak objectively and guarantee impartiality due the consequences of unfounded statements," the government said.

(Reporting by Brendan O'Boyle, Sarah Morland and Carolina Pulice; Editing by Miral Fahmy)