CEJIL

Summaries of Jurisprudence: Gender-based Violence. 2nd Edition Updated

CEJIL presents a new title to its collection of Summaries of Jurisprudence, this time dedicated to Gender Violence.

This publication includes a selection of texts of decisions from international human rights organs related to the protection of women victims of violence. The compilation provides a solid body of jurisprudence that allows one to obtain a broad panorama of the reality of women in a variety of contexts, revealing the indisputable relevance of gender violence in the world, even further than the advances in regulation material.

We hope that this will be a useful tool that contributes to the defense of human rights and the eradication of one of the most tolerated and silenced human rights violations as such is the violence exercised against women.


Type of publication:Compilation of jurisprudence
Full version available in:
Year: 2011
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Summaries of Jurisprudence: Health and Reproductive Rights

CEJIL is delighted to present a new book to its collection of Tools for the Protection of Human Rights: Summaries of Jurisprudence, this time dedicated to Health and Reproductive Rights.

The human rights protection bodies recognize the access to medical care, including reproductive health, as a basic right. Nonetheless, the decisions included in this volume illustrate some of the grave deficiencies in the effective enjoyment of these rights, directly affecting women’s right to choose regarding maternity, accessing health information, or to be respected in their autonomy and privacy, among others.

These pages compile decisions and judgments that constitute more relevant jurisprudence in relation to health and reproductive rights. We hope that this book will be a useful tool that contributes to the defense of those rights.


Type of publication:Compilation of jurisprudence
Full version available in:
Year: 2012
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Human rights in the Inter-American System. Compilation of instruments. 2011 Edition.


Type of publication:Compilation of law
Full version available in:
Year: 2011
Partial download options in:

Spanish


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Human rights in the Inter-American system. Compilation of instruments. 2009 edition.

Los Derechos Humanos en el Sistema Interamericano. Compilación de Instrumentos.

El Centro por la Justicia y el Derecho Internacional (CEJIL) se complace en presentar la sexta edición actualizada de su publicación Derechos Humanos en el Sistema Interamericano: Compilación de Instrumentos.

Desde la primera versión de este compendio de normativa interamericana sobre protección y defensa de los derechos humanos –editada en 1997- CEJIL se ha propuesto con esta compilación tornar más accesible a distintos públicos el conocimiento del derecho internacional de los derechos humanos desarrollado en el continente americano, así como el uso de las herramientas que el sistema interamericano (SI) pone a disposición de víctimas y defensores de derechos humanos.

La obra recopila las Declaraciones, Tratados, Protocolos y Principios que conforman la normativa fundamental del derecho internacional de los derechos humanos en el ámbito interamericano, complementándola con aquellos textos que reglamentan la composición y funcionamiento de la Comisión y Corte Interamericana (Estatutos y Reglamentos).

Esta sexta edición actualizada incluye las últimas modificaciones a los Reglamentos de la Comisión y la Corte introducidas en 2009, que afectan a aspectos centrales del Sistema como son las reglas aplicables a la fase de admisibilidad de peticiones, las medidas cautelares de protección, el papel de las víctimas en el litigio ante la Corte Interamericana, o cuestiones de representación legal, entre otras.

Adicionalmente, en esta nueva edición presentamos un cuadro que cumple con la intención de ofrecer de forma ilustrativa un panorama completo acerca del estado de ratificaciones de los instrumentos del sistema interamericano de derechos humanos. A su vez, la forma en que se expone la información permite tener una mirada abarcadora e integral acerca del grado de involucramiento de los Estados miembros de la OEA en el SI.


Type of publication:Compilation of law
Full version available in:
Year: 2009
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Tribunal paves the road to justice in the case of Rubens Paiva

Rio de Janeiro, Thursday September 11, 2014. Last Wednesday the Federal Regional Court of the Second Circuit unanimously denied the habeas corpus request that was filed by the four soldiers accused of murdering and hiding the body of Ex-Congressman Rubens Paiva in 1971.

This decision allows the prosecution to continue its regular course in the first instance of the federal justice system. Likewise, with this decision, the tribunal guarantees that judicial truth can be obtained in the recognition of the grave violations of human rights committed during the military dictatorship.

Thu, 09/11/2014

Fotografía Rubens Paiva, créditos Lavras 24 horasRio de Janeiro, Thursday September 11, 2014. Last Wednesday the Federal Regional Court of the Second Circuit unanimously denied the habeas corpus request that was filed by the four soldiers accused of murdering and hiding the body of Ex-Congressman Rubens Paiva in 1971.

This decision allows the prosecution to continue its regular course in the first instance of the federal justice system. Likewise, with this decision, the tribunal guarantees that judicial truth can be obtained in the recognition of the grave violations of human rights committed during the military dictatorship.

For Beatriz Affonso, CEJIL Program Director for Brazil, this is a historic decision that demonstrates the judicial power’s commitment to act in conformity with the international commitments assumed by the Brazilian State.

Read the complete press release in Portuguese.

Photo Credit: Lavras 24 horas

 

CEJIL expresses concern for setback in the protection of women’s rights in Nicaragua

San Jose, September 3, 2014. Recently, the Nicaraguan State passed the Comprehensive Law number 779 against violence towards women. The reform has modified many important aspects of the law, which in turn translate into setbacks in compliance with the state obligation to effectively guarantee the right of women to live a life free of violence.

The revisions of Law 779 restrict the concept of violence towards women by establishing that only acts committed in a relationship between a couple will be punishable, that is to say, it excludes violence perpetrated in public or community environments by any person without bonds of affection.

Wed, 09/03/2014

Fotografía Ilustrativa Violencia Contra la MujerSan Jose, September 3, 2014. Recently, the Nicaraguan State passed the Comprehensive Law number 779 against violence towards women. The reform has modified many important aspects of the law, which in turn translate into setbacks in compliance with the state obligation to effectively guarantee the right of women to live a life free of violence.

The revisions of Law 779 restrict the concept of violence towards women by establishing that only acts committed in a relationship between a couple will be punishable, that is to say, it excludes violence perpetrated in public or community environments by any person without bonds of affection.

The new reform also favors the application of mediation as a method of preventing and punishing violence towards women.

With respect to this procedural figure, in its report, “Access to Justice for Women Victims of Sexual Violence in Mesoamerica,” the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) stated its concern for the utilization of said mechanism because it generally harms the victims. According to the IACHR, women find themselves in a situation of disadvantage and inequality and therefore applying the mediation hinders their access to justice as well as the eventual punishment of the aggressor.

At the same time, the cited revisions modify the criminal definition of femicide and limits it to interpersonal relations of a couple, disrespecting what was previously established in the law when the crime was described, “in the context of power relations between men and women.” In only the first semester of 2014 in Nicaragua, the Red de Mujeres contra la Violencia reported 47 femicides, four more than during the same period in 2013.

Meanwhile, during the last trimester of 2013, Nicaragua’s Instituto de Medicina Legal evaluated 1162 women for sexual violence and 1659 for intrafamiliar violence.

Before this grave situation, both the Consejo de Derechos Humanos and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, through the observance of various thematic hearings and the evaluations conducted under the Universal Periodic Review mechanism, have recommended that the Nicaraguan State adapt its legislation so that it guarantees rights to women and that it adopt effective public policies that prevent, punish and eradicate violence against women.

These international obligations also derive from the Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence against Women, known as the “Convention of Belém do Pará,” ratified by the State of Nicaragua in 1995.

“The approved regulations do not constitute an effective action to protect the rights of girls and women. Nicaragua is not complying with its international obligations, leaving this group unprotected in a vulnerable situation,” stated Marcia Aguiluz, CEJIL Program Director for Central America and the Caribbean.

CEJIL respectfully calls on the Nicaraguan authorities to reform the revisions of Law 779 and to comply with its obligation to adjust said law to the international standards in relation to violence against women.

Press Contact

Daniela Araya

+506 2280 7473

daraya@cejil.org

Paraguay: a decade ignoring the judgment on the “Panchito López” case

September 2, 2014, marks 10 years since the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IA Court) condemned Paraguay for the Panchito López Juvenile Reeducation Institute case (Instituto de Reeducación del Menor Panchito López).

Between 1996 and 2001, around 4000 children were subject to inhumane prison conditions in the Panchito López center for minors. This prison had the capacity to accommodate 15 inmates, however, it housed between 200 and 300 children at a time. Due to these conditions, during three fires that occurred between 2000 and 2001, twelve children died and dozens of others sustained injuries.

Wed, 09/17/2014

Photo Credits ABCSeptember 2, 2014, marks 10 years since the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IA Court) condemned Paraguay for the Panchito López Juvenile Reeducation Institute case (Instituto de Reeducación del Menor Panchito López).

Between 1996 and 2001, around 4000 children were subject to inhumane prison conditions in the Panchito López center for minors. This prison had the capacity to accommodate 15 inmates, however, it housed between 200 and 300 children at a time. Due to these conditions, during three fires that occurred between 2000 and 2001, twelve children died and dozens of others sustained injuries.

The IA Court considered to be true the facts reported by the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL), who represented the victims and their relatives before the Inter-American Human Rights System.

Although it has been 10 years since the judgment was issued, the State has yet to comply with the majority of the reparation measures ordered by the IA Court, including the order to draft a comprehensive public policy on children in conflict with the law, which must be in harmony with the international human rights standards. Likewise, the State has not given comprehensive reparations to the victims of the case including access to health and education, as well as other measures ordered by the Tribunal.

The outstanding debts that Paraguay continues to hold in this area are of particular concern. In recent months, four children have died and at least ten others have sustained injuries in the Itaguá Juvenile Detention Center (Centro de Detención para Adolescentes Itaguá), which replaced Panchito López.

In this scenario, CEJIL urges Paraguay to implement the outstanding reparation measures in this case, particularly those designed to prevent the repetition of the violations of fundamental rights suffered by children of Panchito López.

Photographich credits: One of the fires in Panchito López (2000) / ABC Color.

Press Contact:

Daniela Araya

daraya@cejil.org

+506 22807473

Inter-American Court of HR condemns Chile for applying the Antiterrorist Law to members of the Mapuche community

Chile and Buenos Aires, July 30, 2014 - The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IA Court) publicly announced its decision on May 29, 2014, on the case of Norín Catrimán et al. Víctor Ancalaf Llaupe, one of the case’s victims, indigenous leader and Werkén of his community, was represented by the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL) and attorney Sergio Fuenzalida.

This is the Inter-American Court’s first decision in which it condemns Chile for human rights violations committed against members of the Mapuche community. In accordance with its Judgment, the Court considered that applying the term “terrorist” to indigenous leaders violated the presumption of innocence and the state obligation to define criminal conduct with precision and clarity.

Wed, 07/30/2014

Víctor Ancalaf LlaupeChile and Buenos Aires, July 30, 2014 - The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IA Court) publicly announced its decision on May 29, 2014, on the case of Norín Catrimán et al. Víctor Ancalaf Llaupe, one of the case’s victims, indigenous leader and Werkén of his community, was represented by the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL) and attorney Sergio Fuenzalida.

This is the Inter-American Court’s first decision in which it condemns Chile for human rights violations committed against members of the Mapuche community. In accordance with its Judgment, the Court considered that applying the term “terrorist” to indigenous leaders violated the presumption of innocence and the state obligation to define criminal conduct with precision and clarity.

Likewise, the Court considered that the judicial decisions that condemned the victims contained discriminatory prejudices against the Mapuche community, violating the principle of equality and non-discrimination.

Liliana Tojo, CEJIL program director for Bolivia and the Southern Cone noted that, “the sentence analyzes the cases submitted before the international Tribunal within the context of the struggle of the Mapuche for their ancestral rights, evidencing that the application of the Antiterrorist Law constitutes an inadequate response by the State before mobilization and social disapproval...

The IA Court considers the use of witnesses with non-disclosed identities in these cases to be incompatible with the American Convention and ordered Chile to clearly and securely regulate the use of this exceptional measure of evidence. The Court also held the State responsible for the lack of incentive in adopting and maintaining pre-trial detention by the Judicial Power, as well as for the lack of consideration with respect to the characteristics of the indigenous communities at the time in which the measures of deprivation of liberty were ordered.

The judgment orders Chile to give a comprehensive reparation to the victims, regulate the use of witnesses with non-disclosed identity, and in light of the new drafting of the Antiterrorist Law, it recommended the State to revise the legislation to take into account the ideas of international bodies and experts on the subject to ensure its harmony with the obligations imposed by international law.

In the words of Viviana Krsticevic, CEJIL’s Executive Director, “the IA Court’s judgment in the case of Norín Catrimán et al. is of great significance for the Americas in the way that it establishes clear limits on the use of antiterrorist legislation to address social protests, demonstrations and complaints made by indigenous communities.

Background of the case:

In 2002, a criminal process was opened against the Werkén Víctor Ancalaf, marked by irregularities, in which the Antiterrorist Law was applied, condemning him as a perpetrator of terrorist offenses. In this case, the State violated guarantees of due process, as he was condemned based on the use of witnesses with non-disclosed identity, and based on discriminatory criteria for being Mapuche. Additionally, the victim was deprived of freedom in an excessive manner that violated the minimal standards of pre-trial detention.

CONTACT IN CHILE:

Soledad Sandoval Lizana

Email: sandoval.sole@gmail.com

Cell: 56 9 - 91586770

CEJIL CONTACT:

Daniela Araya

Email: daraya@cejil.org

Phone: 506 – 22807473 / 7608

 

Liliana Tojo:

Email: ltojo@cejil.org

Phone: 54 11- 5031 2331

Cell: 549 11 - 33409795

 

Access to case documents:

IA Court’s complete Judgment

Admissibility Report

Hearing before the IA Court conducted: May 29 and 30

 

CEJIL, DPLF and WOLA express their concern for the appointment of retired General Daniel Urresti as Minister of the Interior in Peru

Urresti is currently under investigation for his participation in the murder of a journalist, Hugo Bustíos, in 1988

Washington D.C., July 8, 2014. In the wake of the President of the Republic of Peru’s, Ollanta Humala, recent appointment of retired General Daniel Urresti as Minister of the Interior, the signing organizations express their deep concern about the new Minister as he is a subject of a criminal investigation by the commission for grave human rights violations that occurred during Peru’s internal armed conflict.

Thu, 08/21/2014

Washington D.C., July 8, 2014. In the wake of the President of the Republic of Peru’s, Ollanta Humala, recent appointment of retired General Daniel Urresti as Minister of the Interior, the signing organizations express their deep concern about the new Minister as he is a subject of a criminal investigation by the commission for grave human rights violations that occurred during Peru’s internal armed conflict.

As stated by the Institute for Legal Defense (Instituto de Defensa Legal, IDL) last week, Urresti is under investigation as the alleged mastermind of the murder of Hugo Bustíos, journalist and correspondent for the magazine, “Carretas,” on November 24, 1988. Bustíos, along with his colleague Eduardo Rojas Arce, were investigating the murder of two civilians in the outskirts of the city of Huanta, after having asked the Chief of the Castropampa Military Base, Víctor La Vera Hernández, for permission to access the area. On the way to Huanta, Bustíos and Rojas Arce were attacked with gun fire. Bustíos was hit with a bullet, lost control of the motorcycle he was driving and fell. Rojas Arce was able to save himself. The attackers placed a detonating explosive over Bustíos’s injured body, causing his death. Urrestí, an Army captain at that time, worked as Head of the S-2 Military Intelligence Branch (Sección de Inteligencia S-2) at the Castropampa base in Ayacucho.

The initial investigation was initiated by the military court, but subsequently closed. In light of this, CEJIL and other organizations, including the national headquarters of COMISEDH, brought the case before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, which in 1997 found the Peruvian State responsible for the murder of Hugo Bustíos and the attack on Eduardo Rojas Arce.

The Truth and Reconciliation Commission resumed the investigation on the case, and in 2007, the National Criminal Court condemned officers Víctor La Vera Hernández and Amador Vidal Sanbertoa, 17 and 15 years old, respectively, for the murder and attempted murder of Bustíos and Rojas Arce. The investigation continued in order to establish the identity of others responsible, and on June 17, 2013, the judiciary ordered to open an investigation against Urresti. It stated that on November 24, 1988, both journalists were, “ambushed and attacked by members of the Peruvian military from the Castropampa Military Base under the orders of Officer Daniel Belisario Urresti Elera known as “Arturo,” along with the participation of Sergeant Johny José Zapata Acuña known as “Centurión” and other unidentified members of the Military.”

Along with other pieces of evidence, the existence of the order to open an investigation of Urresti has been supported by statements made by members of the Peruvian military at the Castropampa Base in November 1988. Based on these statements, Urresti is being investigated for his role as the mastermind of the murder of Bustíos and the attempted murder of Rojas Arce, both classified as crimes against humanity.

As noted by Viviana Krsticevic, CEJIL’s Executive Director, “the IACHR determined that Peru was responsible for the murder of Bustíos and for violating the personal integrity of Rojas Arce, as well as violating the freedom of expression of both victims because they were journalists. The Peruvian President’s decision to offer a public position to a person under investigation for grave acts sends a message of disrespect for the work of the judicial power in combating impunity, as well as being a direct affront to the victims of grave human rights violations in Peru.”

For Katya Salazar, Executive Director of DPLF, “this case is emblematic because it was investigated by the Peruvian Truth Commission, which recommended the investigation and prosecution of all those responsible. President Humala’s decision to “evaluate the case” and to conclude that there is not sufficient evidence is an attack on judicial independence and implies “rewarding” a person accused of these grave violations.”

Joe-Marie, a Senior Fellow at WOLA, considers that, “the President should rectify this decision because it is detrimental to the process followed in Peru to find truth, justice and reparation for victims of the internal armed conflict in Peru, and it gravely affects the consolidation of democratic institutions. Urresti should be removed from his position and brought to justice for this case. Additionally, the Ollanta Humala government should reaffirm its promise to protect the physical integrity of relatives and witnesses in this case as well as in others under investigation.”

Based on the above, the organizations respectfully ask the Peruvian authorities to respect the actions of the Judicial Power and to guarantee the independence of the investigations and procedures that are followed to determine the responsibilities of all the perpetrators of the murder of Hugo Bustíos. Additionally, the organizations urge the Judicial Power to suspend General Urresti from his post as Minister of the Interior until his criminal role in the Bustíos case is clarified.

Links of interest:

  • Order to open the investigation against Daniel Urresti (auto de apertura de instrucción), June 17, 2013, (Spanish only)

http://www.scribd.com/doc/232302402/Daniel-Urresti-Autoapertorio-del-caso-del-periodista-Hugo-Bustios

Press Contact

Daniela Araya

+506 22807473

daraya@cejil.org

20 years since the disappearance of Narciso González a lack of justice persists in the Dominican Republic

CEJIL remembers the life and fight of Narciso González and calls for full compliance with the IA Court´s sentence

Santo Domingo and Washington DC, Monday, May 26, 2014. Today, on the twentieth anniversary of the forced disappearance of Narciso González, the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL) calls on the Dominican State to promptly comply with and implement the Judgment of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IA Court).

Mon, 05/26/2014

Fotos conmemorativa NarcisoSanto Domingo and Washington DC, Monday, May 26, 2014. Today, on the twentieth anniversary of the forced disappearance of Narciso González, the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL) calls on the Dominican State to promptly comply with and implement the Judgment of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IA Court).

Narciso González Medina, or “Narcisazo,” was a renowned university professor, journalist, lawyer and opposition of the dictatorial regimes of Rafael Leonidas Trujillo and Joaquín Balaguer. After reporting electoral fraud in the 1994 presidential elections and signaling out the police chiefs and armed forces as Balaguer’s accomplices, Narciso was forcibly disappeared on May 26, 1994.

In the Sentence issued on February 27, 2012 in the case of González Medina and Family v. Dominican Republic, the IA Court condemned the Dominican State for Narciso Gonzalez´s forced disappearance, as well as for lack of due process and the suffering inflicted on his family and ordered the adoption of important measures of reparation.

“Twenty years since the forced disappearance of the celebrated professor, journalist and lawyer Narciso Gonález, we remember his life and struggle and demand absolute compliance with the Inter-American Court’s case named after him, “said Viviana Krsticevic, CEJIL’s Executive Director. “The State is in debt to his family and the Dominican society. Following the steps taken by the Attorney General, we urge the rest of the State powers to act decisively to know what happened, reveal where Narciso González is and to punish those responsible.”

The measures of reparation ordered by the IA Court include the serious search to finding the whereabouts of Narciso González, a serious, impartial and efficient investigation of the acts and the eventual sentence of those responsible, full reparation for the family, as well as a series of measures to preserve the memory of Narciso González’s life, among others.

In 2013, the Attorney General demanded the reopening of the criminal investigation, taking the first step in the search for justice; nevertheless, the commitment of all state bodies is necessary to guarantee that the investigation continues in a serious, impartial and effective manner to finally close the door to impunity. On the other hand, CEJIL call on the State to incriminate forced disappearance in Dominican legislation as soon as possible, in compliance with international law and adopt any other necessary measure to ensure that events like those in this case never occur again.

For more information:

CEJIL, República Dominicana sigue sin cumplir Sentencia de la Corte IDH. April 3, 2012. (Spanish only)

CEJIL, Corte Interamericana condena a República Dominicana por desaparición forzada Narciso González. April 3, 2012. (Spanish only)

IA Court.  Case of González Medina and Family v. Dominican Republic. Judgment of February 27, 2012. Serie C No. 240. Available here.

 

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