IACHR Submits Cases Involving Disappearance and Indigenous Land Rights to Inter-American Court

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights announced today that it will litigate two cases before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (against Argentina and Ecuador), while the press and civil society reported that a third case against the Dominican Republic will also be heard by the court.  The IACHR press release states:

On April 18, 2010, the IACHR filed an application in Case 12.533, Iván Eladio Torres et al., Argentina. The case involves the arbitrary detention, torture, and forced disappearance of Iván Eladio Torres, which occurred beginning on October 3, 2003, in the city of Comodoro Rivadavia, in Chubut province, and the subsequent lack of due diligence in the investigation of the facts, as well as the denial of justice to the detriment of the victim’s relatives. The case was sent to the Court based on the need to conduct a diligent investigation for the purpose of obtaining truth, justice, and reparation for the damage caused by the violations perpetrated against Iván Eladio Torres and his relatives.

In another matter, on April 26, 2010, the IACHR filed an application in Case 12.465, the Kichwa Peoples of the Sarayaku Community and Its Members, Ecuador. The case involves the State’s acts and omissions to the detriment of the Kichwa indigenous people of the Sarayaku community and its members, given that the State has allowed an oil company to carry out activities on the community’s ancestral territory without prior consultation, placing the population at risk. This situation has made it impossible for the indigenous community to seek its means of subsistence in its territory and has restricted its right to movement within the territory. The case also refers to the denial of judicial protection and due process to the Kichwa people of Sarayaku. The case was sent to the Court based on the need for the State to respect and guarantee the right of the Kichwa indigenous people of Sarayaku to use, enjoy, and avail themselves of their territory.

Read the Commission’s earlier admissibility decisions in the cases here and here, respectively.

The third case submitted to the Inter-American Court, involves the disappearance of prominent Dominican journalist, lawyer and professor Narciso Gonzalez at the hands of the military in 1994.  [Diario LibreCEJIL]  Read the Commission’s admissibility report here.

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