Criticism of Inter-American Human Rights System

By Saavedra, Luis Angel | NotiSur - South American Political and Economic Affairs, May 11, 2012 | Go to article overview

Criticism of Inter-American Human Rights System


Saavedra, Luis Angel, NotiSur - South American Political and Economic Affairs


The Ecuadoran government, along with other progressive Latin American governments such as those of Venezuela, Bolivia, Argentina, and Nicaragua, are challenging the role of the Inter-American System for the protection of human rights, created within the Organization of American States (OAS), which they accuse of being a political platform that seeks to discredit governments that have moved away from US influence.

However, in the case of the government of Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa, the challenges are contradictory, since it has used reports from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) to denounce human rights violations by previous administrations, such as that of former President Leon Febres Cordero (1984-1988), during which the largest number of extrajudicial executions and forced disappearances of political adversaries occurred. Correa has used commission reports to discredit rightist governments and the political parties that supported them.

Likewise, Correa validated the commission when he called on it to denounce human rights violations implicit in the March 1, 2008, bombing by Colombian forces in Angostura, Ecuador, which killed Ecuadoran citizen Franklin Aisalla and four Mexican students (NotiSur, March 7, 2008). This complaint, brought by the Procuraduna General del Estado (PGE), sought to have the Colombian government admit that the bombing violated international law and was an attack on Ecuador. The PGE called the action a massacre committed by a foreign government in national territory. The Colombian government tried to justify the action as necessary in the fight against the guerrilla insurgency of the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC), for it was able to eliminate guerrilla leader Raul Reyes.

Correa reacts to allegations of abusive policies

Correa's criticism of the Inter-American System began when Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression Catalina Botero questioned some of his administration's measures that could affect freedom of speech such as suing journalists, seizing communications media, and drafting a new communications law that could severely limit the media's ability to do its job.

Likewise, the commission was criticized when it recommended precautionary measures to protect the rights of the directors of Diario El Universo, in the case of the lawsuit that Correa filed against them (NotiSur, Oct. 14, 2011) and in which various irregularities had been denounced that undermined the independence of the Ecuadoran judiciary, such as the charge that the president's lawyer wrote the opinion and gave it to the judge to issue.

Criticisms of the commission have also been tied to progressive Latin American governments' general criticism of the OAS, an agency that they say is not in keeping with the new regional geopolitics and remains a forum of US influence. The last Summit of the Americas, held in Colombia in April, seems to give credence to these criticisms, since the Latin American countries could not reach a political consensus with the US and Canada, resulting in the summit closing without a final statement (NotiSur, April 20, 2012).

The Ecuadoran criticisms are also related to the commission's apparent inability to judge the US, a country that would seem to be outside the jurisdiction of this international justice body, even though its judges have assumed jurisdiction in cases of violations by the US government such as arbitrary detentions at the Guantanamo Bay Naval Base. The August 2011 and January 2012 resolutions in which the commission calls on the US to close the prisons at this US military base would show that the commission has jurisdiction over the US government even when it ignores the resolutions.

Despite the defense of the Inter-American System by various human rights organizations throughout the region, the Ecuadoran Foreign Ministry is proposing to design a "new architecture of the Inter-American System," under the purview of the Union de Naciones Suramericanas (UNASUR), and in which jurisdiction, especially that of the Inter-American Commission, would be defined with greater precision. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Criticism of Inter-American Human Rights System
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.