viernes, 28 de abril de 2017

Libro: "The American Convention on Human Rights. Essential Rights"

Reporte elaborado por Oswaldo Ruiz-Chiriboga.

Oxford University Press publicó el libro The American Convention on Human Rights. Essential Rights, escrito por Thomas Antkowiak y Alejandra Gonza. Este es el resumen de la obra: 

"This book offers a thorough, critical, and accessible analysis of the American Convention on Human Rights, which is the main human rights treaty of the Americas. The authors closely review the jurisprudence of the two institutions charged with interpreting the Convention -- the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights -- with emphasis on the Court's binding judgments. They focus on the rights most developed by the Court and Commission, namely the rights to equality, life, humane treatment, personal liberty, property, due process and judicial protection, as well as the freedom of expression and reparations. They examine the case law with a victim-centered lens -- identifying key jurisprudential developments, discussing critical areas that lack consistency and rigor, and proposing alternative conceptual approaches. 

Each chapter contains an Introduction to compare the Convention right's formulation with equivalent rights in other major international and regional treaties; a Background section to consider the right's negotiation history; a Scope of Protection section to analyze the right's provisions (paragraph-by-paragraph or topic-by-topic); and lastly, a Limitations section, if applicable, to study any limitations to the right. In addition, the book's Introduction presents an up-to-date overview of the dynamic Inter-American Human Rights System, discussing the System's legal instruments, major institutions, significant impact, critical developments, and current challenges". 

La introducción del libro puede leerse aquí, y el libro puede ser adquirido aquí.

miércoles, 26 de abril de 2017

Libro: "Audi Alteram Partem in Criminal Proceedings"

Reporte elaborado por Oswaldo Ruiz-Chiriboga.

La editorial Springer publicó el libro "Audi Alteram Partem in Criminal Proceedings. Towards a Participatory Understanding of Criminal Justice in Europe and Latin America" (2017) de Stefano Ruggeri, el cual contiene dos capítulos relativos al Sistema Interamericano. A continuación un resumen de estos dos capítulos:

Participatory Rights in Criminal Justice Under the American Convention on Human Rights 

Abstract: "After analysing the Strasbourg system of human rights protection, we shall now examine the contribution of Inter-American case-law to the creation of a participatory understanding of criminal justice. Like the European Convention, the American Convention of Human Rights does not explicitly enshrine the audi alteram partem rule as such. Moreover, the Pact of San José also acknowledges the right of ‘every person’ to a ‘hearing […] in the substantiation of any accusation of a criminal nature made against him or for the determination of his rights and obligations of a civil, labor, fiscal, or any other nature’. Unlike other international human rights instruments, the American Convention provides a different linguistic expression—namely, a hearing with ‘due guarantees’ must be granted. It is not clear whether this lexical choice was due to the proximity to the common law world and especially to ties with the USA. Yet Article 8 ECHR recognised the ‘right to a fair trial’, so this difference does not seem to be of substantial importance."

Audi alteram partem in Transnational Cases Under the American Convention

Abstract: "Like the European Convention, the Pact of San José does not contain specific provisions explicitly aimed at the protection of due process rights in transnational criminal cases. Perhaps more than in Europe, the recourse to this international Charter to protect the individuals involved in transborder inquiries constitutes a relatively recent achievement, which has been rarely analysed until now. The fact that the Inter-American case-law has only rarely been called upon to examine issues concerned with due process rights in transborder cases has contributed to this situation. Moreover, a few cases were recently raised before the Inter-American institutions, providing a basis for the examination of this problematic area."

martes, 7 de marzo de 2017

Anuario Colombiano de Derecho Internacional (Vol. 10, 2017)

Reporte elaborado por Oswaldo Ruiz-Chiriboga.

En el último volumen del Anuario Colombiano de Derecho Internacional (Vol. 10, 2017) se publicaron los siguientes artículos sobre el Sistema Interamericano:
Building Prevention to Protect: The Inter-American Human Rights System 
Carlos Portales y Diego Rodríguez-Pinzón 

Abstract: The article explores the way that the Inter-American human rights system assumes the "responsibility to protect" in the context of serious violations of human rights that can be characterized as war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide, and ethnic cleansing. The essay describes how the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights have responded to such situations by using the ample powers granted to them by the OAS member states. The authors consider that these organs have been some of the most effective tools with which this region has confronted such situations by seeking to prevent them from occurring in the first place. The Inter-American system has contributed to building democratic regimes in the majority of the countries of the hemisphere. This has been crucial to avoiding serious violations of human rights such as those mentioned above, which would have required urgent international intervention to overcome. 

Treaties over time and Human Rights: A Case Law analysis of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights 
Carlos Enrique Arévalo Narváez y Paola Andrea Patarroyo Ramírez 

Abstract: This paper analyzes the issue of treaties over time and the interpretations of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in this context. Parts 1 and 2 introduce the elements of treaty interpretation in general international law, providing criteria for the application of the evolutionary approach to treaty interpretation, the debate between the application of evolutive interpretation and the use of subsequent conduct. Part 3 addresses the issue of fragmentation in international human rights law, and through the case law of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, provides evidence for the application of the rules of general international law to interpret the American Convention on Human Rights. Finally, conclusions are extracted on the basis of the case law analyzed, contrasting the Court's application of the American Convention over time, the conclusions of the International Law Commission Reports on the Fragmentation of International Law in 2008, and the preliminary conclusions of the Study Group on Subsequent Agreements and Subsequent Practice concerning treaty interpretation and the issue of the passage of time.

lunes, 6 de marzo de 2017

Convocatoria: The role of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights

Este reporte fue elaborado por Álvaro Paúl D.

El Norwegian Centre for Human Rights emitió una convocatoria para recibir propuestas para la conferencia “Therole of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights: Jurisprudential advances andnew responses” que se llevará a cabo el 15 de mayo de 2017 en la Facultad de Derecho de la Universidad de Oslo.  El plazo para presentar propuestas vence el 20 de marzo. El call for papers se puede leer aquí. A dejamos un extracto de la convocatoria

“This workshop has three specific aims. Firstly, it focuses on the identification and discussion of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights’ (IACtHR) valuable contribution to the field of International Human Rights Law, particularly in connection to new issues reaching this judicial body. Secondly, aware of existence of negative reactions provoked by some IACtHR’s decisions in determined States, the workshop aims at identifying and analyzing specific factors determining or influencing such rejection. Lastly, this workshop encourages the discussion of possible alternatives for solving those challenges. Through a systematic view of these three aspects, the organizers of the workshop wish to contribute to a better understanding of the role of the IACtHR in the region.”

martes, 21 de febrero de 2017

Human Rights and Personal Self-Defense in International Law

Reporte elaborado por Oswaldo Ruiz-Chiriboga.

Oxford University Press publicó el libro Human Rights and Personal Self-Defense in International Law, escrito por Jan Arno Hessbruegge, el cual recoge la jurisprudencia de la Corte IDH, especialmente respecto al uso letal de la fuerza tanto por parte de agentes estatales como por parte de actores privados. A continuación la presentación del libro y luego su tabla de contenidos: 

"While an abundance of literature covers the right of states to defend themselves against external aggression, this is the first book dedicated to the right to personal self-defense in international law. Drawing on his extensive experience as a human rights practitioner and scholar, Dr. Hessbruegge sets out in careful detail the strict requirements that human rights impose on defensive force by law enforcement authorities, especially police killings in self-defense. The book also discusses the exceptional application of the right to personal self-defense in military-led operations, notably to contain violent civilians who do not directly participate in hostilities. 

Human rights also establish parameters on how broad or narrow the laws can be drawn on self-defense between private persons. Setting out the prevailing international standards, the book critically examines the ongoing trend to excessively broaden self-defense laws. It also refutes the claim that there is a human right to possess firearms for self-defense purposes. 

In extraordinary circumstances, the right to personal self-defence sharpens human rights and allows people to defend themselves against the state. Here the author establishes that international law gives individuals the right to forcibly resist human rights violations that pose a serious risk of significant and irreparable harm. At the same time, he calls into question prevailing state practice, which fails to recognize any collective right to organized armed resistance even when it constitutes the last resort to defend against genocide or other mass atrocities." 

Table of Contents 


 Chapter 1: Introduction 

A. Summary of the argument 
B. Delineation of the topic: What is personal self-defense? 
I. Distinction of self-defense from other concepts of self-help 
II. Distinction between personal and interstate self-defense 
C. Methodology and sources 
I. Reliance on universal and regional jurisprudence 
II. Transposition of jurisprudence from other disciplines of international law 
III. Consideration of arguments from domestic jurisprudence 

 Chapter 2: The right to personal self-defense as a general principle of law 
A. No treaty provisions establishing a right to personal self-defense 
B. No recognition under customary international law 
C. General principles according to Article 38 (1) (c) ICJ Statute 
I. Formation of general principles 
II. Functions of general principles 
D. The right to self-defense as a principle of natural law 
I. Personal self-defense: a shared principle across cultural and religious traditions 
II. Inherent moral justification of self-defense 
E. The right to self-defense as a general principle derived from domestic law 
I. Common classification as a right and justification 
II. Comparable requirements of application 
F. Transposition of the personal self-defense principle into international law 
I. International humanitarian law 
II. International criminal law 
III. The law of the sea 
IV. The law of diplomatic relations 
G. Conclusion: A universally recognized right, but no unlimited license for violence 

 Chapter 3: A human right to self-defense? 
A. Positions in the academic literature 
B. Lack of state recognition of a human right to self-defense 
I. No recognition of a human right in international treaties or resolutions 
II. Insufficient national legislative practice supporting a human right  
C. Conceptual differences between the right to self-defense and human rights 
I. Inalienable nature as a commonality 
II. Auxiliary and relational nature of the right to self-defense 
III. No specific aim of curbing state power and abuses 
IV. Neutrality of the right to self-defense on the nature of the state 
D. Conclusion: Right sui generis, not human right 

Chapter 4: Defensive force by law enforcement agents 
A. Self-defense as a justified limitation of the rights to life and physical security 
I. Recognition in universal and regional human rights law 
II. Defensive force as a state obligation 
III. Self-defense as the sole peacetime justification of deliberately lethal force 
B. Formal requirement: Sufficient basis for the use of force in domestic law 
I. Minimum specifications 
II. Publicity 
III. Parliamentary prerogative to regulate lethal force 
C. Substantive requirements for self-defense as a ground of justification 
I. Unlawful attack against protected individual interests 
II. Immediacy of defensive action 
III. Necessity of defensive action 
IV. Proportionality of defensive action 
V. Defensive Intent  
D. Burden of Proof and evaluation of evidence 
E. Post-action duties of care, accountability and remedy 
I. Medical care and psychosocial support 
II. Duty to investigate incidents involving use of firearms and other force 
III. Duty to prosecute perpetrators of excessive force 
IV. Duties to provide compensation and, exceptionally, to make amends  
F. Conclusion: A deep, but narrow justification for the use of force in law enforcement 

Chapter 5: Personal self-defense in military-led operations 
A. Exceptional relevance of the personal self-defense principle in armed conflict 
I. Riots, violent demonstrations and opportunistic banditry 
II. Violent prisoners of war and interned fighters 
III. Enforcement of naval blockades and ceasefire lines 
B. Military involvement in peacetime law enforcement 
C. "Naked self-defense" - a conflation of personal and interstate self-defense 
D. Conclusion: Exceptional relevance of personal self-defense in military-led operations

Chapter 6: Human rights standards for self-defense between private persons 
A. Applicability of human rights standards to self-defense between private persons  
B. Duty to recognize a right to self-defense between private persons 
C. Duty to regulate and reasonably circumscribe self-defense between private persons 
I. Unlawful attack on a defensible interest 
II. Immediate defense: An exception for victims of intra-family violence? 
III. Necessity and proportionality 
IV. Special requirements regarding private security companies 
D. Duty to investigate and prosecute excessive or unwarranted self-defense 
I. Immunities from prosecution 
II. Burden of proof 
E. No general right to possess firearms and other means of self-defense 
I. Negative impact of gun proliferation on the protection of life and physical security 
II. No enhancement of women's right to self-defense 
III. No effective means to pre-empt tyranny or atrocities 
IV. The right to self-defense of unarmed citizens 
F. Conclusion: Human rights circumscribe the ambit of private self-defense 

Chapter 7: Self-defense against the state - resistance against human rights violations 
A. Resistance against the state - a history of opposing views 
I. Resistance as a legitimate defense against abusive governments 
II. Unassailable authority based on divine mandate or constitutional supremacy 
III. Rebellion as a threat to order and stability 
IV. Balancing stability and vindication of the right to self-defense 
B. Personal self-defense against unlawful individual acts of law enforcement officials 
I. Resistance against extrajudicial killings, torture and other police brutality 
II. No resistance against arbitrary arrest and detention if judicial remedies available 
III. Force to escape inhumane conditions of detention 
IV. General limits of the right to resist individual human rights violations 
C. Collective self-defense below the threshold of direct participation in armed conflict 
I. Limits based on the right to self-defense 
II. Distinction between civilian defense groups and organized armed groups 
D. Organized armed resistance against denials of the right to self-determination 
I. Legal Basis for a right to organized armed resistance 
II. Limits of the right to organized armed resistance 
III. Legal implications of the right to resistance 
IV. No right to rebel against undemocratic governments 
E. Organized armed resistance against mass atrocities 
I. No state recognition of a right of armed resistance against mass atrocities 
II. The case for a right of armed struggle against mass atrocities 
III. Limits of a right to resist mass atrocities 
IV. Legal implications of a right to resist mass atrocities 
V. No justification of unilateral humanitarian interventions 
F. Conclusion: A right to resistance only in exceptional circumstances  

Chapter 8: The right to personal self-defense in a Rechtsstaat - final reflections