Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Inter-American verdicts against Mexico

Mexico owes compensation to women who suffered sexual abuse at the hands of military personnel, the human rights court for the Americas reportedly has ruled.
According to reports here and here, the 2 judgments came yesterday in the cases of Valentina Rosendo Cantú and Inés Fernández Ortega, Tlapaneca (Me'phaa) indigenous women from the Mexican state of Guerrero. (The website of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights does include judgments in both cases, but they are dated in August and September, respectively.)
Leaders of nongovernmental organizations praised the judgment, which came after 8 years of litigation by the 2 women. The judgment "represents 'a light of hope'" that victims and their families can attain justice, said Alejandra Nuño (left), director of the Mexico and Central America program at CEJIL, the Center for Justice and International Law (prior post), which focuses on the Inter-American Court.
Found responsible for having "failed to guarantee the rights to personal integrity, dignity and legal protection" to Rosendo and Fernández, the Mexican government said it would abide by the court's call for a civilian investigation, for compensation, and for publication of the judgment. The government added that it
reiterates its full commitment to the promotion and protection of human rights, in particular to combat violence against women and girls.

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