AGAINST TERRORISM MUST NOT SACRIFICE HUMAN RIGHTS,
TELLS GOVERNMENTS IN NEW REPORT
governments in the Americas and around the world refocus their security
efforts to confront the threat of terrorism, they must ensure that the
measures they take preserve democratic values and human rights, not
undermine them, the President of the Inter-American Commission on Human
Rights, Juan Méndez, said today.
“In the Commission’s experience, when states have sacrificed
fundamental rights in the name of fighting terrorism, the rule of law and
democratic freedoms are eroded and the objectives of terrorism are
ultimately advanced rather than diminished,” Méndez said in releasing the
Commission’s Report on Terrorism and Human Rights.
comprehensive report, believed to be the first of its kind issued by an
international organization, advises governments of the Organization of
American States (OAS) on their international human rights commitments in the
struggle against terrorism. It offers specific recommendations on how to
implement the rules and principles when developing and applying
a news conference at the National Press Club, Méndez said the report is
intended to help legislators and other policymakers develop responses to
terrorism that take into account standards established in international law.
creation more than 40 years ago, the Inter-American Commission on Human
Rights has considered numerous challenging cases involving member states
that have faced terrorist threats, Méndez noted. “In various countries of
this region, the fundamental human rights and democratic freedoms of the
Hemisphere’s inhabitants have been imperiled by terrorist violence as well
as by disproportionate state responses to it.” he said.
analyzes human rights standards in several key areas: the right to life, the
right to humane treatment, the right to personal liberty and security, the
right to a fair trial, the right to freedom of expression, the rights to
judicial protection and non-discrimination, and the protection of migrants,
refugees, asylum seekers and other non-nationals.
Report on Terrorism and Human Rights, as well as an executive summary, can
be found on the Commission’s Web site (www.cidh.oas.org).