IACHR CONDUCTS ON-SITE VISIT TO JAMAICA
Washington, D.C., November 14, 2008—The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) will conduct an on-site visit to Jamaica from December 1 to 5, 2008, in response to an invitation by the government of Prime Minister Bruce Golding. This will be the Commission’s first on-site visit to an English-speaking Caribbean country since 1994.
The Commission will observe the human rights situation in Jamaica, paying special attention to the situation of citizen security, the conduct of the country’s security forces, the administration of justice and prison conditions, as well as the situation of women and children, among other topics. With this purpose, the delegation will interview government authorities and meet with representatives of various sectors of civil society in Kingston and in the interior of the country. The Commission will also sign an agreement to strengthen institutional cooperation with The Norman Manley Law School of The University of the West Indies in Kingston.
The IACHR delegation that will visit Jamaica will be made up of its Chairman, Paolo Carozza, of the United States; its First Chair, Luz Patricia Mejía, of Venezuela; its Second Chair, Felipe González, of Chile; Commissioner Sir Clare K. Roberts, of Antigua and Barbuda, who is the Rapporteur for Jamaica; and Commissioners Víctor Abramovich, of Argentina, and Florentín Meléndez, of El Salvador, as well as the Commission’s Executive Secretary, Santiago A. Canton.
A principal, autonomous body of the Organization of American States (OAS), the IACHR derives its mandate from the OAS Charter and the American Convention on Human Rights. The Commission’s mandate is to promote the observance of human rights in the region in accordance with the parameters established in the American Convention on Human Rights, which Jamaica ratified in 1978. The Commission is composed of seven independent members who act in a personal capacity, without representing a particular country, and who are elected by the OAS General Assembly. The OAS Member States have made a commitment to grant the IACHR all the facilities necessary to carry out its observation missions freely, in order to fulfill its mandate.
The Commission appreciates the cooperation and facilities provided by the government of Jamaica and by nongovernmental organizations and other civil society institutions in the planning and preparations for this visit.
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