Inter American Court ruling questioned

11 February 2018

The Inter-American Court on Human Rights (IACHR) has ruled against the Peruvian state in the case of the supreme justices of the Constitutional Tribunal. Responding to this, the president of Congress, Luis Galarreta, has called on the government to ignore the ruling.

On 9 February, the IACHR ruled that the constitutional procedure that the Peruvian Congress had initiated against four judges (Eloy Espinosa-Saldaña Barrera, Manuel Miranda Canales, Carlos Ramos Núñez y Marianella Ledesma Narváez) should be stopped. They had been accused of having found in favour of investigating events at the El Frontón island jail in 1986 when several inmates, who had previously surrendered, were killed in the wake of prisoner riots.

Under international treaties Peru has the obligation to comply with the rulings of the IACHR. Several members of Congress, not just its president and not just from Fuerza Popular, have called this into question, arguing that Congress is sovereign and does not have to follow the court’s rulings. 

This show of force may be a way to probe the consequences of not following the IACHR rulings when the Court issues its ruling on the Fujimori pardon in a few weeks time. Senior lawyers have argued that Peru cannot ignore the court’s rulings while remaining party to the regional system of jurisprudence.

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    The Peru Support Group exists to promote social inclusion, sustainable development and the observance of human rights in Peru. To that end the PSG highlights shortcomings in observance of established norms, whether international or local in nature, in its research, advocacy and publications. In so doing, it underscores the relationships that exist within the political system, how institutions work, and the effectiveness of policies that aim to reduce poverty and inequality within the context of sustainable development.

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