Country Visits

2019

El Salvador, December 2 - 4, 2019

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) concluded its on-site visit to El Salvador from December 2 to 4, which aimed to observe on the ground the human rights situation in the country, in particular, issues related to citizen security and the situation of persons deprived of liberty; memory, truth, justice, and access to justice; the situation of the rights of women and LGBTI persons; and the situation of migrants, displaced persons and economic, social, cultural and environmental rights. Additionally, as transversal axes, it paid attention to freedom of expression, the situation of human rights defenders and justice operators, and other groups at particular risk.

The visiting delegation was made up of the President of the IACHR, Esmeralda Arosemena de Troitiño, the First Vice President, Joel Hernández, the Second Vice President, Antonia Urrejola; Commissioners Flavia Piovesan and Margaret May Macaulay - Country Rapporteur for El Salvador - and Commissioner Luis Ernesto Vargas. The delegation was also made up of the Executive Secretary, Paulo Abrão, and technical staff of the Executive Secretariat.



2018

Brazil, November 5 - 12, 2018

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) made an in loco visit to Brazil from November 5 to 12, 2018. The objective was to observe the human rights situation in Brazil on the ground. The IACHR’s previous in loco visit to Brazil took place in 1995.

The delegation was headed by the president of the IACHR, commissioner Margarette May Macaulay, and comprised the first vice-president, commissioner Esmeralda Arosemena de Troitiño; commissioner Francisco Eguiguren Praeli; commissioner Joel Hernández García; and commissioner Antonia Urrejola Noguera, rapporteur for Brazil. The delegation also included the assistant executive secretary, María Claudia Pulido; the chief of staff of the executive secretary, Marisol Blanchard Vera; the special rapporteur for freedom of expression, Edison Lanza; the special rapporteur for economic, social, cultural, and environmental rights (DESCA), Soledad García Muñoz; and experts from the IACHR’s executive secretariat.

FlickrPhoto gallery

Nicaragua, September 18 - 20, 2018

Within the framework of the Special Follow-up Mechanism for Nicaragua (MESENI), the IACHR Rapporteurship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty carried out a working visit to Nicaragua from September 18 to 20, 2018. The purpose of the visit was to analyze the conditions of detention of persons deprived of liberty for events associated with the protests that began on April 18. The delegation was made up of the Rapporteur, Commissioner Joel Hernández, as well as staff from the Executive Secretariat.

Honduras, July 30 to August 3, 2018

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) conducted an on-site visit to Honduras between July 30 and August 3, 2018. The aim of the visit was to observe the human rights situation in the country on the ground.

The delegation was led by the first vice-president of the IACHR, Esmeralda Arosemena de Troitiño; and also included the second vice-president, Luis Ernesto Vargas Silva; commissioners Flávia Piovesan and Antonia Urrejola, and commissioner Joel Hernández García, the IACHR rapporteur for Honduras. Among the other members of the delegation were the executive secretary of the IACHR, Paulo Abrão; the assistant executive secretary, María Claudia Pulido; the chief of staff of the executive secretariat, Marisol Blanchard Vera, the special rapporteur for freedom of expression, Edison Lanza; the special rapporteur on economic, social, cultural, and environmental rights (ESCER), Soledad García Muñoz, and experts from the executive secretariat.

The IACHR carried out an observation in the field on the human rights situation in the country, addressing various issues, including the situation of the rights of persons deprived of liberty. The Inter-American Commission held meetings with government authorities; with representatives and organizations of civil society, human rights defenders, indigenous authorities, international organizations, academics, journalists, and the private sector. It also collected testimonies from victims of human rights violations and their next of kin. In particular, the IACHR made unrestricted visits to various regions including Tegucigalpa, San Pedro Sula, Tela, Puerto Lempira, Bajo Aguán, and toured detention centers, in particular, it visited the First Infantry Battalion of the Honduran Armed Forces, in the municipality of Tegucigalpa; the Third Infantry Battalion, in Naco, Cortés; the National Feminine Penitentiary for Social Adaptation (PN-FAS), the Center for the Deprivation of Liberty for Adolescents, “Renazando”, in the Village of Tamara; and the Choluteca National Penitentiary, in La Trinidad, Choluteca.

FlickrPhoto gallery

Nicaragua, May 17 - 21, 2018

On May 3, 2018, given the serious violence in Nicaragua, the IACHR unveiled plans to set up a Rapid and Integrated Response

Coordination Unit (SACROI, by its Spanish acronym) to focus its attention on the human rights situation in that country.

Later, on May 17-21, 2018, the IACHR carried out a working visit to Nicaragua, to conduct a preliminary on-site

observation of the human rights situation in the country, in the context of the violence that took place there from April 18, 2018, to document those events and issue the Commission's first concrete recommendations for the Nicaraguan State.

The IACHR deployed three teams and visited four cities (Leon, Managua, Matagalpa and Masaya), as well as State facilities, healthcare centers, hospitals, detention centers and the Institute of Forensic Medicine. On May 21, the IACHR published its Preliminary Observations on the visit.

The delegation was led by Commissioner Antonia Urrejola, IACHR Rapporteur for Nicaragua, who was supported by Commissioner Joel Hernandez, Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty; and Commissioner Francisco Eguiguren, Rapporteur on the Rights of Human Rights Defenders. The delegation was also assisted by Paulo Abrão, Executive Secretary; Maria Claudia Pulido, Assistant Executive Secretary for Monitoring, Promotion and Technical Cooperation on Human Rights; the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, Edison Lanza, and the Special Rapporteur for Economic, Social, Cultural and Environmental Rights, Soledad Garcia Muñoz, and by the specialists of the Executive Secretary.

Through the SACROI unit, the IACHR continues to monitor the serious, ongoing human rights crisis in Nicaragua.



2017

Guatemala, July 31 to August 4, 2017

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) made an on-site visit to Guatemala from July 31 and August 4. The IACHR observed on the ground a serious situation of inequality and discrimination that particularly affects indigenous people; women; displaced persons; lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, and intersex persons (LGBTI), Afro-descendant persons, persons with disabilities; persons deprived of liberty; and children and adolescents.

The IACHR verified the persistence of multiple factors that contribute to a situation of structural impunity. In addition, the Commission received information regarding the State's authorization of extractive industry activities and projects and development of natural resources in indigenous peoples' territories, without prior consultation to obtain consent. The IACHR also received information on violence against journalists, as well as on the concentration of media ownership. The Commission drew attention to the particularly vulnerable situation that women in Guatemala continue to face, especially indigenous women. Likewise, the IACHR received with great concern the lack of recognition of Afro identity in the country. In relation to the rights of LGBTI persons, the Commission expressed its concern regarding the draft "Law for the Protection of Life and Family," which seeks to ban teaching about sexual diversity and reaffirms the nature of marriage as a right exclusive to persons of the opposite sex. The IACHR received extensive information on how multiple causes have led to the forced displacement of tens of thousands of people, contributing to the crisis of displaced persons and refugees. As to the situation of persons deprived of liberty, the prison system is mainly characterized by overcrowding, excessive use of pretrial detention, deplorable detention conditions.

The IACHR visited the Casa Para Niños Aleluya; the Juvenile Center for the Deprivation of Liberty for Men (CEJUPLIV “Stage II”), in San José Pinula; the Youth Center for the Deprivation of Liberty for Women (CEJUPLIM- “Gorriones”); the jails located in Basement 1, of the Tower of Courts of the Judicial Organism; the Santa Teresa Preventive Detention Center for Women; the Women's Guidance Center (COF), the Pavón Penal Rehabilitation Farm, and the “Federico Mora” National Mental Health Hospital.

Finally, the IACHR found that, despite the important progress in the fight against corruption and impunity led by the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG) and the Public Prosecutor's Office, as well as the efforts of some judges-a series of challenges identified by the IACHR in its country report continue to exist today.

Argentina, June 16 - 20, 2017

As part of the request for precautionary measure number 25-16, the Inter-American Commission visited Milagro Sala on June 16, 2017 in Unit Number 3 for Women of the Jujuy Province Penitentiary Service, known as the “Penal del Alto Comedero ”, in Argentina. The purpose of this visit was to verify her risk situation in her condition as a prisoner. The delegation met first with the Governor of the Province of Jujuy, Gerardo Morales, and later moved to the prison in question. At the end of the visit, the delegation met with prison authorities. Both in the meeting with the Governor and various provincial authorities, as well as with Mrs. Milagro Sala and her lawyers, the delegation received information about the Túpac Amaru organization, its development in Jujuy, and its current activities. The delegation was made up of the Country Rapporteur, Francisco Eguiguren; the Second Vice President Commissioner, Esmeralda Arosemena; and Secretariat staff.

Peru, February 24, 2017

The Rapporteurship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights made a working visit to Peru on February 24, 2017. The main purpose of the visit was to analyze the main advances and challenges facing the Peruvian State to reduce the use of pretrial detention. The delegation was made up of the President of the Commission and Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty, Commissioner James Cavallaro, and staff from the Executive Secretariat. The IACHR Rapporteurship held, in conjunction with the Ministry of Justice and Human Rights, a discussion on the measures that the Peruvian State has adopted in order to reduce preventive detention, which included the participation of members of various states institutions, society civil and academy.



2016

Argentina, September 13 - 17, 2016

The Office of the Rapporteur made a working visit to Argentina from September 13 to 17, 2016. The main purpose of the visit was to monitor the human rights situation of persons deprived of liberty and, in particular, to analyze the main advances, as well as the challenges faced by the Argentine State to reduce the use of pretrial detention. The delegation was made up of the President of the Commission and Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty, Commissioner James Cavallaro, and staff from the Executive Secretariat. The visit covered the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires and the cities of La Plata (capital of the province of Buenos Aires), Mendoza, and Santa Fe.

Costa Rica, February 15 - 18, 2016

The IACHR Office of the Special Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty carried out a working visit to Costa Rica from February 15 to 18, 2016. It was the first visit of this Rapporteurship to Costa Rica, and its main purpose was to monitor the situation of human rights of persons deprived of liberty and, in particular, to analyze the main advances and challenges faced by the Costa Rican State to reduce the use of preventive detention. The delegation was made up of the President of the Commission and Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty, Commissioner James Cavallaro, as well as staff from the Executive Secretariat.



2015

Mexico, September 27 to October 2, 2015

In the framework of the onsite visit to Mexico, on September 28 to October 2, 2105, the Rapporteurship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty focused on gathering and processing information on the torture of prisoners when first detained, the misuse of pre-trial detention, use of the legal mechanism "quasi flagrante delicto" (flagrancia equiparada), and regulation of pre-charge detention (arraigo).

Mexico, September 22 - 24, 2015

In follow-up to the visit to Mexico in September 2014, Commissioner James L. Cavallaro, as Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty, visited Mexico on September 22 to 24, 2015. During his trip, the Rapporteur visited both federal and state penitentiaries in Mexico City and its outskirts, and met with representatives of civil society.

Panama, June 17 - 19, 2015

Panama, June and November, 2015

Commissioner James L. Cavallaro visited Panama on June 17 to 19, 2015. During his trip, the Rapporteur visited the prisons of “La Joya” and "La Joyita” to observe how persons deprived of liberty could be transferred to the prison "La Nueva Joya" in keeping with human rights. He also met with national authorities having jurisdiction in this matter, the directors and staff of penitentiaries, and representatives of civil society. On November 12 and 13, 2015, the Rapporteur made a second working visit to Panama. The Rapporteurship is working with the Deputy Minister of the Interior and other government authorities to identify how the country's penitentiaries can be restructured.



2014

Honduras, December 1 - 5, 2014

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) conducted an on-site visit to Honduras on December 1-5, 2014, for the purpose of monitoring the general human rights situation in the country.

The Commission held meetings with State authorities, civil society organizations, and others who came forward to present information concerning the human rights situation in Honduras. The Commission also traveled to several different regions - including La Ceiba, Tocoa, El Progreso, San Pedro Sula, and Bajo Aguán - and visited care centers for migrant children; Garifuna communities and peasant communities; and several prisons in the country.

The Rapporteurship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty visited the National Penitentiary of San Pedro Sula, the National Penitentiary of Comayagua, the National Penitentiary “Marco Aurelio Soto”, the detention facilities at the 1st and 3rd Battalion of Infantry, the detention facility at “Los Cobras” headquarters, the Center for Juveniles Offenders Renaciendo, and the New Penitentiary of San Pedro Sula, currently under construction; attended to meeting with high level authorities in charge of the penitentiary administration and received relevant information from other stakeholder.

Mexico, September 17 - 19, 2014

From September 17 to 19, 2014, the Rapporteurship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty, led by Commissioner James L. Cavallaro, made a monitoring visit to Mexico that constitutes the first part of a two-part visit, the second part of which will take place in early 2015. The objective of the visit was to obtain information about the situation of the Mexican penitenciary system and to identify its main deficiencies. The delegation met with various public authorities, with several civil society organizations and experts devoted to monitoring the situation of the prison system in Mexico.

Paraguay, August 25 - 29, 2014

The Rapporteurship, led by Commissioner James L. Cavallaro, made a working visit to Paraguay on August 25 to 29, 2014. The objective of the visit was to verify the general situation of the Paraguayan prison system, to identify its main shortcomings, and to make recommendations to the State. The delegation met with diferents authorities and officials of the State and public defenders from various regions of the country. The delegation also met with the Coordinator of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Paraguay and with several civil society organizations devoted to monitoring the situation of persons deprived of liberty. It also had a chance to meet with family members of persons deprived of liberty.

During the visit, the Rapporteurship visited the National Penitentiary of Tacumbú, the Buen Pastor National Women’s Penitentiary, the Integral Education Center for Adolescents of Itauguá, and the “Padre Juan Antonio de la Vega” Regional Penitentiary of Emboscada. Finally, promotion activities included the following: On August 25 the Report on the Use of Pretrial Detention in the Americas was presented at an event that included the participation of the Minister of Justice and key representatives of the judicial branch, civil society organizations, and the National Mechanism for the Prevention of Torture. In addition, on August 27 a training workshop was held for state officials on inter-American standards regarding the rights of persons deprived of liberty, and in particular the guarantees and principles on the use of pretrial detention. The visit concluded with a press conference.

United States, April 7 - 10, 2014

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) conducted a visit to New York, United States, from April 7 to 10, 2014. The delegation was led by the IACHR Rapporteur on the Rights of the Child, Commissioner Rosa Maria Ortiz, accompanied by staff attorneys of the Executive Secretary of the IACHR from the Office of the Rapporteurs on the Rights of the Child and Adolescents and on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty. The delegation talked to state authorities in Albany including Acting Commissioner of the New York Department of Corrections, Anthony Annucci, with the Chair of the Correction Committee of the State Assembly, Danny O´Donnell, and was welcomed by the New York State Assembly. The delegation also met city officials in New York City, including Member of the NYC Board of Corrections Bryanne Hamill and Executive Director Cathy Potler. In addition, they also received information from the Assistant Commissioner of the Correctional Health Services, Homer Venters. The delegation visited the Robert N. Davoren Complex (RNDC) in Rikers Island jail in New York City. The Rapporteur was welcomed by the Commissioner of the New York City Department of Corrections, Joseph Ponte, and the Warden of the Complex, James Perrino, as well as the Deputy Director for Strategic Planning and the complex's school principal and other high ranking officials from the NYC Department of Corrections and the Mayor's Office.



2012

Argentina, December 3 - 8, 2012

During the December 3-8, 2006, working visit to the province of Buenos Aires, Commissioner Florentín Meléndez, in his capacity as Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty, visited the Lomas de Zamora 10 and Echeverría 3 Police Stations, and Units 28 and 36 of the Magdalena Prison Complex, on December 3. On December 4, the Rapporteur visited the Villa Devoto Prison (Penitentiary Unit 2), Women’s Unit 31 of the Ezeiza Complex, and the "Borda" Penitentiary Unit 20 (Men’s Central Psychiatric Service).

Colombia, December 3 - 7, 2012

The Rapporteurship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty conducted promotional and monitoring activities in the context of the in loco visit conducted in Colombia by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights from December 3rd to 7th, 2012. The staff of the Rapporteurship visited the Center for Juveniles Offenders El Redentor, the Metropolitan Penitentiary of Bogota “La Picota” and the “La Modelo” Prison; attended to meeting with high level authorities in charge of the penitentiary administration; and gave a workshop directed to staff members of the National Penitentiary Institute (INPEC). The preliminary observations of the Rapporteurship are included in the annex of the Press Release No. 144/2012 .

Honduras, April 23 - 27, 2012

The Rapporteuship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) conducted a working visit to Honduras from April 23rd to 27th, 2012. The visit was in response to the fire occurred at the National Penitentiary of Comayagua on February 14, 2011 in which 362 people died. The delegation who went to Honduras was composed by the Commissioner Rodrigo Escobar Gil, Rapporteur of Persons Deprived of Liberty of the IACHR and the staff of the Rapporteurship, as an immediate outcome of the visit the IACHR adopted the Press Release No. 43/12 ; likewise the Commission is currently working in the final version of a special report on the situation of persons deprived of liberty in Honduras in accordance with the article 60 of the Rules of Procedure of the IACHR . Moreover, as part of the follow-up of the situation of persons deprived of liberty in Honduras, and specifically due to the tragedy occurred in Comayagua, the IACHR adopted the Press Release No. 19/12 ; formally requested information to the State and sua sponte called for a public hearing that took place on March 26, 2012 during the 144º Period of Sessions, the audio of this hearing is available in Spanish at: http://www.oas.org/es/cidh/audiencias/Hearings.aspx?Lang=es&Session=125



2011

Uruguay, July 4 - 8, 2011

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) carried out a working visit to Uruguay on July 4-8, 2011. The delegation was made up of Commissioner Rodrigo Escobar and staff of the Executive Secretariat. The purpose of this working visit was to verify the general situation of Uruguay's prison system, identify the main problems it is facing, and issue concrete recommendations to the State. At the conclusion of the visit, the IACHR published Press Relese 76/11 .

Suriname, May 25 - 27, 2011

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) carried out a visit to the Republic of Suriname on May 25-27, 2011. The delegation was composed of the Rapporteur, Commissioner Rodrigo Escobar Gil, and staff of the IACHR Executive Secretariat. This was the first observation visit made by an international human rights institution to incarceration facilities in the Republic of Suriname. The IACHR published Press Release 56/11 on the visit.



2010

El Salvador, October 5 - 9, 2010

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty carried out a visit to El Salvador on October 5-9, 2010. The Rapporteur for the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty and his delegation visited the "Sendero de Libertad" ["Path to Freedom"] Center for Social Integration (Ilobasco), the Quezaltepeque Prison, and the Zacatecoluca Maximum Security Prison. At the end of its visit, the Office of the Rapporteur gave a press conference and published Press Release 104/10 : IACHR Office of the Rapporteur Attests to Structural Deficiencies in Prison System of El Salvador.

Argentina, June 7 - 10, 2010

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty conducted a visit to Argentina on June 7-10, 2010. The purpose of the visit was to compile information for the preparation of a report that was presented to the Inter-American Court in the context of provisional measures. The delegation visited the Greater Buenos Aires Northern Complex; Sierra Chica Unit 2; Lisandro Olmos Unit 1; the Ensenada Police Station, Third Precinct (El Dique); the Berisso Police Station, First Precinct; and the Lomas de Zamora Police Station, Sixth Precinct. At the end of the visit, the IACHR issued Press Release 64/10 : IACHR Rapporteurship Confirms Grave Detention Conditions in Buenos Aires Province.

Ecuador, May 19 - 21, 2010

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty carried out a visit to Ecuador on May 19-21, 2010, in the framework of a standing invitation extended by the State of Ecuador to the IACHR. The delegation visited the Quito Women’s Center for Social Rehabilitation and the Litoral Penitentiary in Guayaquil. At the end of the visit, the IACHR issued Press Release 56/10 : Rapporteurship on Persons Deprived of Liberty Concludes Visit to Ecuador.



2009

Uruguay, May 6 - 8, 2009

On May 6, 7, and 8, the Office of the Rapporteur conducted a visit to Uruguay and visited three correctional facilities in the city of Montevideo: the National Rehabilitation Center, the Santiago Vásquez Prison Complex, and the "Medio Camino" halfway house for women. This was the first prison visit the Rapporteur for Persons Deprived of Liberty had made to Uruguay.

Argentina, April 24, 2009

On April 24, 2009, the Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty carried out a visit to the Mendoza Provincial Prison and the Gustavo André Unit, in the province of Mendoza. The Office of the Rapporteur had first visited those prisons in December 2004, after which it made recommendations to the local authorities. The purpose of the April 2009 visit was to verify the state of these facilities and the degree of compliance with the provisional measures handed down by the Inter-American Court in 2004. In addition, the IACHR prepared a report it submitted to the Inter-American Court. The report is cited in the September 10, 2010, Order of the President of the Inter-American Court [available only in Spanish]. On November 26, 2010, the Inter-American Court lifted these provisional measures and archived the matter.



2008

Paraguay, September 11, 2008

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty carried out an observation visit to the Neuropsychiatric Hospital of Asunción, Paraguay, on September 11, 2008, to verify compliance with precautionary measures granted by the IACHR on July 29, 2008 (PM 277-07 ). In addition, on September 11 and 12, Commissioner Meléndez met with authorities from the ministries of Foreign Affairs, Justice, and Public Health and Social Well-Being.

Chile, August 21 - 25, 2008

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty in the Americas carried out a visit to Chile on August 21-25, 2008, in order to receive information and observe the situation of persons deprived of liberty in detention facilities in the country. The Office of the Rapporteur visited two juvenile detention centers (the San Joaquín Center for Provisional Internment of Minors, in Santiago, and “Tiempo Joven,” in San Bernardo); three prisons operated under concession (the Santiago I Preventive Detention Center, the Rancago Prison Complex, and the Valdivia Prison Complex); and the South Santiago Prison Center and the Valparaíso Prison Complex, as well as the Santiago Women’s Prison Center. At the end of the visit, the IACHR issued Press Release 39/08 : Rapporteurship on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty Concludes Visit to Chile.



2007

Mexico, August 6 - 11, 2007

Commissioner Florentín Meléndez conducted an observation visit to Mexico on August 6-11, 2007. One of the purposes of the visit was to verify the situation of persons deprived of liberty in several prisons in Mexico. The delegation was in the Federal District on August 6-8 and in Oaxaca on August 9-11. During the visit, the delegation visited the Eastern Preventive Prison for Men, the Santiaguito Social Readaptation Center, the Altiplano Federal Center for Social Readaptation, the Tlaxiaco Prison, and the Ixcotel Prison. The visit was announced through Press Release 41/07 : IACHR President Visits Mexico. During the visit, the IACHR issued Press Release 43/07 : IACHR President Meets with President of Mexico, and at the close of the visit it published Press Release 45/07 : IACHR President Urges Investigation into Acts of Violence in Oaxaca.

Haiti, June 17 - 20, 2007

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty visited Haiti on June 17-20, 2007, to receive information and observe the situation of persons deprived of liberty in certain detention facilities in Port-au-Prince. The delegation visited the National Penitentiary, the Delmas Police Station, the Delmas Prison for Minors, and the Prison for Women in Pétion-Ville. At the end of the visit, the IACHR published Press Release 32/07 : Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty Concludes Visit to the Republic of Haiti.



2006

Bolivia, November 12 - 17, 2006

During a visit carried out November 12-17, 2006, by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), Commissioner Florentín Meléndez, in his capacity as Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty, visited the Chonchocorro Penitentiary (in El Alto) and the San Pedro Prison and Obrajes Women's Guidance Center (both in La Paz) to observe the human rights situation of persons deprived of liberty. At the end of the visit, the IACHR published Press Release 48/06 : IACHR Checks Situation of Persons Deprived of Liberty in Some Jails in the Republic of Bolivia.

Bolivia, November 12 - 17, 2006

Following an invitation by the government, the Commission carried out a visit to the Republic of Bolivia November 12-17, 2006, in order to observe the general human rights situation in that country. The Commission delegation was made up of its Chair, Evelio Fernández Arévalos; its Second Vice-Chair and Rapporteur for Bolivia, Florentín Meléndez; Commissioner Víctor Abramovich; the Executive Secretary, Santiago A. Canton; human rights specialists Débora Benchoam, Silvia Serrano, and Leonardo Hidaka; and document technician Gloria Hansen.

During its stay in Bolivia, the Commission met with government authorities and held meetings with various segments of civil society. These included representatives of organizations promoting the rights of indigenous peoples, the rights of women, the rights of children, and the rights of persons deprived of liberty; representatives of campesino organizations and organizations devoted to strengthening the administration of justice; journalists; and trade union members.

At the end of its visit, the IACHR issued Press Release 46/06 . On June 28, 2007, the IACHR approved the report Access to Justice and Social Inclusion: The Road towards Strengthening Democracy in Bolivia , which was published on August 7, 2007 . In its 2009 Annual Report, the IACHR published a Follow-Up Report in which it analyzes the State’s compliance with the report’s recommendations.

Brazil, September 20 - 22, 2006

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty conducted a visit to Brazil on September 20-22, 2006, to verify the situation at the “Dr. Sebastião Martins Silveira” Penitentiary in Araraquara, in the state of São Paulo, and the FEBEM "Tatuapé Complex," in the city of São Paulo. Both prisons have been the subject of provisional measures ordered by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. The purpose of the visit was to verify compliance with the Court's measures. During the visit, the Rapporteur met with representatives of the beneficiaries of both provisional measures and their relatives, as well as with high-level authorities in charge of managing both facilities.

The observation at the "Tatuapé Complex" took place September 20, and the IACHR delegation's conclusions were presented to the Inter-American Court in its next written observations on the aforementioned provisional measures.

The observation at the Araraquara Penitentiary took place September 22. The IACHR delegation was also at the Serra Azul Penitentiary, where some of the beneficiaries had been transferred. The Commission decided to conduct that visit to gather concrete information, since the Inter-American Court was holding a hearing on the case on September 28, 2006. The Commission's conclusions were presented to the Court in a public hearing; after that, on September 30, 2006, the Court adopted provisional measures for all persons who were being held in that penitentiary on July 28, 2006.

Dominican Republic, August 8 - 12, 2006

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty conducted a visit to the Dominican Republic on August 8-12, 2006, to observe the human rights situation of persons being held in detention centers in that country. The delegation visited the Higüey Public Jail, the La Victoria National Penitentiary, and the Center for the Comprehensive Care of Juvenile Offenders. It also visited detention centers whose facilities and administrative and disciplinary system were part of a new prison model. This included the Dajabón, Puerto Plata, Rafey Mujeres, Rafey Hombres, and Najayo Mujeres Correction and Rehabilitation Centers, as well as the Monte Plata Model Jail. The Rapporteur also led a workshop on the rights of persons deprived of their liberty, and on the inter-American system's protection mechanisms.



2005

Colombia, November 5, 2005

The Office of the Rapporteur on the Rights of Persons Deprived of Liberty carried out a visit to Colombia in November 2005, in conjunction with the Colombia Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), in order to attest to prison conditions and the respect for the rights of persons deprived of liberty. The delegation visited the Buen Pastor Women's Prison in Bogotá and the Palo Gordo Prison in the municipality of Girón, Santander, to verify compliance with precautionary measures that had been issued by the IACHR for 106 inmates who were calling themselves political prisoners. The observation ended with a visit to the Vista Hermosa Penitentiary in Cali, as well as to police stations in that city.

Brazil, June 23, 2005

Rapporteur Florentín Meléndez conducted a nighttime visit to the "Tatuapé" Internment Center for Juvenile Offenders in São Paulo, Brazil, on June 23, 2005. He produced a report containing recommendations, as part of the processing of precautionary measures granted by the IACHR to the benefit of the youth being held in that institution.



2004

Honduras, December 4, 2004

An IACHR delegation visited adult and juvenile detention centers in the cities of Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula, in coordination with the IACHR Rapporteur on the Rights of the Child and UNICEF. On the occasion of the visit, the Commission of its own accord adopted precautionary measures to protect juvenile detainees who were being subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment. The delegation also made recommendations to the local authorities. On December 4, 2004, Press Release 26/04 was issued: IACHR and UNICEF Express Concern over Situation of Boys, Girls and Adolescentes Involved with Gangs in El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.

Guatemala, November 4, 2004

An IACHR delegation visited detention centers in Guatemala City and Escuintla, including facilities for juveniles and adults. The visit was made in coordination with the IACHR Rapporteur on the Rights of the Child and UNICEF. On the occasion of the visit, the Commission of its own accord adopted precautionary measures to protect juvenile detainees who were being subjected to inhuman and degrading treatment. The delegation also made recommendations to the local authorities and participated in a promotional activity on the rights of persons deprived of liberty, geared toward mayors and departmental governors.



1999

Paraguay, July 28 - 30, 1999

The July 1999 visit to Paraguay included the participation of the IACHR Chair, Robert K. Goldman; the First Vice-Chair, Hélio Bicudo; the Second Vice-Chair, Claudio Grossman; Commissioners Carlos Ayala Corao and Álvaro Tirado Mejía; Executive Secretary Jorge E. Taiana and Assistant Executive Secretary David J. Padilla; the IACHR Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, Santiago A. Canton; and attorneys Ignacio J. Álvarez and Christina M. Cerna.

During the visit, the IACHR met with authorities of the executive branch, including the President of the Republic, Luis Ángel González Macchi; authorities of the judicial and legislative branches; and with different sectors of civil society, such as human rights organizations, representatives of the Church, groups of campesinos and indigenous communities, union leaders, alleged victims of human rights violations, and others. The Commission also visited several prisons and traveled to different regions of the country.

At the end of the visit, the Commission issued Press Release 23/99 . On March 9, 2001, the IACHR approved the Third Report on the Situation of Human Rights in Paraguay . The report’s publication, on March 21, 2001, was announced in Press Release 5/01 . In its 2001 Annual Report, the IACHR published a Follow-Up Report on the State’s compliance with the recommendations in the report.



1997

Dominican Republic, June 16 - 20, 1997

The IACHR carried out an onsite visit to the Dominican Republic in June 1997 in order to observe the human rights situation in that country. The delegation was composed of the Chair of the IACHR, John S. Donaldson; the Rapporteur for the Dominican Republic, Commissioner Claudio Grossman; Commissioner Álvaro Tirado Mejía; the Executive Secretary, Jorge E. Taiana; and staff of the Executive Secretariat.

During its visit, the Special Commission met with the President of the Republic, Leonel Fernández Reyna, as well as with other State authorities, international organizations, and nongovernmental organizations, and visited detention centers. Working meetings were also held in reference to petitions and cases.

Following this visit, the IACHR published the Report on the Situation of Human Rights in the Dominican Republic , which was approved on October 7, 1999. In its 2001 Annual Report, the IACHR published a Follow-up Report on the State’s compliance with the recommendation in that report.