The IACHR has signed several Memoranda of Understanding with institutions at the national, regional and international levels.
Memorandum of Understanding with the National Council of Justice of Brazil
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of the American States (OAS) and the National Council of Justice of Brazil signed, on Tuesday, October 20th, a Memorandum of Understanding that states the will of the parties to work together in areas of training and development of the national judiciary involving human rights. This document constitutes a follow up of the Letter of Intention signed in February of this same year, in Brazil. The President of the IAHRC, Commissioner Rose Marie Belle Antoine, said that “the present Memorandum of Understanding advances further in this cooperation intention, describing in more detail the activities that the parties will conduct in order to achieve their objective of enhancing the education and dissemination of human rights for the benefit of a better administration of justice”. These activities will be implemented through Working Plans including, among others, participation of judges in the IACHR training courses, exchange of information and exchange of Inter-American human rights standards, mechanisms and protocols that may be used by the judicial system in their relationships with social groups in a vulnerable situation. For his part, the President of the Brazilian Council of Justice, Minister Ricardo Lewandowski, expressed that the Brazilian State seeks to apply, through this and other initiatives, his international human rights obligations in the national judiciary. Thus, the importance of Brazilian judges coming to the IACHR to learn the functioning of the Inter-American Human Rights system.
Joint Declaration on Collaboration with the Danish Institute for Human Rights
The collaboration agreement between the IACHR and the Danish Institute for Human Rights aims to strengthen national human rights systems in the areas of promotion and protection of economic, social and cultural rights (ESCR) with particular focus on the areas of business and human rights and sustainable development in the Americas. The collaboration is based on applicable international and regional human rights principles and instruments, including the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs).
The actions envisaged as part of the collaboration include exchange of knowledge and capacity building, advising Member States of the Organization of American States (OAS) on implementation of business and human rights standards, supporting the integration of these standards into the work of the IACHR, and a range of other activities.
This collaboration comes on the heels of the adoption of a OAS General Assembly Resolution AG/doc.5452 from June 2014 concerning the promotion and protection of human rights in business, in which the General Assembly resolved to promote the application of the UNGPs and encourages member states and their national human rights institutions to foster constructive dialogue among all stakeholder groups on the application of the UNGPs. The resolution also requests the IACHR to support states in the promotion and application of state and business commitments in the area of human rights and business.
UN and Inter-American Human Rights Systems Sign Joint Declaration on Collaboration
On November 19, 2014, the IACHR represented by President Tracy Robinson and Executive Secretary Emilio Alvarez Icaza Longoria, and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, represented by the High Commissioner, Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein, signed a joint declaration on collaboration. The declaration aims to strengthen the partnership between the universal and regional human rights systems, by reinforcing and formalizing practices that have already been in place such as joint actions, regular consultations and exchange of information and collaboration in standard-setting, as well as other activities. The High Commissioner Zeid and the IACHR discussed human rights situations in the Americas of common concern in order to prioritize joint action, in particular human rights in the development and economic spheres, as well as the violence and insecurity plaguing many countries in the region.
Agreement for Technical Assistance
On November 18, 2014, the IACHR formalized an agreement for technical assistance with the State of Mexico and the representatives of the missing students of Ayotzinapa. Through this agreement, the Commission will be able to appoint an Interdisciplinary Group of technical cooperation for the search of the 43 missing students from the Rural Normal School "Raúl Isidro Burgos" Ayotzinapa, Iguala as well as the investigations and actions to be adopted in order to punish the perpetrators and the assistance to the families. The primary purpose of this agreement is to solve the structural problems underlying the forced disappearances in Mexico, which have not been limited to the students of Iguala. The ceremony of the formalization of the agreement was held on November 18 in the Federal District and counted with the presence of the IACHR Rapporteur for Mexico, Commissioner James Cavallaro; the Executive Secretary of the IACHR, Emilio Alvarez Icaza; the Undersecretary for Multilateral Affairs and Human Rights of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Juan Manuel Gomez Robledo, and the beneficiaries of the precautionary measure granted by the IACHR to the students of Ayotzinapa, who were represented by Mario Pattern of Human Rights Centre Miguel Agustín Pro Juárez (Centre PRODH). The parents of the missing students were also present as well as representatives of the students of Ayotzinapa and representatives of the Attorney General's Office and the Interior Ministry.
National Autonomus University of Mexico (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, UNAM)
On June 24, 2013, the IACHR signed the a cooperation agreement with the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). Through this agreement, the Inter-American Commission will support three activities to be carried out by UNAM: training students through hypothetical case studies, holding a specialized seminar on the subject, and awarding a fellowship that will enable a student to receive professional experience at the Inter-American Commission’s headquarters.
Supreme Court of Justice of Paraguay
On February 22, 2013, the Inter-American Commission signed a cooperation agreement with Paraguay’s Supreme Court of Justice, in order to strengthen the relationship of cooperation between the institutions. The goal of the agreement is to coordinate efforts to strengthen relations between the institutions, deepen the knowledge of the law and the promotion of a juridical culture to benefit a better delivery of justice, and to promote education in human rights.
Supreme Court of Justice of Colombia
On November 15, 2012, the Inter-American Commission signed a memorandum of understanding with Colombia's Supreme Court of Justice, in order to strengthen the relationship of cooperation between the institutions. The document lays out the parties' intention to sign an agreement that reflects that interest, to protect and promote human rights, along with the intention to hold meetings and forums and implement training and educational programs for justice operators and the Colombian public.
Speech of the IACHR Chair during the ceremony to subscribe the memorandum
(Available only in Spanish)
Human Rights Commission of the Federal District (Comisión de Derechos Humanos del Distrito Federal), Mexico
On October 18, 2012, the IACHR signed a Memorandum of Understanding on Institutional Cooperation with the Human Rights Commission of the Federal District (Comisión de Derechos Humanos del Distrito Federal, CDHDF), Mexico.
International Criminal Court
On April 25, 2012, the IACHR signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Supreme Court of Justice of Mexico
On October 14, 2011, the IACHR signed an Agreement with the Supreme Court of Justice of Mexico.
Inter-American Human Rights Institute and Inter-American Court of Human Rights
On August 19, 2004, the Secretariat of the IACHR signed an Agreement on Joint Work with the Secretariat of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights and the Executive Direction of the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights