Press Release

IACHR Grants Precautionary Measures in Favor of Women Human Rights Defenders in Cuba

February 7, 2020

A+ A-

Washington, D.C. — On February 5, 2020, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued Resolution 12/2020 (link in Spanish) and Resolution 13/2020 (link in Spanish), granting precautionary protection measures in favor of Nancy Alfaya, her husband, and María Elena Mir Marrero, whom it deems to be at serious, urgent risk of suffering irreparable harm to their human rights.

In reaching its decision, the IACHR noted that these women defenders are being constantly followed and harassed by state authorities and have been detained on several occasions for different lengths of time. Due to the nature of their work, the risks they allegedly face would severely limit them in going about this, as they are considered persons of interest by the state. The IACHR warned that these events are part of a wider context of persecution and harassment of human rights defenders who think or express ideas that run counter to those of the current Cuban government.

After analyzing the available information, in accordance with Article 25 of the IACHR’s Rules of Procedure, the IACHR requested that Cuba take all necessary measures to protect the rights to life and personal integrity of the beneficiaries; that it take steps to guarantee that they can go about their work as human rights defenders; that it determine the measures to be adopted in consultation with the beneficiaries; and that it report on the actions it takes to investigate the allegations that led to the adoption of these precautionary measures so as to prevent them from being repeated.

The fact that this precautionary measure has been granted and its adoption by the state does not entail a prejudgment on any petition that may eventually be filed before the inter-American system to allege that the rights protected by the American Declaration and other relevant instruments have been violated.

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 Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is an autonomous organ of the Organization of American States whose principal functions are to promote the observance and defense of human rights and to serve as an advisory body to the Organization in this area. The IACHR is composed of seven independent members who are elected in an individual capacity by the OAS General Assembly and who do not represent their countries of origin or residence.

No. 030/20