Press Release

IACHR Publishes Report No. 137/19 on Case 12,233 (Víctor Améstica Moreno and Others—Chile), Congratulates the State for its Full Compliance with this Friendly Settlement Agreement

October 3, 2019

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Washington, D.C. – The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) has decided to approve the friendly settlement agreement concerning Case 12,233—Víctor Améstica Moreno and Others, Chile—which was signed on January 20, 2010 by the victims, the Corporation to Promote and Defend the Rights of the People (COPEDU), and the Chilean State.

On November 1, 1999, the IACHR received a petition filed by the CODEPU against the Republic of Chile, alleging that the State was accountable for violations of the right to have their honor and dignity protected, the right to freedom of assembly, the right to private property, the right to equality before the law, and the right to judicial protection for Víctor Améstica Moreno, Alberto Araneda Muñoz, Héctor Martínez Vasquez, Oscar Sepulveda Alarcon, and Alejandro Cesar Sánchez Canales, all of them members of Chile’s national police (Carabineros), and their respective wives Jenny Burgos Orrego, Marisol Valencia Poblete, Johanna Valdebenito Pinto, Carmen Araya Cordero, and Maria Angelica Olguin.

On February 3, 2006, the parties formally launched negotiations toward a friendly settlement that led them to sign a friendly settlement agreement. In that agreement, the Chilean State committed to reviewing the legal and regulatory dispositions applicable to Chile’s Carabineros; eliminating the administrative records of victims in this case; publishing the agreement in Chile’s Official Journal; sending reparation letters to victims in this case; granting beneficiaries access to healthcare; and providing reparations for victims, in the form of financial compensation.

In the context of these friendly settlement proceedings, the Commission verified that the Chilean State had enacted Act 20,784, to change the law concerning Carabineros staff. The new legislation created a new committee to grade and classify institutionally appointed Carabineros staff. Further, victims’ administrative records have been eliminated; the friendly settlement agreement has been publicized; reparation letters have been delivered; beneficiaries have been granted access to healthcare; and the agreed financial compensation has been paid.

The Commission commends the parties for making the most of IACHR facilitation, which contributed to the signing of this friendly settlement agreement. The Commission further commends action taken to implement this agreement and congratulates the Chilean State for fully complying with the commitments it made in the friendly settlement agreement signed on January 20, 2010.

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 has a mandate to promote respect for and to defend human rights in the region and acts as a consultative body to the OAS in this area. The Commission 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. 246/19