Press Release

IACHR Announces Publication of Report No. 3/20 on Case 12.095, Mariela Barreto Riofano, Concerning Peru

March 12, 2020

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Washington, D.C. - The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) announced its decision to approve the friendly settlement of Case 12.095, Mariela Barreto Riofano, concerning Peru, which was signed on June 22, 2001, between the Peruvian state and Orlando Barreto Peña and Flor de María Riofano Pajuelo de Barreto, the victim’s parents, and by two petitioner organizations, the Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL) and Asociación Pro Derechos Humanos (APRODEH).

On November 12, 1998, during its on-site visit to Peru, the IACHR received a petition presented by Mr. Orlando Barreto Peña against the Republic of Peru, alleging that the rights of his daughter, Mariela Barreto Riofano, who at the time of the events was an agent of the Army Intelligence Service (SIE), had been violated when state security agents illegally detained her, tortured her, executed her, and dismembered her.

The friendly settlement agreement was signed on December 22, 2001, through which the Peruvian state acknowledged its international responsibility for the human rights violations committed to the detriment of Mariela Barreto Riofano. In the friendly settlement agreement, the state committed to the following:

1. to investigate and sanction those responsible for the acts;

2. to pay financial compensation;

3. to grant orphan’s pensions to the victim’s daughters until they reach the age of majority; and

4. to grant the victim’s daughters healthcare coverage until they reach the age of majority.

In its Friendly Settlement Report, the IACHR praised the fact that substantial compliance had been achieved regarding the friendly settlement agreement. In this regard, it noted that the clause regarding payment of economic compensation had been fully complied with. It also ruled that the clause on the payment of orphan’s pensions had been fully complied with as the state had made the corresponding payments until the beneficiaries reached the age of majority, as had been agreed in the Friendly Settlement Agreement. The IACHR also declared full compliance with the clause on the provision of healthcare coverage, as the two beneficiaries were provided with this through the National Health Authority and Peru’s Social Security system until reaching the age of majority, as was established in the agreement.

Finally, the IACHR observed that the measure regarding bringing those responsible for the violations to justice had been partially fulfilled, so it will continue to supervise the agreement until this aspect has been fully implemented.

The IACHR monitored the development of this friendly settlement closely and praised the two parties for the efforts they made during negotiations toward reaching a friendly settlement agreement that would be compatible with the objectives of the Inter-American Convention on Human Rights. As a result, the IACHR commended both parties for their willingness to move toward settling this issue through nonadversarial means. It will continue to monitor the implementation of the remaining measure until this has been fully complied with. Finally, the IACHR congratulated the state of Peru on its efforts to develop public policy on friendly settlements and alternative forms of dispute resolution.

Friendly Settlement Report No. 3/20 on Case 12.095 is available here.

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. 053/20