WOLA: Advocacy for Human Rights in the Americas
21 Dec 2010 | Commentary | News

Inter-American Court of Human Rights Issues Sentence in Mexican Case Involving Ecologists Rodolfo Montiel and Teodoro Cabrera

The Inter-American Court of Human Rights published on December 20, 2010, its sentence for the case of Rodolfo Montiel and Teodoro Cabrera, two ecologists from the state of Guerrero, condemning the Mexican government for human rights violations committed against the two men in 1999. The court ruled that the abuses included violations of the right to liberty, personal integrity, due process and judicial protection, and ruled that Mexico must carry out reparations for the victims and change the conditions that permitted these grave human rights violations to occur. For their environmental activism, Montiel and Cabrera were arbitrarily detained and tortured by members of the Mexican military in 1999 and unjustly imprisoned.

In addition to finding the Mexican government responsible for these violations, the Inter-American Court also ruled that Mexico should reform the Code of Military Justice to exclude all human rights violations from military jurisdiction, showing that the proposed reform currently before the Mexican Congress to move only the violations of torture, forced disappearance and rape into civilian jurisdiction is not sufficient to satisfy the legally binding sentences of the Inter-American Court on this and other cases from Mexico.

WOLA calls on the Mexican government to comply fully with this sentence as well as the four other sentences issued by the Court against Mexico for human rights violations in the past two years.

To read the official summary of the sentence, click here. (Spanish only)