IACHR Grants Precautionary Protection Measures in Favor of Karla Patricia Ñamendi Mendoza and Her Immediate Family in Nicaragua

July 23, 2021

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Washington, D.C. — On July 22, 2021, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued Resolution 54/2021, through which it granted precautionary measures in favor of Karla Patricia Ñamendi Mendoza, Esperanza del Carmen Mendoza Amador, Raquel de los Ángeles Ñamendi Mendoza, C.A.G.Ñ., and A.A.G.Ñ., whom it deems to be at serious, urgent risk of suffering irreparable harm to their human rights.

According to the petition, the beneficiary, Karla Patricia Ñamendi Mendoza, has allegedly been subjected to threats, harassment, and acts of violence by state and parastate authorities as a result of her opposition work to the current government. This situation has existed since at least 2018 and has worsened since March 2021.

The petitioner's allegations included certain concrete events, including the fact that on April 18, 2021, the third anniversary of the start of the current wave of protests in Nicaragua, the word "plomo" [lead] was painted on the walls of her house, which allegedly constituted a death threat. On May 3, police and parastate agents allegedly threw plastic bottles and stones at her house. On June 2, during the arrest of Cristina Chamorro, Karla Ñamendi Mendoza was allegedly surrounded by police agents and advised in a threatening tone not to take part in protests against the Government. On June 24, 2021, she was allegedly attacked by a government sympathizer as she left her house and had to be helped by her neighbors to avoid further harm. The beneficiary expressed fear in response to the presence of police agents outside her house, particularly fear for her relatives.

The IACHR regretted the fact that the State has not responded to these allegations and noted that although this alone is not sufficient grounds for granting precautionary measure, it does mean that the IACHR did not receive any observations from the State of Nicaragua and thus cannot analyze whether the State refutes the alleged events or whether any actions are being implemented to address the risk the beneficiary is allegedly experiencing.

The IACHR took the current situation in Nicaragua into account and observed that the available information reflects the fact that the threats and intimidations seek to limit Karla Ñamendi Mendoza's work as a dissident opposing the current government. With regard to the specific situation that the beneficiaries are in, it was identified that the risk events in question have been sustained over time, becoming more serious and frequent in recent months. The IACHR noted the tenor of these threats, which called for the death of the beneficiary, and their seriousness, given that State agents were directly involved and were allegedly responsible for a death threat on one occasion.

The IACHR also noted the recent aggression against the beneficiary on June 24, 2021, and the potential impact of this on her rights to life and personal integrity. It also observed that despite the involvement of State agents in this event, the State has not implemented any protection measures in favor of the beneficiaries.

Consequently, in accordance with Article 25 of its Rules of Procedure, the IACHR requested that Nicaragua: a) adopt the necessary measures to protect the rights to life and personal integrity of Karla Patricia Ñamendi Mendoza, Esperanza del Carmen Mendoza Amador, Raquel de los Ángeles Ñamendi Mendoza, C.A.G.Ñ., and A.A.G.Ñ. In particular, the State must guarantee that its agents respect the beneficiaries' rights in accordance with the standards set out in international human rights law and third-party risks; b) agree on any measures to be adopted in consultation with the beneficiaries and their representatives; and c) report on the actions it implements to investigate the events that led to the adoption of this precautionary measure so as to prevent them from being repeated.

The IACHR's granting of this precautionary measure 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 any applicable instruments have been violated.

The IACHR is a principal and autonomous body of the Organization of American States (OAS), whose mandate derives from the OAS Charter and the American Convention on Human Rights. The Inter-American Commission has a mandate to promote the observance and defense of human rights in the region and acts as a consultative body to the OAS in this area. The IACHR is composed of seven independent members who are elected by the OAS General Assembly in their personal capacity, and do not represent their countries of origin or residence.

No. 190/21

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