IACHR Press Office
Washington, D.C. – The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) has asked the Inter-American Court of Human Rights to grant temporary measures in favor of 45 individuals who are being deprived of liberty at eight detention facilities in Nicaragua, as well as their families, because they all face an extremely serious and urgent risk of suffering irreparable harm to their rights.
The Commission notes that these individuals are said to have demonstrated in the protests that started in 2018 and are considered critics of the Nicaraguan government, as well as being members of various civil society groups. They have all expressed their disagreement with the policies of the current government.
These 45 people are beneficiaries of precautionary measures and are being deprived of liberty at the following facilities: 1) Jorge Navarro Prison Complex, known as La Modelo; 2) Evaristo Vásquez facility operated by the Judicial Support Department, known as El Chipote or Nuevo Chipote; 3) La Esperanza Women's Comprehensive Penitentiary Facility; 4) National Prison Service facility in Granada; 5) National Prison Service facility in Matagalpa or National Prison Service facility in Waswalí; 6) National Prison Service facility in Chinandega; 7) National Prison Service facility in Jinotepe; and 8) Cuisalá Penitentiary Facility.
The Inter-American Commission granted precautionary measures in favor of these individuals and their families in keeping with Article 25 of the IACHR's Rules of Procedure, after noting that they faced serious and urgent risks of suffering irreparable harm.
The Commission has repeatedly tried to obtain information from the State of Nicaragua, but it has received no response that might indicate that protection measures have been implemented to address these risks, to seek an agreement, or to investigate the risks. This situation is particularly worrying considering that the affected individuals are being held incommunicado and in dangerous conditions of detention, allegedly made worse by a lack of adequate medical care.
These individuals are also not being given the minimum guarantees required in all judicial proceedings, in a context where the Nicaraguan crisis continues to escalate. The State is still not providing concrete, detailed, and up-to-date information about their current situation, despite repeated requests made in the context of these precautionary measures. The risks faced by these individuals have reportedly got worse over time.
The information the Commission has recently received concerning persistent danger for these individuals' lives and personal integrity, their current conditions of detention, and the multiple, well-substantiated, and consistent allegations of human rights violations in their cases all suggest—in a context that has already been assessed before the Inter-American Court—that their deprivation of liberty is closely linked to a wish to silence them through retaliation, to deprive them of all access to social and/or political activity, and to publicize the punishments awaiting anyone who demonstrates or otherwise protests against State action.
Consequently, in keeping with Article 63.2 of the American Convention and Article 27 of the Rules of Procedure of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the Commission asks the Court to demand that the State of Nicaragua take protection measures in favor of these 45 individuals and their families.
The proposed beneficiaries of this request for temporary measures are: (1) Jhon Cristopher Cerna Zúñiga; (2) Fanor Alejandro Ramos; (3) Edwin Antonio Hernández Figueroa; (4) Víctor Manuel Soza Herrera; (5) Michael Rodrigo Samorio Anderson; (6) Néstor Eduardo Montealto Núñez; (7) Francisco Xavier Pineda Guatemala; (8) Manuel de Jesús Sobalvarro Bravo; (9) Richard Alexander Saavedra Cedeño; (10) Luis Carlos Valle Tinoco; (11) Víctor Manuel Díaz Pérez; (12) Nilson José Membreño; (13) Edward Enrique Lacayo Rodríguez; (14) Maycol Antonio Arce; (15) María Esperanza Sánchez García; (16) Karla Vanessa Escobar Maldonado; (17) Samuel Enrique González; (18) Mauricio Javier Valencia Mendoza; (19) Jorge Adolfo García Arancibia; (20) Leyving Eliezer Chavarría; (21) Carlos Antonio López Cano; (22) Lester José Selva; (23) Eliseo de Jesús Castro Baltodano; (24) Kevin Roberto Solís; (25) José Manuel Urbina Lara; (26) Benjamín Ernesto Gutiérrez Collado; (27) Yubrank Miguel Suazo Herrera; (28) Yoel Ibzán Sandino Ibarra; (29) José Alejandro Quintanilla Hernández; (30) Marvin Antonio Castellón Ubilla; (31) Lázaro Ernesto Rivas Pérez; (32) Gustavo Adolfo Mendoza Beteta; (33) Denis Antonio García Jirón; (34) Danny de los Ángeles García González; (35) Steven Moisés Mendoza; (36) Wilber Antonio Prado Gutiérrez; (37) Walter Antonio Montenegro Rivera; (38) Max Alfredo Silva Rivas; (39) Gabriel Renán Ramirez Somarriba; (40) Wilfredo Alejandro Brenes Domínguez; (41) Marvin Samir Lopez Ñamendis; (42) Irving Isidro Larios Sánchez; (43) Roger Abel Reyes Barrera; (44) José Antonio Peraza Collado; and (45) Rusia Evelyn Pinto Centeno.
When deciding whether to request temporary measures, the IACHR takes into consideration Article 76 of its Rules of Procedure and any available reports that suggest that the requirements held in Article 63.2 of the American Convention are met. Following the assessment process, a request is issued based on the problems at hand, the effectiveness of State action, and the lack of protection faced by the proposed beneficiaries in case these measures are not taken. The decision is based on the context of these events.
The Inter-American Court of Human Rights grants temporary measures in extremely serious and urgent cases, to prevent irreparable harm to individuals. Temporary measures are compulsory for States, and the decisions they hold demand that States adopt specific actions to protect the rights and/or lives of the individuals and groups who are under threat.
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.