IACHR Grants Precautionary Measures to Juan Carlos Soni Bulos in Mexico

March 24, 2023

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Washington, D.C. — On March 21, 2022, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued Resolution 12/2023, through which it granted precautionary protection measures in favor of Juan Carlos Soni Bulos and other people in Mexico, whom it deems to be at serious, urgent risk of suffering irreparable harm to their human rights.

According to the request, the Huasteca Potosina area is experiencing severe insecurity and violence due to organized criminal groups operating there, who are particularly targeting Juan Carlos Soni Bulos, his family, and people who work closely with him. The alleged situation intensified recently when one of Juan Carlos Soni Bulos's brothers was murdered. The murder was followed by death threats from organized crime against Juan Carlos Soni Bulos and his family, which have recently been brought to the attention of the Protection Mechanism.

The IACHR analyzed the information provided by the State regarding the various risk assessments that have been carried out in relation to beneficiaries Juan Carlos Soni Bulos, Luis Edgardo Charnichart Ortega, Evanibaldo Lárraga Galván, and Luis Enrique Biú González since their inclusion in the Protection Mechanism through 2021, and the fact that these continued to take place, despite the allegation that there is no connection between the risk the beneficiaries are experiencing and their work as human rights defenders. However, the IACHR noted that the protection measures in place do not appear to be mitigating or reducing the risk factors in question.

After analyzing the information put forward by both parties, the IACHR deemed that the beneficiaries' rights to life and personal integrity are, prima facie, at grave and urgent risk because because the threats targeting them have continued and intensified, and because of the murder of Juan Carlos Soni Bulos's brother in the last month. As a result, the IACHR deemed that the situation meets the requirements of gravity, urgency, and risk of irreparable damage set out in Article 25 of the IACHR Rules of Procedure. Consequently, it requests that Mexico:

  1. Immediately take the necessary measures to guarantee the beneficiaries' rights to life and personal integrity;
  2. Agree on any measures to be taken with the beneficiaries and their representatives; and
  3. Report on the actions it takes to investigate the alleged events that led to the adoption of these precautionary measures.

The IACHR's granting of this precautionary measure and its adoption by the State of Mexico 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.

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. 048/23

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