IACHR Grants Precautionary Measures in Favor of José Ernesto Lasorsa in Venezuela

December 29, 2022

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Washington, D.C. – The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) issued Resolution 77/2022 on December 26, 2022, to grant precautionary measures in favor of José Ernesto Lasorsa in Venezuela, in the belief that he faces a serious, urgent risk of suffering irreparable harm to his rights.

The request for these precautionary measures said that the proposed beneficiary is a cancer patient in serious condition and has been deprived of liberty since September 15, 2020. He is currently allegedly being held at the Fénix Lara Penitentiary in the Venezuelan city of Barquisimeto. He is said to require "urgent" chemotherapy to prevent further deterioration of his health condition. However, he is reportedly not being provided the medical care he needs. The State did not provide any information that might indicate that this situation is being effectively addressed.

After assessing the request for these precautionary measures, the Commission noted that, despite a domestic decision favoring Lasorsa and despite the relevant requests, penitentiary authorities have allegedly failed to take measures to address these allegations. This could lead to a gradual worsening of Lasorsa's health condition, according to several medical reports that have been provided. The Commission finds that the lack of prescribed medical care could worsen the prognosis concerning Lasorsa's tumor, entailing an imminent risk of death for the proposed beneficiary. In keeping with Article 25 of its Rules of Procedure, the IACHR decided to grant these precautionary measures and asked the State of Venezuela to:

  1. Adopt any measures necessary to protect José Ernesto Lasorsa's rights to life, personal integrity, and health (in particular, by taking immediate measures that grant him access to medical treatment, including necessary medication as prescribed by the relevant healthcare professionals, and to diagnoses and examinations that make it possible to regularly assess his condition, in line with the applicable international standards)
  2. Come to an agreement with the beneficiary and his representatives concerning any measures that need to be taken
  3. Report on any actions adopted to investigate the alleged events that gave rise to the adoption of these precautionary measures, in order to prevent such events from happening again in the future

The fact that these precautionary measures have been granted and their adoption by the State do not entail a prejudgment on a potential petition that may be filed before the inter-American system to allege violations of rights protected by the applicable instruments.

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. 287/22

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