ORGANIZATION OF THE COMMISSION
NATURE AND COMPOSITION
1. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is an autonomous entity of the Organization of American States whose principal function is to promote the observance and defense of human rights and to serve as an advisory body to the Organization in this area.
2. The Commission represents all the member states of the Organization.
3. The Commission is composed of seven members elected in their individual capacity by the General Assembly of the Organization who shall be persons of high moral standing and recognized competence in the field of human rights.
1. The members of the Commission shall be elected for four years and may be re-elected only once.
2. In the event that new members of the Commission are not elected to replace those completing their term of office, the latter shall continue to serve until the new members are elected. Article 3. Precedence
The members of the Commission shall follow the Chairman and Vice-Chairmen in order of precedence according to their length of service. When there are two or more members with equal seniority, precedence shall be determined according to age.
1. The position of member of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights is incompatible with the exercise of activities which could affect the independence, impartiality, dignity or prestige of membership on the Commission.
2. The Commission, with the affirmative vote of at least five of its members, shall decide if a situation of incompatibility exists.
3. The Commission, prior to taking a decision, shall hear the member who is considered to be in a situation of incompatibility.
4. The decision with respect to the incompatibility, together with all the background information, shall be sent to the General Assembly by means of the Secretary General of the Organization for the purposes set forth in Article 8, (3), of the Commission's Statute.
In the event that a member resigns, his resignation shall be presented to the Chairman of the Commission who shall notify the Secretary General of the Organization for the appropriate purposes.
The Commission shall have as its officers a Chairman, a first Vice-Chairman, and a second Vice-Chairman, who shall perform the functions set forth in these regulations.
1. In the election for each of the posts referred to in the preceding article, only members present shall participate.
2. Elections shall be by secret ballot. However, with the unanimous consent of the members present, the Commission may decide on another procedure.
3. The vote of an absolute majority of the members of the Commission shall be required for election to any of the posts referred to in Article 6.
4. Should it be necessary to hold more than one ballot for election to any of these posts, the names receiving the lowest number of votes shall be eliminated successively.
5. Elections shall be held on the first day of the Commission's first session of the new calendar year.
1. The board of officers shall hold office for a year and may be reelected only once in every four year period.
2. The mandate of the board of officers extends from the date of their election until the elections held the following year for the new board, pursuant to Article 7, paragraph 5.
3. In case the mandate of the Chairman or any of the Vice Chairmen expires, the provisions of Article 9, paragraphs 3 and 4 will apply.
1. If the Chairman resigns from his post or ceases to be a member of the Commission, the Commission shall elect a successor to fill the post for the remainder of the term of office at the first meeting held after the date on which it is notified of the resignation or vacancy.
2. The same procedure shall be applied in the event of the resignation of either of the Vice-Chairmen, or if a vacancy occurs.
3. The First Vice-Chairman shall serve as Chairman until the Commission elects a new Chairman under the provisions of paragraph 1 of this article.
4. The First Vice-Chairman shall also replace the Chairman if the latter is temporarily unable to perform his duties. The Second Vice-Chairman shall replace the Chairman in the event of the absence or disability of the First Vice-Chairman, or if that post is vacant.
The Duties of the Chairman shall be:
a. to represent the Commission before all the other organs of the Organization and other institutions;
b. to convoke regular and special meetings of the Commission in accordance with the Statute and these Regulations;
c. to preside over the sessions of the Commission and submit to it, for consideration, all matters appearing on the agenda of the work schedule approved for the corresponding session;
d. to give the floor to the members in the order in which they have requested it;
e. to rule on points of order that may arise during the discussions of the Commission. If any member so requests, the Chairman's ruling shall be submitted to the Commission for its decision;
f. to submit to a vote matters within his competence, in accordance with the pertinent provisions of these Regulations;
g. to promote the work of the Commission and see to compliance with its program-budget;
h. to present a written report to the Commission at the beginning of its regular or special sessions on what he has done during its recesses to carry out the functions assigned to him by the Statute and by these Regulations;
i. to see to compliance with the decisions of the Commission;
j. to attend the meetings of the General Assembly of the Organization and, as an observer, those of the United Nations Commission on Human Rights; further, he may participate in the activities of other entities concerned with protecting and promoting respect for human rights;
k. to go to the headquarters of the Commission and remain there for as long as he considers necessary to carry out his functions;
l. to designate special committees, ad hoc committees, and subcommittees composed of several members, to carry out any mandate within his area of competence;
m. to perform any other functions that may be conferred upon him in these Regulations.
The Chairman may delegate to one of the Vice-Chairmen or to another member of the Commission the functions specified in Article 8(a), (j), and (m).
The Secretariat of the Commission shall be composed of an Executive Secretary, an Assistant Executive Secretary, and the professional, technical, and administrative staff needed to carry out its activities.
1. The functions of the Executive Secretary shall be:
a. to direct, plan, and coordinate the work of the Secretariat;
b. to prepare the draft work schedule for each session in consultation with the Chairman;
c. to provide advisory services to the Chairman and members of the Commission in the performance of their duties;
d. to present a written report to the Commission at the beginning of each session, on the activities of the Secretariat since the preceding session, and on any general matters that may be of interest to the Commission;
e. to implement the decisions entrusted to him by the Commission or by the Chairman.
2. The Assistant Executive Secretary shall replace the Executive Secretary in the event of his absence or disability.
3. The Executive Secretary, the Assistant Executive Secretary and the staff of the Secretariat must observe strict discretion in all matters that the Commission considers confidential.
1. The Secretariat shall prepare the draft reports, resolutions, studies and any other papers entrusted to it by the Commission or by the Chairman, and shall see that the summary minutes of the sessions of the Commission and any documents considered by it are distributed among its members.
2. The Secretariat shall receive petitions addressed to the Commission and, when appropriate, shall request the necessary information from the governments concerned and, in general, it shall make the necessary arrangements to initiate any proceedings to which such petitions may give rise.
FUNCTIONING OF THE COMMISSION
1. The Commission shall meet for a period not to exceed a total of eight weeks a year, divided into however many regular meetings the Commission may decide, without prejudice to the fact that it may convoke special sessions at the decision of its Chairman, or at the request of an absolute majority of its members.
2. The sessions of the Commission shall be held at its headquarters. However, by an absolute majority vote of its members, the Commission may decide to meet elsewhere, with the consent of or at the invitation of the government concerned.
3. Any member who because of illness or for any other serious reason is unable to attend all or part of any session or meeting of the Commission, or to fulfill any other functions, must notify the Executive Secretary to this effect as soon as possible, and he shall so inform the Chairman.
1. During the sessions, the Commission shall hold as many meetings as necessary to carry out its activities.
2. The length of the meetings shall be determined by the Commission subject to any changes that, for justifiable reasons, are decided on by the Chairman after consulting with the members of the Commission.
3. The meetings shall be closed unless the Commission decides otherwise.
4. The date and time for the next meeting shall be set at each meeting.
1. When the Commission considers it advisable, prior to the beginning of every regular session a working group shall convene to prepare the draft resolutions and other decisions on petitions and communications which are dealt with under Title II, Chapters I, II and III of the present Regulations and which are to be considered by the full Commission during the session. Said Working Group will be composed of three members, designated by the Chairman of the Commission, following a rotation policy, when possible.
2. The Commission, with a vote of the absolute majority of its members, shall determine the formation of other working groups the purpose of which shall be the consideration of specific subjects which will then be considered by the full Commission. Each working group will be made up of no more than three members, who will be designated by the Chairman. As far as possible, these working groups will meet immediately before or after each session for the period of time the Commission determines.
The presence of an absolute majority of the members of the Commission shall be necessary to constitute a quorum.
1. The meetings shall conform primarily to the Regulations and secondarily, to the pertinent provisions of the Regulations of the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States.
2. Members of the Commission may not participate in the discussion, investigation, deliberation or decision of a matter submitted to the Commission in the following cases:
a. if they were nationals or permanent residents of the State which is subject of the Commission's general or specific consideration, or if they were accredited to, or carrying out, a special mission, as diplomatic agents, on behalf of said State.
b. if previously they have participated in any capacity in a decision concerning the same facts on which the matter is based or have acted as an adviser to, or representative of, any of the parties involved in the decision. 3. When any member thinks that he should abstain from participating in the study or decision of a matter, he shall so inform the Commission, which shall decide if the withdrawal is warranted.
4. Any member may raise the issue of the withdrawal of another member provided that it is based upon reasons formulated in paragraph 2 of this article.
5. Any member who has withdrawn from the case shall not participate in the discussion, investigation, deliberation or decision of the matter even though the reason for the withdrawal has been superseded.
6. During the discussion of a given subject, any member may raise a point of order, which shall be ruled upon immediately by the Chairman or, when appropriate, by the majority of the members present. The discussion may be ended at any time, as long as the members have had the opportunity to express their opinion.
7. Once the discussion has been terminated, and if there is no consensus on the subject submitted to the Commission for deliberation, the Chairman shall put the matter to a vote in the reverse order of precedence among the members.
8. The Chairman shall announce the results of the vote and shall declare (as approved) the proposal that has the majority of votes. In the case of a tie, the Chairman shall decide.
9. Any doubt which may arise as regards the application or interpretation of the present article shall be resolved by the Commission.
1. Decisions shall be taken by an absolute majority vote of the members of the Commission in the following cases:
a. to elect the executive officers of the Commission;
b. for matters where such a majority is required under the provisions of the Convention, the Statute or these Regulations;
c. to adopt a report on the situation of human rights in a specific state;
d. for any amendment or interpretation on the application of these Regulations.
2. To take decisions regarding other matters, a majority vote of members present shall be sufficient.
1. Whether or not members agree with the decisions of the majority, they shall be entitled to present a written explanation of their vote, which shall be included following that decision.
2. If the decision concerns the approval of a report or draft, the explanation of the vote shall be included after that report or draft.
3. When the decision does not appear in a separate document, the explanation of the vote shall be included in the minutes of the meeting, following the decision in question.
1. Summary minutes shall be taken of each meeting. They shall state the day and time at which it was held, the names of the members present, the matters dealt with, the decisions taken, the names of those voting for and against each decision, and any statement made by a member especially for inclusion in the minutes.
2. The Secretariat shall distribute copies of the summary minutes of each meeting to the members of the Commission, who may present their observations to the Secretariat prior to the meeting at which they are to be approved.
The Commission may assign any of its members, with the approval of an absolute majority, the preparation of a special study or other specific papers to be carried out individually outside the sessions. Such work shall be compensated in accordance with funds available in the budget. The amount of the fees shall be set on the basis of the number of days required for preparation and drafting of the paper.
1. The proposed program-budget of the Commission shall be prepared by its Secretariat in consultation with the Chairman and shall be governed by the Organization's current budgetary standards.
2. The Executive Secretary will advise the Commission of said program-budget.
TITLE II PROCEDURES
1. The official languages of the Commission shall be Spanish, French, English and Portuguese. The working languages shall be those decided on by the Commission every two years, in accordance with the languages spoken by its members.
2. A member of the Commission may allow omission of the interpretation of debates and the preparation of documents in his language.
1. Any person or group of persons or nongovernmental entity legally recognized in one or more of the member states of the Organization may submit petitions to the Commission, in accordance with these Regulations, on one's own behalf or on behalf of third persons, with regard to alleged violations of a human right recognized, as the case may be, in the American Convention on Human Rights or in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man.
2. The Commission may also, motu proprio, take into consideration any available information that it considers pertinent and which might include the necessary factors to begin processing a case which in its opinion fulfills the requirements for the purpose.
1. The petition shall be lodged in writing.
2. The petitioner may appoint, in the petition itself, or in another written petition, an attorney or other person to represent him before the Commission.
The Commission may designate one or more of its members or staff members of the Secretariat to take specific measures, investigate facts or make the necessary arrangements for the Commission to perform its functions.
1. The Commission may, at its own initiative, or at the request of a party, take any action it considers necessary for the discharge of its functions.
2. In urgent cases, when it becomes necessary to avoid irreparable damage to persons, the Commission may request that provisional measures be taken to avoid irreparable damage in cases where the denounced facts are true.
3. If the Commission is not in session, the Chairman, or in his absence, one of the Vice-Chairmen, shall consult with the other members, through the Secretariat, on implementation of the provisions of paragraphs 1 and 2 above. If it is not possible to consult within a reasonable time, the Chairman shall take the decision on behalf of the Commission and shall so inform its members immediately.
4. The request for such measures and their adoption shall not prejudice the final decision.
1. The Secretariat of the Commission shall be responsible for the study and initial processing of petitions lodged before the Commission and that fulfill all the requirements set forth in the Statute and in these Regulations.
2. If a petition or communication does not meet the requirements called for in these Regulations, the Secretariat of the Commission may request the petitioner or his representative to complete it.
3. If the Secretariat has any doubt as to the admissibility of a petition, it shall submit it for consideration to the Commission or to the Chairman during recesses of the Commission.
PETITIONS AND COMMUNICATIONS REGARDING STATES PARTIES TO THE AMERICAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
The Commission shall take into account petitions regarding alleged violations by a state party of human rights defined in the American Convention on Human Rights, only when they fulfill the requirements set forth in that Convention, in the Statute and in these Regulations.
Petitions addressed to the Commission shall include:
a. the name, nationality, profession or occupation, postal address, or domicile and signature of the person or persons making the denunciation; or in cases where the petitioner is a nongovernmental entity, its legal domicile or postal address, and the name and signature of its legal representative or representatives;
b. an account of the act or situation that is denounced, specifying the place and date of the alleged violations and, if possible, the name of the victims of such violations as well as that of any official that might have been appraised of the act or situation that was denounced;
c. an indication of the state in question which the petitioner considers responsible, by commission or omission, for the violation of a human right recognized in the American Convention on Human Rights in the case of States Parties thereto, even if no specific reference is made to the article alleged to have been violated;
d. information on whether the remedies under domestic law have been exhausted or whether it has been impossible to do so.
Without prejudice to the provisions of Article 26, if the Commission considers that the petition is inadmissible or incomplete, it shall notify the petitioner, whom it shall ask to complete the requirements omitted in the petition.
1. The Commission, acting initially through its Secretariat, shall receive and process petitions lodged with it in accordance with the standards set forth below:
a. it shall enter the petition in a register especially prepared for that purpose, and the date on which it was received shall be marked on the petition or communication itself;
b. it shall acknowledge receipt of the petition to the petitioner, indicating that it will be considered in accordance with the Regulations;
c. if it accepts, in principle, the admissibility of the petition, it shall request information from the government of the State in question and include the pertinent parts of the petitions.
2. In serious or urgent cases or when it is believed that the life, personal integrity or health of a person is in imminent danger, the Commission shall request the promptest reply from the government, using for this purpose the means it considers most expeditious.
3. The request for information shall not constitute a prejudgment with regard to the decision the Commission may finally adopt on the admissibility of the petition.
4. In transmitting the pertinent parts of a communication to the government of the State in question, the identity of the petitioner shall be withheld, as shall any other information that could identify him, except when the petitioner expressly authorizes in writing the disclosure of his identity.
5. The Commission shall request the affected government to provide the information requested within 90 days after the date on which the request is sent.
6. The government of the State in question may, with justifiable cause, request a 30 day extension, but in no case shall extensions be granted for more than 180 days after the date on which the first communication is sent to to government of the State concerned.
7. The pertinent parts of the reply and the documents provided by the government shall be made known to the petitioner or to his representative, who shall be asked to submit his observations and any available evidence to the contrary within 30 days.
8. On receipt of the information or documents requested, the pertinent parts shall be transmitted to the government, which shall be allowed to submit its final observations within 30 days.
The Commission shall proceed to examine the case and decide on the following matters:
a. whether the remedies under domestic law have been exhausted, and it may determine any measures it considers necessary to clarify any remaining doubts;
b. other questions related to the admissibility of the petition or its manifest inadmissibility based upon the record or submission of the parties;
c. whether grounds for the petition exist or subsist, and if not, to order the file closed.
The record shall be submitted by the Secretariat to the Commission for consideration at the first session held after the period referred to in Article 31, paragraph 5, if the government has not provided the information on that occasion, or after the periods indicated in paragraphs 7 and 8 have elapsed if the petitioner has not replied or if the government has not submitted its final observations.
1. For a petition to be admitted by the Commission, the remedies under domestic jurisdiction must have been invoked and exhausted in accordance with the general principles of international law.
2. The provisions of the preceding paragraph shall not be applicable when:
a. the domestic legislation of the State concerned does not afford due process of law for protection of the right or rights that have allegedly been violated;
b. the party alleging violation of his rights has been denied access to the remedies under domestic law or has been prevented from exhausting them;
c. there has been unwarranted delay in rendering a final judgment under the aforementioned remedies.
3. When the petitioner contends that he is unable to prove exhaustion as indicated in this Article, it shall be up to the government against which this petition has been lodged to demonstrate to the Commission that the remedies under domestic law have not previously been exhausted, unless it is clearly evident from the background information contained in the petition.
1. The Commission shall refrain from taking up those petitions that are lodged after the six-month period following the date on which the party whose rights have allegedly been violated has been notified of the final ruling in cases where the remedies under domestic law have been exhausted.
2. In the circumstances set forth in Article 34, (2) of these Regulations, the deadline for presentation of a petition to the Commission shall be within a reasonable period of time, in the Commission's judgment, as from the date on which the alleged violation of rights has occurred, considering the circumstances of each specific case.
1. The Commission shall not consider a petition in cases where the subject of the petition:
a. is pending settlement in another procedure under an international governmental organization of which the State concerned is a member;
b. essentially duplicates a petition pending or already examined and settled by the Commission or by another international governmental organization of which the state concerned is a member.
2. The Commission shall not refrain from taking up and examining a petition in cases provided for in paragraph 1 when:
a. the procedure followed before the other organization or agency is one limited to an examination of the general situation on human rights in the state in question and there has been no decision on the specific facts that are the subject of the petition submitted to the Commission, or is one that will not lead to an effective settlement of the violation denounced;
b. the petitioner before the Commission or a family member is the alleged victim of the violation denounced and the petitioner before the organizations in reference is a third party or a nongovernmental entity having no mandate from the former.
1. Any petition that states different facts that concern more than one person, and that could constitute various violations that are unrelated in time and place shall be separated and processed as separate cases, provided the requirements set forth in Article 32 are met.
2. When two petitions deal with the same facts and persons, they shall be combined and processed in a single file.
The Commision shall declare inadmissible any petition when:
a. any of the requirements set forth in Article 32 of these Regulations has not been met;
b. when the petition does not state facts that constitute a violation of rights referred to in Article 31 of these Regulations in the case of States Parties to the American Convention on Human Rights;
c. the petition is manifestly groundless or inadmissible on the basis of the statement by the petitioner himself or the government.
The facts reported in the petition whose pertinent parts have been transmitted to the government of the State in reference shall be presumed to be true if, during the maximum period set by the Commission under the provisions of Article 34 paragraph 5, the government has not provided the pertinent information, as long as other evidence does not lead to a different conclusion.
1. If the file has not been closed and in order to verify the facts, the Commission may conduct a hearing following a summons to the parties and proceed to examine the matter set forth in the petition.
2. At that hearing, the Commission may request any pertinent information from the representative of the State in question and shall receive, if so requested, oral or written statements presented by the parties concerned.
1. If necessary and advisable, the Commission shall carry out an on-site investigation, for the effective conduct of which it shall request, and the States concerned shall furnish to it, all necessary facilities.
2. However, in serious and urgent cases, only the presentation of a petition or communication that fulfills all the formal requirements of admissibility shall be necessary in order for the Commission to conduct an on-site investigation with the prior consent of the State in whose territory a violation has allegedly been committed.
3. Once the investigatory stage has been completed, the case shall be brought for consideration before the Commission, which shall prepare its decision in a period of 180 days. Article 45. Friendly Settlement
1. At the request of any of the parties, or on its own initiative, the Commission shall place itself at the disposal of the parties concerned, at any stage of the examination of a petition, with a view to reaching a friendly settlement of the matter on the basis of respect for the human rights recognized in the American Convention on Human Rights.
2. In order for the Commission to offer itself as an organ of conciliation for a friendly settlement of the matter it shall be necessary for the positions and allegations of the parties to be sufficiently precise; and in the judgment of the Commission, the nature of the matter must be susceptible to the use of the friendly settlement procedure.
3. The Commission shall accept the proposal to act as an organ of conciliation for a friendly settlement presented by one of the parties if the circumstances described in the above paragraph exist and if the other party to the dispute expressly accepts the procedure.
4. The Commission, upon accepting the role of an organ of conciliation for a friendly settlement shall designate a Special Commission or an individual from among its members. The Special Commission or the member so designated shall inform the Commission within the time period set by the Commission.
5. The Commission shall fix a time for the reception and gathering of evidence, it shall set dates for the holding of hearings, if appropriate, it shall plan an on-site observation, which will be carried out following the receipt of consent of the State to be visited and it shall fix a time for the conclusion of the procedure, which the Commission may extend.
6. If a friendly settlement is reached, the Commission shall prepare a report which shall be transmitted to the parties concerned and referred to the Secretary General of the Organization of American States for publication. This report shall contain a brief statement of the facts and of the solution reached. If any party in the case so requests, it shall be provided with the fullest possible information.
7. In a case where the Commission finds, during the course of processing the matter, that the case, by its very nature, is not susceptible to a friendly settlement; or finds that one of the parties does not consent to the application of this procedure; or does not evidence good will in reaching a friendly settlement based on the respect for human rights, the Commission, at any stage of the procedure shall declare its role as organ of conciliation for a friendly settlement to have terminated. Article 46. Preparation of the Report
1. If a friendly settlement is not reached, the Commission shall examine the evidence provided by the government in question and the petitioner, evidence taken from witnesses to the facts or that obtained from documents, records, official publications, or through an on-site investigation.
2. After the evidence has been examined, the Commission shall prepare a report stating the facts and conclusions regarding the case submitted to it for its study.
1. In transmitting the report, the Commission may make such proposals and recommendations as it sees fit.
2. If, within a period of three months from the date of the transmittal of the report of the Commission to the States concerned, the matter has not been settled or submitted by the Commission, or by the State concerned, to the Court and its jurisdiction accepted, the Commission may, by the vote of an absolute majority of its members, set forth its opinion and conclusions concerning the question submitted for its consideration.
3. The Commission may make the pertinent recommendations and prescribe a period within which the government in question must take the measures that are incumbent upon it to remedy the situation examined.
4. If the report does not represent, in its entirety, or, in part, the unanimous opinion of the members of the Commission, any member may add his opinion separately to that report.
5. Any verbal or written statement made by the parties shall also be included in the report.
6. The report shall be transmitted to the parties concerned, who shall not be authorized to publish it.
1. When the prescribed period has expired, the Commission shall decide by the vote of an absolute majority of its members whether the State has taken suitable measures and whether to publish its report.
2. That report may be published by including it in the Annual Report to be presented by the Commission to the General Assembly of the Organization or in any other way the Commission may consider suitable.
1. Communications presented by the government of a State Party to the American Convention on Human Rights, which has accepted the competence of the Commission to receive and examine such communications against other States Parties, shall be transmitted to the State Party in question, whether or not it has accepted the competence of the Commission. Even if it has not accepted such competence, the communication shall be transmitted so that the State can exercise its option under the provisions of Article 45, (3) of the Convention to recognize the Commission's competence in the specific case that is the subject of the communication.
2. Once the State in question has accepted the competence of the Commission to take up the communication of the other State Party, the corresponding procedure shall be governed by the provisions of Chapter II insofar as they may be applicable.
1. If a State Party to the Convention has accepted the Court's jurisdiction in accordance with Article 62 of the Convention, the Commission may refer the case to the Court, subsequent to transmittal of the report referred to in Article 46 of these Regulations to the government of the State in question.
2. When it is ruled that the case is to be referred to the Court, the Executive Secretary of the Commission shall immediately notify the Court, the petitioner and the government of the State in question.
3. If the State Party has not accepted the Court's jurisdiction, the Commission may call upon that State to make use of the option referred to in Article 62, paragraph 2 of the Convention to recognize the Court's jurisdiction in the specific case that is the subject of the report.
PETITIONS CONCERNING STATES THAT ARE NOT PARTIES TO THE AMERICAN CONVENTION ON HUMAN RIGHTS
The Commission shall receive and examine any petition that contains a denunciation of alleged violations of the human rights set forth in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man, concerning the member states of the Organization that are not parties to the American Convention on Human Rights.
The procedure applicable to petitions concerning member states of the Organization that are not parties to the American Convention on Human Rights shall be that provided for in the General Provisions included in Chapter I of Title II, in Articles 32 to 43 of these Regulations, and in the articles indicated below.
1. In addition to the facts and conclusions, the Commission's final decision shall include any recommendations the Commission deems advisable and a deadline for their implementation.
2. That decision shall be transmitted to the State in question or to the petitioner.
3. If the State does not adopt the measures recommended by the Commission within the deadline referred to in paragraphs 1 or 3, the Commission may publish its decision.
4. The decision referred to in the preceding paragraph may be published in the Annual Report to be presented by the Commission to the General Assembly of the Organization or in any other manner the Commission may see fit.
1. When the State in question or the petitioner, prior to the expiration of the 90 day deadline, invokes new facts or legal arguments which have not been previously considered, it may request a reconsideration of the conclusions or recommendations of the Commission's Report. The Commission shall decide to maintain or modify its decision, fixing a new deadline for compliance, where appropriate.
2. The Commission, if it considers it necessary, may request the State in question or the petitioner, as the case may be, to present any observations for reconsideration.
3. The reconsideration procedure may be utilized only once.
4. The Commission shall consider the request for reconsideration during the first regular session following its presentation.
5. If the State does not adopt the measures recommended by the Commission within the deadline referred to in paragraph 1, the Commission may publish its decision in conformity with Articles 48(2) and 53(4) of the present Regulations.
On-site observations shall be carried out in each case by a Special Commission named for that purpose. The number of members of the Special Commission and the designation of its Chairman shall be determined by the Commission. In cases of great urgency, such decisions may be made by the Chairman subject to the approval of the Commission.
A member of the Commission who is a national of or who resides in the territory of the State in which the on-site observation is to be carried out shall be disqualified from participating therein.
The Special Commission shall organize its own activities. To that end, it may appoint its own members and, after hearing the Executive Secretary, any staff members of the Secretariat or personnel necessary to carry out any activities related to its mission.
In extending an invitation for an on-site observation or in giving its consent, the government shall furnish to the Special Commission all necessary facilities for carrying out its mission. In particular, it shall bind itself not to take any reprisals of any kind against any persons or entities cooperating with the Special Commission or providing information or testimony. Article 59. Other Applicable Standards
Without prejudice to the provisions in the preceding article, any on-site observation agreed upon by the Commission shall be carried out in accordance with the following standards:
a. the Special Commission or any of its members shall be able to interview freely and in private, any persons, groups, entities or institutions, and the government shall grant the pertinent guarantees to all those who provide the Commission with information, testimony or evidence of any kind;
b. the members of the Special Commission shall be able to travel freely throughout the territory of the country, for which purpose the government shall extend all the corresponding facilities, including the necessary documentation;
c. the government shall ensure the availability of local means of transportation;
d. the members of the Special Commission shall have access to the jails and all other detention and interrogation centers and shall be able to interview in private those persons imprisoned or detained;
e. the government shall provide the Special Commission with any document related to the observance of human rights that it may consider necessary for the presentation of its reports;
f. the Special Commission shall be able to use any method appropriate for collecting, recording or reproducing the information it considers useful;
g. the government shall adopt the security measures necessary to protect the Special Commission;
h. the government shall ensure the availability of appropriate lodging for the members of the Special Commission;
i. the same guarantees and facilities that are set forth here for the members of the Special Commission shall also be extended to the Secretariat staff;
j. any expenses incurred by the Special Committee, any of its members and the Secretariat staff shall be borne by the Organization, subject to the pertinent provisions.
GENERAL AND SPECIAL REPORTS
The Commission shall prepare the general or special draft reports that it considers necessary.
1. The reports prepared by the Commission shall be transmitted as soon as possible through the General Secretariat of the Organization to the government or pertinent organs of the Organization.
2. Upon adoption of a report by the Commission, the Secretariat shall publish it in the manner determined by the Commission in each instance, except as provided for in Article 47, paragraph 6, of these Regulations.
The preparation of reports on the status of human rights in a specific state shall meet the following standards:
a. after the draft report has been approved by the Commission, it shall be transmitted to the government of the member state in question so that it may make any observations it deems pertinent;
b. the Commission shall indicate to that government the deadline for presentation of its observations;
c. when the Commission receives the observations from the government, it shall study them and, in light thereof, may uphold its report or change it and decide how it is to be published;
d. if no observation has been submitted on expiration of the deadline by the government, the Commission shall publish the report in the manner it deems suitable.
The Annual Report presented by the Commission to the General Assembly of the Organization shall include the following:
a. a brief account of the origin, legal basis, structure and purposes of the Commission as well as the status of the American Convention;
b. a summary of the mandates and recommendations conferred upon the Commission by the General Assembly and the other competent organs, and of the status of implementation of such mandates and recommendations;
c. a list of the meetings held during the period covered by the report and of other activities carried out by the Commission to achieve its purposes, objectives, and mandates;
d. a summary of the activities of the Commission carried out in cooperation with other organs of the Organization and with regional or world organizations of the same type, and the results achieved through these activities;
e. a statement on the progress made in attaining the objectives set forth in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man and the American Convention on Human Rights;
f. a report on the areas in which measures should be taken to improve observance of human rights in accordance with the aforementioned Declaration and Convention;
g. any observations that the Commission considers pertinent with respect to petitions it has received, including those processed in accordance with the Statute and the present Regulations which the Commission decides to publish as reports, resolutions, or recommendations;
h. any general or special report that the Commission considers necessary with regard to the situation of human rights in the member states, noting in such reports the progess achieved and difficulties that have arisen in the effective observance of human rights;
i. any other information, observation, or recommendation that the Commission considers advisable to submit to the General Assembly and any new program that implies additional expense. Article 64. Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
1. The States Parties shall forward to the Commission copies of the reports and studies referred to in Article 42 of the American Convention on Human Rights on the same date on which they submit them to the pertinent organs.
2. The Commission may request annual reports from the other member states regarding the economic, social, and cultural rights recognized in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man.
3. Any person, group of persons, or organization may present reports, studies or other information to the Commission on the situation of such rights in all or any of the member states.
4. If the Commission does not receive the information referred to in the preceding paragraphs or considers it inadequate, it may send questionnaires to all or any of the member states, setting a deadline for the reply or it may turn to other available sources of information.
5. Periodically, the Commission may entrust to experts or specialized entities studies on the situation of one or more of the aforementioned rights in a specific country or group of countries.
6. The Commission shall make the pertinent observations and recommendations on the situation of such rights in all or any of the member states and shall include them in the Annual Report to the General Assembly or in a Special Report, as it considers most appropriate.
7. The recommendations may include the need for economic aid or some other form of cooperation to be provided among the member states, as called for in the Charter of the Organization and in other agreements of the inter-American system.
HEARING BEFORE THE COMMISSION
On its own initiative, or at the request of the person concerned, the Commission may decide to hold hearings on matters defined by the Statute as within its jurisdiction. Article 66. Purpose of the Hearings
Hearings may be held in connection with a petition or communication alleging a violation of a right set forth in the American Convention on Human Rights or in the American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man or in order to receive information of a general or particular nature related to the situation of human rights in one State or in a group of American states.
1. Hearings on cases concerning violations of human rights and which the Commission is examining pursuant to the procedures established in Chapters II and III of Title II of these Regulations, will have as their purpose the receipt of testimony oral or written of the parties, relative to the additional information regarding the admissibility of the case, the possibility of applying the friendly settlement procedure, the verification of the facts or the merits of the matter submitted to the Commission for consideration, or as regards any other matter pertinent to the processing of the case.
2. To implement the provisions of the previous article, the Commission may invite the parties to attend a hearing, or one of the parties may request that a hearing be held.
3. If one of the two parties requests a hearing for the purposes indicated above, the Secretariat shall immediately inform the other party of that petition, and when the hearing date is set, shall invite the other party to attend, unless the Commission considers that there are reasons warranting a confidential hearing.
4. The Government shall furnish the appropriate guarantees to all persons attending a hearing or providing the Commission with information, testimony or evidence of any kind during a hearing. Article 68. Hearings of a General Nature
1. Persons who are interested in presenting testimony or information of a general nature to the Commission shall indicate, prior to the meeting, to the Executive Secretary that they wish to appear before the next session of the Commission.
2. In their petition, interested persons shall give their reasons for desiring to appear, a summary of the information they will furnish, and the approximate time required for their testimony.
3. The Executive Secretary shall, in consultation with the Chairman of the Commission, accede to the request for a hearing, unless the information presented by the interested person reveals that the hearing bears no relation to matters within the Commission's competence or if the purpose of the hearing and its circumstances are substantially the same as an earlier one.
4. The Executive Secretary shall, in consultation with the Chairperson of the Commission, draw up a schedule and propose the time and date for the general hearings to be held during the session, and shall submit them to the Commission for approval on the first day of the session.
The Commission shall, in each case, decide which of its members will take part in the hearing.
1. Hearings shall be private, unless the Commission decides that other persons should attend.
2. Hearings called specifically to review a petition shall be held in private, in the presence of the parties or their representatives, unless they agree that the hearing should be public.
TITLE III RELATIONS WITH THE INTER-AMERICAN COURT OF HUMAN RIGHTS
1. The Commission shall delegate one or more of its members to represent it and participate as delegates in the consideration of any matter before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.
2. In appointing such delegates, the Commission shall issue any instructions it considers necessary to guide them in the Court's proceedings.
3. When it designates more than one delegate, the Commission shall assign to one of them the responsibility of settling situations that are not foreseen in the instructions, or of clarifying any doubts raised by a delegate.
4. The delegates may be assisted by any person designated by the Commission. In the discharge of their functions, the advisers shall act in accordance with the instructions of the delegates.
1. The Commission may also request the Court to summon other persons as witnesses or experts.
2. The summoning of such witnesses or experts shall be in accordance with the Regulations of the Court.
1. When, in accordance with Article 61 of the American Convention on Human Rights, the Commission decides to bring a case before the Court, it shall submit a request in accordance with the provisions of the Statute and the Regulations of the Court, and specifying:
a. the parties who will be intervening in the proceedings before the Court;
b. the date on which the Commission approved its report;
c. the names and addresses of its delegates;
d. a summary of the case;
e. the grounds for requesting a ruling by the Court.
2. The Commissions's request shall be accompanied by certified copies of the items in the file that the Commission or its delegate considers pertinent.
The Commission shall transmit to the Court, at its request, any other petition, evidence, document, or information concerning the case, with the exception of documents concerning futile attempts to reach a friendly settlement. The transmittal of documents shall in each case be subject to the decision of the Commission, which shall withhold the name and identity of the petitioner.
When the Commission decides to refer a case to the Court, the Executive Secretary shall immediately notify the petitioner and alleged victim of the Commission's decision and offer him the opportunity of making observations in writing on the request submitted to the Court. The Commission shall decide on the action to be taken with respect to these observations.
1. In cases of extreme gravity and urgency, and when it becomes necessary to avoid irreparable damage to persons in a matter that has not yet been submitted to the Court for consideration, the Commission may request it to adopt any provisional measures it deems pertinent.
2. When the Commission is not in session, that request may be made by the Chairman, or in his absence by one of the Vice-Chairmen, in order of precedence. TITLE IV FINAL PROVISIONS
All time periods set forth in the present Regulations--in numbers of days--will be understood to be counted as calendar days.
Any doubt that might arise with respect to the interpretation of these Regulations shall be resolved by an absolute majority of the members of the Commission.
The Regulations may be amended by an absolute majority of the members of the Commission.