Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACourtHR), San José (Costa Rica)
Interlocutory measures
Contentious cases
Advisory Opinions
Interlocutory measures


Interlocutory judgment, No. G. 101/81 (Government of Costa Rica [in the matter of Viviana Gallardo et al.]), death of a prisoner on remand in Costa Rica / Direct referral of the case to the Court by the respondent Government

2 HRLJ 108 (1981)


Decision, No. G. 101/81 (Government of Costa Rica [in the matter of Viviana Gallardo et al.]), Gallardo case inadmissible / Referral to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

2 HRLJ 328 (1981)


Order, Three cases v. Honduras (disappeared people: Angel Manfredo Velásquez Rodríguez, Francisco Fairén Garbi and Yolanda Solís, Saúl Godinez Cruz)  order of the Court after assassination of witnesses in the three cases v. Honduras

9 HRLJ 104 (1988)


Order, Three cases v. Honduras, second order of the Court to protect witnesses in the three cases v. Honduras
see also Juliane Kokott’s introduction: Inter-American Commission on Human Rights refers three cases v. Honduras to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights 7 HRLJ 423 (1986)

9 HRLJ 105 (1988)

Contentious cases


Velásquez Rodríguez v. Honduras, Practice of disappearances / Violation of right to life / Burden of proof / Exhaustion of domestic remedies

9 HRLJ 212 (1988)


Bustíos & Rojas v. Peru, Provisional measures

11 HRLJ 257 (1990)


Aloeboetoe et al. v. Suriname, The killing of seven civilians / Court accepts Suriname’s acknowledgment of responsibility and postpones judgment on reparations and costs

13 HRLJ 140 (1992)


Aloeboetoe et al. v. Suriname, Reparations after killing of seven civilians: payment of US$ 453,102 to the heirs, creation of a Foundation, and reopening of a school ordered

14 HRLJ 413 (1993)


Gangaram Panday v. Suriname, Suriname’s responsibility established for illegal detention, but not established for death in detention

15 HRLJ 168 (1994)


Maqueda v. Argentina, Discontinuance of a case pending before the Court after friendly settlement arranged by the Commission with the respondent Government

16 HRLJ 151 (1995)


El Amparo case v. Venezuela, Venezuela accepts responsibility for 1988 military operation which resulted in the killing of 14 fishermen from the town of “El Amparo” / Amount of reparations to be determined separately

16 HRLJ 149 (1995)


Neira Alegría et al. v. Peru, Violation of the right to life by disproportionate use of force against dangerous armed rioters in the San Juan Bautista Penitentiary

16 HRLJ 403 (1995)


Caballero Delgado and Santana v. Colombia, State party’s responsibility for detention and disappearance of two members of the 19 April Movement

17 HRLJ 24 (1996)


El Amparo Case v. Venezuela, Reparations set at US$ 722,322.20 to be paid by Venezuela to the surviving victims and the families of 14 fishermen killed by soldiers and policemen

18 HRLJ 188 (1997)


Caballero Delgado and Santana v. Colombia, Nature and amount of reparations for the violation of the right to life in cases of forced disappearances / Establishing the identity of a victim

19 HRLJ 43 (1998)


Genie Lacayo v. Nicaragua, Death of Jean-Paul Genie Lacayo allegedly caused by General Ortega’s escort / Authorities’ obstruction of the judicial investigation and unwarranted delay in the process violate Art. 8 ACHR / Nicaragua ordered to pay 20,000 US$ to the victim’s father

19 HRLJ 186 (1998)


Genie Lacayo v. Nicaragua, Request for revision of the Genie Lacayo judgment dismissed / Relevance of “new facts” or of a “continuing situation of violation of the rights enshrined in the ACHR”

19 HRLJ 197 (1998)


Loayza Tamayo v. Peru, Unlawful deprivation of liberty since 1993 / Alleged collaborator of the subversive group “Shining Path” tried under the military and the civil court systems / Peru ordered to release the applicant and to pay compensation

19 HRLJ 203 (1998)


Castillo Páez v. Peru, Practice of the Security Forces in Peru to carry out forced disappearances / Ernest Rafael Castillo Páez disappeared in 1991 / Peru ordered to compensate the victim’s next-of-kin

19 HRLJ 219 (1998)


Suárez Rosero v. Ecuador, Unlawful deprivation of liberty, including i.a. 36 days of incommunicado detention, and denial of habeas corpus procedure for more than 14 months / Ecuador ordered to determine persons responsible

19 HRLJ 229 (1998)


Blake v. Guatemala, Crime of forced disappearance committed before Guatemala’s recognition of the Court’s jurisdiction in 1987 / Victim’s fate not known until 1992 / Case still pending before the domestic courts / Violation of the Convention in respect of the victim’s relatives

19 HRLJ 393 (1998)


Benavides Cevallos v. Ecuador, Forced disappearances in Ecuador / Friendly settlement reached / 1 million US Dollars paid to the victim’s parents

19 HRLJ 414 (1998)


Loayza Tamayo v. Peru (Reparations), Contents and scope of measures of reparations / Weight of evidence / Compensation claim for damage to the victim’s “life plan”

20 HRLJ 194 (1999)


Suárez Rosero v. Ecuador, Reparations in the case of Suárez Rosero v. Ecuador (unlawful deprivation of liberty)

22 HRLJ 202 (2001)


Blake v. Guatemala, Reparations in the case of Blake v. Guatemala (crime of forced disappearance)

22 HRLJ 59 (2001)


Castillo Petruzzi et al. v. Peru, Chilean civilians sentenced to life imprisonment by “faceless” military courts for the crime of treason (aggravated terrorism) / Essentials of due process violated

21 HRLJ 143 (2000)


Constitutional Court case v. Peru, Peru’s withdrawal from the Court in litibus inadmissible

21 HRLJ 430 (2000)


Ivcher Bronstein v. Peru, Peru’s withdrawal from the Court in litibus inadmissible

21 HRLJ 436 (2000)


Cesti Hurtado v. Peru, Unlawful extension of military jurisdiction to a retired Army Captain definitively separated from service / State’s failure to comply with a habeas corpus decision in favour of the applicant

21 HRLJ 174 (2000)


El Caracazo v. Venezuela, Venezuela acknowledges in 44 cases responsibility for excesses of State security forces in spring 1989 causing deaths and numerous violations of the Convention

22 HRLJ 211 (2001)


Villagrán Morales et al. v. Guatemala (“The Street Children” Case), Abduction, torture and murder of youths by members of the National Police Force in Guatemala

21 HRLJ 195 (2000)


Bámaca Velásquez v. Guatemala, Disappearance, torture and extrajudicial execution of a member of the Guatemalan National Revolutionary Unit / Respect for mortal remains

22 HRLJ 367 (2001)


Constitutional Court Case v. Peru, Three Constitutional Court Justices dismissed in May 1997, reinstated in November 2000 after President Fujimori resigned / Impeachment proceeding without fair trial or effective remedy / Peru ordered to pay arrears of salary

23 HRLJ 178 (2002)


Olmedo Bustos et al. v. Chile, “The Last Temptation of Christ” / Prohibition to exhibit the film violates freedom of expression / Constitution allows prior censorship / Objective international responsibility of the State to modify domestic law

23 HRLJ 17 (2002)


“Barrios Altos” case v. Peru, Assassinations committed in 1991 by agents of the Fujimori Government / State party recognizes its international responsibility in 2001 / Return under the jurisdiction of the Court / Laws of self-amnesty quashed for being incompatible with the American Convention

23 HRLJ 360 (2002)


The Communities of the Jiguamiandó and the Curbaradó v. Colombia, Provisional measures to protect an identifiable group of 2,125 individuals, victims of acts of harassment and violence designed to cause forced displacement from their territory / Implementation of an agroindustrial oil palm project

24 HRLJ 169 (2003)


Bulacio v. Argentina, Death in police custody after a “razzia” of the Argentine Federal Police / Obligation of the State to complete the investigation of the facts, to disseminate the results publicly, and to punish those responsible / Pecuniary and non-pecuniary reparation

25 HRLJ 191 (2004)


Yean and Boscio Children v. Dominican Republic, Unlawful denial of the right to nationality / Ius soli principle so far not applicable to children whose fathers are Haitian migratory workers and thus considered to be “in transit” / State ordered to organize a public act apologizing to the victims / Compensation awarded

27 HRLJ 360 (2006)


Ximenes-Lopes v. Brazil, Death while held under psychiatric treatment / Precarious State mental health care system / Acknowledgment of State liability

28 HRLJ 46 (2007)


Castro Castro Prison v. Peru, Massacre at the maximum-security prison in Lima in May 1992 / State’s partial acknowledgment of international responsibility held to be insufficient / Apart from financial obligations, various measures of reparation ordered, i.a. inscription of the victims’ names to be represented in the monument “The Eye that Cries”

28 HRLJ 172 (2007)


Kichwa Indigenous People of Sarayaku v. Ecuador, Exploitation of crude oil in the Amazonian region on lands allocated to indigenous communities / Sarayaku’s firm resistance regarding the oil companies’ devastating exploration activities / State’s obligation to guarantee the right to consultation in relation to the rights to indigenous communal property and cultural identity

34 HRLJ 26 (2014)


Hacienda Brasil Verde Workers v. Brazil, Workers recruited from the poorest regions of the country subjected to slavery / Poverty considered a component of the prohibition of discrimination based on the “economic status” (Art. 1 American Convention) / Historical structural discrimination perpetuated in a specific geographical area / State failed to adopt specific measures to protect a group of people with identical characteristics: living in poverty, being illiterate with little or no schooling

38 HRLJ 282 (2018)


Cuscul Pivaral et al. v. Guatemala, Rights of people infected by HIV in Guatemala (country with the greatest number of HIV infections in Central America) / Direct justiciability of economic, social, cultural and environmental rights / Violation of the principle of progressivity (Article 26 ACHR) in relation to health protection and prohibition of retrogressivity / State’s obligation to address systemic deficiencies

39 HRLJ 71 (2019)

06.02.2020 Indigenous Communities of the Lhaka Honhat (Our Land) Association v. Argentina, Interpretation of Article 26 ACHR (progressive development): Rights to a healthy environment, to adequate food, to water and to take part in cultural life / here: Violation of Article 26 ACHR (3:3 ratio of votes) / Far-reaching measures ordered to be accomplished over the next six years 40 HRLJ 71 (2020)
24.06.2020 Guzmán Albarracín et al. v. Ecuador, Sexual harassment and abuse in schools as a “known problem” which was “validated, normalized and tolerated” within a structural context by educational institutions / Victim committed suicide: the girl Paola, aged between 14 and 16 years, sufferred serious acts of sexual violence perpetrated by the Vice Principal of her school / State’s lack of diligence in arresting the fugitive defendant, resulting in impunity / Violation of numerous human rights 40 HRLJ 163 (2020)
15.07.2020 The Workers of the Fireworks Factory in Santo Antônio de Jesus and their families v. Brazil, State’s responsibility for violations of human rights as a result of acts committed by a private enterprise which led to the death of 60 people, who included 20 children / Scope of the right to conditions of work that ensure the safety, health and hygiene of the workers in light of Article 26 ACHR (progressive development) 40 HRLJ 203 (2020)

Advisory Opinions


OC-1/82, “Other Treaties” Subject to the Consultative Jurisdiction of the Court (Art. 64 American Convention on Human Rights)

3 HRLJ 140 (1982)


OC-2/82, The effect of reservations on the entry into force of the American Convention (Arts. 74 and 75)

3 HRLJ 153 (1982)


OC-3/83, Restrictions to the Death Penalty (Arts. 4(2) and 4(4) American Convention on Human Rights)

4 HRLJ 339 (1983)


OC-4/84, Proposed Amendments to the Naturalization Provision of the Constitution of Costa Rica

5 HRLJ 161 (1984)


OC-5/85, Compulsory Membership in an Association Prescribed by Law for the Practice of Journalism (Arts. 13 and 29 American Convention on Human Rights)

7 HRLJ 74 (1986)


OC-6/86, The word “laws” in Article 30 of the American Convention on Human Rights

7 HRLJ 231 (1986)


OC-7/86, Enforceability of the right to reply or correction (Arts. 14(1), 1(1) and 2 American Convention on Human Rights)

7 HRLJ 238 (1986)


OC-8/87, Habeas Corpus in Emergency Situations (Arts. 27(2), 25(1) and 7(6), American Convention on Human Rights)

9 HRLJ 94 (1988)


OC-9/87, Judicial Guarantees in States of Emergency (Arts. 27(2), 25 and 8, American Convention on Human Rights)

9 HRLJ 204 (1988)


OC-10/89, Interpretation of the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man within the framework of Article 64 of the American Convention on Human Rights

11 HRLJ 118 (1990)


OC-11/90, Exceptions to the Exhaustion of Domestic Remedies (Arts. 46(1), 46(2)(a) and 46(2)(b), American Convention on Human Rights)

12 HRLJ 20 (1991)


OC-12/91, Compatibility of Draft Legislation with Article 8(2)(h) American Convention on Human Rights

13 HRLJ 149 (1992)


OC-13/93, Certain Attributes of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (Arts. 41, 42, 46, 47, 50 and 51 of the American Convention on Human Rights)

14 HRLJ 252 (1993)


OC-14/94, International Responsibility for the Promulgation and Enforcement of Laws in Violation of the Convention (Arts. 1 and 2 American Convention on Human Rights)

16 HRLJ 9 (1995)


OC-15/97, Exceptional preconditions required to review or amend a report already adopted by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (Art. 51 of the American Convention on Human Rights)

19 HRLJ 241 (1998)


OC-16/99, The Right to Information on Consular Assistance within the Framework of the Guarantees of the Due Process of Law

21 HRLJ 24 (2000)


OC-17/02, Juridical Condition and Human Rights of the Child

25 HRLJ 216 (2004)


OC-18/03, Juridical Condition and Rights of Undocumented Migrants

25 HRLJ 233 (2004)


 OC-26/20, "The obligations in matters of human rights of a State that has denounced the American Convention on Human Rights and the Charter of the OAS" / Colombia's request for an Advisory Opinion as rephrased by the Court / An example how the Court interprets its advisory functions / Background: Venezuela's withdrawal from the inter-American system

41 HRLJ 29 (2021)


 OC-28/21, Indefinite presidential reelection is contrary to the principles of a representative democracy / Obiter dictum: “The greatest current danger facing the region’s democracies is not the abrupt breakdown of the constitutional order, but the gradual erosion of democratic safeguards that can lead to an authoritarian regime, even if it is popularly elected”

41 HRLJ 341 (2021)