II. PROCESSING WITH THE COMMISSION SUBSEQUENT TO APPROVAL OF ADMISSIBILITY REPORT No. 144/10 2
III. THE PARTIES’ POSITIONS 3
A. The petitioners 3
B. The State 5
IV. THE MERITS 6
A. The Guatemalan State’s acknowledgement of responsibility 6
B. Established facts 7
1. Background and context 7
1.1. Armed conflict in Guatemala: causes and State policy 7
1.2.3. Massacres against communities 11
1.2.4. Forced disappearance of persons 12
1.2.5. Violence against children 13
1.2.6. Violence against women 14
2. Situation of the village of Chichupac and neighboring communities during the armed conflict 15
B. THE LAW 45
1.Preliminary matters 46
1.1. Concerning the victims’ identification 46
2. Analysis of the facts through the prism of the American Convention and other applicable inter-American instruments 47
V. CONCLUSIONS 77
REPORT No. 6/14
RESIDENTS OF THE VILLAGE OF CHICHUPAC AND NEIGHBORING COMMUNITIES,
MUNICIPALITY OF RABINAL
April 2nd, 2014
On December 13, 2007 the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter the "Inter-American Commission", "Commission" or "IACHR") received a petition filed by the Asociación Bufete Jurídico Popular (hereinafter "the petitioners") in which it alleged that the Republic of Guatemala (hereinafter “the State”, the “Guatemalan State” or “Guatemala”) is internationally responsible for the human rights violations committed in a series of events between 1981 and 1986 against Maya Achí indigenous persons of the village of Chichupac and neighboring communities (Xeabaj, Chijom, Coyojá, El Tablón, Toloxcoc and El Apazote), in the municipality of Rabinal.
According to the petitioners, in furtherance of a specific policy of the State, the Guatemalan Army and its collaborators perpetrated a massacre in the village of Chichupac on January 8, 1982, in which 32 persons were tortured and murdered. In the period between August 1981 and 1986, they committed other deeds involving extrajudicial executions, torture, forced disappearances, rapes, failures to render aid and assistance, unlawful arrests and forced labor, to the detriment of 54 villagers of Chichupac and neighboring communities.
The State did not contest the petitioners’ allegations. In its early communications, it argued that because the complaint involved multiple cases, it should not be addressed as a single case. Later, the State acknowledged its international responsibility “for the violations alleged and substantiated by the petitioners, for the period between the time the violations were committed and up to the present day and with respect to those victims who have been fully identified and the violation of whose rights has been proven in cases brought before the institutions of national justice, and with respect to the identified victims documented in the Report of the Commission for Historical Clarification.”
After examining the available information, the Commission concludes that the State is responsible for violation of the rights protected under articles 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 16, 17, 19, 21, 22, 23, 24 and 25 of the American Convention, read in conjunction with the obligations set forth in Article 1(1) thereof, and Article I of the Inter-American Convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons, and Article 7 of the Convention of Belém do Pará, to the detriment of the persons listed in each section of this report.
II. PROCESSING WITH THE COMMISSION SUBSEQUENT TO APPROVAL OF ADMISSIBILITY REPORT No. 144/10
The petition was received on December 13, 2007. A detailed account of the processing of the petition up to the date of the admissibility decision appears in the admissibility report issued by the IACHR on November 1, 2010.1 In that report, the Commission declared that the petition was admissible and indicated that the facts alleged could tend to establish violations of the rights recognized in articles 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 16, 17, 21, 22, 24 and 25 of the American Convention, read in conjunction with Article 1(1) thereof, and Article I of the Inter-American Convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons. Furthermore, in application of the principle of jura novit curia, the Commission concluded that the petition was admissible for a possible violation of the rights established in Articles 3 and 23 of the American Convention, both read in conjunction with Article 1(1) thereof.
On November 29, 2010, the IACHR sent a communication to the parties advising them that the admissibility report had been approved and placing itself at their disposal with a view to reaching a friendly settlement. Also, in keeping with the Rules of Procedure then in force, the Commission invited the petitioners to submit, within two months, any additional observations they might have concerning the merits. On February 28, 2011, the petitioners submitted their additional observations on the merits. The State presented observations on March 22, June 17 and July 29, 2011.
Thereafter, the petitioners submitted observations on September 24, November 1 and 7 and December 19, 2011; March 22, June 29 and October 19, 2012; September 13 and December 11, 2013; and March 10, 19 and 20, 2014. For its part, the State submitted observations on January 25, March 16, June 28 and October 26, 2012; and July 24, September 24 and December 11, 2013.
All briefs were duly forwarded to the other parties.