[Ppnews] American Association of Jurists resolution on repression of Puerto Rican independence movement
Political Prisoner News
ppnews at freedomarchives.org
Tue Jan 22 11:24:50 EST 2008
Declaration of the American Association of
Jurists on the Politically Based Persecution in Puerto Rico
1. Anti-terrorist laws in several countries have
produced worsening repression against movements
dedicated to the protection of human rights.
2. Under the pretext of combating terrorism,
atrocities have been committed throughout
history, from the Condor Plan in Chile, to the
persecution of dissidents in Argentina and
Paraguay, to the Massacres of Ponce and Cerro
Maravilla in Puerto Rico, among others.
3. Fear is used in order to persecute,
discriminate, imprison and torture, based on race
and religion, as with the Japanese interned in
camps in the United States during the Second
World War, and today, with Arabs and Muslims in
areas of conflict and on military bases.
4. The struggle of peoples for self-determination
and national sovereignty is the fundamental
reason for the attacks, repression, and
accusations of terrorism, and criminalization of
those who defend the preservation and protection
of natural, economic, historical and cultural resources.
5. The Mapuche and other Peoples and ethnic
groups, those of Western Sahara, Molucas,
Palestine and Puerto Rico, and other parts of the
world, have suffered not only the lack of
sovereignty, but their sustainability, to which
they have a right and a power to live with dignity, has been impeded.
6. Political assassinations have been perpetrated
by the military, militia and paramilitary groups,
with governmental endorsement or their
indifference and impunity through all of the Americas and the Caribbean.
7. The political assassinations of those who
struggle for the independence of Puerto Rico,
such as Filiberto Ojeda Ríos, Santiago Mari
Pesquera and Angel Cristobal Ruiz, remain unprosecuted.
8. The repression and persecution of various
groups advocating for the independence of Puerto
Rico is currently escalating by the conduct of
the government of the United States and its
institutions such as the FBI, the federal court
and the Grand Jury, against people of Puerto
Rican descent and against those born on the
Island and in New York, who struggle for the independence of Puerto Rico.
9. The Grand Jury, an inquisitorial institution
used by the U.S. Department of Justice, provides
no minimum guarantees to those subpoenaedthere
is no right to be represented by an attorney and
refusing to testify can result in imprisonment.
10. Historically, members of the Puerto Rican
independence movement have been sent to prison
for refusing to collaborate with this instrument
of repression, intimidation and persecution used
by the U.S. government against the struggle for
the ideal of Puerto Rican independence.
THEREFORE, the American Association of Jurists,
jointly with the AAJ Puerto Rico Chapter, resolve that:
1. Political discrimination and persecution based
on race, color, language, among other rights, is
prohibited by the Charter of the U.N., the
Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), the
International Covenant on Civil and Political
Rights (ICCPR), the International Convention on
the Elimination of All Forms of Racial
Discrimination, and the Charter of the Organization of American States (OAS).
2. Every individual has the right to life,
liberty, security and dignity (UDHR, Charter of
OAS, and the Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man).
3. Every human being has the right not to be
arbitrarily detained, imprisoned, tortured or
treated in a cruel, inhuman or degrading way
(UDHR, Convention Against Torture and Other
Cruel, Inhuman and Degrading Treatment).
4. Every person has the right to freedom of
expression and opinion, to receive and
disseminate information, irrespective of borders,
and to peacefully meet and associate (UDHR), to
exchange of ideas characteristic of a democratic society.
5. A Peoples right to self-determination is a
fundamental right guaranteed by several
international instruments such as the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights, the International
Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,
Conventions107 and 109 of the International Labor
Organization (ILO), in various resolutions of the
United Nations, such as the Declaration on the
Granting of Independence to Colonial Countries
and Peoples (Resolution 1514 (XV) of 1960), the
Declaration of the U.N. on the Rights of
Indigenous Peoples of 2007, and the African Charter.
6. All Peoples have, in addition, the right to
freely determine their social and cultural
development, including the right to have their
resources protected (International Covenant on
Economic, Social and Cultural Rights; ICESCR),
with cultural diversity forming an inseparable
part of human dignity (Universal Declaration on
Cultural Diversity of UNESCO), and the right not
to be discriminated against or persecuted as a result.
7. These rights have been adopted and included in
all the constitutions and laws of the world; they
have been ratified by all nations, in
international and regional accords, and have applied since time immemorial.
8. All nations have the obligation, as members of
international organisms, to comply with and
enforce human rights, as required by Articles 55
and 56 of the Charter of the United Nations of all Member Nations.
January 14, 2008
President of the Continental AAJ
President of the AAJ Consulting Counsel
Dinorah La Luz
President of the AAJ Puerto Rico Chapter
Board of the AAJ Puerto Rico Chapter
522 Valencia Street
San Francisco, CA 94110
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