A.        Introduction


1.       This chapter deals with the work done by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights during 2003, and it concerns the system of petitions and individual cases before both the Commission and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. This chapter covers the precautionary measures granted by the Commission and requested of member states of the Organization and the reports approved pursuant to Articles 49 or 51 of the American Convention or Article 45(3) of the Rules of Procedure of the Commission in effect as of May 1, 2001--in the case of those states not party to the Convention--and which the Commission has decided to publish; and its reports on cases declared admissible or inadmissible under the terms of Articles 46 and 47 of the Convention and Article 37(1) of the Rules of Procedure. This chapter also describes the activities of the Commission before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, vis-ŕ-vis provisional measures, contentious cases, and requests for advisory opinions.  


2.       Section B includes statistical tables on the information contained in this chapter; section C.1 contains information on the precautionary measures agreed on or extended by the IACHR.  In this regard, the Commission has continued its practice of reporting on the precautionary measures sought from member states of the Organization, either on its own initiative or at the request of a party, pursuant to the provisions of Article 25 of its Rules of Procedure, in those cases where such action was necessary to prevent irreparable harm to persons.  The precautionary measures are presented in alphabetical order according to the names of the states to which the request was submitted; the listings also indicate the name of the person or persons on whose behalf the request was made, a summary of the information on which the request was grounded, the rights of the persons exposed to grave and imminent harm, the number of the case, if any, and, finally, the date of the request and the name of the state in question, as well as other relevant information. 


3.       Section C.2 includes all the petitions and cases processed and resolved by the Commission during the time covered by this report.  It contains a total of 65 reports: 37 cases that were declared admissible; 10 reports on petitions that were deemed inadmissible; 11 friendly settlement reports; 1 compliance agreement report; and 6 reports on merits.



4.       In accordance with Article 46 of the IACHR’s Rules of Procedure, section D includes an analysis relative to compliance by States with the recommendations contained in reports on individual cases published in the Annual Reports for 2000, 2001 and 2002. 


5.       Section E deals with the individual petitions and cases taken by the Commission to the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.  It lists the provisional measures ordered by the Court at the Commission’s request in cases of extreme gravity and urgency, pursuant to the provisions of Article 63(2) of the American Convention on Human Rights; a summary of a number of Court judgments; and the actions taken by the Commission in several contentious cases. The provisional measures are also listed in the order of their presentation; they include the name of the person or persons on whose behalf they were requested, a summary of the facts of the case and of the rights at stake, the date of the request, the name of the state in question, and the date on which the Court adopted the relevant decision.



6.       Over 2003, the Commission received 1080 complaints alleging violations of human rights protected in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man and the American Convention on Human Rights or other relevant instruments; it also instituted 115 petitions during the period covered by this report, giving a total of 987 individual cases and petitions being processed by the Commission in the year 2003. 


B.       Statistics  


7.       This chapter of the 2003 Annual Report contains statistical information to provide a general overview of the different activities carried out by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.  


8.       First it presents data concerning the cases and petitions being processed.  These comprise the greater volume of the Commission's work.  “Cases” is taken as meaning all those petitions declared admissible by means of a report on admissibility. “Petitions” is taken as meaning all those complaints that have been forwarded to the state involved but in which no report on admissibility has been issued.



1.       Total number of complaints received by country in the year 2003.

The preceding graph illustrates the total number complaints received by the IACHR according to the OAS member States in respect of which the complaints were presented.


 2.       Total number of complaints received by year.

            This graph illustrates the total number of complaints received by the Commission during the last seven years. "Complaints" for the purposes of these statistics includes all complaints, presented in writing, concerning an alleged violation by an OAS member state of the Convention, the Declaration and/or other pertinent instrument.

            *Of this number, 3763 petitions referred to the situation of the rights of persons affected by the banking measures "Corralito" in Argentina.


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