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Indigenous Peoples Law and Policy News

IPLP Students and Faculty to Represent Party before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of American States will hear a case filed by the Border Action Network (BAN), a nonprofit group represented by students and faculty from the Indigenous Peoples Law & Policy Program (IPLP) at the James E. Rogers College of Law.

The case alleges human rights violations by the United States for allowing anti-immigrant vigilante groups to operate along the US/Mexico border. The Commission’s decision, which allows the case to move forward to the merits stage, comes after four years of legal submissions and a hearing before the Commission in Washington, D.C. BAN also asked the Commission for an interim order to stop vigilante violence while the case is being heard, in response to a series of incidents, most recently including the murder of a family in Southern Arizona allegedly by members of Minutemen American Defense.

The Commission’s decision to hear the case is, in itself, a significant achievement, according to Seánna Howard, an attorney for BAN. “The Commission only processes about 10% of the petitions they receive. This important milestone allows the case to move forward and the Commission to determine whether the U.S. government has a duty to prevent and sanction these vigilante groups.”


Posted:10/13/2009
Updated: 10/13/2009