PRESS RELEASE


N° 8/08
 

IACHR ANNOUNCES PUBLIC COMPETITION FOR

SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR FOR FREEDOM OF EXPRESSION
  

Washington, D.C., March 10, 2008 – In light of the expiration, at the end of March 2008, of the second year of the mandate of the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression, Dr. Ignacio J. Αlvarez, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) thanks him for his services and announces a public competition for the election of his successor.

 

The process by which the Commission will select the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression shall follow the procedures adopted by the IACHR in its Resolution No. 04/06. The names and backgrounds of candidates who are selected as finalists for the position will be published on the IACHR website for the information of the Member States and of civil society. The IACHR Executive Secretariat will receive applications until June 1, 2008, based on the terms or reference included in the announcement. The IACHR expects to complete the selection process in July 2008.

 

During the period of vacancy of the Special Rapporteurship from April 1 until the selection of a new Special Rapporteur, the Office of the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression will be under the responsibility of the President of the Commission.

 

The announcement describes the duties and responsibilities of the position, saying that that the Special Rapporteur will be responsible for supporting the IACHR in the fulfillment of its mandate for the promotion and protection of freedom of expression in the Americas. In particular, the Special Rapporteur shall perform the following functions:

 

•           Prepare reports on freedom of expression for consideration by the IACHR and for publication, including thematic reports on issues relating the right to freedom of expression and an annual report on the status of freedom of expression in the Americas.
 

•           Process individual cases on freedom of expression for decision by the IACHR and advise the IACHR in its litigation before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in cases involving freedom of expression.
 

•           Assist the IACHR in promoting international instruments relating to freedom of expression, including through the organization of and participation in promotional activities directed toward officials, professionals, journalists and students of the IACHR's work in this area.
 

•           Make recommendations to the IACHR on urgent situations that could require adopting precautionary measures or requesting the Inter-American Court of Human Rights to adopt provisional measures.
 

•           Provide advice and assistance to other organs of the Organization of American States (OAS) on matters relating to freedom of expression in the Americas.

 

•           Fulfill such other mandates relating to the promotion and protection of freedom of expression as may be delegated by the IACHR.

 

The minimum requirements established in the announcement of the public competition for the election of the Special Rapporteur are the following:

 

•           High moral character and independence.
 

•        University degree in law, journalism or other relevant social science.  Postgraduate or other specialized studies in the area of international human rights law preferable.
 

•           At least 10 years of professional experience at the national or international level involving, inter alia, interaction with senior government officials, intergovernmental or nongovernmental organizations.
 

•           Excellent knowledge of the procedure and case-law of the IACHR and the jurisprudence of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.
 

•           Recognized competence and professional experience in issues relating to freedom of expression and human rights in the Americas.
 

•           Capacity to supervise personnel.  Experience in fundraising and supervising projects.
 

•           Excellent written and oral communication skills.  Excellent analytical and interpretive skills. Ability to give public presentations to senior government officials, experts and representatives of nongovernmental human rights organizations, and the general public.
 

•           Command of at least two of the official languages of the OAS: English, French, Portuguese and Spanish.
 

•           Nationality of a Member State of the OAS.

 

 The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) is a principal and autonomous organ of the OAS.  Together with the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, based in Costa Rica, it is one of the two bodies in the inter-American system for the protection and promotion of human rights in the Americas.  The IACHR acts on behalf of all member states of the OAS and derives its mandate from the Charter of the OAS and the American Convention on Human Rights. 

 

Press contact: Marνa Isabel Rivero
Tel. (202) 458-3867
Cell: (202) 215-4142
E-mail: mrivero@oas.org

 

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