Herminio Deras García and family vs. Honduras

A selection of key paragraphs can be found below the document.

54. Furthermore, the Commission notes that the extrajudicial execution of Mr. Deras occurred in a context
acknowledged by both international and domestic organizations as being shaped by the so-called “doctrine of national security.” That entailed the commission of grave human rights violations, including extrajudicial
execution, against persons considered to be members or sympathizers of the Salvadoran guerrillas or
Sandinistas. The ISACHR observes that Mr. Deras’ status as a trade union leader and political leader in the
Communist Party matches the profile of what the government at the time considered a target in accordance
with a well-established context. On top of that, there is the information provided by the petitioners regarding several raids on his home, attempts at arrest and acts of aggression suffered by Mr. Deras at the hands of military agents for years prior to his execution, due precisely to his trade union and political work. That information, which will be analyzed in the following section, was not contested by the State.

55. Thus, the IACHR observes that the State attempted, through numerous means, to deny Mr. Deras’ right to
freedom of expression and freedom of association, a process that culminated in his extrajudicial execution. In
light of the above, the Commission considers that the extrajudicial execution of Mr. Deras, in clear reprisal for his activities as a political leaders and trade unionist, also violated his rights to freedom of expression and association. Consequently, the IACHR concludes that the State violated, to his detriment, the rights protected in Articles 13.1 and 16.1 of the American Convention in conjunction with Article 1.1 of said instrument.

58. In the Commission’s opinion, the allegations made by the petitioners and not contested by the State form part of the aforementioned “national security doctrine” context. The IACHR notes that, based on the
information furnished by the petitioners regarding the details of each of these episodes, it is possible to
determine that they are connected with the participation by Mr. Deras and some of his relatives in trade
union and political organizations identified by the government of the day as participants in, or sympathizers,
of Salvadoran guerrillas.

63. The Commission notes that those allegations of acts committed by military personnel were not contested
by the State. The Commission further observes that those deeds took place in the aforementioned context of
“national security doctrine.” Although the Commission does not possess sufficient information to be able to
say whether in each of the deeds described in which personal integrity was violated there were elements
constituting torture, it is abundantly established that the aforementioned persons suffered at least cruel and
inhuman treatment. The Commission reiterates that these facts were neither contested nor investigated by
the State. Consequently, the IACHR concludes that the State is responsible for violation of rights protected in
Articles 5.1 and 5.2 of the American Convention, taken in conjunction with Article 1.1 of that instrument, to
the detriment of the persons listed in paragraph 62 to this report.


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