Zambrano Vélez et al. v. Ecuador. Series C No. 166

Key paragraph(s) can be found below the document.


51. The Court points out that in certain states of emergency or in situations of disturbance of law and order, States use the Armed Forces to control the situation. In that respect, the Court deems absolutely necessary to emphasize the extreme care which States must observe when they decide to use their Armed Forces as a mean for controlling social protests, domestic disturbances, internal violence, public emergencies and common crime. As stated by the Court, “States must restrict to the maximum extent the use of armed forces to control domestic disturbances, since they are trained to fight against enemies and not to protect and control civilians, a task that is typical of police forces”. The strict fulfillment of the duty to prevent and protect the endangered rights must be assumed by the domestic authorities in observance of a clear demarcation between military and police duties […]


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