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Human rights Intimidation ignites alert

Posted on November 22, 2016 in Panama

Human rights protrestors are under threat
Post Views: 92

THE Ombudsman’s Office and several civil society organizations  are “on alert” over attempts at intimidation against human rights defenders.

 The ombudsman, Alfredo Castillero Hoyos, said that he “worries” about the issue, and will hold a meeting with the human rights rapporteurs of the United Nations (UN) and the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) ) On  December  2 during the the regular session of the commission  in Panama from November 29 to December 7.

Castillero Hoyos, says the meeting with Michel Forst, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, aims to create a “protocol” to protect activists.

“This protocol will indicate the steps to be taken as a country in the event of a person suffering harassment and threats,” he said.

The official stressed that the Office of the Ombudsman evaluates cases such as threats to Ligia Arrega for defending the Matusagaratí wetland in Darien, attempts at intimidation against human rights defenders and the harassment of activist Larissa Duarte in Veraguas, who is fighting for the conservation of the Copper River, as well as the civil suit filed by Grupo Suárez against residents of Coco del Mar in San Francisco.

Panama’s deputy mayor, Raisa Banfield, called these actions “lamentable” and said they are changing a number of rules that did not meet the needs of the population.

Magaly Castillo, of the Human Rights Network, said that the protocol is very “valuable”.

Human rights defenders claim protection


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US  trashes Panama human rights record


La Joya Prison

Posted 16/03/2019
From recurrent institutionalized corruption to conditions in the prison system, and rights of indigenous people and persons with disabilities  Panama got largely failing grades in the latest report of The US Department of State.

The report also deals with the issue of freedom of expression, particularly in reference to the demands of the media and journalists. Under the same section of the report are mentioned the threats and attacks carried out by deputies against the media in the plenary session of the National Assembly. The report recalls that, constitutionally, the deputies are protected during these interventions and cannot be sued.

The report highlights the poor medical and health conditions in the national prison system,  and castigates the shortage of prison guards, as in 2018 there were around 1,700 although it is estimated that the system needs 2, 870 to operate correctly.

The report fingers the reopening of the island prison in Punta Coco, and refers makes reference to the petition published by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (CIDH) to close it.

The report published on the website of the  State Department details existing limitations on foreigners in the national territory and summarizes the procedures that exist for refugees and foreigners seeking asylum in Panama.

The most developed section deals with corruption and lack of transparency in the state and mentions the anti-corruption mechanisms that have been implemented without major benefits. It details cases of corruption of police officers to former government officials, mentioning judicial cases for the alleged commission of crimes against the administration of Luis Cucalón, Demetrio Jimmy Papadimitriu, and Jaime Ford.

The State Department explains and summarizes, the subject of the criticized payrolls of the National Assembly, explaining the denunciations by the comptroller Federico Humbert before the Supreme Court of Justice for that matter.

It also refers to the fact that the judicial system is inefficient and susceptible to corruption, as well as to internal and external influences. The report adds that there were also complaints of interference by the Executive Branch in the administration of justice.

Finally, the report deals with some broader issues, such as the lack of racial and gender representation in important boards of directors and decision-making positions. and it also mentions that the law does not prohibit discrimination based on sexual orientation.



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  • Moderator_02 changed the title to Panama and Human Rights
  • 4 months later...
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Human rights conference delayed  as pro-life group protest gay panelist


Posted 19/07/2020

A  virtual conference on "human rights during a pandemic", organized by law students at Santa María la Antigua University  (USMA)  has been postponed after Juan Francisco de la Guardia, president of the Panamanian Alliance for Life and Family, allegedly sent a note to the rector, Juan Planells, to protest the participation of two panelists who adverse publicly the principles of our Catholic faith. "

They are the lawyer Iván Chanis, president of the Fundación Iguales, a “recognized homosexual”, and Esmeralda Arosemena de Troitiño, former magistrate of the Third Chamber of the Supreme Court and current president of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).

The event was originally scheduled for Saturday, July 18, but did not take place, due to problems with the rector's schedule.

The Association of Law Students of the university , said that the event has been postponed - not canceled - and the decision bears no relation to De la Guardia's note. And maintains that the Alliance has no interference in the student association or its activities.

"We reject this new attempt at interference by the aforementioned group," says a statement f issued on Saturday.



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CIDH: Panamá debe reconocer el matrimonio igualitario

La CIDH concedió una audiencia a petición de Fundación Iguales, en la que participó la sociedad civil y el Estado panameño, mientras se espera un fallo por parte de la Corte Suprema de Justicia.
Dalia Pichel
03 oct 2020 - 12:00 AM


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El matrimonio igualitario divide a los magistrados de la CSJ

Organizaciones religiosas han anunciado una marcha hacia la Corte para pedir el rechazo de las demandas, pero la comunidad LGBTIQ pide reconocer el matrimonio igualitario.
Juan Manuel Díaz C.
04 oct 2020 - 12:36 AM


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OPINION: Rights of the LGBTIQ community on hold


Posted 04/10/2020

The recognition of the rights that LGBTIQ people have remains taboo in Panama, isolating us from the much more progressive countries. We are facing a human rights issue, which may not be to the liking of many, but which should be recognized since, before the law, we are all equal.

 Human rights law cannot be applied to some, while many others are ignored. Organizations such as the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (Inter-American Court of Human Rights) have already ruled in advisory opinions, warning of the need to recognize their rights. The Supreme Court of Justice has had this issue in its hands for a long time, but there has been little progress. Issues like this and sex education seem to escape the legal sphere, thanks to the pressure exerted by groups in society that are opposed to addressing these issues with the seriousness they deserve.

Justice and the authorities are obliged to do so, as the country is in arrears and for years. We hope that, with the winds of change blowing in the Court, Panama will begin to leave behind the validity of issues that are typical of underdevelopment.- LA PRENSA, Oct. 4



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‘pro-family’ activists protest equal marriage   


Posted 08/10/2020

"Pro-family" activists and religious organizations demonstrated in front of the Supreme Court on Wednesday, October calling on the judges to not rule in favor of  "equal marriage”.

The protest came six days after organizations that favor the recognition of the rights of LGBTI persons went to the Court to request that equal marriage in force in several countries of the inter-American human rights system, be recognized.



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