October 22, 1999
Diario Las Américas, Oct. 21.
During the General Assembly of the Inter-American Press Association (IAPA) which closed on Wednesday evening in Houston, with the attendance of some five hundred journalists of the Western Hemisphere, one of the speakers was Dr. Claudio Grossman, Vice President of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of American States (OAS) who talked about topics related to the operation of that institution and its struggles to defend those rights as soon as the correspondiong denunciations are presented with the supporting evidence.
This renowned Chilean legal expert, Dean of the School of Law at American University in Washington, D.C., gave to the Editor of DIARIO LAS AMERICAS a copy of Report No. 86/99, Case No. 11,589 Cuba. The heading of the report states that it corresponds to the case of Armando Alejandre Jr., Carlos Costa, Mario de la Peña and Pablo Morales and it was published on September 29th, 1999. DIARIO LAS AMERICAS made copies and distributed them to those attending the General Assembly so that they might read the complete text of this report, twenty-three single spaced pages, from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the OAS on that painful case.
In its Conclusions the report reads as follows: "No. 53.- The Cuban State is reponsible for the violation of the right to life --Article I of the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man-- to the detriment of Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario de la Peña, and Armando Alejandre who died as a result of the direct action of its agents in the afternoon of February 24, 1996, while they were flying in international air space. No. 54.- The Cuban State is responsible for the violation of the right to justice --Article XVIII of the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man-- to the detriment of the families of Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario de la Peña and Armando Alejandre, whereas the Cuban authorities to date, have not conducted an exhaustive investigation in order to prosecute and penalize criminally the parties responsible thereof, nor have they indemnified said relatives for the damage and injuries which they have suffered as a result of the said unlawful act."
In its Recommendations to the Cuban State the report states: "First. - Conduct a complete, impartial and effective investigation in order to identify, prosecute and penalize criminally the agents of the State responsible, materially and intellectually, for the deaths of Carlos Costa, Pablo Morales, Mario de la Peña, and Armando Alejandre, for the event which took place in international air space on February 24, 1996."
The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the OAS has fulfilled its juridical and historical duty well.
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