WCEL, in a joint submission with the Organization of American States, presented its written response (see downloads) and made oral arguments (see links) addressing environmental implications and ramifications in respect to the request by the Republic of Colombia for an advisory opinion from the Inter-American Court on Human Rights concerning the interpretation of Article 1(1), 4(1) and 5(1) of the American Convention on Human Rights.
In all, the commission joined 47 written submissions made by state agencies, national and international organizations, academic institutions, non-governmental organizations, and private individuals. The public hearing held during the 57th special session of the court took place on 22 March where it received 32 oral arguments to the request. As an overarching message, WCEL emphasized that the rule of law in environmental protection and the sustainable development of the marine environment, are essential to human wellbeing. Hence, interpretation and application treaties such as the American Convention in tandem with international environmental law is critical to delivering on the rights-based approach within the global commitments on sustainable development.
IUCN has had cooperative relations with the Organization of American States since 1968 (OEA/ Ser.D/v.21/70). In this framework WCEL strongly values the opportunity to participate in this process and share expert insight on the issues under consideration by the Court in the context of this request. The commission thanks the expert group consisting of Claudia de Windt, WCEL SC Member, Prof. Donald K. Anton, Dr. Maria L. Banda, Prof. Charles Di Leva, Dr. Luis Fernando Macias, and Prof. Nilufer Oral who prepared the opinion on behalf of WCEL.