BRAZIL: HUMAN RIGHTS AND JUSTICE THAT DELAYS, FAILS, AND KILLS
The Brazilian reality shows the tragedy offered to those who actually work as human rights defenders: living with the risk of feeding the murder statistics while performing their activities and leaving orphans and widows or widowers. Violence against human rights defenders is a crime against society and must be condemned and consistently investigated and repudiated.
The Brazilian 1988 Constitution advocates institutional responsibilities for human rights however the country is far away and dropping from this compliance.
Brazil has reached the 21st century with a deficit of attention from the public powers and a colossal surplus of omissions. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights exemplarily punished Brazilian State in the case of Sales Pimenta Vs Brazil. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) found the Brazilian State internationally responsible for violating the rights to judicial guarantees, judicial protection, truth, and personal integrity, to the detriment of the family members of human rights defender Gabriel Sales Pimenta. This situation occurred as a serious result of the State’s failure in the investigations into the violent death of Sales Pimenta and the absolute impunity of his homicide.
In analyzing the facts of the case, The Inter-American Court established that serious failures werw due to Brazil’s lack of expected diligence in prosecuting and punishing those responsible for the murder of Gabriel Sales Pimenta. Additionally, the international court concluded that the grave negligence of the judicial operators in the prosecution of the case, which allowed the occurrence of the statute of limitations, was the determining factor for the homicide to remain in a situation of guaranteed impunity.
According to the Inter-American Court, the Public Prosecutor’s Office declared that the case was time-barred. On May 2, 2006, the request for extinguishment of criminal liability was denied by the first instance judge of the Criminal Court of Marabá. However, on May 8, 2006, the Assembled Criminal Chambers of the Court of Justice of Pará issued a contrary decision and declared the extinguishment of punishment for the crime.
This week, forty years after the murder of Gabriel Sales Pimenta, the condemnatory sentence issued by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights against Brazil exposes the country as a fifth-rate republic in human rights defense. The new fact presented by this international condemnatory sentence evidences to the world what human rights activists have suffered on a daily basis: threats, harassment, intimidation, psychological and physical torture, and, finally, death, most often by premeditated crime.
Records of violence that cover gender inequalities, race, ethnicity, and other conditions also multiply in this same context of violence established by the urban and rural guerrillas of the “confrontation dialogue.” A macabre spectacle staged to the detriment of human rights, but watched by authorities that turn a deaf ear and occupy themselves with self-centered views. Meanwhile, the Brazilian Wild West reproduces itself in the Midwest, Southeast, Northeast, North and South regions and works on the basis of words against gunpowder. Thus, the case judged with unequivocal understanding of the Brazilian tragedy by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights expresses deep indignation about a justice that delays, fails, and kills.