REPORT N 95/08
PETITION 1351-05
ADMISSIBILITY
NADEGE DORZEMA ET AL, OR GUAYABIN MASSACRE
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
December 22, 2008
I.

SUMMARY

1. On November28, 2005, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereinafter the
Inter-American Commission, the Commission, or IACHR) received a petition lodged by the
Support Group for Repatriates and Refugees [Grupo de Apoyo a los Repatriados y Refugiados],
represented by Mr. Cherubin Tragelus, and by the Dominican-Haitian Cultural Center [Centro
Cultural Domico Haitiano], represented by Mr. Antonio Pol Emil (hereinafter the petitioners), 1
alleging the international responsibility of the Dominican Republic (hereinafter Dominican
Republic or the State) for the presumed arbitrary deprivation of life of Jacqueline Maxime, Fritz
Alce (Gemilord), Roselene Theremeus, Ilfaudia Dorzema, Mimo Rub de Jes Espinal, Pardis
Fortilus, and Nadege Dorzema, the presumed failure to ensure the humane treatment of
Joseph Pierre, Selafoi Pierre, Silvie Thermeus, Roland Israel, Rose Marie Dol, JosuMaxime,
Michel Florantin,2 Celicia Petithomme/Estilien, Sonide Nora, Alphonse Oremis, Renaud Timat,
and Honorio Winique, (hereinafter the alleged victims), for the presumed deprivation of
freedom of some of the alleged victims, and for failure to respect the right to a fair trial and
the right to judicial protection, which would have allowed for reparations for the damages
incurred.
2. The petitioners alleged that the State is responsible for violating the rights established in
Articles 4 (right to life), 5 (right to humane treatment), 7 (right to personal liberty), 8 (right to
fair trial), 24 (right to equal protection), and 25 (right to judicial Proteccion), in relation with
the obligation to respect rights established in Article 1.1 of the American Convention on Human
Rights (hereinafter the Convention or the American Convention). With regard to the
admissibility requirements, the petitioners maintained that the requirement of prior exhaustion
of domestic remedies, stipulated in Article 46.1.a of the Convention, is not applicable because
the alleged victims were prevented from exhausting adequate remedies under domestic law.
3. For its part, the State maintained that the petitioners complaints were inadmissible, due to
failure to comply with the requirement of prior exhaustion of domestic remedies stipulated in
Article 46.1.a of the American Convention, since all of the remedies provided under Dominican
law to the injured parties in this case were not exhausted.
4. Without prejudice to the merits of the case, and after examining the available information
and verifying compliance with the admissibility requirements set forth in Articles 46 and 47 of
the American Convention, and in Articles 30 and 37 of the Rules of Procedure, the IACHR
concludes that the petition is admissible insofar as the alleged violation of the rights
established in Articles 4, 5, 7, 8, 24, and 25 of the American Convention are concerned,
considered in relation to the general obligation established in Article 1.1 of that international
instrument. Moreover, in application of the principle of iura novit curia, the Commission will
examine, in the merits stage, whether there is a possible violation of Article 2 of the American
Convention. The Commission has decided to notify the parties of this decision, to publish it,
and to include it in its Annual Report to the General Assembly of the Organization of American
States.
II.

PROCEDURES OF THE COMMISSION

1

On October 23, 2006, the IACHR Executive Secretariat received accreditation as co-petitioners from UQAMs
International Clinic for the Defense of Human Rights, represented by Bernard Duhaime and Carol Hilling.
2
The petitioners indicate that Michel Florantin and Michel Francois is the same person, and that in the interrogation of
Michel Florantin in Court, he was called Michel Fransua. (The original petition received by the IACHR on November 28,
2005, page 8.)
1

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