INTER - AMERICAN COMMISSION ON HUMAN RIGHTS COMISION INTERAMERICANA DE DERECHOS HUMANOS COMISSÃO INTERAMERICANA DE DIREITOS HUMANOS COMMISSION INTERAMÉRICAINE DES DROITS DE L'HOMME ORGANIZACIÓN DE LOS ESTADOS AMERICANOS WASHINGTON, D.C. 2 0 0 0 6 EEUU July 29, 2011 Ref.: Case No. 12.361 Gretel Artavia Murillo et al. (“In Vitro Fertilization”) Costa Rica Mr. Secretary: I am pleased to address you on behalf of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in order to submit to the jurisdiction of the Honorable Inter-American Court of Human Rights, Case No. 12.361, Gretel Artavia Murillo et al. v. Costa Rica (hereinafter “the State”, “the Costa Rican State” or “Costa Rica”), which concerns the violation of the rights to have one’s private and family life respected, the right to found a family and the right to equality and non-discrimination, recognized in articles 11, 17 and 24 of the American Convention on Human Rights, read in conjunction with articles 1(1) and 2 thereof, to the detriment of Gretel Artavia Murillo, Miguel Mejía Carballo, Andrea Bianchi Bruno, German Alberto Moreno Valencia, Ana Cristina Castillo León, Enrique Acuña Cartín, Ileana Henchos Bolaños, Miguel Antonio Yamuni Zeledón, Claudia María Carro Maklouf, Víctor Hugo Sanabria León, Karen Espinoza Vindas, Héctor Jiménez Acuña, Maria del Socorro Calderón P., Joaquina Arroyo Fonseca, Geovanni Antonio Vega, Carlos E. Vargas Solórzano, Julieta González Ledezma and Oriester Rojas Carranza. The violations were the result of an across-the-board ban on the practice of the assisted reproductive technique of in vitro fertilization, a ban that has been in effect in Costa Rica since 2000, following a ruling issued by the Constitutional Chamber of the Costa Rican Supreme Court. As indicated in merits report 85/10, the Commission found that this absolute ban constituted arbitrary interference in the right to private and family life and the right to found a family. The Commission also found that the ban violated the victims’ right to equality inasmuch as the State had denied them access to a treatment that would have enabled them to overcome the disadvantage they have with respect to the possibility of having biological children. The ban also had a disproportionate impact on women. The State ratified the American Convention on Human Rights on April 8, 1970 and accepted the Court’s contentious jurisdiction on July 2, 1980. The Commission has designated Commissioner Rodrigo Escobar Gil and IACHR Executive Secretary Santiago Canton as its delegates. Likewise, Elizabeth Abi-Mershed, Deputy Executive Secretary, and Silvia Serrano Guzmán, Isabel Madariaga, Fiorella Melzi and Rosa Celorio, attorneys with the Commission’s Executive Secretariat have been designated to serve as legal advisors.