REPORT Nº 78/06 PETITION 12.094 ADMISSIBILITY ABORIGINAL COMMUNITY OF LHAKA HONHAT (“OUR LAND”) ARGENTINA October 21, 2006 I. SUMMARY 1. On August 4, 1998, the Aboriginal Communities Association Lhaka Honhat (hereafter "the petitioners" or the “Lhaka Honhat Association"), with the support of the Center for Legal and Social Studies (Centro de Estudios Legales y Sociales, CELS) 1 and the Center for Justice and International Law (Centro por la Justicia y el Derecho Internacional, CEJIL), presented a petition before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (hereafter "the Commission", "the InterAmerican Commission", or "the IACHR") for violation of the rights to life (Article 4), the right to humane treatment (Article 5), the right to privacy (Article 11.2), the right to information (Article 13), the right to freedom of association (Article 16), the right to freedom of movement and residence (Article 22), the right to judicial protection (Article 25), in concordance with the general obligation to respect human rights, recognized in Article 1.1 of the American Convention on Human Rights (hereafter “the Convention” or “the American Convention”) and in Articles XI, XII, XIII and XXII of the American Declaration on the Rights and Duties of Man (hereafter the Declaration), against the Argentine Republic (hereafter “the State”, the “Argentine State”, or “Argentina”), to the prejudice of the indigenous communities that make up the Lhaka Honhat Association, and that live in State-owned or “fiscal” lots (lotes fiscales) 14 and 55 of the Municipality of Santa Victoria, Department of Rivadavia, Province of Salta, for failing to consult them on various public works projects in the context of the integration plan for MERCOSUR (the Common Market consisting of Argentina, Paraguay, Brazil and Uruguay, with participation of Chile), since 1995. The Lhaka Honhat Association consists of 35 indigenous communities of the Mataco (Wichi), Chorote (Iyjwaja), Toba (Quom), Chulupí (Nivacklé), and Tapiete (Tapy´y) 1 Commissioner Victor Abramovich formally resigned as legal counsel and representative of CELS in this case, by a letter sent to the Commission on July 7, 2005, after he was elected a member of the Commission on June 7, 2005 during the General Assembly of the Organization of American States. The Commission acknowledged receipt of this letter on November 14, 2005. Commissioner Abramovich did not participate in discussion and voting for approval of this report, by virtue of Article 17 of the IACHR Rules of Procedure.