Commission of Human Rights (hereinafter, “the Commission” or “the Inter-American
Commission”), the Republic of Guatemala (hereinafter, “the State” or “Guatemala”) and
the representatives of the victims and their relatives (hereinafter, “the representatives”) to
a private hearing, in order for the Court to obtain information from the State as regards
compliance with the Judgment passed in the instant case, and to receive the observations
made by the Commission and the representatives in that regard.
The private hearing held by the Court in San José de Costa Rica on January 20,
2000.1 In the course of such private hearing, the State, the Inter-American Commission
and the representatives made reference to the only aspect pending compliance, regarding
the obligation of the State to investigate and, if applicable, punish those responsible for
the human rights violations declared by the Court and to adopt any domestic law
provisions necessary to guarantee compliance with this obligation.
That one of the inherent attributes of the jurisdictional functions of the Court is to
monitor compliance with its decisions.
That the State of Guatemala is a State Party to the American Convention of Human
Rights (hereinafter, “the Convention” or “the American Convention”) since May 25, 1978,
and recognized the jurisdiction of the Court on March 9, 1987.
That Article 68(1) of the American Convention sets forth that “[t]he State Parties to
the Convention undertake to comply with the judgment of the Court in any case to which
they are parties.” For such purpose, the States must guarantee that the Tribunal’s decisions
are implemented in the domestic jurisdiction.2
That in view of the final and non-appealable character of the judgments of the Court,
as established in Article 67 of the American Convention, they should be complied with fully
and promptly by the State within the established term.
That the obligation to comply with the rulings of the Court conforms to a basic
principle of the law on the international responsibility of States, as supported by
international case law, under which States are required to comply with their international
treaty obligations in good faith (pacta sunt servanda) and, as previously held by the Court
and provided for in Article 27 of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties of 1969,
States cannot invoke their municipal laws to escape their pre-established international
responsibility. The obligations imposed by the Convention upon State Parties bound all
powers and authorities of the State.3


The parties appearing at this hearing were as follows: for the Inter-American Commission, Mrs. Elizabeth
Abi-Mershed, Alternate Executive Secretary; for the victims, Mrs. Marcela Martino and Gisela De León, from the
Center for Justice and International Law (CEJIL), and for the State, Mrs. Dora Ruth del Valle Cóbar, President of the
Presidential Coordinating Committee for the Executive’s Human Rights Policy (COPREDEH); Delia Marina DávilaSalazar, Agent, and Vivian Nohemí González-Westendorff, Alternate Agent.

Cf. Case of Baena-Ricardo et al. v. Panamá. Competence. Judgment of November 28, 2003. Series C No.
104, para. 131; Case of Vargas-Areco v. Paraguay. Monitoring Compliance with Judgment. Order of the Court of
October 30, 2008, Considering clause No. 3; and Case of Claude Reyes et al. v. Chile. Monitoring Compliance with
Judgment. Order of the Court of November 24, 2008, Considering clause No. 3.

Cf. International Responsibility for the Promulgation and Enforcement of Laws in Violation of the
Convention (Arts. 1 and 2 of the American Convention on Human Rights). Advisory Opinion OC -14/94 of

Select target paragraph3