Human & Constitutional Rights, Documents

American Convention on Human Rights

To obtain this file as a WordPerfect document, download here


Previous Next

Part I

Chapter 2

Article 14. Right of Reply

1.Anyone injured by inaccurate or offensive statements or ideas disseminated to the public in general by a legally regulated medium of communication has the right to reply or to make a correction using the same communications outlet, under such conditions as the law may establish.

2.The correction or reply shall not in any case remit other legal liabilities that may have been incurred.

3.For the effective protection of honor and reputation, every publisher, and every newspaper, motion picture, radio, and television company, shall have a person responsible who is not protected by immunities or special privileges.

Article 15. Right of Assembly

The right of peaceful assembly, without arms, is recognized. No restrictions may be placed on the exercise of this right other than those imposed in conformity with the law and necessary in a democratic society in the interest of national security, public safety or public order, or to protect public health or morals or the rights or freedom of others.

Article 16. Freedom of Association

1.Everyone has the right to associate freely for ideological, religious, political, economic, labor, social, cultural, sports, or other purposes.

2.The exercise of this right shall be subject only to such restrictions established by law as may be necessary in a democratic society, in the interest of national security, public safety or public order, or to protect public health or morals or the rights and freedoms of others.

3.The provisions of this article do not bar the imposition of legal restrictions, including even deprivation of the exercise of the right of association, on members of the armed forces and the police.

Article 17. Rights of the Family

1.The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the state.

2.The right of men and women of marriageable age to marry and to raise a family shall be recognized, if they meet the conditions required by domestic laws, insofar as such conditions do not affect the principle of nondiscrimination established in this Convention.

3.No marriage shall be entered into without the free and full consent of the intending spouses.

4.The States Parties shall take appropriate steps to ensure the equality of rights and the adequate balancing of responsibilities of the spouses as to marriage, during marriage, and in the event of its dissolution. In case of dissolution, provision shall be made for the necessary protection of any children solely on the basis of their own best interests.

5.The law shall recognize equal rights for children born out of wedlock and those born in wedlock.

Article 18. Right to a Name

Every person has the right to a given name and to the surnames of his parents or that of one of them. The law shall regulate the manner in which this right shall be ensured for all, by the use of assumed names if necessary.

Article 19. Rights of the Child

Every minor child has the right to the measures of protection required by his condition as a minor on the part of his family, society, and the state.

Article 20. Right to Nationality

1.Every person has the right to a nationality.

2.Every person has the right to the nationality of the state in whose territory he was born if he does not have the right to any other nationality.

3.No one shall be arbitrarily deprived of his nationality or of the right to change it.

Article 21. Right to Property

1.Everyone has the right to the use and enjoyment of his property. The law may subordinate such use and enjoyment to the interest of society.

2.No one shall be deprived of his property except upon payment of just compensation, for reasons of public utility or social interest, and in the cases and according to the forms established by law.

3.Usury and any other form of exploitation of man by man shall be prohibited by law.

Article 22. Freedom of Movement and Residence

1.Every person lawfully in the territory of a State Party has the right to move about in it, and to reside in it subject to the provisions of the law.

2.Every person has the right lo leave any country freely, including his own.

3.The exercise of the foregoing rights may be restricted only pursuant to a law to the extent necessary in a democratic society to prevent crime or to protect national security, public safety, public order, public morals, public health, or the rights or freedoms of others.

4.The exercise of the rights recognized in paragraph 1 may also be restricted by law in designated zones for reasons of public interest.

5.No one can be expelled from the territory of the state of which he is a national or be deprived of the right to enter it.

6.An alien lawfully in the territory of a State Party to this Convention may be expelled from it only pursuant to a decision reached in accordance with law.

7.Every person has the right to seek and be granted asylum in a foreign territory, in accordance with the legislation of the state and international conventions, in the event he is being pursued for political offenses or related common crimes.

8.In no case may an alien be deported or returned to a country, regardless of whether or not it is his country of origin, if in that country his right to life or personal freedom is in danger of being violated because of his race, nationality, religion, social status, or political opinions.

9.The collective expulsion of aliens is prohibited.

Article 23. Right to Participate in Government

1.Every citizen shall enjoy the following rights and opportunities:

1.to take part in the conduct of public affairs, directly or through freely chosen representatives;

2.to vote and to be elected in genuine periodic elections, which shall be by universal and equal suffrage and by secret ballot that guarantees the free expression of the will of the voters; and

3.to have access, under general conditions of equality, to the public service of his country.

2.The law may regulate the exercise of the rights and opportunities referred to in the preceding paragraph only on the basis of age, nationality, residence, language, education, civil and mental capacity, or sentencing by a competent court in criminal proceedings.

Article 24. Right to Equal Protection

All persons are equal before the law. Consequently, they are entitled, without discrimination, to equal protection of the law.

Article 25. Right to Judicial Protection

1.Everyone has the right to simple and prompt recourse, or any other effective recourse, to a competent court or tribunal for protection against acts that violate his fundamental rights recognized by the constitution or laws of the state concerned or by this Convention, even though such violation may have been committed by persons acting in the course of their official duties.

2.The States Parties undertake:

1.to ensure that any person claiming such remedy shall have his rights determined by the competent authority provided for by the legal system of the state;

2.to develop the possibilities of judicial remedy; and

3.to ensure that the competent authorities shall enforce such remedies when granted.

Previous Next

Human and Constitutional Rights Resource Page
Documents||Document Menu