AG/RES. 2035 (XXXIV-O/04): Protecting Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms While Countering Terrorism

June 8, 2004

(Adopted at the fourth plenary session held on June 8, 2004)


REAFFIRMING the principles and purposes of the Charter of the Organization of American States and the Charter of the United Nations;

EMPHASIZING that everyone is entitled to the rights and freedoms set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, without distinction of any kind as to race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth, or other status, and that this applies in all circumstances, in accordance with international law;

REITERATING that all persons are equal before the law and have the rights and duties established in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man, without distinction as to race, sex, language, creed, or any other factor;

CONSIDERING that terrorism poses a serious threat to the security, the institutions, and the democratic values of states and to the well-being of our peoples;


That, in the Declaration on Security in the Americas, we States renewed our commitment to fight terrorism and its financing with full respect for the rule of law and international law, including international humanitarian law, international human rights law, and international refugee law, the Inter-American Convention against Terrorism, and United Nations Security Council resolution 1373 (2001);

That, in the Declaration of Nuevo Le´┐Żn, at the Special Summit of the Americas, the Heads of State and Government agreed to take all necessary steps to prevent and counter terrorism and its financing in full compliance with our obligations under international law, including international human rights, refugee, and humanitarian law; and

Its resolutions AG/RES. 1840 (XXXII-O/02), AG/RES. 1906 (XXXII-O/02), and AG/RES. 1931 (XXXIII-O/03), and the Report on Terrorism and Human Rights prepared by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (OEA/Ser.L/V/II.116 - Doc.5 rev.1);

WELCOMING WITH SATISFACTION the fact that, with the ratifications of Antigua and Barbuda, Canada, El Salvador, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Peru, the Inter-American Convention against Terrorism came into force on July 10, 2003, and that Panama and Venezuela became States Parties to the Convention in 2004; and

CONSIDERING the report of the Meeting of Government Experts to Exchange, from a Human Rights Perspective, Best Practices and National Experiences in Adopting Antiterrorism Measures, held on February 12 and 13, 2004 (CP/CAJP-2140/04),


1. To reaffirm that the fight against terrorism must be waged with full respect for the law, human rights, and democratic institutions, so as to preserve the rule of law and democratic freedoms and values in the Hemisphere.

2. To reaffirm that all member states have a duty to ensure that all measures adopted to combat terrorism are in compliance with their obligations under international law, in particular international human rights law, international law on refugees, and international humanitarian law.

3. To urge member states once again to consider, as appropriate, signing and ratifying or acceding to the Inter-American Convention against Terrorism and to take appropriate steps to implement the provisions of that treaty.

4. To request the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to continue promoting respect for and the defense of human rights in this area and facilitating efforts by member states to comply appropriately with their international human rights commitments when developing and executing antiterrorist measures, including, in particular, the rights of members of those groups that might become vulnerable, or be placed at a disadvantage, or threatened with discrimination as a result of terrorist violence or counter-terrorist initiatives, and to report to the Permanent Council on the advisability of conducting a follow-up study.

5. To instruct the Permanent Council to convene a meeting with the government experts of the member states so that they may provide their points of view to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism on the content of the recommendations mentioned in the following paragraph.

6. To request the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to draw up, with the support of the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism, recommendations for the protection of human rights by member states in the fight against terrorism, on the basis of Article 15 of the Inter-American Convention against Terrorism and other pertinent international and regional instruments, as appropriate, bearing in mind its own Report on Terrorism and Human Rights and the findings of the meeting of government experts referred to in the preceding paragraph, and to present them to the Permanent Council before the thirty-fifth regular session of the General Assembly.

7. To foster dialogue and cooperation among the Inter-American Committee against Terrorism, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, and other pertinent areas of the Organization, on the issue of the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism.

8. To request the Permanent Council to present a report on implementation of this resolution, which is to be effected within the resources allocated in the program-budget of the Organization and other resources, to the General Assembly at its thirty-fifth regular session.