Peru will create a national registry of forced sterilization victims
Peru adopts national registry of forced sterilization victims
The Peruvian government announced the adoption of a National Registry of Forced Sterilization Victims-a sign of progress in the criminal investigation into the mass sterilizations in the 1990s under Fujimori's regime. With the announcement of this registry President Ollanta Humala of Peru reaffirmed that the cases of men and women involuntarily sterilized is a national priority.
The Center for Reproductive Rights with local partners Estudio para la Defensa de los Derechos de la Mujer (DEMUS) and Grupo de Reparación a Víctimas de Esterilización Forzada held a press conference acknowledging the progress made but also noting that much more needs to be done so the victims receive reparations and essential mental and health support services. You can watch it here (available in Spanish).
This is a huge step forward in the fight to end impunity of María Mamérita Mestanza Chávez and other thousands of victims in Peru. The Government has one month to establish the framework to implement the President's decision.
Background to case
Last Friday, the Peruvian government released an Executive Order (available in Spanish) that provides a legal framework to help implement an official record, and provide legal and health services to the victims of forced sterilization in the 90s. A decision issued two weeks after we had a working meeting with the IACHR and the Peruvian Government.
This is very exciting because it is recognized -as the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) established 12 years ago in the María Mamérita Mestanza v. Peru Friendly Agreement- the State's responsibility in a series of forced sterilizations carried out by Alberto Fujimori's administration in the implementation of the National Program of Reproductive Health and Family Planning, involving over 300,000 mostly indigenous women, one of those women was Ms. Mestanza.
During these years, the Center for Reproductive Rights and our partners and allies have been advocating before the IACHR for the State to conduct an exhaustive investigation of the facts, to establish enough means of proof and to decide if the case of Ms. Mestanza is one more among a large number of cases of women affected by a massive, compulsory, and systematic government policy.