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The Case of Artavia vs. Costa Rica and its impact for the protection of reproductive rights in the Americas


Date: Thursday, June 13, 2013
Time: 12:30PM - 02:00PM
Description: The Artavia Case involved the prohibition of in vitro fertilization in Costa Rica on the basis of an alleged violation of the right to life of embryos. Until 2000, domestic legislation had regulated the practice of in vitro fertilization when the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court ruled that the decree was unconstitutional. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights found that the absolute prohibition of in vitro fertilization involved a severe interference with the exercise of the right to private life and family life, as well as the right to personal integrity of those affected by the measure, and that such a measure was disproportionate to the purpose of protecting the right of embryos. To reach this conclusion the Court analyzed, inter alia, the scope of Article 4 under the American Convention on Human Rights and decided that embryos that have not been implanted do not enjoy the full protection of the right to life under that provision. Moreover, in dicta the Court reasoned that the protection afforded by Article 4 is not absolute and that it must be interpreted in harmony with the fundamental rights of other persons, specially the rights of the mother when the case relates to prenatal life. The panel will analyze the scope of the judgment, the reasoning of the Court and the outcome of this decision. In addition, it will explore the impact that this judgment will have on future debates about reproductive rights in the region. Speakers: Elizabeth Abi-Mershed, Deputy Executive Secretary, Inter-American Commission on Human Rights, OAS Alejandro Madrazo, Professor, CIDE Mónica Roa, Programs Director, Women’s Link Worldwide Moderator: Claudia Martin, Co-Director, Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
Sponsor: The Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law
URL: http://www.wcl.american.edu/hracademy/hrmonth.cfm
Location: WCL Rm. 603
Contact Name: Renee Lurker
Contact Phone: 202-274-4070
Contact Email: hracademy@wcl.american.edu
Posted On: 05/24/13

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