The Organization of American State elected an Inter-American Court of Human Rights, the first for the hemisphere, at a special assembly.
After accepting two new member states, Dominica and St. Lucia, the now 27-nation OAS assembly also elected seven memebers to the existing human rights commission. The expanded rights apparatus results from entry in force last year of the American Convention on Human Rights.
The U.S. representative on the 19-year-old rights commission, international law Prof. Thomas J. Farer, was reelected. Since the United States has only signed but has not ratified the rights convention, it could not nominate a candidate for the seven-judge court. Nevertheless, another American professor, Thomas Burgenthal of Texas, was elected to the court after nomination by Costa Rica.
Thirteen states that have ratified the convention also elected as members of the court Maximo Cisneros Sanchez of Peru, Eugene H. Monroe of Jamaica, Cesar Ordonez Quintero of Colombia, Rodolfo Piza Escalante of Costa Rica, Carlos Reina Idiaquez of Honduras and Miguel Urquia of El Salvador.
Reelected to the rights commission, with all 27 nations participating, were Carlos A. Dunshee Abranches of Brazil, Andres Aguilar of Venezuela and Marco G. Monroy Cabra of Colombia, as well as Farer. Newly elected were Francisco Bertrand Galindo of El Salvador, Mario Cantu Leal of Mexico and Luis D. Tinoco Castro of Costa Rica.
The commission will continue to act as rights watchdog in the hemisphere and will aslo serve as a clearing house for the court, which is to sit in San Jose, Costa Rica.