GENERAL ACTION AND POLICY OF THE ORGANIZATION WITH REGARD TO ACTS OF TERRORISM AND, ESPECIALLY, THE KIDNAPPING OF PERSONS AND EXTORTION IN CONNECTION WITH THAT CRIME
(Resolution adopted at the sixth plenary session, held on June 30, 1970, and reviewed by the Style Committee)
Acts of terrorism, and especially kidnapping of persons and extortion connected with that crime, are occurring with increasing frequency and seriousness in this hemisphere;
Such acts have been characterized by the Permanent Council of the Organization, in its resolution of May 15, 1970, as such cruel and irrational crimes that they attack the very spirit of mercy of the American peoples and constitute common crimes, whose seriousness makes them crimes against humanity;
The governments of the member states of the Organization unanimously repudiate such acts, which constitute serious violations of the fundamental rights and freedoms of man; and those governments are firmly determined to prevent the repetition of such acts;
The political and ideological pretexts utilized as justification for these crimes in no way mitigate their cruelty and irrationality or the ignoble nature of the means employed, and in no way remove their character as acts in violation of essential human rights.
The member states of the Organization, in the exercise of their sovereignty and their territorial jurisdiction, have invariably reaffirmed the rights of the individual and the principles of universal morality;
The process of economic development and the social progress of the hemisphere, in which our governments are engaged not only directly but also through inter-American cooperation, are disturbed by the crimes in question;[Page 2]
Kidnapping and extortion connected with that crime, as well as offenses against the lives of representatives of foreign states and of other persons, are heinous crimes that have aroused world opinion and that shatter the very bases of friendly national and international relations; and
The proliferation of such crimes in the hemisphere creates a situation that requires prompt and effective measures on the part of the. Organization and of its member states,
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
- To condemn strongly, as crimes against humanity, acts of terrorism and especially the kidnapping of persons and extortion in connection with that crime.
- Also to condemn such acts, when perpetrated against representatives of foreign states, as violations not only of human rights but also of the norms that govern international relations.
- To declare that these acts constitute serious common crimes characterized by flagrant violation of the most elemental principles of the security of the individual and community as well as offenses against the freedom and dignity of the individual, the safeguarding of which should be a guiding criterion of every society.
- To recommend to the member states that have not yet done so that they adopt such measures as they may deem suitable, in the exercise of their sovereignty, to prevent and when appropriate to punish crimes of this kind, defining them in their legislation.
- To request the governments of the member states to facilitate, in accordance with their laws, the exchange of information that will help in the prevention and punishment of crimes of this kind.
- To charge the Inter-American Juridical Committee with preparing an opinion on the procedures and measures necessary to make effective the purposes of this resolution. To this end, the Committee shall conclude the work entrusted to it within sixty days of the closing date of this session of the General Assembly. The Committee shall conclude the work entrusted to it within sixty days of the date on which it meets for that purpose.
- Also to charge the Inter-American Juridical Committee with preparing, within the period set in the preceding paragraph, one or more draft inter-American instruments on kidnapping, extortion, and assaults against persons, in cases in which these acts may have repercussions on international relations.
- To request the Inter-American Juridical Committee to report on its work to the Permanent Council of the Organization, which may, on an urgent basis, convoke a special session of the General Assembly or order the holding of an inter-American specialized conference to consider the opinion and the draft or drafts prepared by that Committee.
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
EXPRESSES its adherence to the principles set forth in the American Declaration of the Rights and Duties of Man and in the economic and social standards of the Charter of the Organization of American States.