UNESCO Social and Human Sciences
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American Convention on Human Rights

The American Convention on Human Rights was adopted by member states of the Organization of American States in San Josť, Costa Rica, on 22 November 1969. It entered into force on 18 July 1978.

Article 1 

    1. The states parties to this Convention undertake to respect the rights and freedoms recognised herein and to ensure to all persons subject to their jurisdiction the free and full exercise of those rights and freedoms, without any discrimination for reasons of race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, economic status, birth, or any other social condition.

Article 8 

    2. Every person accused of a serious crime has the right to be presumed innocent so long as his guilt has not been proven according to law. During the proceedings, every person is entitled, with full equality, to the following minimum guarantees: (a) the right of the accused to be assisted without charge by a translator or interpreter, if he does not understand or does not speak the language of the tribunal or court;

Source: 1144 U.N.T.S. 123, Basic Documents Pertaining to Human Rights in the Inter-American System, OEA/Ser.L.V/II.82 doc.6 rev.1 at 25 (1992). The full text version of the American Convention can be found in English at the Organization of American States Internet site.

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