The extradition of Fujimori: an important step towards justice

Press release
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The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), its member league in Chile, la Corporation de Promotion y Defensa de los Derechos del Pueblo (CODEPU) and its member leagues in Peru, L’Asociacion pro Derechos Humanos (APRODEH), and le Centro de Asesoria Laboral del Peru (CEDAL) welcome the decision of the Supreme Court of Chile to extradite Mr Alberto Fujimori to Peru. We believe that the effect of this historic decision goes beyond Latin America and symbolises the potential success of cooperation between states aiming to put an end to the impunity from which heads of state and governments that have committed crimes against humanity, grave human rights violations and/or corruption too often benefit.

Through this decision, Chile is respecting its international human rights obligations. We recall that Mr Alberto Fujimori is wanted in relation to crimes of homicide, serious attacks on physical integrity, enforced disappearances and aggravated abduction relating to, inter alia, the "La Cantuta" and "Barrios Altos-Sotanos Del Servicio De Inteligencia Del Ejercito (SIE)" episodes.

The decision of the Supreme Court in favour of extradition also sees Chile conform to the decision of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in the case of "La Cantuta", in which the Court insisted on the fact that "interstate cooperation constitutes a duty for the international community in order to eradicate impunity. Access to justice is an essential norm of international law and, as such, it creates obligations erga omnes. [1] [States] are required to adopt measures to guarantee that violations are not left unpunished, whether those measures exercise domestic or international jurisdiction that will judge and, eventually, appropriately sanction those responsible, be it alone or in cooperation with other states acting in pursuit of the same goal" [2].

The Criminal Division of the Chilean High Court has therefore rectified the previous decision pronounced by the Supreme Court Judge, Justice Orlando Alvarez, head of the Fujimori case since the latter’s detention in Chile in 2005. Justice Alvarez rejected calls for the extradition of the former dictator on 11 July 2007, despite the positive assessment of conviction by the Supreme Court Prosecutor, Ms Maldonado.

FIDH and its member leagues call upon the Government of Chile to act without delay upon the Court’s decision and call upon it to hand Alberto Fujimori over to Peruvian authorities. We urge the Government of Peru to ensure that the former dictator is judged by an impartial and independent tribunal, one that guarantees fair trial standards and which respects the right of Fujimori’s victims to truth, justice and reparations. Given the gravity of the crimes with which he is charged, it is essential that Fujimori is detained in a high security prison. FIDH and its member leagues also call on the Government of Peru to guarantee the personal security of victims and other individuals involved in judicial proceedings against Mr Fujimori.


Alberto Fujimori was President of Peru from 28 July 1990 to 19 November 2000, presiding over an authoritarian regime. Fujimori fled Peru in 2000 to seek safety in Japan following the revelation of a financial scandal. According to the report of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which was established following his flight, 2,113 people died or disappeared during Fujimori’s regime.

Fujimori was detained by Chilean authorities on 7 November 2005 upon arriving in that country. Peru submitted a request for his extradition on 3 January 2006.

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