Over the past two years, the Trump administrations participation at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights has placed the U.S. alongside National Security Advisor John Bolton’s “troika of tyranny”—Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela.
In 2017, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights determined that marriage equality was a human right. In the face of resistance in the region, in a recent IACHR hearing on the matter, commissioners committed to enforce it.
Since the start of the Trump administration the U.S. participation at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights has started to falter. Its failure to participate threatens to weaken human rights and democracy in the hemisphere.
As many governments are questioning the value of democracy, civil society has emerged as the main force to ensure compliance with democratic principles worldwide. Still, it’s unclear how much influence it can have on November’s G20 Summit in Argentina.
The political and human rights crises in Venezuela and Nicaragua were predictable. It may have been preventable too, if media, multilateral institutions and governments had reacted to the obvious and documented warning signs.