Mr. Diego García-Sayán, Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers
Mr. Diego García-Sayán was appointed Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers in December 2016. Mr. García-Sayán was a judge of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights for two consecutive terms. During his tenure, he was elected Vice-President of the Court (2008-2009) and President of the Court for two consecutive terms (2009-2013). Some of the significant achievements of his 4-year Presidency include having increased the Court’s efficiency (32% of the rulings since the Court’s inception in 1979 occurred during this 4-year period), boosting the organization’s income by over 50% in order to fund its budget, and holding the first public hearing of the Court in a CARICOM Country (Barbados). During this period the Court issued several landmark rulings related to women’s rights in contexts of violence, discrimination, and access to public information, among others.
Mr. García-Sayán has broad experience working for multilateral organizations such as the United Nations and the Organization of American States. Among other, he was: Representative of the UN Secretary-General for the Peace Agreements at El Salvador and for the subsequent verification of the agreements reporting directly to the Security Council; member and Chairperson of the UN Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances during several years; member of the Redesign Panel on the United Nations System of Administration of Justice, appointed by the UN Secretary-General in 2006; Head of the Electoral Mission of the Organisation of American States (OAs) in Guatemala during the general elections (2007).
Mr. García-Sayán was Minister of Justice during the democratic transition in Peru and Minister of Foreign Affairs proposing and promoting the Inter-American Democratic Charter adopted on 11 September 2001 by the General Assembly of the OAS which he presided. He was also President of the High Level Commission to design and implement the Museum of Memory, Tolerance and Social Inclusion in Peru, inaugurated in December 2015.
Mr. García-Sayán successfully performed public roles in critical situations demonstrating his ability to identify strategic issues and lead change and democratic transition processes in complex contexts such as internal conflicts and authoritarian regimes. He is the author of several books on international law and development. Finally, he has experience in high level diplomatic and policy negotiations on international peace, security and inclusive development.