06/09/11 – Mexican President Felipe Calderón signed an amendment to enact human rights reforms that will modify 11 articles of the constitution in order to be consistent with international commitments previously made by Mexico. Human rights reform has been a topic of discussion for over three years and was finally confirmed to move forward by the Senate and the House of Representative in March 2011. The reforms will allow the National Human Rights Commission (Comisión Nacional de Derechos Humanos, CNDH) to investigate serious violations of human rights and bring them in front of the Supreme Court of Justice. It will also allow anyone to challenge the constitutionality of federal and local laws that might violate the rights of any Mexican citizens as well as force authorities to go before the legislative bodies to give their side of the story for not respecting or complying with the new reforms. Article 33 was also reformed to recognize the right to hear a foreigner who is in the process of being deported.
Navi Pillay, United Nations High Commissioner, praised the reforms laid out by President Calderón and said that these they will “lay the groundwork for further promotion and protection of human rights.” A U.N. representative added that this is the first time that a reform in Mexico has recognized all of the human rights laid out by international treaties ratified by the country and will ultimately help Mexico “cope with the challenges that it is facing today.”