The U.S. State Department has recently released their annual report on International Child Abduction. Below is our eighth post in a series here focusing on the ten countries classified as “demonstrating patterns of noncompliance.” Today's country is Peru.
Country Summary: The Convention has been in force between the United States and Peru since 2007. In 2019, Peru continued to demonstrate a pattern of noncompliance. Specifically, the Peruvian Central Authority regularly failed to fulfill its responsibilities pursuant to the Convention and judicial authorities failed to regularly implement and comply with the provisions of the Convention. As a result of this failure, 45 percent of requests for the return of abducted children under the Convention remained unresolved for more than 12 months. On average, these cases were unresolved for two years and 11 months. Peru was previously cited for demonstrating a pattern of noncompliance in the 2014-2019 Annual Reports.
Initial Inquiries: In 2019, the Department received three initial inquiries from parents regarding possible abductions to Peru for which no completed applications were submitted to the Department.
Significant Developments: In October 2019, Peru's Judicial Authority drafted a judicial protocol intending to expedite Convention cases. As of December 31, 2019, the Peruvian Central Authority reported that the executive branch was still reviewing the protocol, which has not yet been implemented.
Central Authority: There have been serious delays in the processing of cases by the Peruvian Central Authority and a lack of effective communication with the U.S. Central Authority regarding abduction cases, which contributed to a pattern of noncompliance. The Peruvian Central Authority continued to refuse to accept an abduction case, despite an obligation to take all appropriate measures to initiate or facilitate the institution of proceedings under the Convention.
Voluntary Resolution: The Convention states that central authorities “shall take all appropriate measures to secure the voluntary return of the child or to bring about an amicable resolution of the issues.” In 2019, one abduction case was resolved through voluntary means.
Location: The competent authorities regularly took appropriate steps to locate children after a Convention application was filed. The average time to locate a child was 100 days.
Judicial Authorities: There were serious delays by the Peruvian judicial authorities in deciding Convention cases. As a result of these delays, cases may be pending with the judiciary for over one year, contributing to a pattern of noncompliance.
Enforcement: The United States is not aware of any abduction cases in which a judicial order relating to international parental child abduction needed to be enforced by the Peruvian authorities.
Department Recommendations: The Department will continue intense engagement with the Peruvian authorities to address issues of concern.