Letters to US Dept. of State – Kennedy 5/14/14

The rhetoric of Under Secretary Kennedy of the US Department of State belies the reality of the failure of Consulates to utilize the Convention of Consular Relations to protect the rights and interests of Americans living abroad  





See more videos of Maria Jose… Remembering that her case is not ‘isolated’, but representative of what happens to the wives of abusers who take advantage of negligence and corruption in the courts to continue harassing their victims



May 14, 2014

RE: American Victims of Domestic Violence Living Abroad & the Obligation of the US Government to Protect Under International Law

Dear Under Secretary Kennedy,

I am once again contacting you regards to my ongoing case against the Spanish government for human rights violations, which due to Spanish regulatory agencies systematic and extensive refusal to investigate allegations of the cover-up for human rights violations by judicial actors in Spanish judicial proceedings (as documented by Amnesty International & Save the Children, inter alia) elevates these crimes to crimes against humanity as defined by the art. 7 of the Roma Statute of the International Criminal Courts (art. 7–murder, rape, torture, enslavement, imprisonment, persecution of a group, or other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health… when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack).

The continual refusal of the American Consulate in Madrid & US Department of State in Washington, DC to comply with §71.1 and §10.735–215 of CFR 22, 2715a, 71.6, 3904(1) of 22 USC, 7 FAM (1700’s & 1900’s), and utilize their prerogatives under the Convention of Consular Relations, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and Declaration of Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime & Abuse of Power, inter alia in order to fulfill their ‘obligation to protect’ Americans living abroad, victims of domestic violence, legal abuse and violation of rights within Spanish courts renders them complicit to the human rights violations of the Spanish government under their omission of action.

The continual refusal of the US Department of State to provide assistance under the aforementioned, claiming that they may not comply with my requests for assistance due to their inability to “intervene in private legal matters of US citizens in foreign courts” is erroneous under the following:

  • Domestic violence and the failure of a government to protect is a human rights violation not a “private legal matter” – Inter-American Commission of Human Rights, Gonzales vs. USA, 2011
  • The double standard of US Department of State officials, and de facto discrimination against women, which claims that domestic violence, the failure of a State to protect, and illegal acts by judicial actors in relation to divorce, division of assets and custodial decisions of foreign nationals are “private legal matters”, but women & children who flee a host country in fear of their lives, sexual abuse, physical violence, and/or psychological torture are criminal acts for which women may, and are, increasingly incarcerated with the active assistance of State Department & US government officials in the capture of said victims

The refusal of State Department civil servants and officials to implement federal guidelines and directives, as well as international law & State Department rhetoric, into their actions parallels and mimics the failure of legal professions and judicial actors to integrate domestic violence & anti-discrimination against women legislation and jurisprudence into their case management and argumentation of individual case during divorce proceedings & related litigation.  The crux of the problem in the ‘failure to protect’ is the refusal of lawyers & judges to utilize and/or implement laws and legal principles that defend and protect the rights of women – while applying favoritism for men in judicial decisions & argumentations. This is why at present the concentration of governments should, and must be, transparency & accountability of judicial actors who are breaking the law.  

As stated by Michelle Bachelet, Executive Director of UN Women state “The shortcomings [in failing to protect victims of domestic violence] are not in the vision, voices and the voluminous efforts undertaken by determined women around the world. No, the shortcomings lie elsewhere—in the lack of political prioritization… Now is the time for governments to translate international promises into concrete national action….”

In light of the afore mentioned, I am hereby, once again requesting that the US Department of State translate their promises into concrete action, by assuring that the American Embassy in Madrid utilize its prerogatives under the Convention of Consular Relations, Universal Declaration of Human Rights, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and Declaration of Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime & Abuse of Power in officially requesting that appropriate Spanish authorities investigate my allegations against implicated judicial actors whose actions and/or omissions of actions resulted in the violation of my and/or my children’s rights, and whose actions, and/or omissions of actions, constitute penal offenses under Spanish law.

I hope that the US Department of State will reconsider, and rescind, its policy of non-compliance with §71.1 and §10.735–215 of CFR 22, 2715a, 71.6, 3904(1) of 22 USC, 7 FAM (1700’s & 1900’s), and the Convention of Consular Relations, inter alia in defending the rights of American victims of domestic abuse living abroad, and whose rights have been violated by host countries judicial systems, in violation of international law, as well as the host’s countries national law.

If American Consulates around the world would systematically comply with CFR 22, 22 USC, and 7 FAM, and utilize their prerogatives under the Convention of Consular Relations, inter alia, judicial actors within receiving states would not so overtly and flagrantly violate the rights of American women & children, under the fear and knowledge that American Consulates would assure that these actors are held accountable for their illegal actions, and/or omissions of actions. In this way the American government, and US Department of State, would be able to:

  • fulfill their ‘obligation to protect’ under international law
  • assure transparency & accountability in judicial systems around the world
  • promote democracy & democratic principles around the world
  • effectively combat violence & discrimination against women & children around the world,

instead of the present situation, in which the US government is complicit to human rights violations of American women & children by foreign government.

Please find enclosed a copy of my letters to Ambassador Costos in Madrid and my official complaint to the Spanish Defensor del Pueblo.

Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. If you should have any questions, I may be contacted at my email, quenby@global-xpats.com.


Quenby Wilcox

Founder – Global Expats

Founder – Safe Child International

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