Alfredo Martínez Moreno, Honorary Member of IHLADI, passed away in El Salvador last Saturday night at the age of 98. Dr. Martínez Moreno was one of the great Ibero-American jurists. The adjective jurist, however, is an understatement. A multifaceted and renaissance man, he showed himself to us in diverse profiles, as an academic, diplomat and writer.
In the academic field, Dr. Martínez Moreno carried out an intense teaching work in International Law and Integration Law.
As a jurist and diplomat, he reached the highest magistracies, presiding over the Supreme Court of Justice and holding the post of Minister of Foreign Affairs of El Salvador. He represented his country in the most important international forums and organizations, and left an indelible mark as a member of the U.N. International Law Commission and as Chairman of the Second Committee of the Seabed Conference, where he earned the nickname of “the hero of Geneva” for his ability to reach consensus in such a controversial subject as the regime of international straits.
His vocation and action as a linguist should not be forgotten. It is not in vain that Dr. Martínez Moreno directed the Salvadoran Academy of Language for almost forty years and was the author of a remarkable literary work.
He left many lessons of criteria and good work in the meetings and congresses of the IHLADI. When a twenty-year-old Martínez Moreno maintained the illegitimacy of the Chinese invasion of Tibet, the New York Times recognized that this young Salvadoran had saved the decorum of the UN, then an incipient institution. Of course, that young man lost neither decorum nor integrity for the rest of his fortunately long life.