On 6 January, the organization Justice for Our Daughters released a bulletin regarding the high number of feminicides experienced in the state of Chihuahua in 2010. The bulletin discussed the “historic record” of 446 feminicides in said state, noting that a woman was killed every 20 hours last year. “2010 has been the most violent year for the women of Chihuahua,” declared Norma Ledezma, coordinator of Justice for Our Daughters. The municipality of Ciudad Juárez continues to suffer the highest levels of violence: 306 of the 446 feminicides that were committed originated from this city, thus representing 69% of the total. The organization demands justice for each case of intentional homicide committed against the women of the state of Chihuahua. Julia Monárrez Fragosa, sociologist and investigator at the School of the Northern Border, declared in an interview with feminicidio.net that “feminicide is practically a pandemic in Ciudad Juárez but also in other parts of Mexico, such as Oaxaca, the state of Mexico, and Central America.” The magazine Contralinea indicates that the concept of “feminicide” is absent from Mexican law. “Specialists recognize that the term is only just now becoming a political category, product of feminist theory, that different organizations have employed to denounce the murders against women inspired by a ‘discriminatory and misogynist’ culture,” claims the article regarding the rise in feminicides from said magazine.
In other news, with 20 votes in favor, 11 against, and 2 abstentions, the National System to Prevent, Attend, Sanction, and Eradicate Violence against Women (SNPASEVM) refused to declare an alert regarding gender violence in the state of Mexico regarding cases of feminicide. The Citizens’ Observatory of the Rights of Women, in a communiqué from 12 January, declare that “this determination was realized while ignoring all the international agreements on the human rights of women and the conventions that Mexico has signed regarding this question [...].” The request to publish a gender alert was made by the Citizens’ National Observatory on Feminicide and the Mexican Commission on Defense and Promotion of Women’s Human Rights. The petition contains data from the Attorney General’s Office in the state of Mexico which report 4773 denunciations of rape during a period of one and a half years as well as 922 intentional homicides against women committed between January 2005 and August 2010. Additionally the data show a high percentage of impunity in the cases of feminicide.
In light of the negative response made by SNPASEVM, human-rights organizations declared that they would launch an appeal. In a press-conference, Maria de la Luz Estrada Mendoza, executive coordinator of the Citizens’ National Observatory on Feminicide, denounced that the system of prevention has trivialized feminicide in the state of Mexico, which according to the Citizens’ Observatory and the Mexican Commission of Defense and Promotion of Human Rights have risen to 922 between 2005 and 2010. She rejected the idea that the petition regarding gender-alert is meant to impugn governor Peña Nieto. “We do this because the state of Mexico represents a red alert regarding feminicide in the country,” she said. According to NGOs, Chihuahua and the state of Mexico are the regions in which most feminicides take place. In the same press-conference, specialists Lourdes Enríquez, fromt he Coordination of Sexual and Reproductive Rights from the University Program of Gender Studies from the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and Alicia Elena Pérez Duarte, former prosecutor of crimes against women from the Federal Attorney General’s Office, lamented the lack of implementation of national and international norms to eradicate violence against women in the case when the Inter-American Court on Human Rights sentenced Mexico with regard to the case of Campo Algodonero in Ciudad Juárez and in that of the two indigenous women sexually abused by soldiers in Guerrero. For his part, Enrique Peña Nieto assured that the state of Mexico is not the entity in which is registered the highest number of feminicides in the country, so that, as he said, there are no grounds to declare a gender alert, as demanded by civil organizations.
For more information (in Spanish):
Gender alert is denied for feminicides in the state of México (Observatorio Ciudadano de los Derechos de las Mujeres, 12 January)
Feminicide on the rise in Mexico (Contralinea, 4 April 2010)
Ciudad Juárez is a modern necropolis (22 December 2010)
NGOs will launch appeal in light of refusal to declare gender alert (La Jornada, 14 January)
Peña Nieto scorns suggestion to release alert against feminicide; political interests in shadows (La Jornada, 14 January)
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):
Guerrero – briefs – Tierra Caliente is second-highest national location in number of feminicides; SCJN will analyze recommendations of the Inter-American Court in the case of Radilla (14 September 2010)