In observance of 25 November, the International Day for the elimination of violence against women, activists and human-rights defenders in the state of Oaxaca created the State Network of Female Activists and Human-Rights Defenders in Oaxaca, with the objective of articulating responsibilities for actions and omissions on the part of the state. Oaxaca is the state with highest number of aggressions against female human-rights defenders in the country, as the Network has denounced. According to data from the National Network of Human-Rights Defenders in Mexico, as of November 2012, Oaxaca has registered a total of 19 aggressions against female rights-defenders this year, including an attack against a female journalist.
On 23 November, in the city of Oaxaca de Juárez, there was celebrated the Festival for Life and Non-Violence toward Women, an event that formed part of the popular campaign of citizens’ participation “For our rights, we act now!” organized by the Civil Space of Oaxaca. The activities included dance, music, poetry, art, and a space of storytelling for children. During this event was read the Declaration of the First Meeting of Female Activists and Human-Rights Defenders in Oaxaca, which stresses that “We know that the actions that we carry out to demand respect for human rights and so as not to remain silent before the injustices, impunity, and abuses of power, situates us in a state of vulnerability, implying risks that are not just personal but also directed against our families and organizational processes.” The document indicates that “the authors of said aggressions are the federal, state, municipal, communal, and private corporate authorities, including caciques, a situation that places us at great risk, given that our struggle is against a system that we all dream of changing. We desire a world in which the defense of human rights be a real right, one that guarantees security everywhere and at all times of our lives.” The document concludes, “we find the state government of Oaxaca and the federal government to be responsible for the life and physical and psychological security of our comrades Bettina Cruz Velázquez, Reynalda Cid, and the members of the group 8 of March.”
During the six-year term of Ulises Ruíz Ortiz, 283 murders were registered against women. During what has passed of the administration of Gabino Cué Monteagudo, 169 women have been killed in Oaxaca. The Sub-Prosecutor for Crimes against Women for Reasons of Gender indicates that from January to October 2012 62 crimes have been committed against women, but according to data from civil organizations, a total of 69 murders of women have been observed.
For more information (in Spanish):
Crean Red Estatal de mujeres activistas y Defensoras de Derechos Humanos (Quadratín, 25 de noviembre de 2012)
Declaración del “Primer Encuentro de Mujeres Activistas y Defensoras de Derechos Humanos de Oaxaca (Consorcio para el diálogo parlamentario y la equidad Oaxaca, 26 de noviembre de 2012)
Denuncian que Oaxaca es el peor estado para defensoras de derechos (Excelsior, 25 de noviembre de 2012)
Espacio Civil invita al Festival por la Vida y la Noviolencia Hacia las Mujeres (Comité de Defensa Integral de Derechos Humanos Gobixha-Codigodh, 20 de noviembre de 2012)
For more information from SIPAZ (in English):
Oaxaca: “Totally indignant!” activities in observance of the International Day of Non-Violence toward Women (28 November 2011)
Oaxaca: Harassment and robbery of offices of Consorcio (14 November 2011)
Demand for end to feminicide in Oaxaca (8 September 2011)