Chiapas: Organizations and collectives pronounce themselves against the commodification and objectification of women in print

August 17, 2015


Center for Women’s Rights Chiapas A.C.

In a public letter to the director of the General Director of the Diario of Chiapas, Gerardo Toledo Coutiño, several collectives and human-rights organizations denounced the objectification and commodification of women in the media. The specific reason for this declaration was the publication of an image of a woman who had been raped and murdered in the common land of Las Champas, Comalapa border region. The authors stressed that murders of women are not simple criminal acts but a form of specific violence against women, this being the a product of a patriarchal, sexist society. The letter stated that “discourse and images produce and feed a common imaginary about women that needs to be treated with sensitivity in order to avoid reaffirming wrong values or strengthening discrimination against and mercantilization of women […]. To inform about femicides by using images of semi-naked bodies that are terribly degrading represents a form of violence against women and girls.”

The Center for Women’s Rights Chiapas denounced this publication and similar other ones, indicating the moral obligation of the media to protect the rights of male and female citizens as well as to abide by national and international laws on women’s rights. For this reason, the group demanded that Gerardo Toledo follow up its legal request and “change the gender perspective in the police report section of the media whenever women are victims of femicide, or any other kind of violence, as well as eliminate images of semi-naked bodies or dead bodies, since these images contribute neither to freedom of expression nor to the free exercise of journalism but on the contrary only represent violence and sensationalism.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Organizaciones y Colectivos se pronuncian contra la cosificación y la objetivación de las mujeres en medio impreso (Centro de Derechos de la Mujer de Chiapas, 17 de julio de 2015)

National: Activists denounce increase in violence against women

July 19, 2014

Foto (@SiPaz)

Photo (@Sipaz)

Between 9 and 10 July, there was held a meeting in Mexico City among civil-society organizations seeking to relieve the situation of violence and discrimination experienced by women in Mexico, analyze the work that these organizations have carried out in recent years, and above all examine the challenges faced by the State still in advancing toward the guarantee of the full recognition and exercise of women’s rights.

Participants in the event included the UN Expert of the Work Group on Discrimination against Women in Law and in Practice, Alda Facio, and Rashida Manjoo, the UN Special Rapporteur for Violence against Women, the latter operating in a non-official capacity.  Eight years since the publication of their report “Integration of Women’s Human Rights and Gender Perspectives: Violence against Women, Mexico Mission,” the representatives of the Associates for Justice (JASS) stressed that, “If some reforms have been adopted in law, these have not resulted in structural changes, both in terms of prevention through investigation and sanctioning as well as access to a life free of violence.”  In effect, on this occasion it was recalled that Mexico has ratified the “Convention for the Elimination of Discrimination against Women” (CEDAW), an international instrument to recognize the human rights of women, while there remain “many practices and policies that in effect favor and even deepen discrimination,” noted the JASS activists.

Finally, those at the event denounced the increase in violence against women in all their manifestations: impunity, the gravity of forced disappearance, sexual crimes, attacks against female human-rights defenders and journalists, the generalized increase in gender discrimination and inequality, particularly for poor, indigenous, and migrant women.  In this way, conference-goers called on the Mexican State forthrightly to adopt comprehensive policies to arrest the structural violence experienced by women.

In light of this context, the Special Rapporteur declared that gender violence is “the most generalized violation of human rights that we confront today,” explaining that “the lack of comprehension of gender violence is a barrier to the exercise of all human rights by women themselves.”

For more information (in Spanish):

A 8 años de publicado informe sobre derechos humanos de las mujeres en México, regresa Relatora Especial sobre la Violencia contra la Mujer de la ONU (PRODESC, 8 de julio de 2014)

Responsabilidad del Estado Mexicano ante la CEDAW (JASS, 7 de julio de 2014)

La violencia hacia las mujeres “es la violación a DH más generalizada”: Relatora ONU (Sididh, 10 de julio de 2014)

Integración de los Derechos Humanos de la Mujer y la Perspectiva de Género: la violencia contra la mujer. Misión a México (CINU, 13 de enero de 2006)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

National: the Mexican government does not comply with the recommendations of the Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) (23 June 2014)

Oaxaca: Every other day a woman is killed in the state (12 June 2014)

Oaxaca: the Mexican state with the highest number of attacks on women human rights defenders and journalists (10 June 2014)

Guerrero: Harassment and attacks on individuals and organizations in favor of the decriminalization of abortion and the right to decide (12 June 2014)

Chiapas/Oaxaca: Commemoration of femicides during Day of the Dead

November 13, 2013


Photo @Popular Campaign against Violence against Women and Femicide in Chiapas

Due to the alarming number of femicides that has taken place in the state, activists and different organizations which form part of the Popular Campaign against Violence against Women and Femicide in Chiapas organized different activities and set up an altar in San Cristóbal de Las Casas. On the altar was collected white crosses made of paper to denounce the violent deaths and femicides of more than 80 women this year, a statistic that places the state of Chiapas fifth among other Mexican states in terms of the number of femicides.

In Oaxaca City, there was offered bread, fruit, flowers, liquor, and candles on an altar that was installed aside a Oaxacan university to commemorate the women who have been killed in Oaxaca and throughout the country.  Prayers were offered for female victims of violence, “recalling their names, their ages, their work, their successes, who it was who attacked them, and what the status is of their legal processes,” as Daniela Ramírez explained, a member of the International Diplomat in Studies of Women and the Group on Femicide in the Republic.

Presented just a few days ago, the report “From survivors to defenders: Women who confront violence in Mexico, Honduras, and Guatemala,” as compiled by the Initiative of Nobel Prize Winning Women, warns that the problem of femicide and violation of human rights in Mexico has reached “crisis” levels.  The report notes that in Mexico 6.4 women are killed per day, with 95% of these crimes going unpunished, according to data from the report and the UN.

For more information (in Spanish):

Recuerdan a mujeres víctimas de feminicidio en Chiapas (Reporte ciudadano, 4 de noviembre de 2013)

En recuerdo de las muertas por la barbarie de los machos en Oaxaca (NSS Oaxaca, 1 de noviembre de 2013)

Exigen “ni una muerta más” en el país (Educa Oaxaca, 4 de noviembre de 2013)

Crecen 40% feminicidios en México (Diario de Oaxaca, 4 de noviembre de 2013)

Feminicidios alcanzan nivel de “crisis” en México: Informe de premios Nobel; cada día asesinan a 6.4 mujeres (Sin Embargo, 4 de noviembre de 2013)

For more information from SIPAZ (in English):

Chiapas/Oaxaca: Marches against violence against women and femicide (26 October 2013)

Chiapas: Careful, patriarchy kills! Presentation of the “Campaign against violence against women and femicide in Chiapas” (3 October 2013)

Chiapas: Women declare alert over gender violence (20 July 2013)

Chiapas: Increase in feminicide and State Accord for Gender Equality (22 April 2013)

Chiapas: Colem Group of Women take action against feminicide (19 October 2012)


Chiapas: International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women

December 3, 2009

The United Nations has declared November 25th “International Day for Elimination of Violence Against Women”. This date was chosen in commemoration of the brutal assassination of the three Marabal sisters under the Trujillo regime in the Dominican Republic in 1960.

Rashida Manjoo, the UN’s Special Rapporteur on violence against women, affirmed that “all women have the right to live free of violence” and called for the States to assume the responsibility to end violence in the lives of women. On the eve of the day, Ban Ki-moon, the secretary general of the UN, announced that “at some point in their lives 70 percent of the world’s women suffer from physical or sexual aggression on the part of a man, who in the majority of cases is the husband, partner, or someone the woman knows. This is unacceptable.”

Women from independent organizations, indigenous women, members of The Other Campaign, syndicates, and international women all marched in the streets of San Cristobal de las Casas in Chiapas to call attention to the violent situations from which women continue to suffer.

During a meeting in the city’s center one woman said, “Today we remember the heroic, dignified and rebellious fight; this is a day of reflection and of anger and denunciation of the different forms of violence that we suffer as women.”

The public declaration by the organizers of the march stated, “We call to the women and men of both country and city to resist in a civil and peaceful manner, and to build alternatives that are equal across gender, class, and ethnicity in terms of economy, nutrition, education, sanitary, and security.”

For more information (in Spanish):

Pronunciamiento politico organizaciones en Chiapas

Indymedia Chiapas (26 de noviembre de 2009)

Hacen recuento de los atropellos contra mujeres (La Jornada, 26 de noviembre)

Informe presentado a CIDH sobre la violencia institucional contra las mujeres en México (noviembre de 2009)

Oaxaca: event against feminicide

April 27, 2009

On April 17, in Oaxaca City, more than 20 organizations protested the killing of women and called for an investigation into the ongoing feminicide in Oaxaca. During a press conference, the attending organizations demanded justice for the murdered women. According to the press release, during this year there have been “13 killings in Oaxaca” and “impunity continues in Oaxaca”. They demanded that “the attorney general’s office immediately begin an investigation into the killing of women” as well as put a stop to “the machismo (sexism) which permeates the government and continues claiming the lives of women”.

They denounced that “according to the report on Violence Against Women in Oaxaca by the Federal House of Deputies, Oaxaca is second place in the number of killings of women and children. 549 women were killed in the last 10 years. According to the official statistics, on average almost 5 women (4.8) are killed each month in Oaxaca.”

Finally, the organizations signed a declaration which “urges the implementation of a law dealing with violence against women”.

Interview with Laura Jiménez García of Consorcio (In Spanish):

For More Information (In Spanish):

Boletín de prensa, Consorcio (17/04/2009)

“En Oaxaca asesinan a 1 mujer cada 8 días, consignan los medios”, El Sur (17/04/2009)