A solidarity action with women in Mexico has taken place in the Hague. Early in the morning of Feb 25, we marked the Mexican embassy with red paint, symbolizing the blood of the countless women that have been murdered.
In Mexico, an average of 10 women are killed every day, which is an increase of 3 compared to 7 per day in 2017, according to the Mexico office of UN Women. Mexico has the second highest rate of trans women being murdered in the world and sex-workers are also disproportionately targeted.
The murders of a 25-year-old woman and a 7-year-old girl in Mexico City have shocked the nation this month. Ingrid, 25, was stabbed, skinned, eviscerated and photos of her mutilated body were published in a newspaper. The girl, Fátima, was abducted from school, police officers delayed searching for her and later her body was found wrapped in a plastic bag.
These murders have triggered a rise of near-daily street protests, disruption of public services, fury on social media and demands for government actions against femicides -the crime of killing women or girls because of their gender-.
However, president Andrés Manuel López Obrador does not know how to respond to the issue and shows little patience for those who questioned him about the government’s commitment to fighting gender-based violence. In Mexico City, not much is done either. The government is more focused on cleaning graffities demanding justice and on using the police force to face women protesters, rather than acknowledging that the authorities are passive, complicit or even abusive toward women who try to report violence.
Met with such obstacles and forced to fend for themselves, women in Mexico do what they can to protect their own life and the lives of women around them. They are forming groups to demand justice and learn self-defense, to question long-held macho culture and to push the government into action.
Women are the ones who continue pointing out that the government, media and all other patriarchal institutions have an outstanding debt to them, a historical debt. This dept consists of a lot of damage that needs compensation and the guarantee of non-repetition. Until this dept is paid, women will fight for the dignity of all, for calling their names without violence or sorrow.