1000’s of feminists march in Mexico Metropolis: ‘I’m scared to easily be a girl in Mexico’

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1000’s of ladies took to the streets right here Tuesday, demanding an finish to gender-based killings they are saying are rooted in a tradition of machismo and urging the federal government do extra to guard them.

“Not yet one more assassination!” they chanted as they marched down Paseo de la Reforma, pumping their fists.

A typical signal they carried: “I march as a result of I’m alive and I don’t know for the way lengthy.”

The feminist motion has been gaining ground across Latin America lately. The protest, held on Worldwide Ladies’s Day, centered on femicide — a time period used to explain the killing of ladies due to their gender.

The Mexican authorities logged 1,006 such homicides final 12 months, up from 978 in 2020. Activists say the true numbers are increased.

A 2021 report by Amnesty Worldwide on femicide within the state of Mexico discovered that authorities usually did not conduct assessments to find out whether or not a sufferer had additionally been sexually assaulted, a think about classifying a killing as a femicide.

Adriel Vazquez, 20, marched carrying a white costume that she had stained with pink paint, symbolizing what she described as “the blood that has run by way of Mexico that nobody has paid consideration to.”

“We’re bored with this,” mentioned Vazquez, who research psychology and industrial design on the Nationwide Autonomous College of Mexico. “I’m scared to exit every single day. I’m scared to easily be a girl in Mexico.”

Leslie Garin, a 25-year-old structure pupil on the college, mentioned that she started taking part within the annual marches after a classmate was killed by her boyfriend a number of years in the past.

“This made me understand it’s … not solely a bit of the inhabitants,” she mentioned of lethal violence in opposition to ladies. “I feel we’ve got to struggle for our rights.”

Comparable protests had been held all through Mexico and Latin America. Within the Mexican metropolis of San Miguel de Allende, the water in fountains was dyed pink to signify the blood of ladies who’ve been killed.

In Argentina, the protests got here amid nationwide headlines {that a} 20-year-old lady had been gang-raped final month in Buenos Aires’ fashionable Palermo neighborhood. Elizabeth Gomez Alcorta, the nation’s minister of ladies, gender and variety, tweeted that the boys “aren’t monsters” however individuals who grew up in a sexist tradition.

“It’s your brother, your neighbor, your father, your son, your buddy, your colleague,” she wrote.

Feminist collectives in Mexico have grown more and more confrontational throughout protests lately, with activists vandalizing monuments and buildings.

Within the spring of 2020, a collection of killings in Mexico Metropolis, including the murder of a 7-year-old girl, fueled an enormous protest that led to clashes with police.

Months later, activists stormed the National Human Rights Commission, ripping work of revolutionary heroes off the partitions and masking the facade with anti-police slogans and posters commemorating ladies who had been killed or disappeared.

Within the days earlier than Tuesday’s march in Mexico Metropolis, officers erected limitations in entrance of presidency buildings, together with the nationwide palace, as President Andr´es Manuel López Obrador warned that girls intent on attacking his authorities had been arming themselves with hammers and making ready Molotov cocktails.

“That’s not defending ladies, that’s not even feminism,” he mentioned. “It’s a reactionary conservative place in opposition to us, in opposition to the politics of transformation,” as he calls his administration’s political agenda.

Lots of of feminine police walked alongside the protesters. That didn’t stop activists whose faces had been lined with black material from spray-painting authorities statues with the gender image for ladies.

As soon as the procession reached the Zocalo, the town’s central sq., protesters banged in opposition to steel barricades in entrance of the Nationwide Palace and lighted small bonfires.

“AMLO, don’t be afraid of us!” they shouted, utilizing the president’s initials. “AMLO, you’re a liar! You don’t care about ladies!”

Moms who mentioned their daughters had been killed got microphones to share their testimony.

“You’re not alone,” the viewers chanted.

Activists mentioned their techniques are justified in a rustic the place those that kill ladies are not often held accountable.

“The town appears extra essential than ladies,” mentioned a 24-year-old lady holding a can of spray paint who declined to offer her title.

She motioned to the buildings round her. “Is all of this extra essential than me?”

Particular correspondent Cecilia Sánchez in Mexico Metropolis contributed to this report.

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