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Amnesty International denounces the police aggression in the feminist demonstrations in Mexico


The NGO demands that the Government of López Obrador protect the right of free assembly and denounces the tactics of repression and police threats in several states

A feminist demonstration ends in a police charge on September 28 in Mexico City.CARLOS JASSO / Reuters

Amnesty International has recognized the practices of violence and abuse against women by the Mexican police.

The NGO has analyzed in a report published this Wednesday five demonstrations in Mexico that occurred during 2020 to conclude that the authorities have violated the human rights of women during the protests.

The document denounces arbitrary detentions, threats, intimidation, stigma and even sexual violence.

Amnesty International has demanded that the Government of Mexico guarantee the right of free assembly for women to demonstrate and that those who decide to protest in a country where 10 women die a day be protected.

The document was presented a few days before 8-M, which represents a day of feminist mobilizations throughout the country.

The president of Mexico has referred to the date in his morning conference to say that the demonstrations will not be prohibited as long as they are peaceful.

On November 10, more than 20,000 women gathered in Cancun to protest the three femicides that occurred in the State of Quintana Roo during that weekend.

The protesters marched through the resort town, burning some planks and breaking some windows.

Before they could enter the Municipal Palace, a group of police officers opened fire on the women to break up the march.

Cecilia Solís, a journalist who was covering the demonstration, was shot in the leg and assured that it was not an accident, since the policemen deliberately targeted them.

"The agents arrived with the clubs and began to beat the girls.

One of the police officers comes up to me and says: 'He took the hell out of you, asshole.'

I tell him I'm from the press, but he doesn't believe me, ”Solís told El PAÍS.

The NGO report notes that eight people who were “demonstrating peacefully” were also detained, seven of them women.

Two of these people were injured in the head, without receiving the necessary medical attention.

The eight people were “preventatively secured” and transferred to the Quintana Roo State Attorney General's Office and later to the Public Security Secretariat of the Municipality of Benito Juárez, without having been presented to any competent authority, nor had they received medical certification. , according to the NGO.

"During the arrests and transfers of the women detainees, several women and girls suffered physical violence of different kinds, as well as threats and verbal abuse based on gender stereotypes," the report denounces.

On August 22 in León, Guanajuato, several women participated in a demonstration to demand justice in the case of Evelyn, a woman who reported being a victim of sexual violence by local police officers.

The authorities broke up the demonstration and several women filed complaints about the abuses committed by the uniformed men.

One of the detainees assured that one of them told her: "If you don't shut up, I'm going to break your mother, I'm going to punch you".

The protesters suffered verbal attacks related to the slogans of the march such as: “Now who the hell is going to help you?

Who is going to come take care of you, you bastard? "

Another protester recounted how the police officers told her that she should run together with them to get her into the patrol car and as she did not run fast they told her: "I told you to run, you fucking mother daughter."

Later they beat him in the ribs and neck, according to the Amnesty International document.

The organization denounces that several protesters suffered threats of rape, sexual intimidation, sexual harassment, touching, threats of forced nudity and even rape.

The researcher Ariadna Tovar, who participated in the preparation of the report, assures that the document demonstrates the use of violence against women in a systematic way in Mexico by the authorities.

"We document sexual harassment by the police and failure to help the police when the harassment was committed by other detainees together with the women," he highlighted at a press conference.

Libertad Reyes, a young woman who went there to help her fellow detainees, was apprehended by the police when she was taking the names of the detained protesters to notify their families.

"They told us all the time that they were going to undress us, that they were going to beat us," he said at the press conference with a broken voice.

“I received a very strong and direct threat from an officer, as well as violent.

I was very scared and didn't know if I was going to get out of there alive ”, she recalled.

They released her the next morning and saw the harassment on social networks of people who pointed to her for her feminist cause with intimidation.

“From that day on the tranquility moved away from me.

The strongest thing was seeing my photo of the disappeared person on social networks ”, he declared.

In Ecatepec, in the State of Mexico, a group of women occupied the headquarters of the entity's Human Rights Commission (CODHEM) on September 10 and 11 of last year.

They demanded progress in the investigations into human rights violations by civil servants, who were identified as responsible for negligence in cases of violence against minors.

The authorities detained several women who were “demonstrating peacefully”, including people between the ages of 12 and 17, “without a court order”.

The Prosecutor's Office used "unnecessary and arbitrary force" against those who protested, throwing heavy objects at them to disperse and persecute them even after they had already dispersed, according to Amnesty International.

“This is extremely serious because many protesters said that they were afraid of being victims of disappearance, something not unusual in Mexico, language was also played to create this perception.

It is torture because it generates serious suffering authorized by the State authorities to punish the protesters for the simple act of demonstrating ”.

Priscila Salas is a young woman who on September 10 went out to protest in Culiacán (Sinaloa) because Liliana Pimentel Villalobos, the attorney for the protection of children and adolescents of the Integral Family Development System (DIF), justified the femicides of two adolescents 14 and 16 years old saying they were "unruly girls."

Salas went out to march towards the City Hall and, seeing the police, who had “a bad attitude” towards the protesters, decided to go home.

The agents chased her.

“They started looking for us in the streets, the women who were going to demonstrate and we didn't.

A patrol stopped us, they got out, yelled curses at us and detained us.

They took our cell phones from us and they didn't tell us why they were detaining us or where they were taking us ”, he recalled.

"We did not even get to demonstrate," insists Chambers who assures that the authorities took them through unknown and dark routes to intimidate them.

The report states that the crimes committed by the local authorities involve various human rights violations.

"Gender-based violence against women, including sexual violence, continues to be used by the authorities as a way to inhibit the exercise of women's right to peaceful assembly and as a sobering mechanism," the document reads.

The organization recalls that rape is a form of torture and that the Mexican State has made "minimal progress" in the adoption and implementation of specific and effective measures against gender violence.

Demonstrating in Mexico is a situation of particular risk for women, according to Amnesty International, who demands that the government take measures to protect the rights of feminists to assemble peacefully without being subjected to police abuse.

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Source: elparis

All news articles on 2021-03-03

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