Violence Persists Against Women in Mexico
Tuesday, December 16, 2008 10:23 AM

A caravan promoting women’s rights commenced in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, earlier this month, where more than 600 women have been murdered since 1993. The group of over 200 human rights activists journeyed to Chiapas in southern Mexico to bring attention to the problem of femicide in Mexico.

Even after ample international media attention, murders are still occurring along the U.S.-Mexico border. On 25 November 2008, almost 20 people, mostly men, were murdered in Ciudad Juarez, and more than 1,400 people have been murdered in that city this year.

The National Citizens' Femicide Watch (OCNF), a Mexican coalition of 43 civil and human rights organizations, released a report (Spanish, PDF, 118 pages) finding that 1,014 women were killed in 13 Mexican states from January 2007 to July 2008, and over 8,100 women were murdered between 2000 and mid-summer 2008. Some of the murders fall in the category of “systematic sexual femicide,” others are victims of intimate partner violence or violence by family members, and some are children femicides. According to the OCNF report, almost 43 percent of the 1,014 victims across the country were between the ages of 21 and 40, and close to 14 percent were between 11 and 20 years.

OCNF recommends the creation of state and federal juridical bodies to investigate the femicides in an expedited timeframe. The report also notes that the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) recommended in its Sixth Periodic Report that the Penal Code be amended to include femicide as a crime. Formal and informal education on gender equity must take place, as well. The report also recommended that the federal government create a public national femicide information database. Finally, the coalition recommended periodic reviews of militarized zones by national and international human rights groups, which the report states is part of the culture of violence which leads to femicide.

Compiled from: Mexico - Pain and Protest - Violence Persists Against Women in Mexico, Frontera NorteSur, 2 December 2008; Mendoza Aguilar, Gardenia, Alarmante cifra de crímenes contra la mujer, La Opinion, 25 November 2008; Una Mirada del Femicidio en Mexico: 2007-2008, Observatorio Ciudadano Nacional del Feminicidio (Spanish, PDF, 118 pages).