MEXICO CITY – Hundreds of women marched Thursday on Mexico City’s streets calling for an end to sexual violence, coinciding with the anniversary of earthquakes that struck on Sept. 19, 1985 and 2017.
The “Feminist Earthquake” march, which began at the central Monument to the Revolution, was named after the victims of sexual violence and those affected by the two earthquakes – during which the Mexican capital was among the cities that suffered the most damages.
“If we have to make the entire planet tremble we will do it,” said Enoe Uranga, spokesperson of the march and lawmaker of the Party of the Democratic Revolution (PRD), which has been at the forefront of the feminist movement.
Uranga said the march was called to express their outrage at the state of affairs concerning gender-based violence.
Claudia Sheinbaum, Mexico City’s mayor, has been holding discussions with feminist groups and launched an action plan to prevent assaults on women in the face of the increasing wave of rapes and femicide in the capital.
However, Uranga said that discussions were organized solely by the government, who decided with whom it was going to hold talks and that “(negotiating) tables aren’t spaces where a problem integral to a country where girls are raped and dismembered can be solved.”
The march went past the emblematic Paseo de la Reforma to the Angel of Independence, where on Aug. 16 another feminist demonstration caused damages.
On this occasion, in which the demonstrators were mothers of women murdered or missing in Mexico City, the march was peaceful and concluded with the reading of a manifesto under heavy rain.
Maria del Carmen, mother of Pamela Gallardo – who disappeared in 2017 – explained that, for her, “this is support from (the feminist women) to keep looking for Pame.”
She said that despite it being a case still under investigation, “it is not being carried out as it should be.”
In a country that suffers the highest number of femicides in Latin America, with 10 women killed every day and two rapes an hour, the feminist movement called for immediate justice in the face of an obvious crisis of widespread violence.
They blame Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s government, who they say has been unable to stop it.
On Aug. 16 another demonstration was called in the central Glorieta de Insurgentes roundabout in Mexico City to draw attention to the recent cases of rapes by the capital’s police.
Four days before the violent Aug. 16 protests, came another march for the same reasons, in which some minor damages were caused at the headquarters of the Public Prosecutor’s Office – which Sheinbaum called a “provocation.”
On July 10, Aug. 3 and Aug. 8, three cases of rape were reported – among them of a minor – allegedly committed by police officers in Mexico City, resulting in protests calling for accountability and justice.