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By KELIN DILLON

In an interview with El Universal, Érika Guevara Rosas, director of Amnesty International (AI) in the Americas, admonished Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador for his repeated flippance on Mexico’s widespread gender violence problem.

“Mexico occupies one of the first places in the world in the number of femicides, of disappearances of girls and adolescents with pregnancies due to sexual violence, and impunity for crimes against women,” said Guevara.

The AI director said many promises have been made on paper by the Mexican government to advance women’s rights, but they have yet to be fulfilled.

“Mexico has countless institutions that would have to prevent such violence, but they are ineffective and without human and financial resources or training,” she said. 

“No government, even that of President López Obrador, has really taken this crisis seriously. It is the responsibility of President López Obrador to have made a substantial change in public spending to address the human rights of women.”

“No government, even that of President López Obrador, has really taken this crisis seriously. It is the responsibility of President López Obrador to have made a substantial change in public spending to address the human rights of women.”

…Amnesty International Director Érika Guevara Rosas

Guevara further pointed out that Mexico saw a 20 percent budget slash in 2019 for sexual, maternal and reproductive health resources for Mexican women. Further cuts came in 2020 to the National Women’s Institute and women’s shelters.

“President López Obrador … has tried to delegitimize women’s human rights organizations,” Guevara said. “He has discredited the fight for equality and against gender violence by stigmatizing the multiple movements and, especially, the genuine protests against violence and the demand that his government finally be able to take action on the matter seriously.”

The Amnesty International representative continued to reprimand AMLO’s public statements on gender violence, saying his speech “continues to encourage this violence to be generated with total impunity, and also sends a message to all authorities that they do not actually prioritize addressing (gender violence).”

López Obrador must seriously address the gender violence issue in the country, and take preventative measures to stop it from happening, said Guevara, because without AMLO taking the responsibility head-on, nothing will change for Mexican women.

…Jan 8, 2021

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