Monday, October 19, 2020
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ARGENTINA | 02-07-2020 16:32

Feminist organisation: one femicide every 29 hours in Argentina

Feminist organisation Mumalá recorded at least 143 femicides in Argentina during the first six months of 2020, according to new report.

Feminist organisation Mujeres de la Matria Latinoamericana (Mumalá) said this week that 143 femicides were registered in the first six months of the year, working out to a woman is murdered every 29 hours. 

The organisation added that there are 18 other violent deaths that are under investigation, which could push the tally even higher.

As reported by Mumalá, there were 128 "direct murders" of women, with the killing of 13 children (seven girls and six boys) determined as linked to femicides.

According to the NGO, as a result of the 143 deaths in total, 177 children and adolescents were left without their mother.

Mumalá's National Coordinator Silvia Ferreira, in a dialogue with Sputnik Radio, said that the report covered a period running from January 1 and June 30. Its source material is news reports and publications published by media outlets across the country. In addition to the 128 murders, another 135 attempted murders were detected throughout the country, she added.

Ferreira said that femicides had continued to happen during the coronavirus-induced lockdown, saying that 80 femicides and 79 attempted femicides had been registered since March 20.

"The serious situation we are facing continues despite the quarantine," she observed. 

According to the report, 41 percent of the femicides were perpetrated by the victim's partner, and 22 percent by their former partner.

"Femicides are the only crime that has not declined in the context of the pandemic," Ferreira said pointedly.

Mumalá's report also found that 2 out of 10 victims had filed a previous criminal complaint against their aggressor, while 68 percent of killings had been committed in the woman's own home or in the home she shared with her attacker.

Violence against trans women 

The report also recorded two femicides involving trans women.

María Victoria Aguirre, a lawyer and coordinator of MuMaLá in Buenos Aires City said that "this year we have added the LGBTIQ+ emergency because in this context of a pandemic, the situation of trans groups is much more serious – they often do not have a place to isolate because they do not have a home."

Quizzed on geographical breakdown, Aguirre said that the provinces of Tucumán, Catamarca, Misiones and Salta all registered a higher rate of femicides in relation to their number of inhabitants than other provinces. 

"Although 60 femicides were recorded in the province of Buenos Aires, is the most populated in the country and that puts it lower down on the table," Ferreira explained. 

Mumalá has called on President Alberto Fernández to declare a national emergency in relation to gender violence. This declaration is necessary "so that material and economic resources can be allocated to prevent this scourge and the government can carry out tools for the prevention of gender violence, especially at the local level, which is where we identify the weakest link," Ferreira said. 

"We have been demanding the Ni Una Menos emergency for five years and last year in March we presented a bill that continues to have parliamentary status. The bill has 15 points of public policy where the main focus is on interdisciplinary care at the time of making the complaint. That is the problem we have today. We do not have a correct approach to these complaints," said Aguirre.

Aguirre further argued that there was a lack of sensitivity in analysing complaints.

"The person who takes the complaint does not ask you if you live alone," she said. "if you have the possibility of leaving that place, how long has it been. He takes the complaint as if it were any type of crime and gender violence is not any crime. It is a problem that does not happen once. You do not know when or how it ends. If you are feeling that your life is at risk, you have to grab your things and leave."

– TIMES/PERFIL/NA

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