In a moving statement paying tribute to women’s struggles, the Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of Our America strongly condemned the violence that affects women every day, and called on for a massive mobilization on Saturday across the continent, for the annual march of #NiUnaMenos.
“Being a woman is living constantly in a time of war,” stated ALBA, recalling women’s massive mobilizations throughout the continent over the past two years to fight for their right to life and safety.
The member states celebrated women who have mobilized “so they would not be assassinated in their private homes as a consequence of a sexist culture that converts them into objects of the men they love; so they would not be raped and killed in a dark alley because of how they dressed; … so they would not be disappeared by paramilitary organizations or armies serving the national or transnational elites when they are leading the fight for the right to water, to land, or for the biodiversity of the ancestral lands where live their communities.”
Despite their noble struggle, women are still stigmatized as “the historical witches, incapable of love,” continued the document. A culture that deeply undermines the cohesion of societies: a society where half of the population is under threat cannot be a society of solidarity, equality and liberty, it concluded.
#NiUnaNiMenos and #VivasLasQueremos, the hashtags that expressed on social media the public outrage over the wave of femicides, initially emerged in Argentina in June 2015. They sparked a national movement, and then a regional movement, struggling to raise awareness about the murders of women based on their gender.
The annual march this year comes amid an alarming surge of femicides recorded in many countries of the continent since the beginning of the year.
In Colombia, over 200 women have been killed in 2017, according to Colombia’s National Institute of Legal Medicine. In Paraguay, femicides doubled this year compared with 2016’s first two months, with an average of one woman killed every four hours. And in Argentina, one woman was murdered every day between the beginning of the year until April 27.