On January 15th, the first of two meetings took place in México City with Rapporteur Michel Forst and women human rights defenders over the situation of violence and discrimination that they face in Mexico.
The coordinator of the National Network of Women Human Rights Defenders in Mexico, Flor Goche, presented to the Rapporteur the particular context faced by women defenders as well as various statistical data extrapolated from the Network’s Register of Attacks:
- From 2010 to the present, at least 41 women defenders and journalists have been killed.
- At least four attacks have occurred each week.
- In the last three years, a 261% increase in attacks has been registered.
- In 26% of the cases, several different forms of gender violence were documented. The majority of the defenders recognize that their work is negatively affected by gender discrimination.
- The main aggressors are public servants, particularly the police. Nevertheless, women defenders are also attacked by private actors, such as employees of private businesses and persons in their famílies or social surroundings.
- The most recurrent attacks are intimidation and psychological harassment; slander, defamation and smear campagns; and threats, warnings and ultimatums.
- The women who suffer the heaviest attacks are the defenders of the right of women to a life free from violence; defenders of the rights to information and freedom of expression; and defenders of land, territory and natural resources.