Last week 11 women testified at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) in a public hearing on sexual torture perpetrated by police in San Salvador Atenco, Mexico. In 2006, while serving as governor, President Enrique Peña Nieto ordered a violent crackdown on these women and dozens of other protestors. The sexual violence survivors still await proper legal proceedings in Mexico.
A day after the IACHR proceedings got underway, the Mexican government apologized and offered an “amicable settlement” to avoid further action through the IACHR.
“We don’t see an option and it is not our wish to consider an amicable settlement, since the State has shown over these six years the inability to respond to our demands for truth and justice…its only actions have been related to the charges we’ve pressed at the inter-american and international levels…false information about what happened in Atenco continues to be spread.”
Earlier this month the Nobel Women’s Initiative echoed the concern of women human rights defenders in the Americas about the potential weakened capacity of the IACHR. On the eve of its review we called on members of the Organization of American States to strengthen the commission’s power and efficiency. We continue to stand in solidarity with the women of Atenco challenging State impunity.
Watch the video of the public hearing on March 14, 2013 (triggering).
Víctimas de tortura sexual en Atenco rechazan “solución amistosa” del gobierno de Peña, Proceso, 14 March 2013.
Inter-American Human Rights System Reform Faces Deadline, Inter Press Service, 1 March 2013.
From Survivors to Defenders: Women Confronting Violence in Mexico, Honduras & Guatemala, Nobel Women’s Initiative and JASS.
Visit the Mirada Sostenida (Sustained Gaze) website, an ongoing project on the resistance and testimony of the women survivors of Atenco.