8M Women Protests
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8M Women Protests

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Paloma Duran By Paloma Duran | Journalist and Industry Analyst - Wed, 03/08/2023 - 12:00

March 8. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador highlighted the important role that women have in the transformation of the country and assured that the government is guaranteeing their right to protest. However, he called on women and protesters to march peacefully. "There will be protests in defense of their rights. We suggest they act peacefully. We do not want violence.”

Today, dozens of feminist groups will protest in Mexico demanding that gender violence be stopped. In 2022, approximately 75,000 protesters walked the streets of Mexico City. During the López Obrador administration, violence against women has barely decreased. In 2022, Mexico reported 968 femicides, 4.6% less than the 1,006 reported in 2021. However, rape crimes increased from 21,188 to 23,102. Currently, the country has an average of 10 femicides per day. 

AMLO: Political opponents infiltrate feminist groups. López Obrador assured that opposition groups use the feminist movement to promote violence against authorities and vandalize monuments during the protest. “They want to destroy and burn the National Palace, turning this incident into national and international headlines.”  

The Ministry of Citizen Security of Mexico City announced there will be 800 female police officers that will guarantee peaceful protests. In case of an emergency, approximately 2,500 police officers are expected to be deployed. Lucía Karen Pérez, Regional Director of the Ministry of Citizen Security in the municipality of Benito Juárez, assured the ministry seeks to guarantee security conditions and respect for human rights. She also stressed police officers have been trained to recognize and prevent violations of women's rights.

Despite assurances that the march will not be repressed, feminist groups have asked demonstrators to take precautions, because in past protests there have been arbitrary arrests, rubber bullets, gas sprayed against them and members of the media. According to government figures, last year at least 25 women in Mexico City were injured in clashes between police and protesters and attacks by men.

Fentanyl. President López Obrador said many young people are dying due to fentanyl overdoses. The president stressed that new strategies are being introduced to raise awareness of its risks. "We call on teachers and parents to help us. We want the issue to be addressed in classrooms. We suggest they do the same in the US."

The fentanyl crisis represents one of the most critical healthcare issues for both Mexico and the US and has been a key discussion topic for both countries. According to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid considered 30 to 50 times stronger than heroin and 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine. In 2021, there were approximately 70,000 deaths in the US related to fentanyl. In 2022, fentanyl deaths accounted for 66 percent of drug-related deaths in the US. While the price of fentanyl is at its lowest point, its consumption is increasing in Mexico and the US, according to authorities.  In 2022, representatives from both countries agreed to jointly launch a campaign against its use and trafficking.

Photo by:   Gobierno de México

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