MEXICO CITY – An adapted version of “La Llorona,” the popular Mexican theme, presided over a protest on Friday in Mexico City against the killing of young doctor Mariana Sanchez last week in the country’s south and against ceaseless violence against women.
“Being a woman is a crime, Llorona, with a well-defined passion. They grab four scoundrels, Llorona, and take your life. From the northern border to the southern border there is a trail of bones, Llorona, that once were you,” singer Edna Hernandez from the SnowApple band said in her verses.
Her song voiced the pained glances of all women gathered in front of the building that represents the state government of southern Chiapas in the capital, where Sanchez, a 24-year-old doctor on a scholarship, was found dead Jan. 28.
In front of the Chiapas representation, fenced off in a striking image in the heart of the capital, activists, mothers and relatives of femicide victims gathered.
There they established an altar with candles and photographs of the murdered. There was the photo of Mariana, but also those of Paulina, Jade or Zyanya on behalf of so many who, as Hernandez’s “La Llorona” said, went to school and ended up at the coroner.
One of those attending the protest was Araceli Osorio, the mother of Lesvy Osorio, a young woman who was murdered in 2017 and tied to a public telephone booth in an area near the Engineering Institute of the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM).
Osorio said that among the group “there is a lot of outrage” because those “in charge of security and health” in Mexico are “taking resources from where they can” to solve the pandemic but not to end violence against women.
“The other pandemic, the one they do not recognize, the one that takes the lives of eleven girls and women in this country every day is not seen the same, it is not seen as an urgent situation. The pandemic of femicidal violence in this country has years, has decades,” she said.
Mexico registered an annual increase of 0.3 percent in feminicides in 2020, which means that at least 1,015 women died in a murder typified by sexist or gender violence.
Osorio also protested against the “institutional violence” that forces mothers and relatives to “go out and report their cases to civil society” in order to confront the passivity of the authorities, for which they demanded responsibilities from the Ministry of the Interior and the National Commission on Victims (Conavim).
Through the microphone of the tribune erected in the middle of the street, one block from the emblematic Paseo de la Reforma, the testimonies of other mothers who lost their daughters passed.
Some of these claims were read by activists to whom the mothers had sent letters to recite in the protest, as was the case of Adriana, mother of Jade Guadalupe Yuing, who was murdered in 2020, according to her family, while authorities say the 13-year-old teenager committed suicide.
“Jade liked music, she liked to sing, compose songs. Her dream was to be an aviator pilot. Her heart was kind and of good feelings. Her name and her family have ended up in the fight for justice in front of an indolent state that prefers not to listen. Jade lives in our hearts,” the letter read.
Before closing the event, Lourdes Davalos, the mother of Mariana Sanchez, the doctor for whom the event was organized, shared a video with the attending press in which she said she had not been given “copies of the investigation folder.” She also said she had a breast removed in December to justify her absence from recent protests.
“To date I have not received a copy or access to the investigation folder. My distrust grows as the days go by and my anguish grows every moment. I call on society to demand justice, true justice without scapegoats or rigged processes,” she says in the video.