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The massive increase in number of women fleeing domestic violence in Mexico

1 in every 3 women in Latin America face sexual or physical violence, yet 98% of them either aren’t reported or convicted.


1. Women all around the world have long been victims of Domestic Violence. But recently, mandatory lockdowns have caused a surge in domestic and intimate partner violence.


2. Mexico’s President Lopez Obrador said that there had been no increase in violence against women during the lockdown. However, Amnesty International released an open letter, calling for strict action to be taken by Mexican officials against the spike in domestic violence cases during the lockdown.


3. Even though laws against Domestic violence exist, law enforcement officials are usually passive and abuse women who try to report such crimes.


4. The US Department of Justice, under the Trump Administration, hasn’t considered ‘women and children’ as a protected group under the 1951 Refugee Convention.


5. The 1951 Refugee Convention is an important legal document ratified by 145 nations, which explicitly states the definition of ‘refugees’, and outlines the obligations of a state to protect those who are displaced.


6. Since the US doesn’t recognize them as a ‘protected group', many women escaping Mexico are turned away even though their lives hang on a string.


7. Every time the USA or any other nation denies asylum to refugees and returns them to their home county, it is a stark violation of Article 33 on the NON-REFOULMENT principle of the 1951 Convention, which basically says that no country can turn away a refugee.


8. It is notable that migrants often face extortion, kidnapping, or even sexual abuse. In fact, many women take contraceptives before they migrate to avoid the risk of pregnancy, but still become vulnerable to Sexually Transmitted Diseases and other health risks.


9. In Mexico, Peru, and Chile, it has been found that there is hesitation in extending refugee protection through the Cartagena Declaration (a document which forms the basis for refugee laws in Latin American nations) due to the political implications of taking in refugees, thereby “insulting" the affected country’s capacity of hosting its own citizens.


10. Once, President Trump even suggested having soldiers shoot migrants trying to cross the US-Mexico border. In addition, he said that he wanted to build a moat filled with alligators or snakes to deter migrants. And, these are just a few of the bizarre ideas that President Trump has come up with to secure his nation from such foreign elements.


11. Of course, being a woman per se is not a ground for asylum, but gender should be recognized as a category deserving protection if it is the basis for being persecuted.


12. In conclusion, victims of domestic violence flee their home countries, leaving everything behind and migrate towards developed nations to seek safety and a better life. But, these developed nations simply turn them away. This sad state of affairs has drawn ire from many in the recent past, and we can only hope to see them live a decent life in the near future.


Reporter- Pranav Muralikrishna

Bangalore, India | epicenter.newsmedia@gmail.com

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