Mexican protesters decry violence against women

Demonstrators marched through the Mexican capital on Wednesday and scuffled with police during an angry protest at widespread violence against women in the Latin American nation.

Around 10 women are killed every day in Mexico and activists accuse the government of not doing enough to tackle the problem.

Holding banners, flags and placards, thousands of protesters demanded justice for the many victims of femicides on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. 

“Although the state doesn’t do its job, we support each other as women,” said 22-year-old student Ana Karen Resendiz.

“We look for a way to move forward and to stay well and alive.”

Protesters marched to the city’s main square where some faced off with riot police trying to stop them defacing the walls of the presidential palace and the cathedral with paint.

Around 3,800 women are killed each year in Mexico, while six in 10 women have suffered some form of aggression in the past decade, Interior Minister Olga Sanchez said.

“We have a historical debt to women, especially to victims of violence, and we cannot allow impunity,” she said.

“Machismo kills, destroys the lives of women and limits our country’s development,” Sanchez added, speaking at President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s daily press conference.

Lopez Obrador for his part said that “conditions of poverty and economic inequality have led to these phenomena of aggression and violence against women.”

Only half of all femicides in Mexico lead to a convictions and in some regions impunity is as high as 98 percent, according to the report presented at the news conference.

Protests against gender violence have multiplied in the past year in the capital and other parts of the country.

Last month a police crackdown on a protest in the resort city of Cancun against the murder of a local woman left several people injured and sparked national outcry.