A 14-year-old girl was jailed for fleeing forced marriage in the Mexican state of Guerrero

Published:

Nov 25, 2021 21:40 GMT

The Mountain Human Rights Center (CDHM) Tlachinollan denounced that the sale of minors continues in this region of southwestern Mexico.

A human rights organization denounced that in November there were five cases of child marriage in the municipality of Cochoapa el Grande, in the La Montaña region of the state of Guerrero, in southwestern Mexico.

The most recent case of human rights violations, documented by the Centro de Derechos Humanos de la Montaña (CDHM) Tlachinollan, was that of Anayeli, a 14-year-old girl from the community of Joya Real who was deprived of her liberty and imprisoned after trying to flee of the forced marriage agreement that her relatives had negotiated.

The minor was deprived of her liberty for more than a day without water or food, and it was thanks to the intervention of the Tlachinollan Mountain Human Rights Center that she was rescued and made available to the National System for the Integral Development of Families (DIF) in the city of Tlapa, according to the organization in a press release published on Wednesday.

Anayeli’s case

The member of the Na Savi indigenous people is a girl orphaned with a father who on Monday, November 22, was going to be handed over to a family in the Joya Real community, after a cousin of his will negotiate his forced marriage for about 200,000 pesos (about $ 9,756).

The minor asked for help from her community and ended up taking refuge in a neighbor’s house. The Community Police of Joya Real went to look for her, but instead of rescuing her, Anayeli was imprisoned by the authorities, according to the director of CDHM Tlachinollan, Abel Barrera, in an interview with journalist Carmen Aristegui.

“They located her in a neighbor’s house, she went to shelter to avoid being taken away and force her to marry, “said the human rights defender.

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The organization that documents the human rights violations committed in the Montaña and Costa Chica regions learned that the authorities imprisoned Anayeli, the neighbor who gave her shelter, the cousin who negotiated her sale, and an uncle of the girl who would have warned him about the eventual forced marriage agreement.

“What the Community Police of Joya Real did was look for the girl, because since she escaped when they were going to deliver the money, they had to find her whereabouts,” said Barrera.

Anayeli’s case shows that the illegal practice of selling girls continues in La Montaña de Guerrero.

The Tlachinollan Center learned that on Wednesday, November 24, there would be several parties in Joya Real for the forced marriage of four other minors.

Strategy against gender violence

On November 10, the governor of the entity, Evelyn salgado, was in the city of Tlapa to celebrate the signing of the ‘Strategy to Prevent, Attend, Punish and Eradicate Violence against Women, Girls and Adolescents’.

In his Twitter account, Salgado affirmed that it was “a historic day” for Guerrero because the authorities would work together to “uproot all forms of gender violence.”

Despite the announcement of a strategy in the matter, the director of Tlachinollan pointed out that it was a “media event”, since as the case of Anayeli demonstrated, it continues “this practice of selling girls“in the entity.

“There is no action by the institutions to prevent and prevent the consumption of this type of marriage alliances, where girls are the main victims of this practice that has become commercialized and has denigrated the lives of minors,” lamented Barrera.

The Tlachinollan Mountain Human Rights Center lamented the “great neglect” of the authorities in cases of forced marriages. “A macho vision prevails in several municipal officials who come to justify these illegal actions“, the organization denounced.

Repercussions of this violence

Globally, one in five girls marries or lives in a common-law union before their 18th birthday, according to the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA).

The United Nations agency explains that child marriage is the “harmful result” of conditions of poverty and gender inequality, and that it has multiple negative effects on the lives of women.

Girls and minors who are victims of forced marriage “tend to receive a lower level of education”, since they are forced to leave school to take over household chores.

On the other hand, UNFPA warns that these marriages are often “followed by a pregnancy”, which puts women’s health and lives at risk. In addition, on many occasions, girls and minors are exposed to “sexually transmitted infections, including HIV“.

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