August 3, 2020

Guatemalan women demand justice for the death of 41 girls burned in 2017

A group of approximately 35 Guatemalan women gathered on Sunday to protest the feminist anthem created by the Chilean collective Lastesis in front of the presidential office for the death of 41 girls burned in a state home in 2017.

“It is one of the most heinous crimes in our country,” said one of the participants, Brenda Hernández, in statements to journalists before the National Palace of Culture, in the center of the country’s capital.

The women’s group carried out the choreography of the hymn with a letter adapted for the occasion, remembering the 41 deceased girls and the 15 wounds in 2017.

The singing of the feminist anthem was carried out on the last weekend of Jimmy Morales as president of Guatemala after four years in office.

Morales has been formally denounced for his alleged involvement in the case by getting involved in the chain of command on the day of the girls’ death. However, as with dozens of other complaints against the president for various reasons, the accusation has not progressed legally.

The 56 girls were in a small classroom, locked, when the fire originated on March 8, 2017, in a home under state administration. The fire was born inside the classroom, to protest overcrowding the abuse and the conditions in which the minors were.

The group of girls had been locked up in the classroom for several hours by local authorities and police, after several incidents the previous day in which dozens of teenagers also participated under state guardianship.

“President Jimmy Morales had to resign on March 9, one day after the tragedy,” Hernandez added.

The home is located 20 kilometers northeast of Guatemala City, in the municipality of San José Pinula, in the department (province) of Guatemala.

At least eight people among police and authorities have been charged for the death of the minors.


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