The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (CorteIDH) reported today a ruling in which it determined that the Mexican State is responsible for the sexual torture and violations suffered by women in 2006.
The sentence establishes as victims Yolanda Muñoz Diosdada, Norma Aidé Jiménez Osorio, María Patricia Romero Hernández, Mariana Selvas Gómez, Georgina Edith Rosales Gutiérrez, Ana María Velasco Rodríguez, Suhelen Gabriela Cuevas Jaramillo, Bárbara Italia Méndez Moreno, María Cristina Sánchez Hernández, Angélica Patricia Torres Linares and Claudia Hernández Martínez,
The facts of the case are related to the operations carried out by police authorities in the municipalities of San Salvador de Atenco, Texcoco, and on the Texcoco-Lechería highway to suppress the demonstrations that took place on May 3 and 4, 2006.
In these operations were arrested eleven women victims of the case, who during their capture and while they were transferred and admitted to the Center for Social Readaptation (Cepreso) "Santiaguito", were subjected to violence, including rape in the case of seven of them , the Inter-American Court indicated.
"Several of the victims suffered degrading treatment from the first doctors in attending them when they arrived at Cepreso, who refused to review them, to perform gynecological exams, as well as to report or record the rape," the Inter-American Court stated.
The judges detailed that the Mexican authorities initiated various criminal proceedings to investigate the facts, but none have concluded, except for a criminal proceeding that ended with an acquittal.
During the processing of the case before the Inter-American Court, Mexico acknowledged its international responsibility for the physical, psychological and sexual violence, including acts of torture, suffered by the eleven women victims of this case, as well as the deprivation of liberty, the lack of notification of the reasons for the arrest and the absence of an adequate defense.
"The performance of the security authorities in developing the operations of May 3 and 4, 2006, was characterized by the use of force indiscriminately and excessively against anyone who assumed that it was part of the demonstrations," says the ruling of the Inter-American Court.
The judges determined that "the eleven women victims of the case were exercising peaceful conduct or safeguarding their integrity when they were arrested."
"The use of force by the police authorities when arresting them was not legitimate or necessary, but it was also excessive and unacceptable due to the sexual and discriminatory nature of the assaults suffered," the ruling states.
The Court determined that the eleven women suffered sexual violence, through verbal and physical aggressions with connotations and sexual allusions; and seven of them were also victims of rape.
The Court concluded that the arrests of the eleven women were "illegal and arbitrary" and that the investigations carried out by the State were not carried out with the required due diligence and gender perspective.
The Inter-American Court ordered the State to carry out "extensive, systematic and thorough investigations, including a gender perspective, that are necessary to determine, prosecute, and, where appropriate, punish all those responsible for the violence and sexual torture suffered by the eleven female victims. "
Mexico must also hold a public ceremony recognizing international responsibility and public apologies.