MEXICO CITY ( Associated Press) – Mexican humanitarian organizations won a victory in the battle to free women facing abortion-related proceedings from prison when a court ordered the release of indigenous youth Aurelia Garcia Cruceno, who was sentenced to three years in prison was taken into custody on a charge of murder in the first degree. Of kinship
Despite the fact that Mexico’s Supreme Court outlawed abortion last year, the process related to termination of pregnancy remains in limbo and cases such as Cruceno, a 23-year-old Nahua indigenous woman who was detained for having an abortion I went. After becoming pregnant as a result of rape.
Humanitarian organizations now hope the girl’s sentence serves as a precedent for the release of other women detained for abortion-related procedures and who face trials for crimes such as kinship, infanticide or neglect of care. Is doing. According to local organizations, there are more than 200.
This was recognized by Verónica Garzón, a lawyer for Cruceno and a member of the Mexican Institute of Human Rights and Democracy, who affirmed that the sentence “has many political, legal and social implications” and served as an example to other women. can do. State and “violations from institutions that are unable to guarantee access to justice”.
On the night of 20 December, a judge ruled that there was not enough evidence to hold Cruceno in custody for the crime of murder in degree of kinship, which has haunted her since 2019 when she was imprisoned. The southernmost city of Iguala in the state of Guerrero.
The young woman is originally from the remote town of Xochicalco, located in Baja de Guerrero, Montana, where she spent her childhood and youth and which she left after becoming pregnant by a man, a community authority, who abused her Was.
In mid-2019, the young woman moved to Iguala to live with her aunt, and a few months later she developed vaginal bleeding and went into premature labor, for which she was transferred to a hospital to receive a blood transfusion. While she was convalescing, she was handcuffed to her bed and after she was told the reason for her detention, they made her sign a bill of rights, the contents of which she did not understand as she did not speak Spanish well. She didn’t speak properly.
Still troubled by her release, Cruseno told The Associated Press that she still hasn’t gotten used to her new reality and is surprised to wake up in the morning to find herself in a place other than her cell. “I felt ethereal. I still can’t believe it when I see my mother waking up.”
The young woman speaks little about the three years she spent in prison and admits that “it caused me a lot of anxiety, a lot of sadness.”
Despite the hardships he went through, Cruceno admits that his imprisonment was a learning phase and allowed him to improve his knowledge of Spanish. “My colleagues encouraged me a lot and one woman gave me advice that I’ve never forgotten: ‘Here you have to be strong, you have to be brave'”.
“Aurelia’s case is one of many,” acknowledged Marina Reyna Aguilar, president of the Guerrero Association Against Violence Against Women, who pointed out that the state, which is one of the 20 with the highest record of violence against women in Mexico, The female indigenous population is one of the most vulnerable in the country due to the usages and customs maintained by the four ethnic groups that live in the region.
Between January and October, Guerrero recorded 11 femicides and 98 premeditated murders, according to official figures, slightly less than the record for the same period in 2021.
Although Guerrero in May became one of 11 states in Mexico to decriminalize abortion up to 12 weeks gestation, Reyna Aguilar confirmed that there is still a long way to go. Said that “in those cases in which they have an obligation, by law mandate to protect the rights of women.
The judge’s ruling in Cruceno’s favor surprised activists who had fought to get her out of prison, acknowledged Ana Grabiela Candela Garzón, a member of the Guerrense Network for Women’s Rights, who called the measure a response to the fact attributed that “we looked into his case. Through the media.
During his morning conference call – in which the country’s daily agenda is usually set – President Andrés Manuel López Obrador mentioned Cruceno’s situation and said his case would be reviewed. “We always want injustices not to happen, always, always, always, they are not accepted,” he said.
Despite the fact that the country’s highest court ordered public defenders to seek out and assist women detained in abortion-related cases, such as Cruceno, for their release, many are still imprisoned and that There is no official figure of how many are in the position or the prison where they are held, said Veronica Cruz, director of the organization “Las Libres,” which protects women’s rights.
In an effort to locate these women, a coalition of humanitarian organizations imposed curfews this year in five of the country’s 32 states to pressure judicial officials to search for them.
Determined to start a new life, Cruceno confirms that she will soon resume her high school studies and then dedicate herself to working as a teacher. Talking about the importance of her case, the young woman said she hoped it would serve as a reference for other women. “I would like them not to go through what I’m going through … not to be silenced, they need to talk about what’s happening to them.”