14-year-old girl jailed for running away from arranged wedding in Mexico

A 14-year-old girl was jailed last week after fleeing to escape from the wedding ceremony which she was purchased.

The girl, who was named by the local press as Anayeli “N”, is said to have married a neighbor in From Mexico Guerrero state whose family offered 200,000 pesos (about $9,300) buy her hand in hand marriage.

Anayeli’s mother accepted the payment, and the neighboring family hired a band, killed a cow, and prepared a marriage party. will take place last Monday. All told, the groom’s parents will spend around 56,000 pesos ($2,600) on the wedding preparations.

But Anayeli, a member of the indigenous Mixtec people, did not suffer from that. Early in the morning of the “big day,” she fled her family home in the village of Joya Real, southwestern Mexico, and took refuge in the nearby home of her 15-year-old friend Alfredo “N.” hers.

Abel Barrera, director of the Guerrero-based Tlachinollan Center for Human Rights, said: “She thought it was her sister that was going to get married, she never thought it was her, because she was young. juvenile. Daily Beast.

When Anayeli discovered that it was not her sister but herself that was the intended bride, “she wanted to run away without informing anyone, despite the fact that her mother consented. [on the price] and expenses are covered by the father of the groom,” Barrera said.

“None of them are interested in the girl. She simply wanted to protect her freedom, life and safety,” he said. Barrera said that, while technically illegal under Mexican law as of 2019, Arranged marriages for minors are still common among families living in the countryside.

Once a girl is bought, she is “regarded as an object” by the family that paid for them, Barrera said. “She has to go to work, she has to cook, she has to clean, she has to go to the fields, and if she does agricultural work, the money won’t pay her, but to her father-in-law. there,” Barrera said.

Marina Reyna Aguilar, executive director of the Guerrero Association Against Violence Against Women, told The Daily Beast that Anayeli had had the courage to defy social norms by running away and denying “partially” of the tradition of forcing underage girls in their communities to marry by agreement of relatives in exchange for money [or] goods or things like beer, cows or other animals. “

“She hardly said a word to us, most of the time she was silent.”

When the bride went missing, the groom’s family asked Joya Real Community Police officers to track down Anayeli. They sweep the small village, find Anayeli and Alfredo hiding, and send them to prison.

“Inside [indigenous] Barrera, an anthropologist specializing in local indigenous cultures, said. “It is the men who do justice, the older men, because there is a patriarchal culture. Women cannot stand up for girls because they too will be jailed. “

During the night they spent in jail, the two minors were told by police that Anayeli had to either submit to the marriage or return the $2,600 that the groom’s family had spent on the wedding and related setbacks.

NS Community police is an independent, complementary form of law enforcement intended to provide security to isolated regions of Mexico where there is little or no federal or state police presence. As a result, officers in small towns and villages sometimes act unilaterally, because they do not respond to higher authorities, Aguilar said. She accused the Community Police of abusing their power by “normalizing customs that are contrary to the human rights of girls and women”, despite the law in the book banning underage marriage.

“Community Police, when deciding to lock up Anayeli, [are] ignore the legal framework they have to respect and enforce… By not complying, this turns them into criminals who break the law,” Aguilar said.

By Tuesday morning, members of Barrera’s Tlachinollan Center, state police and representatives of the regional attorney’s office had all arrived at Joya Real to make sure the teenagers were released from prison. For their own safety, the two were subsequently placed in protective custody as part of Mexico’s Comprehensive Family Development system. [known as DIF for its acronym in Spanish].

“His opinions are misleading and sexist.”

“Anayeli’s case is complicated,” said Neil Arias Vitinio, a lawyer who helped secure the girl’s release. According to Vitinio, one of the complicating factors is that Anayeli only speaks a Mixtec language known as Tu’un Savi.

Vitinio said: “Her situation was very difficult because she was a monolingual girl, illiterate and not even well educated. “When we talked to her, we realized that she is very self-aware. She hardly said a word to us, most of the time she was silent.”

“All of this has to be understood in the context of extreme poverty” in marginalized indigenous communities abandoned by the state, said Barrera’s director.

“The government has forgotten about these communities. Here there is no way to study, no way to find a job, to develop any artistic abilities,” Barrera said, adding that Anayeli’s father was recently murdered by attackers. unclear, leaving her mother desperate to take care of the family.

Arranged marriage is often seen as the only way out, because otherwise “the girls are condemned to live in these terrible conditions,” he said.

A recent report by the Spanish newspaper El Pais pointed out that “Thousands“Of teenage girls all over Mexico are trafficked into forced marriages every year. Since the girls were then forced to do hard labor and become pregnant unexpectedly, El Pais likened the practice to “slavery”. A notorious case came to light earlier this year involving a woman who was acquired from her father to a single bottle of mescal when she was a 10 year old girl.

Vitinio, who often provides legal advice to victims of forced marriages in Guerrero with the Tlachinollan Center, says that in many cases, underage girls “see it as very normal.” and say they know that at a certain age their parents will leave them to someone. “

Largely rural, poor and home to a diverse indigenous population, Guerrero is one of the nation’s top states for child brides, along with neighboring Michoacán and Oaxaca. During a stopover in the Guerrero mountains last October, not far from Anayeli’s Joya Real home, Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador lit a fire for his family. choose to downplay the problem.

“I’m not here to look at that because it’s not the rule,” Obrador said. “There are many moral, cultural and spiritual values ​​in [indigenous] community. [Buying child brides] may be the exception, but it is not the rule. “

Groups like the Children’s Rights Network in Mexico were quick to criticize the president for “despise“The problem of child trafficking, including the trafficking of girls” of the country, according to Mexico News Daily.

[T]The president is irresponsible when he wants to hide a serious problem that is happening in rural and indigenous areas, he doesn’t realize and wants to minimize the problem,” said women’s rights defender Aguilar. She sees Obrador’s dismissal attitude as setting a dangerous precedent for tolerance and looks the other way, which will be continued and emulated at the state and local level.

“I think his views are skewed and sexist,” said Aguilar, who accused the president of “doing not care what happens to this vulnerable group, because they are childish.” adolescents, because they are indigenous and rural, because they are poor, and because they are marginalized populations. ”

“Currently, there are cases where girls, because they don’t love men, decide not to marry them.”

Vintinio agreed, saying that instead of trivializing the issue, the president should “seek strategies to end forced marriage.”

But there are signs that today’s generation of girls and young women may not be counting on outside help from an unconcerned president. That they may be fed up with the customs and patriarchal demands that make them sold into marriage and ready to act.

Days before Obrador delivered his heartbreaking speech in Guerrero, headlines across the country carried the story of Another girl From Guerrero, who was sold for marriage at the age of 15. Like Anayeli, this victim was also taken into custody by the Community Police of her village after running away from her new husband’s home after her father-in-law tried to rape her. As was the case with two minors at Joya Real, this girl was also placed in protection with DIF.

Tlachinollan’s Barrera says that while some girls are still “forced to obey” their parents and submit to being sold, the situation may be changing – and Anayeli’s self-escapation was inspired by the trend this new direction.

“Nowadays there are starting to be cases where girls, because they don’t love men, decide not to marry them.” Barrera said the word was spreading and fast enough, “that it reached Anayeli’s ears.”

Source link 14-year-old girl jailed for running away from arranged wedding in Mexico


Inter Reviewed is an automatic aggregator of the all world’s media. In each content, the hyperlink to the primary source is specified. All trademarks belong to their rightful owners, all materials to their authors. If you are the owner of the content and do not want us to publish your materials, please contact us by email – admin@interreviewed.com. The content will be deleted within 24 hours.

Related Articles

Back to top button