14ymedio, Havana, 21 June 2023 — The femicides of Miriam Isern Mompié in the municipality of Manzanillo (Granma) and of Yanet Mejías González in San Luis de Jagua (Santiago de Cuba), and the aggressions suffered by six trans women in Cárdenas (Matanzas) by a group of five men, raise the alert for the increase in sexist violence in Cuba.
Mompié’s body was found by her son last Sunday. The 59-year-old woman was “killed with a knife,” CubaNet published, along with a blow to the head. Her ex-partner, with a criminal record, was arrested the next day in the province of Camagüey.
Yanet Mejías González was killed by machete blows last Friday. Her former partner and perpetrator of the crime, Michael León, surrendered the same day.
Mirielis Garbán, cousin of the killer, told Radio and Television Martí that the subject “had already been imprisoned.” She also said that Mejías González, 24, worked at the Gustavo Machín Psychiatric Hospital and “had several family problems” after she separated from León.
With these two cases, there are now 44 femicides on the Island so far this year.
The platform Yo Sí Te Creo en Cuba (YSTCC) reported last Monday on Twitter that they were working on the information received about two alerts of sexist violence in Santiago de Cuba, one in Trinidad, another in Melena del Sur, and one recently reported in Manzanillo.
Violence against women is one of the issues for which there is no official information in Cuba, said the Alas Tensas Gender Observatory (OGAT). “This prevents citizens, civil society and academics from evaluating the extent of this social phenomenon.”
“In a country with more than 40 femicides in just the first six months of the year, the few existing resources are used by the political police to repress, imprison and silence women who want to be an active part of the political life of the country,” OGAT said, alluding to the “short-term” forced disappearance of activist Eroisis González.
This Wednesday, trans actress Kiriam Gutiérrez Pérez said that on the corner of Tenería and Rubí, in the Matanzas city of Cárdenas — a meeting place of the LGBTIQA community — a group of men threw stones and bottles, causing injuries to six trans women. In the police unit at Linea and Velázquez, the complaint was not accepted; the agents argued that “gender-based hate crimes are not processed.”
Those affected presented certified documents of the injuries and were stationed outside the municipal prosecutor’s office. “Enough of hate crimes, impunity, discrimination,” Gutiérrez Pérez demanded. “Cuba is getting worse every day. Women of all ages, boys and girls are raped, and the competent authorities do not act, except to repress those who dissent.”
Translated by Regina Anavy
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