40 years after the institution of 25N as the Day of Non-Violence against Women

The Mirabal Sisters in whose memory the 25N
The Mirabal Sisters, in whose memory the 25N was instituted.

This Thursday 40 years of the International Day of Non-Violence Against Women are commemorated, a date in homage to the activist sisters of the Dominican Republic, Minerva, Patria and María Teresa Mirabal, who were brutally murdered in 1960 by order of the Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo (1930-1961), and the 30 years of the campaign will also be celebrated 16 days of activism against gender violence.

Yes OK the celebration of 25N was made official by the United Nations (UN) On December 17, 1999, the truth is that the fight to eradicate gender violence has a long history.

The Mirabal sisters were born in Ojo de Agua, a small town in the province of Salcedo, in the north of the country, and they belonged to a wealthy family.

In 1949 the family was invited to a reception in honor of the dictator Trujillo, who quickly became attracted to Minerva’s beauty and began to court her without success. She, however, demanded that he end the judicial harassment against his close friend Pericles Franco, one of the founders of the Popular Socialist Party.

Minerva, Patria and María Teresa were imprisoned, raped and tortured on several occasions; his father, Enrique, was also arrested and released several times until he fell ill and died in late 1953.

The murder of the three sisters occurred in the midst of social discontent that was growing by leaps and bounds. On November 25, 1960, Minerva’s body was found shattered at the bottom of a ravine, inside a jeep along with her two sisters, Patria and María Teresa, and the driver of the car, Rufino de la Cruz.

Years passed, but the Mirabals were crystallized in the collective memory of feminist activists who 21 years later, in 1981, held the First Latin American and Caribbean Feminist Encounter in Bogotá, Colombia, and decided that the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

Two years earlier, in 1979, the United Nations (UN) had obtained the approval of the Convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women (Cedaw) and in 1999, the General Assembly recognized November 25 as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

This Thursday also marks 30 years of the campaign 16 days of activism against gender violence, originally launched by activists who participated in the inauguration of the Women’s Global Leadership Institute in 1991 and, each year, continues to be coordinated by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership.

During the campaign that will run until December 10, the UN invites governments, civil society, women’s organizations, youth, the private sector, the media and the entire United Nations system ” to join forces to face global problems “

The Mirabal sisters are still a symbol today. At the time of their assassinations, Latin America was witnessing a process of popular uprisings against the dictatorships of the region that also promoted the creation of a movement in the Dominican Republic.

In this context, a year before the homicides, in 1959 the Agrupación 14 de Junio ​​was created, which was chaired by Tavares, Minerva’s husband, and where the Mirabal sisters were known as Las Mariposas.

All the members of the organization were arrested and more than a hundred were tortured and lost their lives. Among them were several members of the most recognized families on the island, which increased the social pressure before the Trujillo regime.

Those who did regain their freedom, however, were subjected to government surveillance and police harassment.

That November 25, 1960, the three sisters were returning from seeing their husbands who were incarcerated when they were intercepted by members of the secret police, hanged and beaten. The objective of the force was that, once thrown into the car over a cliff, the murders would be interpreted as an accident.

At the time, the three sisters were between the ages of 25 and 36, had five children in all, and had a decade of political activism. A fourth sister, Belgium Adela “Dedé” Mirabal, who died in 2017, had a less active role in the dissent and managed to save herself.

“The crime was so horrific that people began to feel totally and completely insecure, even those close to the regime,” recalled Luisa De Peña Díaz, director of the Memorial Museum of the Dominican Resistance (MMRD), quoted by the BBC news network.

The following year, in March 1961, Trujillo was assassinated, and the Las Mariposas hitmen sentenced to 30 years in prison, but fled the country with the help of military groups. The last of the confessed murderers Cruz Velorio died in early April after living in hiding for decades.

According to the UN, currently only two out of three countries have prohibited gender-based violence, while in 37 states rapists are still not tried if they are married or if they later marry the victim. Furthermore, in 49 other states there is still no legislation that protects women from domestic violence.

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Helen Hernandez is our best writer. Helen writes about social news and celebrity gossip. She loves watching movies since childhood. Email: Phone : +1 281-333-2229

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