Global Fund Advisor Luz Mendez recently shared the following statement expressing solidarity with Amandine Fulchiron. Luz is the President of the Advisory Board of the National Union of Guatemalan Women (UNAMG), a women's association working for women's human rights, gender equality and social justice:
Threat of Sexual Violence Against a Member of Women Act for Change, Guatemala.
We wish to denounce in the strongest terms a threat recently addressed to Amandine Fulchiron, a member of Women Act for Change (Actoras de Cambio), a Consortium created by the National Union of Guatemalan Women (UNAMG) and the Community Studies and Psicosocial Action Team (ECAP). On the night of 24 November 2007, as she came out of ameeting, Amandine found some women’s underwear, rippedapart and placed under the windscreen wipers of her vehicle.
This threatening gesture is directly related to the work of Women Act for Change, which involves accompaniment of women who were victims of sexual violence during Guatemala’s armed conflict. Our work aims to support and strengthen women survivors in such a way that they recover their ‘life projects’ and are enabled to play an active role as protagonists for change in their communities and in the country.We understand this menacing act, with its implicit sexual violence, as an attack not only on the person and the human integrity of Amandine Fulchiron herself, but on the whole Consortium team.
It is one in a series of similar acts of intimidation that have been levelled in recent months against various of our female activists. We have issued public information on each as it occurred. Threats such as this are clearlyintended to disrupt our work among women survivors of war-time sexual violence. Those responsible want to impede or stop women’s empowerment, the renewal of their dignity and the recovery of historical memory.We have denounced each act of aggression to the Attorney General's Office and the Human Rights Ombudsperson´s Office, calling on the State to
fulfil its duty to investigate the offences and protect the life and physical safety of all those of us who work for women’s human rights.
Finally, we appeal for solidarity from Guatemalan organizations, from the international community and the media, so as to strengthen the networks of protection and accompaniment without which we cannot continue our struggle for the life and dignity of women.
Consortium Women Actors for Change
(Consorcio Actoras de Cambio)