Friday, January 21

Since January, Spain will be the first European country to officially count all femicides

In just a few weeks, when between 2022, Spain will become the first European country to officially count all femicides. It will be then when the Government deploys a new statistic in which, in addition to the fatal cases of gender violence within the partner or ex-partner, sexual, family, social or vicarious femicides will also be registered. It does so after a process of defining the categories in which they have consulted with different organizations, including the CGPJ or the European Institute for Gender Equality.

The concept of femicide encompasses all murders of women committed by men for reasons of machismo or misogyny, that is, because they are women. Several feminist theorists coined it in the 1970s, and in recent decades it has been especially used in Latin America. Several countries, such as Mexico or Argentina, incorporated this term into their legislation to refer to sexist violence not only within the couple but in other contexts.

Now it will be Spain who will lead the statistical operation in Europe. It does so by complying with what is agreed in the State Pact against Gender Violence and also taking into account the content of the Istanbul Convention, the international framework of reference on the matter. In recent years, cases such as those of Marta del Castillo, Diana Quer or Laura Luelmo evidenced the need to register crimes with a clear sexist nature, even if they occurred outside the sphere of the couple. Also the case of Marina and Laura, murdered by Sergio Morate, the former’s boyfriend, when they went to pick up their things from the house that the until then couple shared: Laura, with no sentimental connection to the criminal, was left out of the statistic.

That will change from January. The Government Delegation against Gender Violence will have a Feminicide Observatory that will break down all cases according to various types: femicides in a partner or ex-partner, family femicides, sexual femicides, social femicides and vicarious femicides. Each of these types will have a specific heading, in which other categories will also be listed.

Five types of femicides

Femicide in a partner or ex-partner will be the same statistic that already exists today and that since 2003 counts these murders. There will therefore be no statistical change and the series will be comparable. Family femicide will be the murder of a woman by men from her family environment and there will be two categories: general family femicide and femicide by honor crime, the “murder of a woman by a man of her family, due to the belief of that the woman would have caused her to be discredited. ”

The murder of a woman without a partner or family relationship linked to the sexual violence included in the law will be considered sexual femicide. They will be divided into femicides for sexual assault -when there is a sexual assault by a man towards a woman with whom he has no intimate or family relationship, and subsequent murder-; femicide linked to trafficking for the purposes of sexual exploitation, sexual exploitation, prostitution or other activities with sexual connotations stigmatized by gender; feminicide linked to female genital mutilation; and femicide linked to forced marriage.

Another type will be social femicide: the murder of a woman by an assault, of a non-sexual nature, by a man with whom there was no relationship or family relationship, for example, a stranger, a partner from work, a neighbor, a friend, an employer etc.

The last category will be vicarious femicide, “the murder of a woman or minor children, by a man as an instrument to cause injury or harm to another woman.” There will be two major subtypes: the one that occurs within the scope of the partner or ex-partner and that which happens outside of that scope. The one that happens within the couple or ex-partner will include minor sons and daughters, but also other minors and women of legal age who are close: nephews, friends, sisters … Vicarious femicide outside the couple or ex-partner will be the murder of minors or women with intent to harm another woman.

It will be the violence against women units of the government delegations and sub-delegations distributed throughout all the territories that will collect the data and send it to the Government Delegation against Gender Violence, which will review the information and be in charge of confirming the data. cases. Sources from the Ministry of Equality explain that it is a new way of accounting that requires “technical delicacy” and coordination with the Ministry of the Interior. For this reason, the data will not, for the moment, be communicated with the agility that happens with the statistics of cases within the couple or ex-partner.