photoNovember 25 marks International Day to Eliminate Violence Against Women around the world. While no country is immune to acts of aggression and violence against women, Guatemala is marked by some of the highest figures of murders of women in the world. So far in 2013, 690 have been killed,. This year, 818 complaints have been placed with the National Civil Police for rape in Guatemala, while only 162 people have been charged for sexual assault.

Women’s and human rights organizations in Guatemala are encouraging women in Guatemala to break their silence on sexual violence. In the majority of cases, the perpetrators of the abuse are known to the girls and women, but are threatened if they go to the police.

Below is a link to an interview with Norma Herrera of the National Union of Guatemalan Women speaks about why she works to end violence against women at a vigil in Guatemala City November 25, 2013.

Norma Herrera interview

Statistical information from