Thousands march in Spain to demand end of violence against women

Thousands of people took to the streets in Madrid and Barcelona on Friday evening in marches to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women.

 

In Madrid, protesters, many wearing purple, marched down the Gran Via in the city centre carrying banners and chanting “no is no, anything else is rape”, and “we women are not goods”. In Barcelona people banged drums and lit flares.

 

Since 2003, when statistics started to official count fatalities, 1,171 women have died as a result of gender violence in Spain, according to the Ministry of Equality. So far in 2022, 38 women have died.

 

Spain’s Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez asked men on Friday to step forward to stop machismo.

 

“Male violence is a tragic reality that shames us every day,” he said at a Socialist Party event.

 

The protests come after it emerged that some men have had prison sentences reduced because of a loophole in a new law governing penalties for sexual abuse, causing fury and heated debate among politicians.

 

The law, known as the “only yes means yes” law, classifies any non-consensual sex as rape but also sets lighter minimum sentences for certain sexual crimes.

 

At least 11 convicted sexual abusers have had their prison terms reduced and five men have been released from prison, according to Europa Press news agency.

 

Source: Tap News Agency