Over 100 Mexican Women Take Up Arms To Defend Community In Xaltianguis
Posted: 08/20/2013 3:25 pm EDT
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Mexico City (EFE).- More than 100 women in the southern
Mexican town of Xaltianguis have taken up arms to protect their
community from organized crime groups, a local self-defense force
official said Monday.
The women signed up over the past four days with the Union of
Peoples and Organizations of Guerrero State, or UPOEG, Xaltianguis
community self-defense force commander Miguel Angel Jimenez told
"We have an average of nine groups" of community police, with
each one made up of 12 women who will work in the daytime in the
neighborhoods of Xaltianguis, located about 50 kilometers (31 miles)
from the resort city of Acapulco, Jimenez said.
The women will be trained in the use of firearms and carry the same weapons as men, Jimenez said.
The vigilante group has only about 80 firearms and the weapons are rotated among members, Jimenez said.
"I trust that the people, once they know that the women are participating," will provide more weapons, Jimenez said.
Women were among the biggest supporters when the community
self-defense forces were being formed, telling men that "either you join
or I join," Jimenez said.
"Women are brave and we are capable of defending our town,"
Silvia Hipolito, a mother of two who joined the self-defense group,
The women will learn how to use firearms and work schedules that
allow them to continue taking care of their homes, Hipolito said.
UPOEG, whose members are armed and wear hoods, was created in January in Guerrero state's Costa Chica region.
The self-defense group controls access to communities and polices
them to fight crime blamed on drug traffickers and other organized
Vigilante groups have appeared in recent months in several
Mexican states, with the largest number being reported in Guerrero and
the western state of Michoacan.