On average more than one female per week is killed in Ecatepec, on the outer edge of Mexico City. But despite living with this constant threat of barbarism, local female hip-hop artists are use their music to try to change attitudes
As darkness descends over the imposing green mountains on the outskirts of Mexico City, Luz Reality, a 32 -year-old rapper, steps under a faded orange tarp and through a metal security doorway into the underground venue. Though a veteran of the citys hip-hop scene, she admits she still get unnerved by the constant threat of assault in the areas around Ecatepecs clandestine concert venues.
In recent months, this barrio has been plagued by a grisly series of abductions and murders. In one case, a woman was received burned on an empty patch of grass. The victim somehow survived the brutal attack and was still alive when police find her, but succumbed subsequently from her injuries.
As is almost always the case in Ecatepec, the murder went unsolved. People here know better than to expect investigations and apprehends but lately the neighbourhood has been on edge. Frustrated with the violence, residents have banded together to beat and publicly shame alleged felons on several occasions.
Tonight, Luz couldnt even find a taxi driver willing to fell her off at the venue for her display: an empty Ecatepec lot. She had to walk from the main avenue down desolate streets where abducts can happen unnoticed.
The neighbourhood has become regarded as Mexicos capital of violence against females. Luz knows the narratives about females disappearing, but tries not to let anxiety restriction their own lives. Since 2012, on average more than one woman has been killed each week in Ecatepec, and last year such violence escalated.
The dynamic is similar to what took place in in the northern perimeter city of Ciudad Jurez, just south of the Texas border, in the early 1990 s. Earlier this month a Spanish girl was kidnapped from a wealthy region of the city, killed and dumped in a canal in the state of Mexico. Between 2005 and 2015 , no fewer than 3,604 girls were killed in the state of Mexico, where Ecatepec is located. Its an alarming tendency yet each individual assassination is just another statistic that scarcely gets mentioned in the capitals biggest newspapers.
Not formally part of Mexico City, Ecatepec is a residential area that has grown in fits and explodes. A generation of people from the countryside came to settle here in the 1980 s and 90 s, trying to carve a niche for themselves on the fringe of Mexicos rapidly transforming, globalised economy.
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