San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Six women killed Wednesday in Guatemala

GUATEMALA CITY – Separate acts of violence on Wednesday resulted in the death of six women, including three minors, south of the capital and in the eastern part of the country, Guatemalan police reported.

Two girls, aged 6 and 12, appeared with signs of apparent strangulation on a neighborhood street south of Guatemala City.

In a nearby area, the body of a woman approximately 35 years old was found shot in the face and gagged with duct tape. Shortly after, another body with signs of violence appeared a few blocks away, the report said.

In La Unión, in the department of Zacapa, 205 kilometers east of capital, a mother and her 16-year-old daughter were shot dead outside a school, local fire rescuers said.

“Today Guatemala is grieving. We demand prompt clarification of the crimes,” a statement from the Survivor Foundation, a group that denounces violence against women in Guatemala, said.

Guatemala faces a wave of violence – mainly related to drug trafficking and gangs – that left more than 5,000 dead in 2012, one of the highest murder rates in Latin America, according to official figures.

According to police data, 700 women die violently each year in that country.

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