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Officer Velasco: attacked during Sunday's Women's Day march. Officer Velasco: attacked during Sunday's Women's Day march.

Female police officer victim of attack during anti-violence march

'If there’s no respect for women by women, it makes me very sad'

A protester at the International Women’s Day march in Mexico City on Sunday — held to draw attention to violence against women —used a caustic substance to burn the face of a female police officer posted to the event’s security detail.

Officer Lucero Velasco San Juan, 25, said that she stayed after her shift had ended in order to support her fellow officers on Juárez avenue.

“Everything was very calm until about five in the afternoon, which is when it all happened. … We were protecting the people … since there were families there,” she said.

“When we got in line … a group of women passed us and began to throw bottles at us, they began to throw liquids on us, to shout, to hit our shields, to paint them with spray paint. Then they tried to take our shields by pulling on them, and when they were pulling on them someone stuck their hand in my helmet and rubbed something on me.”

She said she didn’t feel anything at that moment, as she was busy with her duties, but the pain gradually began to set in.

“After the women continued on, that was when I began to feel more pain, more burning. I told my commander that it was hurting me, and she lifted the face mask on my helmet and saw that I had a burn on my face,” said officer Velasco.

She was treated by paramedics and taken to a hospital for further care. She hopes the burn will not leave a scar.

“I’m very sad, really very sad, because in the end we are women and we are human beings; before women, we are human beings,” she said.

“So if there’s no respect for women by men, for women by women, yes, it makes me very sad, even more so knowing that we’re there to keep people safe. … We were there to protect them, not hurt them, so it makes me sad that they burned my face and it scares me, because I don’t know if I’ll recover 100% or if I’ll have a scar on my face.”

Source: Reforma (sp)

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