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Harassment prompts women's footballer to quit Mexico

Harassment prompts women's footballer to quit Mexico

March 24, 2023 (AFP)

A Mexican professional women's football club urged authorities Friday to do more to tackle gender violence, after cyber-harassment forced one of its players to seek a transfer abroad.

Club America said this week that Scarlett Camberos, who has also played for the national team, planned to move to the United States due to "digital violence."

The Mexico City-based team said that it was in the process of arranging a transfer for the 22-year-old to Angel City FC in Los Angeles.

"What happened recently in terms of harassment and gender violence cannot be repeated in football or in any other space in Mexico," Club America manager Angel Villacampa tweeted Friday.

"The authorities must guarantee all women respect and care," he added.

Club America said that despite taking all possible legal steps to bring the man accused of harassing Camberos to justice, he had received only 36 hours of house arrest.

The player and her family feel that the authorities' response does not offer "sufficient guarantees for her emotional stability, her development as a person and for a life free of violence," it added.

Gender violence is a major problem in Mexico, where an average of 10 women are murdered daily, according to official figures.

Club America's appeal came days after another high-profile case of alleged bullying led to the death of a teenage girl.

A 14-year-old schoolgirl was arrested on suspicion of fatally injuring Norma Lizbeth, also 14, in Teotihuacan near Mexico City.

Video footage appeared to show her repeatedly hitting Lizbeth on the head with a rock, shocking the country and prompting President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to call for a strengthening of moral values.

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