Story Publication logo October 7, 2021

Murderer in Uniform


They are supposed to protect, but Argentine police officers often commit femicides. The deaths of...

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Multiple Authors

The following is a summary of the Le Monde diplomatique article, which is written in German. To read the full article in German, click here.

Every month on page 2, Le Monde diplomatique gives authors space for very personal texts. In the October 2021 issue, Karen Naundorf writes about her joint project with photographer Sarah Pabst, which was produced with the support of the Pulitzer Center. Femicidal Cops: Argentine Women say, 'Basta!' is about femicides committed by police officers and ex-police officers in Argentina.

The text begins with an account of the first visit by the author and the photographer to the town of Rojas: “On the day we go to Rojas for the first time, the sky is furious. Vast amounts of water pour angrily onto the highway, lightning discharges right next to us on the fields of the pampas. Even during the memorial service for Úrsula Bahillo, the lightning flashes through the church windows, the sky does not want to calm down. Why should it? Úrsula is dead, murdered by her ex-boyfriend, a policeman. And she could still be alive.”

The author describes the problem of femicides by police officers and system failures in Argentina from a personal perspective. However, she also emphasizes that the reporting is not about pointing the finger at Argentina. Violence against women is a global problem.

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She writes: “If I nevertheless focus on Argentina in my reports, it is because on the one hand there is a problem of violence and machismo here. But on the other hand, there are also those who are looking for solutions and have already achieved a lot.”

The author says she often experiences a shake of the head when friends and acquaintances react to her reports: "How terrible what is happening down there in the south!"

Without wanting to minimize the problem in Argentina, she wishes that the readers in Germany, where her text in Le Monde diplomatique can be read, would have more awareness about what is happening in their own country: A man tries to kill his (ex-)wife or (ex-)girlfriend every day. Every three days, a femicide takes place.

"There is a lack of places in women's shelters, too," she writes. "And partner violence is often treated as a taboo subject."

The text is also available as an audio version on Le Monde diplomatique's website.


Criminal Justice


Criminal Justice

Criminal Justice
Three women grouped together: an elderly woman smiling, a transwoman with her arms folded, and a woman holding her headscarf with a baby strapped to her back.


Gender Equality

Gender Equality

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