Minute's silence at the offices of the national government's delegation to the Balearics. | Picasa


Social services minister Fina Santiago said today that the fight needs to continue against gender violence. She was speaking to the press, following the murder on Wednesday of Celia Navarro at the hands of her partner, the sixth woman to die in the Balearics this year as a result of this form of violence.

Santiago observed that violence exists in all cultures regardless of educational or financial background. She noted that the deaths are very violent, be they through being set fire to (as was the case with the woman in Alcudia earlier this year) or being beaten. "We must continue fighting because, although there is social rejection, this type of violence continues."

The Balearic government, the Council of Majorca and Palma town hall all held a minute’s silence in memory of Celia Navarro and to condemn domestic violence. The Women of Majorca lobby group will be holding a rally to demonstrate revulsion at the murder from 18.00 to 20.00 on Friday evening. It will be at the Plaça de les Tortuges along the Born in Palma.

Since 1996, when there was a record number of murders, Majorca has not registered as bloody a year as this. There have been eight murders, five of the victims having been women. The first case was on 23 January in Costa de la Calma. British resident, 50-year-old Warren Lyttle, strangled his wife Lisa with a telephone cable. On 10 March in Son Servera, a Colombian, 22-year-old Carlos Villegas Giraldo, suffocated his girlfriend, 19 year-old Victoria Sard Massanet.

At the start of April, a Russian woman, Svetla Batukova, stabbed her German husband Horst Hans Henkels to death in Cala Millor. On 12 May in Santa Ponsa, Bernat Ferrá shot Juan José Piña, the boyfriend of his former wife, and then turned the gun on himself. At the end of May, a 47-year-old Romanian woman, Lucia Patrascu, was stabbed to death in Puerto Pollensa by her husband Ioan Ciotan (58) only hours after having attempted to denounce him to the Guardia Civil.

In late June, Xue Sandra Saura was set on fire by her partner Carlos Peña at their house in Alcudia. She survived for some weeks before finally passing away as the result of her burns. In August, Trevor O’Neill (41) was shot dead in Costa de la Calma in what was a case of mistaken identity as part of the ongoing feud between two Irish gangs, the Hutch and the Kinahan.

And finally, there was the Wednesday murder of Celia Navarro, bludgeoned with what is thought to have been a kettle before being apparently strangled.