A minute's silence to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women was observed before yesterday's parliamentary session. The president (speaker) of the Balearic parliament, Baltasar Picornell, referred to the latest victim - Sacramento Roca - and said deaths such as hers "affect us deeply".

In rejecting this violence, Picornell stated that it was necessary to put an end to violent acts against women. For this to happen, he said, "we need individual commitment from every citizen - men and women - and the collective commitment of society".

Following his statements, President Armengol informed the house that the government is undertaking a great deal of work in tackling gender violence. It is a "most important issue in the Balearics, in the rest of Spain and throughout the world". "I will never accept excuses for the number of victims. While women are being murdered, this democracy cannot be called a democracy."

In this respect, Armengol explained that there will be an increased budget for the Balearic Institute for Women next year and that a transfer of responsibilities for equality to island councils "will bring this matter closer to the public".