Later this month the final run off in Guatemala's presidential elections will take place. Though violence marred ballots in November, the process is seen as a triumph of democracy for a state scarred by a 36 year civil war that only ended in 1996.
The political campaign so far has not addressed a wave of murders that terrifies the female population. Since 2001 more than 700 girls and young women have died. The toll so far this year is more than 250. More recently the bodies of the girls and young women have started appearing in pairs and the authorities seem powerless to act.
Claire Marshall reports, which some of you may find disturbing, from Guatemala City.