Effigies of US Republican presidential hopeful Donald Trump have been burnt in Easter rituals in Mexico. Trump's anti-immigrant views have made him a much-disliked figure there - but many US women also have their doubts.
The Mexican tradition of burning effigies of Judas Iscariot, who according to the Bible betrayed Jesus Christ, was given a contemporary twist during Holy Week, with effigies of Trump burning across the country late on Saturday, media say.
Cheering residents in various regions watched on as the papier-mache likeness of Trump in a blue blazer, red tie and with his trademark tuft of blond hair went up in flames.
Trump is notorious in Mexico for comments he has made during his campaign to become the Republican presidential candidate in which he has accused Mexican immigrants in the US of being criminals and rapists. He has alsovowed to build a wall along the southern US border
to keep illegal immigrants out, and make Mexico pay for it.
Although the effigies are meant to represent Judas, they are often modeled on unpopular political figures.
Bad poll ratings
The artisan who created the figure of Trump, Felipe Linares, said a likeness of the billionaire American businessman was chosen "because we don't like him. He speaks ill of Mexicans."
Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has said his country will not pay for the wall and compared Trump's behavior to theascent of dictators such as Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini.
An opinion poll this month found that some 61 percent of Mexicans hold a negative opinion of Trump.
From low to low
Meanwhile, Trump's popularity with women in the US may have also taken a renewed hit amid a social media feud between the real-estate tycoon and his Republican rival Ted Cruz that involves the two men's wives.
In one of the latest incidents, Trump tweeted an unflattering photograph of Cruz's wife, Heidi, next to one of his own third wife, Melania, a former model, with the caption: "The images are worth a thousand words."
Trump's tweet came in response to a campaign ad by an anti-Trump coalition - that has nothing to do with Cruz' official campaign - showing Melania posing nude in Trump's private jet 15 years ago.
Cruz reacted by telling Trump to "leave Heidi the hell alone," saying it was "not acceptable for a big, loud New York bully to attack my wife."
Many observers feel that the clash has brought the US presidential campaign to a new low point.
Off-putting for women
This comes as opinion polls in the US show that many female voters there have already been deterred by what they see asTrump's problematic attitude to women.
Thirty-nine percent of Republican women have a negative view of Trump, according to a CNN/ORC poll, while a survey from Quinnipiac University found that 60 percent of women would not vote for Trump in the November presidential election.
Trump is known for his prolific insults and personal attacks on prominent women he does not like, though he maintains that he holds women in general in very high esteem.
The survey findings do not portend well for the real-estate tycoon should he be chosen as Republican candidate, with women generally outnumbering men at the ballot box in the US.
tj/jm (Reuters, AFP)