A Protest Between Teachers And Police In Mexico Turns Violent With Deaths Reported

(Editor’s Note: The above video is nearly a week old but reflects the ongoing violence discussed in the below post.)

On Sunday, the massive protests between unionized teachers and police in Oaxaca, Mexico took a disturbing turn when four people were killed. The intense fight between the radical teachers’ union CNTE and government officials has been brewing for some time in the Southern Mexican state. Teachers in Oaxaca have been extremely outspoken when it comes to the Mexican government’s latest sweeping education reform plan. They’re opposed to standardized testing as well mandatory testing for all educators. The Mexican government is also accusing CNTE members of setting up “an illegal financial network to fund protests and line their pockets.”

According to the Washington Post, Sunday’s protests saw teachers blockading roads and burning vehicles, and the violence included both state and federal police. The paper also mentions an unnamed journalist who saw police in riot gear firing at protesters in Nochixtlan. This city has seen the worst of the protests, which included an incident where protesters took a police officer hostage. Earlier this week, protesters managed to take over a local shopping mall and blockaded major highways and train tracks.

Mexico’s federal government released a statement that declared 21 federal agents injured with no mention of the deaths. The statement also said that the gunfire came from neither the police or the protestors: “The attacks with guns came from people outside the blockades who fired on the population and federal police.” In addition, the police were not carrying guns during the operation.

(Via Washington Post, Sky News & The Nation)