Mexico’s Striking Teachers Stand Firm Against State Repression

08/25/16 The Nation

Oaxaca—Since the killing of 11 demonstrators at a street blockade in the Oaxacan town of Nochixtlán on June 19, Mexico has been in an uproar over the use of force against teachers resisting corporate education reform. As the Mexican school year is starting, teachers and supporters in four states have refused to return to classes until there is a negotiated agreement to change the government’s program, and until the perpetrators of the Nochixtlán massacre are held responsible.

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Mexicans are seeking asylum in U.S. to escape the chaotic violence of a prolonged teachers’ protests

08/17/16 Fusion

EL PASO, Texas — The violent standoff between radical factions of a teachers’ union and the Mexican government has led to an unexpected push of emigrants fleeing the south of Mexico to seek asylum at the U.S. border.

A radical faction of teachers known as The National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE) has paralyzed several economies in the south of Mexico by blocking roads and clashing violently with police in a prolonged protest that is paralyzing life and business for many people in the states of Chiapas and Oaxaca. Tourism has plummeted and the government has resorted to using military planes to fly in food aid into some towns.

Why teachers have been occupying one of Mexico’s most alluring public spaces since May

07/25/16 Los Angeles Times

protest -- stroke -- resistanceWith its towering cathedral, stately trees and many cafes, the central plaza here usually exudes a sense of peace and elegance — a place to dine, reflect or listen to the marimba bands that perform on the ornate, wrought-iron bandstand.

But sit-ins, roadblocks and violence linked to Mexico’s roiling conflict between teachers and the federal government have cast a pall over Oaxaca City and the Guelaguetza, the signature annual celebration of the indigenous and mestizo heritage of this culturally rich state.

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Mexico’s Wind Farms Brought Prosperity, but Not for Everyone

07/26/16 The New York Times 

energy -wind_energyLA VENTOSA, Mexico — At night, Juan Piñeda López hears the hum of a wind turbine that churns 300 yards away from his adobe house. Sometimes he catches the stench of lubricant that spews down the turbine’s mast.

Beyond that, Mr. Piñeda said, the forest of turbines that has sprung up on the plains here in the southern state of Oaxaca in recent years barely affects him.

And that is the problem.

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A battle to feed young minds

07/08/16 The Economist

CNTEPEOPLE in one of Mexico’s poorest states breathed a sigh of relief when over 170 tonnes of food were flown in at the start of July to restock local shops. The scarcities in Oaxaca were not caused by a natural disaster or a besieging foreign power. They followed a blockade by teachers, indignant over education reforms, who have once again shown how effectively they can paralyse commerce. In between bursts of lethal clumsiness, the authorities have mostly left the protesting pedagogues free to man their barricades.

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Teacher blockades force Mexico to airlift food into cut-off villages

Reuters 07/02/16

CNTEMexico’s air force has flown tonnes of grain to the southern state of Oaxaca as protests by teachers opposed to education reform spread across the country and road blocks led to dwindling food supplies in some remote regions.

Tension in the state intensified after eight people died last month in clashes between police and the protesting teachers, and unrest has flared throughout Mexico.

Local media reported protests by factions of Mexico’s CNTE teachers union on Friday in the states of Guerrero, Oaxaca, Michoacan, Chiapas, Nuevo Leon and in Mexico City.

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The Ugly Reality of Police Violence Against Mexico’s Protesters

06/28/16 CityLab

The photos are reminiscent of a war zone: hundreds of people run through the streets, shooting, launching tear gas, throwing stones and firing rockets. In the background, cars burn and the wounded await medical attention.

Nine have died since a violent clash erupted just over a week ago in Oaxaca, Mexico, between police and protesters. Most of the protestors are teachers from Section 22 of Coordinadora Nacional de Trabajadores de la Educación (CNTE), a teachers’ union that opposes education reforms put in place by President Enrique Peña Nieto. The country’s public education system is in a dire state, and the reforms have been supported in other parts of the country.

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