Conflicts & War

Hundreds of police deployed in Mexico protests

Mexico City, June 10 (efe-epa).- At least 400 police officers were deployed Wednesday in the affluent neighborhood of Polanco in Mexico City during youth protests demanding an end to police violence and the immediate release of the country’s political prisoners.

Shortly after midday, the representative office of Jalisco state in Mexico City, located in the area, became a bunker as protesters from various social organizations were expected to arrive.

“We are demanding the dissolution of repressive bodies, the release of political prisoners, the punishment of perpetrators and the entire line of command that has sheltered these violent acts,” a member of the Accion Revolucionaria (Revolutionary Action) group told EFE.

The young people demanded justice for the police custody deaths of the African-American George Floyd in Minneapolis, United States, and of the Mexican Giovanni Lopez after being detained in Jalisco state for not wearing a mask; as well as the release of the lawyer Susana Prieto, who was detained in Matamoros.

They also marked the 49th anniversary of the 1971 student massacre known as “El Halconazo” or “The Corpus Christi Massacre,” considered the second most tragic after the Tlatelolco Massacre on Oct. 2, 1968.

They reported that the police tried to intimidate them when they arrived.

“From the Polanco subway to here there was a large display of policemen dressed as civilians. This shows their nature, the defense of private property and the repression of working people,” said the Accion Revolucionaria member.

On Wednesday, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador spoke out against the repression, recalling El Halconazo.

“No to repression, neither to students nor to any citizen. No to repression, no to torture, no to enforced or forced disappearances, no to massacres, no to violence,” said the president.

He indicated that his government seeks to resolve differences peacefully “and that the State, the State security forces should not be used to repress the people,” since, he said, “that does not solve the problems; on the contrary, it complicates them.”

On June 5, dozens of protesters vandalized the US embassy in the central Reforma Avenue of the Mexican capital, protesting the deaths of Floyd and Lopez. They tried to tear down the metal fences that guard the embassy, hit the police and caused damage.

They then went to the headquarters of the government of Jalisco and destroyed shops and other properties in their wake, while a group of police officers allegedly beat a 16-year-old girl who was participating in the protest.

On Monday, during another march over the case of this young woman, in the center of Mexico City, protesters caused destruction and looting, which was condemned by Lopez Obrador, who proposed the creation of an unarmed peace group for the demonstrations.

Mayren Padilla, a member of the Izquierda Socialista (Left Socialist) organization, assured that these recent events in the country have served to justify police violence “which has been used to maintain social order, supposedly.”

She insisted that the police presence caused violent events on Friday, ending in violent acts by the police. “That shows that the police come to harass and violate,” she said. EFE-EPA


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