Global protests support Mexican students' campaign for justice

Issue 
Thousands marched in Mexico City on November 20 to demand justice for the missing 43 students.

Thousands of workers, campesinos, members of civil society, and students marched in Mexico City on November 20 to demand justice for the missing 43 students from the Ayotzinapa teachers' school.

They were joined by the family members of the missing students, who have been traveling in three solidarity convoys throughout the country to build support for their cause.

On the night of September 26-27, the local police of Iguala, Guerrero, shot at several buses carrying the Ayotzinapa students, killing three of them and another three civilians. Then, according to authorities, the police “arrested” 43 students and handed them to the local gang known as United Warriors.

Since then, Mexico has been hit by sustained protests demanding justice for the students and their families.

November 20 is the day the 1910-20 Mexican Revolution is officially commemorated. However, normal celebrations were suspended in light of the protests. Protesters are demanding the students be returned alive and are calling on President Enrique Pena Nieto to resign.

Protesters blocked the entrance to Mexico City’s international airport. Police had tried to stop protesters from assembling. Hundreds of riot police surrounded the young protesters, who were chanting “We want them alive!” in relation to the missing students, as they sought to defy police and reach the airport.

That day, actions were held around the world in solidarity with protesters. “Mexico, the world is watching over you,” said the banner of a flash mob gathered at Lille, France.

Meanwhile, students at the University of Nottingham held a silent march inside the university dressed in black and holding banners with different messages under the refrain: “It’s not only 43.”

One banner said: “It’s not only 43. It’s the 22,322 missing people since 2006.”

Protesters also marched in London and students gathered across Germany also gathered to support the Mexican demands for justice. Protesters were held in Barcelona and Madrid in Spain. Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez, a Mexican football player playing for Real Madrid, tweeted “#WeAreAllAyotzinapa” and “#UnitedForAyotzinapa”.

There were also actions in Amsterdam, Hong Kong, New York, New Delhi and Melbourne. Demonstrations took place right across Latin America, with thousands of people marching in La Paz in Bolivia.

That day, Cuban students published an open letter in the Rebel Youth newspaper, stating: “The Cuban students, loyal to our history of solidarity and internationalism, and inspired by teachings of Marti and Fidel, energetically condemn the torture, the crimes and the disappearances.”
They expressed their solidarity with Mexican students, and said they would “join the Mexican people in their call for justice”. They offered “each Cuban school as a trench to keep fighting for the truth.”

[Compiled from TeleSUR English.]

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