Teachers affiliated to the radical CNTE union took to the streets of Mexico City on July 19, as their leaders hold talks with authorities to discuss the education reform that has led to two months of mass protests across the country. The march kicked off at the national trainee teachers' college in the heart of Mexico City. Protesters held banners opposing President Enrique Pena Nieto, who spearheaded the neoliberal reform in 2013.
A highway blockade in support of Mexico's striking teachers was increasingly gaining popular support in the capital of the southern state of Chiapas, La Jornada reported on July 13. The protest in the city of Tuxtla Gutierrez was organised as a popular assembly. As of July 12, it had been active for 15 days, involving 3500 demonstrators in support of the radical CNTE teachers union.
Protesters march against the education reform in Mexico City. Public school teachers in Mexico City launched an indefinite strike on July 5, called by leaders of the dissident National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE) teachers union to protest the education reforms imposed by President Enrique Peña Nieto.
Ten years after the Oaxaca Commune of 2006 — when for nearly six months workers, students, peasants, women, youth, indigenous peoples and urban poor brought the government of the southern Mexican state to a virtual standstill — teachers in the Mexican state are back on the barricades. Once again, the state has responded with brute force.
Representatives from the CNTE attend talks in Mexico City, June 22, 2016. A second hours-long meeting between striking teachers and the government in Mexico City wrapped up in the early hours of June 28 as authorities called on unions to end the blockades in the southern state of Oaxaca, the Mexican news agency Notimex said.
On June 25 a vigil was held outside the State Library of Victoria in Melbourne to pay tribute to the Mexican teachers who were murdered by police during protests organised by the CNTE teachers' union in Oaxaca last week. The teachers have been rallying against the privatisation of education by the government of Enrique Peña Nieto and for democratic reform in the education system.
The scene outside the La Madame bar in Veracruz, Mexico. Photo: Yerania Rolón, Blog Expediente. Reactions by politicians and the media around the world to the horrific mass murder at an Orlando LGBTI club on June 12 have largely focused on the attacker’s alleged links to Islamic extremists — despite the killer pledging allegiance to both the Islamic State group and its nemesis Hezbollah.
CNTE protest against neoliberal education reform, Mexico City, June 24. Photo: TeleSUR. Marathon talks between the Mexican government and teachers protesting neoliberal education reforms in the face of deadly repression ended on June 22 with no resolution, TeleSUR English said the next day.
Prominent Mexican left-wing politician Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador demanded on January 10 to know how the authorities could catch an escaped gangster, but were unable to find the 43 students kidnapped in Ayotzinapa in Guerrero state in September 2014. The National Regeneration Movement (Morena) leader and twice presidential candidate hit out at the government following the arrest of Sinaloa Cartel drug kingpin Joachin “El Chapo” Guzman on January 8. The student teachers from Ayotzinapa, meanwhile, are feared dead at the hands of a gang. Their remains have not been found.
The controversial Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) is slated to hit Mexico with more food insecurity and hard times for farmers by extending tariff exemptions to more countries. The TPP has been negotiated, largely in secret, by 12 Pacific nations and incorporates 40% of the world's GDP. The deal is still to be ratified by parliaments of signatory countries of Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, United States and Vietnam.
Hurricane Patricia — the most intense hurricane ever recorded in the Western Hemisphere — was downgraded to a tropical depression on October 24. It offered a reminder of the consequences of a warming planet.
Unionists, rural workers and environmentalists are coming together in Arequipa, in southern Peru, to halt the proposed Tia Maria copper mine. The mine project belongs to Southern Copper Corporation, a subsidiary of Grupo Mexico. Mine opponents are demanding respect for workers' rights, community democracy and involvement in development decisions, and protection for the ecosystem and rural farmers.
The US government issued a congratulatory statement on June 9, praising the Mexican people after June 7 elections, despite large protests and boycotts held by activists and teacher unions across the nation. The elections were marked by violence, but the US Department of State considered the process democratic, saying: “We congratulate the people of Mexico for exercising its democratic right to vote and choosing its leaders.”
The leftist political party led by two-time former presidential candidate Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador will govern in areas representing more than 8 million people after Mexico's June 7 elections. Lopez Obrador's National Regeneration Movement (Morena) took part for the first time in the mid-term elections. It won in six of the 16 districts of Mexico City, breaking the long-time hegemonic rule of the once popular Democratic Revolution Party (PRD) in the country's capital, which won five.
The Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) being negotiated between the US and 11 other Pacific Rim nations — including Australia — is a treaty covering regulations and investments. It is being negotiated in secret from the peoples of the affected nations, but not from the corporations that are set to benefit from the deal — as chapters leaked by WikiLeaks reveal. For the US side alone, about 600 corporate representatives are neck deep in the negotiations.
Greece, Venezuela discuss cooperation Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has invited the newly-elected Greek prime minister to Caracas, TeleSUR English said on February 9. “I have invited Alexis Tsipras, comrade Alexis, to visit us as soon as he can, here in Venezuela,” Maduro told Venezuelan public TV. “He plans to come to Latin America. He mentioned all the pressures that he is under. Because of a savage, savage neoliberal system that has been applied in Greece.” Tsipras expressed an interest in touring Latin America, starting with the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela.