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Minnesota protest demands: Cut U.S. aid to Mexico

By staff

National day of action for Ayotzinapa

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Saint Paul, MN – More than 100 people protested in front of the Mexican Consulate on Dec. 3, calling for an end to ‘Plan México’ and all U.S. aid that goes to the Mexican military and police, because of their rampant repression and human rights abuses against the people of Mexico.

The protest was part of a national day of action in at least 43 U.S. cities in response to the September kidnapping and disappearance of 43 Mexican students from the rural teachers college in Ayotzinapa, Guerrero by the Mexican police in collaboration with a local cartel.

Protest organizers used the hashtag #UStired2 (for “U.S. tired too”) as an echo of the hashtag being used by the movement in México: #YaMeCanse (“I’m tired of this”). #YaMeCanse was started after a top Mexican government official said he was tired of all the protests; the movement turned it around to mean that they are tired of the government’s murderous corruption and impunity.

What happened in Ayotzinapa has sent shock waves throughout México as massive militant protests rocked the country. Ayotzinapa is seen by many as the straw that broke the camel’s back after more than 100,000 people have been similarly ‘disappeared’ and killed since 2006 at the hands of the intertwined Mexican police, military and cartels.

Mexico receives large amounts of military aid and political support from Washington, DC. According to local immigration attorney and activist Susana De Leon, “Thousands of the 100,000 dead and 25,000 missing were killed and disappeared by a corrupt Mexican government which is widely acknowledged to be colluding with narcotraffickers. Billions in guns, ammunition and training for police, military and other security forces were paid for with our U.S. tax dollars. #UStired2’s goal is to promote peace by stopping Plan México. A major component of Plan México is Plan Merida, a multi-billion dollar security aid program that President Obama has promised to continue indefinitely.”

The 43 missing students, who studied at Ayotzinapa, a teacher training college in the state of Guerrero, Mexico, went missing on Sept. 26. After taking part in a protest in the city of Iguala, about 120 miles south of Mexico City, the convoy of buses they were travelling home in came under fire from Iguala’s municipal police. Subsequently a series of mass graves has been discovered just outside Iguala, though it’s as yet unconfirmed whether they contain the bodies of the students.

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