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(en) U.N.A.M. Solidarity Action in Seattle

From Brenna <bwolf@oz.net>
Date Tue, 7 Mar 2000 13:14:51 -0500

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

> March 6, 2000 Seattle, Washington www.indymedia.org
During the lunch hour today, March 6, 2000, the Seattle U.N.A.M.
Solidarity Committee held a rally and march demanding the release of the
political prisoners from the National Autonomous University of Mexico
(U.N.A.M.).  The rally featured open-mike bilingual hip-hop, drumming
and speeches by a U.N.A.M economics professor and a student strike
leader. The rally then turned into a march down the streets of downtown
Seattle to the Mexican Consulate, where the Committee attempted to
deliver a list of demands and a petition with over 1000 signatures. 
When the marchers arrived at the consulate, nine Seattle police officers
had blocked the entrance way with bikes and prevented admission to the

Irina Arellan, a U.N.A.M student and strike leader stated that actions
such as today's rally and march "are effective because the Mexican
Consulate knows that someone else in the world knows what's going on in
Mexico."  The Mexican Consulate seemed concerned about the protesters,
as the office needed police protection in order to not receive the
protesters demands.  The Mexican Consulate was not available for

Addressing issues of privatization, the IMF/World Bank, human rights and
education, the solidarity action demonstrated the large scope of the
UNAM student situation. In April 1999, more than 200,000 students went
on strike at UNAM, protesting unjust and unconstitutional tuition
increases.  The strike, shutting down the largest university in the
western hemisphere, has received scant media coverage in the United

During the second week of February, in two separate raids, the Federal
Preventative Police Force (Mexican militarized police) raided the
campus, arresting and detaining a total of 998 students.  As of March
6th, 251 students remain in jail.  Many of these students are being held
on charges of terrorism.

Ryan Judge, a University of Washington student and organizer with the
Committee Against Repression and For Democracy in Mexico, discussed the
level of media spin on the Mexican student strike and with coverage of
most events occurring presently in Mexico.  He stated that "in the last
2 years, that several hundred Americans have been expelled for human
rights work is a strong demonstration about the level of concern the
Mexican government has as far as portraying its nation as democratic and
free of repression and corruption."

For more information on the U.N.A.M strike, please visit the following


Brenna is an Independent Media Center partidaria and enjoys absurd

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