Striking teachers in Oaxaca, Mexico said they would boycott this weekend’s Mexican Presidential election, but would cancel the boycott if contract negotiations with the government took a turn for the better. The National Union of Education Workers Local 22 (SNTE, in Spanish)-representing 40,000 primary and secondary public school teachers- also announced the re-establishment of a permanent and total occupation of the Oaxaca City central plaza. A previous occupation was violently dislodged by police on June 14, injuring hundreds of teachers, supporters and bystanders.
SNTE’s most recent actions, including a demand for the Governor’s resignation, represent its attempt to capitalize on massive popular support won by teachers after the police attack. The hardened positions come in spite of a call from the Archbishop of Oaxaca for a “truce” until after July 2nd balloting takes place.
The union announced that teachers would hold another march June 28 that will embark from the airport on the edge of town. A June 15 march drew up to 300,000.