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Oaxaca Initiates Alternative Government
by Narco News (reposted)
Saturday Jul 8th, 2006 8:15 AM
The Popular Assembly of the People of Oaxaca (APPO, by its Spanish initials) declared itself the governing body of Oaxaca on the morning of July 5.
During a student march of several thousand, the Popular Assembly convened representatives of Oaxaca’s state regions and municipalities, unions, non-governmental organizations, social organizations, cooperatives, and parents. They met for several hours in the teachers’ building to decide the next steps of this social movement. Meanwhile perhaps 2000 citizens milled around outside in the zocalo.

Governor Ulises Ruiz Ortiz last year converted the anchor of Oaxaca’s colonial zocalo, the block-long Government Palace, to a museum. He moved government offices outside the city to discourage protests in front of it. Today, as APPO symbolically re-opened it for the people’s government, it sports some new art work to celebrate. (see photo).

Directly in front of the Government Palace, a gauntlet formed through which unwanted persons – press and PRI government workers– were rudely expelled from inside the edifice, while high shrills whistles and cries of “Fuera! Fuera!” (“Out! Out!”) pursued them.

Decisions made by the assembly include: a return to classes on Monday July 10, so that the schoolchildren will not lose their school year; putting the encampment in the zocalo into the hands of the alternative government; strengthening the fight to oust Ulises Ruiz Ortiz (URO) as governor; and boycotting the tourist Guelaguetza celebration in favor of a free celebration for the people.

The zocalo’s central gazebo, from which the decisions were announced, was adorned with flags and banners. The teachers have strung plastic canopies and tents, to protect themselves from sun and rain. In the heat most of the public crowded under whatever protection they could find. When the speaker on the bandstand announced the name of marching groups and assembly representatives, the crowd responded to each name by shouting “Viva!”

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