The Oaxaca State Secretary of Interior, Heliodoro Díaz Escárraga, defended the state government's decisions to suspend oustanding arrest warrants and release convicted criminals "even if the acts are repeated." Diaz, ever mindful that he is first in line of succession if Governor Ruiz Ortiz resigns, said that these actions were taken "to create an environment favorable to negotiation." He also said that the arrest warrants could be reactivated if negotiations don't progress. Well now, that was certainly scary.
He said that the crimes were committed "under special circumstances" and that citizens had to understand that "it would be totally illogical to think that they can be handled in the normal manner." He said the government was negotiating some kind of restitution for the damage. He did not speculate what the government would do when the teachers say, "No." This kind of reminds me of the old James Garner movie, "Support Your Local Sheriff". Garner, wishing to take an uninterrupted nap, orders his deputy and town drunk, played by veteran character actor Jack Elam, into a saloon to arrest a notorious gunslinger. Elam responds, "What do I do after he kills me?"
He only addressed negotiations with the striking teachers. He did not mention APPO, except to say that the latest burned bus incident could not be investigated because the police were not given permission to enter Juarez University. Dang-it!
Reforma gives us a neat little list of the crimes for which there may be no punishment:
Destruction of the Guelaguetza amphitheater
Forced cancelation of the Guelaguetza Festival
Destruction of public and private property
Occupation and destruction of the Zócalo
Hijacking and burning buses
Blocking hotels and kidnapping tourists
60 days (and still counting) lost classroom time for 1.3 million students
Blocking banks and commercial centers
Shutting down the airport and bus terminals
Blocking federal highways
Attacking and injuring policemen
Shutting down the legislative, judicial and executive branches of the state government
So many others we can't keep track of them all
On and on and on
Yada yada yada
Etc. etc. etc.
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TAGS: Oaxaca, Mexico, Oaxaca teachers strike, APPO