Mexico City: Brief summary of the December 1st protests

[nggallery id=14]

The 1st of December marks the change of federal government every six years, when a new President of Mexico is sworn. The office was won by the ‘imposition’ of Enrique Peña Nieto, a member of the dominating Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI). Uniformed scum held a huge military parade in honor of the new bastard, whom the troops shall serve and obey ‘to protect the nation’; this year’s nationalist parade took place in Mexico City’s Campo Marte military base.

On the other hand, thousands took to the streets of Mexico City to oppose the newly-sworn president, in the context of similar movements in previous months. The protest rally began early on Saturday, December 1st, at 7am, in front of the San Lázaro Palace (or Chamber of Deputies), which hosted the symbolic ceremony where the president took the oath of office. The federal police was in charge of repression in the vicinity of San Lázaro, erecting steel barriers to push away protesters.

Among diverse demonstrator blocs and an angry mob in general, along with hundreds of hooded individuals there were also distinct anarchist, anti-authoritarian, libertarian collectives, including the Revolutionary Anarchist Alliance (AAR) and various other anarchist groups, such as the Anarchist Black Cross (CNA) of Mexico, the Anarchist Students Coordinative (CAE), as well as the Black Bloc (Bloque Negro). Instead of shouting out about any democratic delusion, comrades hit the streets for total liberation, for anarchy.

Throughout the day there were riots, at least twenty injured people (two of them severely wounded) and four cops injured. Many protesters were targeted by police beatings, kidnappings and chases. The Power was faced with a march of thousands of demonstrators and reacted fiercely; heavy police forces like the Grenadiers (armored anti-riot units) and cops of the GERI special immediate reaction group were deployed across the main streets.

At around 12pm, the main bulk of the protesters (not only anarchists) moved downtown towards the National Palace in El Zócalo square, where the president’s election was formally completed. The location was surrounded by presidential guards. Small-scale clashes broke out there, while insurgents were preparing more Molotov cocktails.

The protesters marched along Madero street (which has been converted into a car-free commercial zone), but the repression grew harder as the demo passed from the main avenue of Eje Central and went further to Juárez avenue, until it reached the corner where the Palace of Fine Arts is located, next to the park Alameda Central. People were attacked there by anti-riot forces. Some protesters managed to resist the crackdown and fought back. On numerous occasions, police used tear gases, rubber bullets, water cannon armored trucks, stun grenades and physical violence.

In the meanwhile, youths smashed capitalist targets in their path (from El Zócalo square, downtown, to the end of Juárez avenue the place is full of stores like Starbucks, 7-Eleven, bank branches, an electric power company building, but also the Secretariat of Foreign Affairs headquarters, and so on). There was some looting as well. Cops made detentions along the way.

When the demo reached the end of Juárez avenue, protesters took a turn to continue along another fashionable wide avenue, Paseo de la Reforma, an area dominated by luxurious hotels like the Meliá and Hilton, plus other global capitalist symbols. Strong clashes happened on the spot. Most of the business stores had their windows smashed, and slogans and graffiti were painted.

All around the world, it’s just the same shit. A.C.A.B.

Here’s a video of demonstrators and bystanders getting violently beaten by anti-riot cops on an avenue close to the Pino Suárez station:

It is being reported that an old man who was assaulted by the police is still hospitalized in critical condition, while another injured protester is in risk of completely losing one eye. In total 92 people were arrested in different parts of the city where clashes took place. It has been said that among the hostages were some of the participants in the Revolutionary Anarchist Alliance bloc.

At 19.30pm, the Mexico City’s governor blatantly stated that the authorities have unleashed a political hunt against anarchists who—in his words—coordinated and planned the entire chaos that was caused downtown, and sprayed graffiti on the historic monument Hemiciclo a Juárez —recently restored together with the whole of Alameda Central park, where the monument is located, on a budget of around 200 millions Mexican pesos. The painted slogan actually read ‘Neighbourhood food autonomy’.

A solidarity gathering for the arrestees, who were threatened with severe charges, was called for 20.00pm in front of the 50th agency of the Public Ministry (a police department where hostages are taken in) in the neighbourhood of Colonia Doctores in Cuauhtémoc borough. By 20.30pm, heavy anti-riot forces stormed the gathering, and people were chased all over the district.

On December 2nd, it was confirmed that 69 people have been held captive. They were transferred to the Reclusorio Norte (northern men’s prison) and the Santa Martha Acatitla (women’s prison, south of the city) awaiting sentence.

On December 3rd, the Anarchist Black Cross of Mexico released a communiqué, stating that what happened on December 1st in Mexico City is the product of social discontent. The comrades denounce the growing campaign of criminalization of social protest, holding Marcelo Ebrard—the current head of Government of the Mexican Federal District—primarily responsible for the accusations against anarchist and libertarian groups or individuals. They furthermore explain that the anti-anarchist witch-hunt is nothing new, as the persecutory campaign against resisters of the established order was evident already since 2003, after the commemorative demo of October 2nd for the 1968 Tlatelolco massacre, and has now been followed with numerous incriminating statements by the new governor Miguel Ángel Mancera Espinosa, who assumes his duties this month. The mass communication media spread that among the arrestees were persons who participated in anarchist groups. For this reason the comrades clarify that none of the hostages come from the ABC Mexico; nevertheless, they clearly express their unconditional solidarity with each and every one of those kidnapped by the State and demand their immediate release.

‘Bread and circus to the people’ is what we perfectly experience in Mexico, too. A vast majority of people still rely on the Press to read distorted news, or use alternative social networks (Facebook service, etc.) to exchange information and chat with each other. At the same time dozens of attacks and direct actions of individuals or groups like the FAI/FRI, CARI-PGG, etc. are reported as if they were caused by some strange power failure (often presented as the result of short circuit), accompanied even with images of ashes from a torched ATM, vehicle or industrial complex, while many more actions are never made public in the mainstream media. Thus, we deem personal contact and mutual trust necessary in order to spread libertarian thoughts and counter-information on any such occasion, in order to build relations that will trash the state surveillance and corporate domination.

3 thoughts on “Mexico City: Brief summary of the December 1st protests”

Comments are closed.