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‘Gasolinazo’ protesters peaceful but defiant

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A rally at the Monumento a la Patria expresses rage at rising gas prices. Photo: Desde el Balcón

Mérida, Yucatán — About 1,000 demonstrators took to the streets Saturday to protest rising gas prices while demanding government reform.

Meanwhile, similar gasolinazo protests were staged all around the country. Fuel prices rose as much as 20 percent on Jan. 1, triggering a massive public outcry.  

Protestors take their message to the government palace at Mérida’s Plaza Grande. Photo: Despierta Yucatán

Marchers rallied at the Monumento a la Patria and made their way down to the main square to gather at the government palace. The first protest was organized by the Telephone Workers’ Union and the National Coordinator of Education Workers (CNTE). Another, later in the day, followed the same course but was organized by a group called Despierta Yucatán. A third rally, organized by the PRD, took place in Progreso.

In addition to their opposition to the hike in fuel prices, marchers demanded that the civil servants at all levels of government reduce their own salaries. Many called on the president of the country to resign.

Despite the anger, demonstrations here were peaceful. But a tense moment occurred when a group of protesters were prevented by state police from entering the government palace to deliver a manifesto. Eventually, they were granted entry.

More protests are scheduled Tuesday, Jan. 17 and Sunday, Jan. 22.

Sources: Diario de Yucatán, Desde el Balcón, Despierta Yucatán

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