Friday, January 05, 2007

UNICEF urges Mexican gov't to complete school year affected by teachers' strike

Below Zapatista Mother and Baby

Above Subcomandante Marcos

Photos By chouchoux

Excitement, patients, love, enthusiasm, joy, anger and above all pride. Each face though covered with a mask was glowing in San Cristobal on January 1st 2006. The masks good enough to cover the faces, but not the emotions. Easy to see, amazing to feel, impossible to capture with a back metal box.

UNICEF urges Mexican gov't to complete school year affected by teachers' strike

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) on Thursday urged the Mexican authorities to take measures to complete the school year of children, who have lost many hours of study as a result of a teachers' strike in the southern state of Oaxaca.

The call was made by Michael Klaus, head of the Mexican mission of UNICEF, who had made similar calls for several times since the strike began some 200 days ago.

About 1.3 million children have been left off-school as 10,000 primary and secondary schools have been closed due to the strike in Oaxaca, said the UNICEF official.

As Mexico has ratified the international convention on children's rights and included the content on the protection of such rights in its constitution, the government should take measures to protect children's rights for education, said Klaus.

Education for children should be conducted in a dignified, friendly and safe atmosphere, something that has disappeared since the teachers' strike, Klaus said.

Protesters occupied Oaxaca City, capital of the state, from May to October last year as the teachers' strike developed into a protest demanding the resignation of Governor Ulises Ruiz, who made a bloody attempt to evict striking teachers in June.

In late October 2006, the Mexican government ordered the police to evict the protesters and has since controlled the city center. Many of the state's 70,000 protesting teachers have not returned to work.

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