It is two years today since 43 student teachers were abducted in Guerrero in southern Mexico, and have never been seen again. Their parents, students, communities, supporters and democratic teachers have been campaigning for truth and justice ever since.
As if the compicity of the security forces in the disappearances were not enough, they sunk to yet another low at the weekend when they attacked a peaceful demonstration of students demanding the return alive of their classmates. According to reports, 8 students and two community members are still missing after Sunday's protest, seven others were detained and beaten by police before being released and three others were seriously injured.
The complicity of the Mexican government in the Ayotzinapa tragedy is strongly suspected as they seek to destroy the kind of democratic and critical education promoted in teacher education colleges such at that at Ayotzinapa. Like the recent massacre of teachers and their supporters in Oaxaca, this case is a shocking example of the violent ways which the state is using to force through its reforms.
However teachers, students, families and communities will not rest until the truth about Ayotzinapa is known, and the fight for democratic education in the country goes on with more determination than ever. As one slogan from that time makes clear:
- They tried to bury us, they didn't know we were seeds
- Truth and Justice for the Ayotzinapa 43 and their Families
In an important development, 6 teaching unions - from the US, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Argentina and Ecuador - have lodged a human rights complaint with the United Nations over the disappearance of the student teachers.