The protest caravan is in town – but where is it?


During the “Common Space” session of the government GFMD, a colleague of mine received a text message: The caravan is in town! Immediately, we left the venue to look for the demonstrations that had arrived after a two-day-journey from Mexico-City. But after almost circling the venue, there was no demonstration in sight. The apparent reason:

was revealed to me in a press release by the IAMR I have just received. We expected the protesters to be close to the venue, but all we saw was a very limited police/military presence (right picture) and a “beware of crocodiles” sign (left picture)…

That was surprising, since the IAMR (center picture) had announced a caravan of around 500 people to leave Mexico City on November 9, stop overnight in Guadalajara and arrive in Puerto Vallarta in time for the government meeting on Wednesday morning. The participants: international delegates of the Third International Assembly of Migrants and Refugees (IAMR3), the Madres de los desaparecidos [mothers of the disappeared] from Honduras, the ex-braceros representing 24 states of Mexico, the indigenous peoples of Michoacan, and students from Tamaulipas, the site of the massacare of 72 migrant workers earlier this year.

Now I found out that the caravan was not blocked in front of the venue – but already way before they could even come close. I posted a link to the full press release below.

Personally, I don’t see why the caravan members were not allowed to demonstrate closer to the venue – they posed no apparent security threat and allowing them to voice their critique of the process would have been more in line with some of the significant steps towards transparency/openness taken at this year’s GFMD… 

http://iamr3.wordpress.com/2010/11/16/migrants-from-around-the-world-blocked-from-approaching-the-site-of-gfmd/

And here is a youtube clip:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NIiGJfhZF5I&feature=player_embedded#!

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About Stefan Rother

Lecturer and Researcher at the Department of Political Science, University of Freiburg -- Freelance journalist -- You can find my CV at the links below:
This entry was posted in GFMD Government Meeting, GFMD in General, IAMR and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to The protest caravan is in town – but where is it?

  1. h! says:

    Stefan, Thanks for this entry. We would have liked to come closer to the venue, but after some time with our legal team negotiating with the police blockade, we were still prohibited from exiting the contained area. It was a very moving rally with statements from ex-Braceros and the Madres Caravan – it would have been a great opportunity to share that experience with other community-oriented delegates at the GFMD.

    Looking forward to reading the rest of your blog!

    Best,
    Hanalei Ramos
    IAMR3 Media Committee

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