plans for the airport may be modified.

Matthew X profrv at
Sun Apr 4 22:12:12 PDT 1999

San Salvador Atenco Erupts Against Mexican Government

On July 11, hundreds of farmers from the areas of San Salvador Atenco and 
Texcoco, 18 miles south of Mexico City, rebelled against the Mexican 
government's attempts to take their land in order to build airport runways. 
The towns have protested since October 22, 2001, when the federal 
government announced its plans to expropriate more than 10,000 acres of 
farmland for a new airport.
The uprising started when farmers attempted to blockade a road in response 
to a tour of the area by a government official. They were attacked by riot 
police, and responded with sticks, rocks, machetes, and gasoline bombs. 
Seventeen government officials and police were taken hostage over the next 
several days as a means of exchange for farmers arrested in earlier protests.
Over the next four days, thousands of demonstrators, bolstered by 
supporters from around Mexico, organized their municipal response and 
barricaded themselves in their towns, including Acuexcomac, Atenco, 
Magdalena Panoaya, and Tocuila as a defense from raids by the federal 
Mexican police. They barricaded the main roads in the towns and access to 
freeways, with piles of tires, tractor-trailers, Coca-Cola trucks, and 
burned police cars. At the same time, Mexican military forces and police 
surrounded the towns.
On July 14, the Mexican government released 11 jailed farmers in an effort 
to resolve the hostage situation. All prisoners held by the protestors were 
released on Monday, July 15, the remaining farmers were freed, and the 
Mexican government conceded that plans for the airport may be modified.
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