The attempted assassination of a US consular official and bloody protests, riots and looting that were spilling over into America have forced the closure of the US-Mexico border as the nationwide rebellion continues spiralling towards full-scale revolution.
FBI offered a $20,000 reward for information on the attempted assassination.
CCTV footage of the gunman, who is still at large, has been posted on the US Consulate’s Facebook page.
More than a week after the government of President Enrique Peña Nieto deregulated gasoline prices, which instantly rose as much as 20%, Mexicans are taking to the streets and the protests and riots are growing by the day.
LA Times reports: Four people have been killed and more than 1,500 arrested while looting, staging road blockades and marching in protests such as the weekend demonstrations in Rosarito and along the border.
The price hike, which many believe will lead to higher prices for food and household goods, is opposed by 99% of Mexicans, according to a recent poll, and has drawn the condemnation of business groups, truckers unions, leaders of the political opposition and even the Catholic Church.
Thousands of people marched at a large demonstration in Mexico City on Monday — the second major protest in the capital in four days.
“Out, Peña!” chanted crowd members, who included university students and grandmothers, as they took over Reforma, the city’s biggest boulevard.
In a televised address Thursday, Peña Nieto asked for understanding, saying his government would have been forced to cut funding for social services if it hadn’t raised prices, because of rising fuel costs internationally and the devaluation of the Mexican peso.
“I ask you,” Peña Nieto said, “what would you have done?”
His question was quickly transformed into a social media meme, with thousands of Mexicans offering alternative solutions, including combating corruption at Pemex, Mexico’s state-run oil company, and cutting the gasoline vouchers distributed to elected officials.
Margarita Zavala, the wife of former President Felipe Calderon and a likely 2018 presidential candidate, said in a video posted on her Facebook page that the anger on display in Mexico in recent weeks has less to do with gasoline and more with a perception of corruption and mismanagement among Peña Nieto’s ruling Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI.
The president’s approval rating has fallen to about 25%, and several high-profile current and former members of his party, including ex-governors, face corruption charges.
“The government thinks the indignation is just a result of gasoline increases, but they’re mistaken,” said Zavala, who belongs to the right-leaning National Action Party, or PAN. “The indignation is also due to the abuse, the lies, the injustice and the corruption.”
“There’s discontentment across the country,” said Julieta Cañez, 35, a Mexico City therapist who took the day off work to march with her husband and toddler. “My grocery bill is rising. I’m afraid to leave my house because of the violence. We march so that they hear us because it feels like they don’t.”