Activists, police clash during Santa Cruz Teachers’ protest

A group of activists that showed up in support of the Santa Cruz teachers demanding higher salaries in Buenos Aires City, broke off from the demonstration they were leading and began hurling stones to several police officers who were standing guard outside the Government House in Plaza de Mayo.

A police hydrant truck quickly intervened, forcing the protesters to move away from the square.

The Santa Cruz demonstrators had staged a day-long protest in downtown Buenos Aires on Friday in protest to the violent eviction of teachers camping outside the Ministry of Labour offices last night.

Teachers’ unions in Santa Cruz hope the provincial government will return to the collective bargaining talks and accept their demands for a 50 percent hike in salaries.

Earlier on Friday, they marched through Avenida de Mayo in order to reach the Ministry offices again. However, they planned to make a quick stop by the Government House, where they expected to present the President with a written statement, demanding that she helps them negotiate with the provincial government in order to reach an agreement.

As they approached the Government House, other activists who supported their cause and had showed up and joined the demonstration, began attacking the police, who had been deployed outside the Pink House.

By bringing their conflict to the City, they intend to turn their struggle into a national cause. They have been on strike for nearly two months now.

The National Government, however, has said that their protests are “a political move and nothing else,” and has come out in support of the Santa Cruz governor.

At the same time, the Santa Cruz government has stated that “the conflict has already been solved” after they offered a 25 percent hike, which teachers have refused to accept.

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