Saturday, December 1, 2012

Enrique Peña Nieto takes oath of office before Mexico's Congress, but not everyone was applauding

"I want to be a president who is always very close to the people. Together we are going to create a Mexico of possibilities."

Anti-Peña Nieto rally in Mérida, July 7, 2012 - "Mexicans, wake up and do something for yourselves!"

*Updates below*
Guadalajara - Enrique Peña Nieto took the constitutional oath of office before Mexico's congress at 11:17 a.m. today. He did so in the San Lázaro Palace in Mexico City, home to the country's senate and house of deputies. The swearing in ceremony, witnessed live on television by millions of citizens, completes an orderly transition of executive power which began last night. The formal changing of the political guard from PAN to PRI is complete, and in every legal sense Peña Nieto is now president.

There were cheers of support and applause from deputies and senators in San Lázaro, and some noticeable boos as well, as the 46 year old PRI leader thrust his arm forward in stiff salute and swore to defend the "constitution and laws of Mexico, to the best of my ability." The national anthem was played immediately afterwards, and Peña Nieto joined many others in singing the lyrics.

Outside the hall there were demonstrations throughout the morning, but no violence. YoSoy 132, a student protest organization which was rabidly anti-Peña Nieto during last spring's political campaign and made no secret of its support for defeated leftist candidate Andrés Manuel López Obrador, has been vocal but measured so far.

President Peña Nieto is on his way to another location where he'll deliver brief inauguration comments and greet Mexico's armed forces, of which he is now supreme commander.

11:40 a.m. Some demonstrators outside San Lázaro have grown unruly and tear gas has been fired, according to networks covering the events live.
12:00 p.m. Rock throwing by demonstrators (most of whom appear to be young) continues, while security forces periodically launch gas canisters to keep the crowd more or less under control.
Dec. 2 - YoSoy 132 vandalized property in Guadalajara today, in protest to yesterday's inauguration of Enrique Peña Nieto. Their targets included a PRI headquarters and a Televisa facility. The huge Spanish language network is alleged to have been a bought ally of the new president for many years.

Dec. 3 - About 70 persons who were arrested during Saturday's post-inauguration violence remain in custody today. They're facing criminal charges which are tantamount to riot, and which according to one national source carry a possible prison term of five to 35 years. This afternoon a large group of YoSoy 132 members has taken to the streets in Mexico City to demand the release of the accused, most of whom are students.

Dec. 4 - Mexican prosecutors get tough with YoSoy 132 rioters

Clips from president Enrique Peña Nieto's address to the congress and the nation
12:20 p.m. "I feel profound pride at this moment . . . Our shared values are liberty, independence and justice . . . I salute our beloved armed forces, which protect our institutions . . . Mexico is entering a new stage in its history . . . Improving the national economy for the benefit of Mexican families will be one of my most important goals . . . My promise and commitment is to carry Mexico to that place which it should occupy on the world stage, and to always discharge my duties in full compliance with the law . . . I want to be a president who is always close to the people, in touch with their problems and their needs . . . I declare my full respect and support for our judicial authorities, and for the rule of law in Mexico . . . My government will respect Mexico's unique ethnic diversity, and support the preservation of its indigenous languages . . . I want to transform this country as quickly as possible . . . I acknowledge that violence and insecurity have robbed us of our freedom as a nation . . . But before we can accomplish anything, we must restore peace and order everywhere . . . I acknowledge that we must eliminate the dire poverty experienced by so many Mexicans . . . We must address the lack of employment which plagues our young people . . . We must train our young work force, to prepare them to complete in the modern world . . . We must promote the formal economy, and invest in our infrastructure, to transform Mexico into an emerging economic power . . . We must respect the nation, the culture, the history and the institutions which we Mexicans share . . . We must support laws which recognize and protect crime victims' rights . . . We must consolidate and simplify our criminal code . . . We must address hunger in this country, especially the severe pobreza alimentaria which affects millions . . . We must update our educational system . . . Our national transportation system, especially our railroads, must be modernized . . . We need to improve telecommunications and increase internet access, especially in remote rural areas . . . Let's move forward together . . . As a united people, we have enormous creative energy and ability . . . In the Mexico of today, we cannot tolerate and we will not permit hunger, the lack of education, the lack of employment, the lack of security . . . Together we are going to create a Mexico of possibilities, a Mexico which gives a fair chance to everyone, with opportunities for all . . . We have to move this country forward together . . . We need everyone's help . . . We can do it . . . This is Mexico's moment in history . . . Thank you."

The president's speech terminated at 1:05 p.m., concluding today's public ceremonies.

Student protesters in Michoacán show their true colors
YoSoy 132 discusses civil disobedience to stop Enrique Peña Nieto from taking office
Yo NO Soy's "summer of discontent"
Mexicans surveyed on YoSoy 132 attitudes
Mérida YoSoy 132 promises to turn up the heat
YoSoy 132 returns to Mérida streets, this time showing its true colors
YoSoy 132 protest arrives in Mérida

"Peña Nieto, you're not my president"

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