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December 31, 2006 | Patrick Healy, Special to The Times
A few scenes from a crippled tourist town: Plywood covers the windows of a torched government building. Laborers paint over scrawls of graffiti. A maid folds sheets in a hotel with no guests. And with no travelers to hear their songs, a mariachi band idly paces the main plaza. Since May, political protests, arsons and shootings transformed Oaxaca from a charming colonial town into a city under siege, severely damaging its tourist-based economy.
December 29, 2006 | Reed Johnson, Times Staff Writer
ROWS of poinsettias are rising along the zocalo, where police and protesters recently brawled. Fresh coats of paint are being slapped on buildings to cover up angry graffiti. Even though the barricades have been removed and the blood has been mopped from the streets, this colonial-era city is struggling to recover from a violent spasm that scarred its buildings, traumatized its citizens and left as many as a dozen people dead over a seven-month span.
December 17, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
Hundreds of federal police officers packed up their tents and marched out of Oaxaca's central square, ending their seven-week occupation. The officers had been sent in to put down a lengthy protest by leftists that had left nine people dead. More than 4,000 federal police seized the plaza from protesters in October, five months after they had taken it over to demand the resignation of Oaxaca state Gov. Ulises Ruiz.
December 6, 2006
Re "Calderon's daunting to-do list," Current, Dec. 3 While I share much of Jorge Casteneda's analysis of Mexico's new president, Felipe Calderon, I disagree with his assertion that President Vicente Fox "did not resort to the bloody repression for which most of his predecessors came to be known." Fox leaves office in the midst of a months-long dirty campaign against the Popular Assemblies of the People of Oaxaca, or APPO, an umbrella group of hundreds of civil society organizations.
December 6, 2006 | Hector Tobar and Sam Enriquez, Times Staff Writers
Mexican federal police were holding Flavio Sosa, the self-styled rebel and leader of Oaxaca's protest movement, in a maximum-security prison Tuesday after detaining him hours before he was to meet with negotiators for another federal agency.
November 27, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Leftist protesters trying to force out the Oaxaca state governor set fire to another building Sunday after a night of burning vehicles and government offices in running street battles with police that injured at least 43 people. The violence broke out late Saturday after masked youths broke away from a protest march by about 4,000 people and began attacking police and buildings in this picturesque state capital.
November 13, 2006 | From Times Wire Reports
Four masked youths tossed gasoline bombs at a McDonald's restaurant in the conflict-torn city of Oaxaca, damaging windows, seats and a play area, police said. Security personnel at the shopping center extinguished the blaze, police said. The restaurant was closed during the predawn attack.
November 3, 2006 | From the Associated Press
Federal police surrounded a university packed with leftist protesters here Thursday, clearing barricades and firing tear gas as the activists showered them with gasoline bombs. At least 20 protesters, 10 officers and three news photographers were injured. About 200 police officers in body armor and carrying riot shields advanced to the gates of Benito Juarez Autonomous University and fought the protesters for more than six hours before retreating.
November 1, 2006 | Sam Enriquez, Times Staff Writer
Federal police reopened this city's central square Tuesday after painting over the anti-government graffiti that had covered nearly every building in the colonial plaza during a five-month occupation by leftists and striking teachers. Small skirmishes continued to flare in other parts of the state capital between federal police and protesters seeking the ouster of Gov. Ulises Ruiz.
October 31, 2006 | Sam Enriquez, Times Staff Writer
The state capital remained divided Monday, as thousands marched in defiance and others praised government forces that dislodged a protest encampment from the city center this weekend. The recovery of the plaza by federal police late Sunday marked a symbolic end to the five-month occupation by striking teachers and leftist supporters who are demanding that the state governor resign. But it remains unclear when the tourist capital will return to normal.
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