10 June 2009

Whispers of yesterday

Photos from: http://www1.folha.uol.com.br/folha/educacao/ult305u578870.shtml

During the dictatorship in Brazil, the university was moved from the centre of town to a new campus enclosing all the faculties. The objective was to isolate the students and the "problems" they bring, such as manifestations.

5th of May functionaries of the University of São Paulo (USP) went on strike, because it is the only way they get a rise. University council would like to rise their salaries every 5 years, however the functionaries demand a rise every 2 years. So every two years they go on strike. This time the leader of the syndicate was suspended during the negotiations, and so manifestations started. The functionaries include bus drivers of the "Circular" (circular bus service on campus), employees at the "Bandechão" (cafeteria where you can eat for only R$2 (less than 1 dollar) etc.

The way I have understood it the functionaries started blocking the enterence of the respective buildings in protest. The government then inserted the military police to remove them. Students started protesting against the aparance of the MPs and yesterday, during a protest where the students were blocking one of the main access points into campus, there was a confrontation with the MPs. The MPs through smoke bombs at the students and pointed arms. Since the end of the dictatorship this is the first time the MPs have entered university grounds. Consequently all the students at my own faculty is now on strike as a protest.

Photos from: http://veja.abril.com.br/noticia/brasil/policiais-militares-entram-confronto-estudantes-usp-476304.shtml

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