Teachers occupy Acapulco city hall over missing students

ACAPULCO, MEXICO (AFP) - Around 100 teachers occupied the city hall of the Mexican tourist resort of Acapulco to demand authorities find dozens of students who disappeared nearly a month ago.

"We demand to see alive the 43 victims of kidnapping by the authorities," said Walter Anorve, spokesman for the CETEG radical wing of the teachers' union.

"This is a state crime," Mr Anorve told AFP that the authorities were "delaying the process, while families are awaiting anxiously with uncertainty" since the night the youths disappeared on September 26 in the town of Iguala, which shares the state of Guerrero with Acapulco.

Mass demonstrations have also taken place elsewhere over the case that has sparked national and international outrage.

Protesters torched the Iguala city hall Wednesday, while nearly 50,000 people marched in Mexico City.

Local officials say the mayor of Iguala ordered police linked to the the Guerreros Unidos drug cartel to conduct the attack, which could prove to be one of the worst slaughters that Mexico has witnessed since the drug war intensified in 2006.

Although the Acapulco protest was peaceful, more than 1,000 regional security forces guarded federal government installations, and dozens more were deployed by the city court.

CETEG plans to gradually occupy the 81 city halls of Guerrero state.

By Thursday, about 25 city halls had already been occupied, according to the teachers' group, while regional authorities counted 20.

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