GUADALAJARA, Mexico – Police officers staged a protest in Guadalajara, the capital of the western Mexican state of Jalisco, to demand more security following the killings of six law enforcement agents by organized-crime groups.
The officers marched on Wednesday to the Jalisco governor’s residence to demand more security and improvements in the working conditions of police.
“We’re asking for improvements in working conditions, legal certainty and a system that protects policemen’s labor rights, economic stability, their families and physical integrity,” Manuel Zuñiga, former chief of the Guadalajara police department, told EFE.
The murders of four cops in early September in Guadalajara and two others in Zapopan alarmed law enforcement agents, Zuñiga said.
Protesters placed candles outside the governor’s residence to honor the fallen officers.
Warnings have been given for years about officers’ safety, but officials have not accepted reality, Juan Manuel Mercado, a state police officer, told EFE.
“The red flags are there, even if the state government doesn’t admit it. The urban guerrillas (organized crime groups) are already in the Guadalajara metropolitan area and they are not amateurs,” Mercado said.
Jalisco Undersecretary of Internal Affairs Alfredo Gomez met with the protesters and offered to set up a dialogue to discuss the situation of police and possible improvements.