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Mexico’s Fox Offer Victims Support

May 8, 2002

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MEXICO CITY (AP) _ President Vicente Fox directed federal agencies on Tuesday to provide whatever help was needed for the victims of a man who raced his pickup truck into a crowd of preschoolers, killing two toddlers and injuring 20.

Fox’s representatives visited area hospital, talking to wounded children and teachers and offering the president’s support.

On Monday, a man drove his pickup truck into a crowd of preschoolers and teachers, killing a 5-year-old girl and a 3-year-old boy as they participated in a flag ceremony in front of their school. About 20 others were injured.

Jose Luis Nieto, a 56-year-old mechanic, was arrested in the attack. He had long complained that the flag ceremony _ consisting of preschoolers marching in the street with a Mexican flag and banging on drums _ had blocked access to his house and shop.

An amateur video showed a man who appears to be Nieto trying to talk to adults watching the flag ceremony. The footage then shows him climbing into his pickup, backing up briefly and ramming the truck full force into the crowd of some 100 children and teachers, dragging several bodies down the street.

Family members buried one of the victims on Tuesday, 5-year-old Ariadna Martinez, clutching each other and weeping over her grave. The family of 3-year-old Rodrigo Reyes took his body to southern Oaxaca state for a funeral there.

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