International Bridge Reopened After Blockade
PIEDRAS NEGRAS, Mexico (AP) _ Authorities said traffic resumed crossing the international bridge to Eagle Pass, Texas, today after 1,000 to 3,000 members of the National Action Party closed the span for about 11/2 hours.
″It’s over,″ Eagle Pass Police dispatcher David Saucedo said today, after protestors left their blockades on the bridge, which was shut down about 8:30 p.m. Sunday and reopened about 10 p.m.
A National Action Party leader, Francisco Quiros, said in a telephone interview that the bridge was blocked to protest the Coahuila state government’s refusal to recognize the recent mayoral election victory of his centrist opposition party, known in Mexico by the initials PAN.
Official election results gave Carlos Juaristi Septien of the Institutional Revolutionary Party a slim victory, but the PAN claims its figures show a 400- vote margin of victory for their candidate, Eleazar Cobos.
Quiros said the protestors marched through town Sunday and rallied in front of the burned shell of the municipal building, which was destroyed in a riot in the last weekend of December.
At least one person was killed and dozens injured in that riot, triggered by PAN claims that the government’s Institutional Revolutionary Party had stolen the election.
Quiros said the protesters numbered about 3,000, but Saucedo estimated the crowd at about 1,000 people.
Quiros said the party had planned to block access to the international bridge for about four hours Sunday night and threatened to block streets ″for an indefinite time″ to pressure Governor Jose de la Fuente Rodriguez into recognizing the PAN’s victory.