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  • A student seen after a confrontation with private security guards at UNAH, July 17, 2017.

    A student seen after a confrontation with private security guards at UNAH, July 17, 2017. | Photo: EFE

University students were attacked by a group of private security guards during a protest Wednesday.

Hundreds of students from the National Autonomous University of Honduras marched to the country's congress in Tegucigalpa to deliver a law project to protect public education and resolve the internal budget crisis.

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Three students from the University Student Movement delivered the request to legislative members demanding an end to budget cuts affecting education.

The march began at the University City with a concert by Venezuelan group Los Guaraguao, a band that supports the leftist movements in Latin America. They were also joined by human rights defenders and leaders of workers unions.

The students demanded the repeal of austerity measures, having yet to reach an agreement with authorities to begin a dialogue to end the crisis that has been ongoing for months and affected more than 60,000 students.

Students have occupied buildings and blocked classes primarily in the cities of Tegucigalpa and San Pedro Sula. The situation has led UNAH authorities to cancel classes in about 28 faculties. On Monday, nine students were hurt after more than 50 security guards were hired by the university to clear the buildings.

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Last year Honduran riot police arrested at least 12 students out of hundreds who had occupied one of the buildings of the UNAH to protest against the privatization of universities across the country and the resignation of President Juan Orlando Hernandez.

The students are also demanding the resignation of Julieta Castellanos, head of the university over corruption claims and the end of the judicial processes against at least 75 students for taking control of the university in 2016.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in Honduras said it was concerned about the crisis at UNAH and urged authorities and students to develop a "peaceful dialogue."


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