MEXICO, February 27: Large rallies have been held in several Mexican cities against what protesters say are government attempts to undermine electoral authorities.
The largest was in Mexico City, where organizers say 500,000 people marched in the city’s main square. The local government put the number at 90,000.
Lawmakers voted last week to cut the budget of the National Electoral Institute (INE) and cut its staff.
President Andrés Manuel López Obrador accuses the INE of being partisan.
But opponents describe the recent vote as an attack on democracy itself, and are pressing the Supreme Court to strike it down as unconstitutional.
On Sunday, massive crowds gathered in Mexico City’s historic Plaza Zócalo. The protesters dispersed through the adjoining streets of the city center.
“We are fighting to defend our democracy,” protester Verónica Echevarría was quoted as saying by Reuters. She was wearing a cap emblazoned with the words “Hands off INE.” Many protesters carried cards with a similar slogan.
Smaller peaceful demonstrations were organized in several other cities.