Children in Mexican prisons have staged a series of demonstrations to protest beatings and other abuse, The Washington Post reported this week. The government of President Vicente Fox has pledged to clean up a corrupt criminal justice system, including the dozens of “little jails” that house 4,200 children. Conditions in the centers came under public scrutiny last month, when 37 children in the western state of Nayarit took over a facility, throwing stones and shouting that they were “tired of the beatings.” Youngsters at other centers have rioted, set fires, and shouted complaints from the rooftops. “These institutions are horrible,” said Elena Azaola, who has researched Mexico’s juvenile-detention centers. “The children live in misery.”
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