Chiapas teachers blocked President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador from entering morning conference venue

Mexican teachers in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas on Friday blocked President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador from entering a venue in the regional capital where he was due to hold his daily televised news conference.

The leftist president was forced to deliver his remarks via a video call on his phone from a car in Tuxtla Gutierrez, the capital of Chiapas, while inaudible protesters shouting and speaking on a megaphone could be heard in the background.

Since assuming office in December 2018, Lopez Obrador has used his morning news conferences – which begin at 7 a.m. and can last over two hours – to set the political agenda and take critics to task.

Most of the conferences take place in Mexico City, but he sometimes conducts them while traveling around the country.

“They have a right to protest. We will respect that,” Lopez Obrador said, in reference to the teachers. “We are offering them dialogue.”

“I will stay here as long as necessary.”

Mexican teachers often strike, and the latest protests are related to the most recent teaching reforms, Mexican newspapers said.