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21 injured in clashes with police in Mexican state

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Mexico City, Dec 15 (AP) - Clashes between federal police and protesters organizing a concert in solidarity with 43 missing college students left at least 21 people injured and several cars in flames Sunday in the southern state of Guerrero. A police official told The Associated Press that eight officers were injured, including five who were run over by a vehicle. Three others were beaten by protesting teachers, leaving one officer with "severe brain damage." The official was not authorized to talk to the press and spoke on condition of anonymity. The Tlachinollan human rights group, which supports the relatives of the missing students, said the violence left at least 13 people injured, including students, teachers, parents of the missing students and two journalists, including a photographer who was working with The AP. Each side blamed the other for initiating the clash in Chilpancingo, the capital of Guerrero state. It began early Sunday when students from the Ayotzinapa teachers college began blocking a street with metal barriers in preparation for the concert. The blocked street led to the hotel where federal police were staying. The case off the missing students, who disappeared in September at the hands of corrupt local government officials linked to a drug cartel, has ignited protests across Mexico. Mexico's attorney general said 80 people have been arrested so far in the case, including 44 police officers from the cities of Iguala and Cocula and former Iguala Mayor Jose Luis Abarca, who is under investigation for ordering the Sept. 26 attacks. So far, one student has been positively identified.