Friday, December 28, 2012

Daily Headlines: December 28, 2012

* Brazil: Doctors In Brazil who previously had to notify officials of patients who developed AIDS will now need to inform authorities of all HIV cases.

* Latin America: Could Latin America’s “culture of family, support, and living a life to spend time with your family” explain why some countries in the region are at the top of a global happiness index?

* Colombia: The son of a former Colombian senator and ambassador filed a civil lawsuit in Florida against the South American country’s two main guerilla groups.

* Argentina: In a setback for the government the Argentine Supreme Court backed an injunction protecting media giant Grupo Clarin from being partially broken up.

Video Source – YouTube via user 1818video (Excerpt from a Frontline documentary, possibly “Sick Around the World” from 2008).

Online Sources- USA TODAY, CNN, ABC News, Christian Science Monitor

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Daily Headlines: December 27, 2012

* Nicaragua: Over 300 families have been evacuated due to increased activity from the San Cristobal volcano.

* Guatemala: In remarks made days after the murders of a federal prosecutor and six other people Attorney General Claudia Paz said that drug gangs have infiltrated the Guatemalan justice system.

* Brazil: Police and health officials claimed that Brazil is undergoing a crack epidemic with use of the drug booming over the past six years.

* Argentina: The country’s top penal court dismissed a case against ex-president Fernando De la Rua over his decision in 2001 to declare a state of siege during a major economic crisis.

Video Source – YouTube via euronews

Online Sources- UPI, New York Times, Hispanically Speaking News, NPR, Huffington News

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Daily Headlines: December 26, 2012

* El Salvador: Leaders of street gangs including the Barrio 18 and Mara Salvatrucha backed a plan declaring ten municipalities free of violence.

* Puerto Rico: The U.S. Justice Department and Puerto Rico's government signed an agreement aimed at reforming the island’s corrupt police department.

* Venezuela: Vice President Nicolas Maduro claimed that President Hugo Chavez is “up and walking” following recent cancer surgery in Cuba.

* Argentina: Sales of livestock will be suspended for twenty-four hours as part of a protest by farmers against the government.

Video Source – YouTube via Voice of America (Video uploaded in May 2012).

Online Sources- IPS, Fox News Latino, VOXXI, Huffington Post

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Today's Video: Away in a Manger

Numerous Christmas traditions have been observed through Latin America and the Caribbean this month.  In Peru, for instance, children have received gifts and hot chocolate drinks as part of the las chocolatadas while Mexicans and Central Americas participated in las posadas.

Another typical celebration throughout the region are the use of pesebres, which are depictions of the biblical Nativity scene with Mary and Joseph welcoming the birth of the Baby Jesus in the manger.  Beyond this, the design of the pesebre is up to the eye of their creator and vary in the materials used, the decorations surrounding the manger, and the overall size.  (As Washington Times columnist Mario Salazar described, pesebres are a "mini universe in which anything was allowed.")

A 20,000 square meter site in Bogota, Colombia is vying to be the world's biggest pesebre.  The pesebre is a replica of ancient Bethlehem and includes thousands of figurines,  replicas of Bilbical-era homes and dozens of animatronic figures and actors.
The mega-pesebre in Bogota is based on a similar project exhibited in Mexico last year, which can be appreciated in the below video:
The massive Mexican pesebre received over 2.1 million visitors and was recognized with four Guinness World Records.

Daily Headlines: December 25, 2012

* Uruguay: President Jose Mujica requested last week that legislators delay voting on a proposal that would legalize and regulate marijuana use.

* Colombia: Peace talks held in Cuba between the FARC rebels and the Colombian government have been put on hold until January 14th.

* Argentina: Former minister Jaime Smart became the first civilian to be sentenced for crimes against humanity committed during the repressive Dirty War era.

* Ecuador: President Rafael Correa proposed raising the minimum wage by 9% so that workers can receive a “dignified salary”.

Video Source – YouTube via the Washington Office on Latin America 

Online Sources- BBC News, Fox News Latino, Reuters, Christian Science Monitor

Monday, December 24, 2012

Daily Headlines: December 24, 2012

* South America: The risk of eruption from the Copahue volcano led Chile to issue a maximum red alert and Argentina to warn residents of local villages to closely monitor the situation.

* Mexico: Several thousand supporters of the Zapatista National Liberation Army marched in southern Mexico in order to commemorate the fifteenth anniversary of the Acteal massacre.

* Spain: Argentine soccer star Lionel Messi scored in Barcelona's 3-1 victory and, thus, finished 2012 with ninety-one goals in all competitions.

* Brazil: According to new government data the number of murders in Sao Paulo last month increased by 71% compared to November 2011.

Video Source – YouTube via user abccolor

Online Sources- AFP, Sacramento Bee, ESPN Soccernet, LAHT