Friday, September 11, 2015
* Venezuela: Could the controversial prison sentence last night against opposition activist Leopoldo Lopez provide a boost to anti-government politicos in December's legislative election?
* Puerto Rico: Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla proposed a series of austerity measures in order to attempt to decrease most of Puerto Rico's $72 billion debt.
* Cuba: Cuban authorities will pardon more than 3500 prisoners ahead of Pope Francis’ visit next week though jailed political dissidents might not be released.
* Argentina: The Argentine government welcomed a U.N. General Assembly resolution for “creating a new global framework for sovereign debt restructuring”.
YouTube Source – euronews (“Venezuelan opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez has been sentenced to nearly 14 years in jail. The court found him guilty of inciting violence during anti-government street protests in 2014 in which more than 40 people were killed.”)
Online Sources – NBC News, Reuters, BBC News, The Guardian
Thursday, September 10, 2015
* Latin America: According to the Pan American Health Organization, “ultra-processed food products and fast food are occupying a larger and larger share of what people eat and drink in Latin America, with very negative results.”
* U.S.: The Washington State Attorney General plans to review the decision made by a local prosecutor to not charge police officers who killed an unarmed Mexican national last February.
* Haiti: A record fifty-four Haitians registered as presidential candidates amid a poor economy, controversy over corruption and a humanitarian crisis involving stateless residents of Haitian background.
* Mexico: Did fugitive Mexican drug capo Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman flee to Costa Rica or is his son trying to throw authorities off his father’s trail?
YouTube Source – Duetsche Welle
Online Sources – GlobalPost, Jamaica Observer, King 5, Tico Times
Wednesday, September 9, 2015
* Brazil: Financial analysts surveyed by Brazil’s central bank believe the country this year will face its worst economic performance since 1990 and predicted that the economy will keep shrinking in 2016.
Update: More bad news for the economy as Standard & Poor’s on Wednesday downgraded the Brazilian government’s sovereign debt rating to junk status.
* Ecuador: Canada’s Supreme Court ruled unanimously in favor of proceeding with an environmental damages lawsuit against Chevron though the tribunal did not “endorse the underlying Ecuadorian legal case.”
* Latin America: A new study found that digital use in Latin America grew between April 2014 and April 2015 including increases of 147% and 351% in activity for Facebook and Twitter, respectively.
* Cuba: Some 140 Cuban dissidents including twenty members of the Ladies in White were reportedly arrested yesterday while on their way to a Catholic mass.
YouTube Source – CNNMoney (“Brazil is struggling with high unemployment, rising inflation and a currency trading at 12-year lows.”)
Online Sources including Update – MercoPress, The Latin Americanist, Financial Post, Billboard, Latin American Herald Tribune, The Guardian
Tuesday, September 8, 2015
* South America: Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro expanded the partial border shutdown with Colombia that he claims is needed to combat smuggling and crime but has led to the return of at least 10,000 Colombians.
* Mexico: Two Mexican intelligence agents and two prison guards have been charged regarding their alleged roles in the jailbreak last July of Sinaloa drug capo Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman.
* Guatemala: TV comic turned candidate Jimmy Morales won last Sunday’s Guatemalan presidential election but was unable to prevent a runoff next month.
* Chile: A Chilean court upheld the conviction of two men involved in the killings of filmmaker Charles Horman and journalist Frank Teruggi shortly after the 1973 military coup led by Gen. Augusto Pinochet.
YouTube Source – CCTV News
Online Sources – Bloomberg, Reuters, USA TODAY, JURIST
Monday, September 7, 2015
* Mexico: Families of 43 Ayotzinapa college students missing for nearly a year have called on meeting with Mexico’s president after an independent probe contradicted the official investigation.
Update: President Enrique Peña Nieto said on Monday that he would be willing to meet again with families of the missing students and claimed that the government's investigation into the disappearances remains open.
* U.S.: While some politicians on the campaign trail deride immigrants, a recent study found that “immigrant adolescents are actually less likely than native-born peers in the United States to commit crimes, use drugs or behave violently.”
* Latin America: Representatives from seventeen nations celebrated the tenth anniversary of the Petrocaribe oil alliance that has been shaken by the low price of crude and Venezuela’s economic problems.
* Colombia: FBI agents reportedly placed the late Nobel laureate Gabriel García Márquez under surveillance including monitoring his ties to then-Cuban president Fidel Castro.
YouTube Source – euronews
Online Sources including Update – El Universal, The Latin Americanist, Latina, The Washington Post, Xinhua, Excelsiór (in Spanish)