Friday, September 30, 2016
* Brazil: Children's rights groups urged the International Olympic Committee to compensate minors who they claim were victims of police violence during the Rio Olympics and the security crackdown prior to the games held in August.
* Cuba: The campaign of United States (US) presidential candidate Donald Trump is under fire over alleged secret and illicit business dealings with Cuba’s government in 1998, while the Cuban state media blasted “subversive” US-funded programs.
* United States: The OneOrlando Fund commenced distribution this week of donations to some of the families and survivors of the June 12th massacre during a Latino-themed night at the Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando.
* Venezuela: Representatives of thirty countries led by Paraguay at the Untied Nations Human Rights Council called for a “timely and effective dialogue” in Venezuela and advocated the freeing of all political prisoners.
YouTube Source – ITV News (Uploaded on August 2, 2016: “As battles between security forces and drugs gangs rage ahead of the Rio Olympics, innocent bystanders are getting caught in the crossfire.”)
Online Sources – BBC Sport, Newsweek, McClatchy, Latina, Reuters
Thursday, September 29, 2016
* Argentina: Nearly one in three residents in Argentina live below the poverty line according to the first data on the subject published by the government since October 2013.
* Colombia: Days after a peace accord was signed with Colombia’s largest guerilla army, the ELN rebels claimed to be ready to officially start peace talks with the government.
* Chile: “I believe that women should have legally the possibility of making their own choices,” said Chilean President Michelle Bachelet over a proposal that would relax the country’s ban on abortion under all circumstances.
* United States: A PricewaterhouseCoopers study concluded that Hispanic television viewers prefer English-language programs over those in Spanish with stronger preference in each subsequent generation for shows in English.
YouTube Source – CCTV America (New data from the Argentinian government seems to confirm the findings of a 2014 World Bank report warning that a third of the population is vulnerable of falling into poverty.)
Online Sources – Voice of America, The Latin Americanist, Deadline, BBC News, ABC News
Wednesday, September 28, 2016
* Peru: Vladimiro Montesinos, the shady former Peruvian intelligence chief who was instrumental in the rise and fall of Alberto Fujimori from the presidency, was sentenced to twenty-two years in prison for the kidnapping and burning of three people.
* Panama: Panamanian officials formally sought the extradition from the United States (US) of ex-President Ricardo Martinelli who is accused of using public funds for illegal surveillance.
* Puerto Rico: US Federal Reserve Chairman Janet Yellen warned that Puerto Rico is facing a fiscal crisis and claimed it’s up to Congress or the White House to formulate an adequate solution.
* Latin America: The Pan American Health Organization declared the Americas are free from all endemic cases of measles “after years of intense efforts to vaccinate children under the age of five.”
YouTube Source – Journeyman Pictures (Documentary from December 2003.)
Online Sources – UPI, Reuters, Voice of America
Tuesday, September 27, 2016
* Colombia: “In the name of the FARC, I sincerely apologize to all the victims of the conflict for any pain we may have caused during this war,” admitted rebel commander alias Timochenko as he and Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos signed a historic peace deal yesterday.
* Mexico: The Mexican peso, which has hit record lows over the last past week, has sharply rebounded following the United States (US) presidential debate on Monday night.
* Argentina: In a surprising move, former Argentina men’s national team coach Gerardo Martino was named as manager of Major League Soccer expansion club Atlanta United.
* Venezuela: According to a State Department spokesman, US Secretary of State John Kerry “spoke of our concern about the economic and political challenges that have affected millions of Venezuelans” after meeting President Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela.
YouTube Source – AFP (“Colombia's leftist FARC rebel force signed a historic peace accord with the government bringing the country a step closer to ending their half-century civil war.”)
Online Sources – Goal.com, Reuters, SBS, Fox News Latino
Monday, September 26, 2016
United States (US) and European Union (EU) diplomats have given indications that the FARC might be rescinded of its status as a terrorist group for both entities as Colombia’s president and the leader of the rebels will soon sign a historic peace agreement.
EU Special Envoy for the Peace Process in Colombia Eamon Gilmore confirmed that the bloc will soon commence actions to eliminate the status of the FARC as a terrorist organization and claimed it was an action “that had been considered for a long time.”
“The peace process is on its journey. We hope the process ends with the signing of the (peace) agreement,” affirmed Gilmore in an interview earlier to Colombian media outlet RCN.
The comprehensive pact gives the FARC a 180-day deadline to disarm and move to disarmament zones monitored by the United Nations. A judicial mechanism was established in order to place rebels on trial for crimes against humanity, torture, and rape, while the guerillas must also provide reparations to victims of an armed conflict that over a fifty-two year period claimed an estimated 260,000 lives and led to seven million displaced people.
As part of the accord, the rebels may be allowed to form their own political party, will receive aid to return into civil society, and cannot be put on trial for "political crimes".
US Secretary of State John Kerry, meanwhile, listed numerous conditions the guerillas must meet as part of the peace deal before they’re removed from the terrorist blacklist.
* United States: The baseball world, and especially players of Cuban background, is mourning the untimely death of rising star Jose Fernandez who died at the age of 24.
* Latin America: Several recent reports concluded that the burgeoning weapons trade in Latin America “serves to both profit illicit groups and to facilitate criminal violence in the region.”
* Mexico: Jose Alfredo Lopez Guillen became the third Mexican priest kidnapped and killed in less than a week.
* South America: A small diplomatic brouhaha has developed between Bolivia and Chile after Bolivian President Evo Morales alleged that the landlocked country was being denied access to Chilean ports.
YouTube Source – Associated Press
Online Sources – InSight Crime, CBS Miami, CBC, Reuters