Friday, July 3, 2015

Daily Headlines: July 3, 2015

* Colombia: The U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime found that coca cultivation in Colombia increased by 44% in 2014.

* Brazil: The Brazilian Congress rejected a bill that would have allowed criminals as young as 16 to be tried as adults and potentially sent to overcrowded adult prisons.

* Venezuela: The Spanish government will seek from Venezuela the extradition of a convicted member of Basque separatist group ETA.

* Mexico: Human rights investigators accused the Mexican army of the extrajudicial killings of drug gang suspects including twenty-two people in Tlatlaya last year.

YouTube Source – AFP

Online Sources – BBC News, teleSUR English, ABC News, ABC Online

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Daily Headlines: July 2, 2015

* Cuba: U.S. President Barack Obama called on Congress to drop the trade embargo against Cuba as both countries fully reestablished diplomatic ties for the first time since 1961.

* Mexico: Mexican Supreme Court judge Olga Sanchez urged legislature in 29 of the 31 states banning gay marriage to overturn their restrictions.

* Venezuela: Venezuelan and U.S. representatives have reportedly undergone “quiet” negotiations since March in order to improve years of bitter relations.

* Argentina: Are comparisons between the current financial quagmire in Greece and Argentina's default in 2001 constructive or inappropriate

YouTube Source – Associated Press

Online Sources – Bloomberg, The Guardian, BBC News, Reuters

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Daily Headlines: July 1, 2015

* Mexico: The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights accused the Mexican government of acting too slowly in the investigation over forty-three Ayotzinapa university students missing since last September.

* Brazil: The presidents of Brazil and the U.S. met at the White House two years after a diplomatic rift over U.S. intelligence surveillance on the South American country.

* El Salvador: The Chalatenango region may be immune from most of the modern-day violence in El Salvador but the scars still remain from the country’s brutal civil war.

* South America: Chile will be seeking its first Copa America title against an Argentine side that walloped Paraguay 6-1 in their semifinal match last night.

YouTube Source – teleSUR English

Online Sources – Fox News Latino, New Scientist, The Latin Americanist, PRI, CNN

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Puerto Rico's Governor Gets Key Support for Strategy Against Debt

Puerto Rican political and business leaders gave their support to austerity measures proposed by the debt-ridden commonwealth’s governor in order to prevent default.

“There must be a better environment in Puerto Rico if we want to promote job creation and have more laborers and salaried employees,” said local Chamber of Commerce president José Izquierdo Encarnación following a meeting with Gov. Alejandro Garcia Padilla on Tuesday.

He and other business group representatives proposed creating a special fiscal control board and labor reforms as part of Garcia Padilla’s five-year plan to attempt to reign in Puerto Rico's $73 million debt. Izquierdo Encarnación and company gave their backing to the governor’s idea for reinvesting savings in bond payments into “strategic” projects for economic development.

“(Garcia Padilla) is seeking support from the private sector to those suggestions made in the report by (ex-World Bank Chief Economist) Anne Krueger that are vital such as economic growth,” he emphasized.

In a separate set of discussions, the heads of Puerto Rico’s main political parties gave their conditional support to Garcia Padilla yet with numerous conditions. Partido Nuevo Progresista head Pedro Pierluisi called for the participation of the opposition in the government’s decision-making process. Partido Independentista Puertorriqueño chief Rubén Berríos Martínez, meanwhile, blasted the “neoliberal package” outlined by Krueger.

In a televised speech Monday evening, Garcia Padilla warned that the island’s massive debt is unpayable and proposed seeking a multi-year moratorium on debt repayment while austerity measures can go into effect.  He also urged Congress to change existing laws and allow Puerto Rico to declare Chapter 9 bankruptcy after the White House rejected a potential bailout.

Daily Headlines: June 30, 2015

* Latin America: Pope Francis expressed enthusiasm for his planned visit to three South American countries next month, while the Vatican released details of the Argentine-born pontiff’s trips to the U.S. and Cuba in September.

* U.S.: The U.S. has surpassed Spain to become the world’s second largest Spanish-speaking country according to a new study from the Instituto Cervantes.

* Argentina: British officials slammed the Argentine government after a judge ruled against foreign oil firms drilling near the disputed Falkland Islands.

* Colombia: “Equality is unstoppable and equality also will come to Colombia,” declared Interior Minister Juan Fernando Cristo as he called on the Supreme Court to legalize same-sex marriages.

YouTube Source – teleSUR English

Online Sources – Catholic Culture, NBC News, The Guardian, Reuters, Washington Post

Monday, June 29, 2015

Daily Headlines: June 29, 2015

* Latin America: A recent study found a shift in migration flow between 2007 and 2012 with more Europeans leaving their countries for Latin America rather than vice versa.

* Guatemala: Several hundred protesters gathered once again in Guatemala City and called for the resignation of scandal-plagued President Otto Perez Molina.

* Chile: Copa America host nation Chile will face Peru tonight in the semifinals amid controversy over the suspended Gonzalo Jara, while Paraguay will hope to shock Argentina in the other match on Tuesday .

* Cuba: Cuban scientists claimed to have successfully developed a new oral vaccine against cholera, a bacterial disease that is the cause of death for 100,000 to 120,000 people globally according to the World Health Organization.

YouTube Source – euronews (Video uploaded in June 2014).

Online Sources – Global Voices Online, The Latin Americanist, Fox News Latino, Yahoo Sports, Xinhua