Friday, January 8, 2016

Mexican Fugitive Drug Boss "El Chapo" Recaptured (Updated including Video)

Mexican drug cartel chief Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzmán was reportedly recaptured nearly six months following his second prison escape according to President Enrique Peña Nieto:

Few details are known about the Friday morning operation though the Mexican media reported that Guzmán was nabbed in Los Mochis, Sinaloa state. At least five members of the fugitive's security convoy were killed amid a gunfight with approximately seventy Mexican soldiers.

The Sinaloa cartel boss had been on the run since July 11, 2015 when he fled the maximum security Altiplano prison via an underground tunnel from his jail cell. This incident thoroughly embarrassed the Peña Nieto administration and shone an uncomfortable light on corruption within the Mexican security structure.

Despite rumors alleging that Guzmán escaped Mexico for another country in Latin America, his pursuers focused primarily on the "Triangulo Dorado" ("Golden Triangle") area of Chihuahua, Sinaloa and Durango states. It was in this region where Guzmán was caught today and nearly nabbed last November in an operation that left him injured in his face and a leg.

If the rumors of his capture are true, then Guzmán will more than likely be extradited to the U.S. as soon as today, He is charged in several federal courts with drug trafficking and related crimes.

Updates can be read below the page break.

Daily Headlines: January 8, 2016

* Puerto Rico: Two firms that are insuring Puerto Rico’s bonds filed a lawsuit days after the island’s government missed a $36 million payment on a $70 billion municipal debt.

* U.S.: The Latino unemployment rate dipped last month to 6.3% according to the latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data published today.

* Brazil: In the latest black eye for the Brazilian economy, the 2015 inflation rate of 10.67% was the highest in thirteen years.

* El Salvador: The Salvadoran government will seek the arrest of seventeen retired soldiers suspected of murdering eight people including six Jesuit priests in 1989.

YouTube Source – Al Jazeera America News

Online Sources – Reuters, GlobalPost, Fox News Latino, The Tico Times

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Daily Headlines: January 7, 2016

* Mexico: Mexican government officials expect some 2.3 million visitors to be present at a motorcade and rally on February 14th as part of during Pope Francis’ trip to the that country.

* Costa Rica: Several hundred migrants stranded in Costa Rica over the past few weeks will reportedly be allowed to leave for El Salvador starting on January 12th.

* Colombia: Irish advocacy group Front Line Defenders deemed Colombia at the most dangerous state for human rights activists in Latin America.

* Guatemala: Fourteen ex-military officials were detained over alleged involvement in the disappearances of at least 588 indigenous Guatemalans during the civil war some three decades ago.

YouTube Source – Reuters (Bolivia was one of four countries in Latin America and the Caribbean that Pope Francis traveled to in 2015).

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

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Daily Headlines: January 6, 2016

* Venezuela: President Nicolas Maduro will likely reshuffle his cabinet and announce new economic measures following the tense takeover of congress by the opposition.

* Latin America: The Zika virus, a deadly mosquito-borne disease that particularly affects newborn children, has spread throughout Latin America and reached Puerto Rico this week.

* Mexico: Edgar Valdez Villarreal, alias “La Barbie,” is expected to plead guilty in a U.S. court today on charges related to drug trafficking for Mexican cartels.

* Brazil: The number of HPV and pneumonia vaccines administered by the Brazilian public health care system will be cut reportedly due to the government’s austerity plans.

YouTube Source – Reuters

Online Sources – ABC News, Reuters, Quartz, CNN

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Daily Headlines: January 5, 2016

* Cuba: The Cuban Commission on Human Rights claimed that five dissidents pardoned as part of the closer diplomatic ties between the U.S. and Cuba were detained again and “confined in high-security prisons in the second half of 2015.”

* U.S.: Immigrants rights activists blasted recent raids mostly targeting Central American asylum seekers, while Guatemalan foreign minister Carlos Raul Morales warned that mass deportations will not halt migrants seeking to enter the U.S.

* Uruguay: The Uruguayan legislature approved a $620 million bailout to state oil company Ancap in an effort to lower the firm’s debt.

* Brazil: Brazil’s economic woes are expected to worsen according to analysts in a central bank survey who forecast a deeper recession in the upcoming months.

YouTube Source – euronews (Video uploaded on December 11, 2015).

Online Sources – Business Standard, The Guardian, Fox News Latino, Reuters, Bloomberg

Monday, January 4, 2016

Daily Headlines: January 4, 2016 (Updated)

* Colombia: Defense Minister Luis Carlos Villegas criticized the recruitment of Colombian mercenaries for combat in several Middle Eastern states including Saudi Arabia and, as we mentioned in 2011, the United Arab Emirates.

* Panama: Panama President Juan Carlos Varela assured that problematic expansion of the country’s famed canal will be delayed and completed in May.

* Mexico: Researchers in Mexico are set to commence clinical trials of a “cocktail” of vaccines that could prevent the recurrence of several types of cancers.

* Venezuela: “Outspoken” opposition veteran Henry Ramos Allup was selected over Julio Borges of the “newer, moderate” Justice First party as the new chief of the next Venezuelan legislature taking office tomorrow.

Update: Ramos Allup on Monday said that the new congress would not "declare war" on the government but strongly suggested that President Nicolás Maduro should resign. (Link in Spanish).

YouTube Source – CCTV America

Online Sources including Update – El Universo, Bloomberg, The Latin Americanist, ABC News, Fox News Latino, International Business Times