Politics, Business & Culture in the Americas
 

From Caracas. Mercosur and The Venezuela Elections

The soon-to-close electoral race for the presidency of Venezuela between Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez and Henrique Capriles Radonski will certainly be remembered as one of the most fascinating campaign periods in this country’s recent political history. On one hand, the race has been silently colored by the uncertainty that surrounds Chávez’ health. On the other, … Read more

 

Peru’s Fujimori May Ask for Pardon this Week

Peruvian President Ollanta Humala indicated Wednesday that his government had received no formal request from former President Alberto Fujimori’s family for an official humanitarian pardon from the state. However, according to Fujimori’s lawyer, César Nakazaki, Fujimori is planning to ask for a pardon sometime this week, with legal documents expected to be submitted this Friday. … Read more

 

Tensions Rise in Venezuela Ahead of Sunday’s Elections

  Tensions have continued to heighten in Venezuela just days before Sunday’s presidential election between President Hugo Chávez and Henrique Capriles Radonski. Electoral law prohibits opinion polls from being published four days ahead of the Venezuelan elections, but the most recent polling results reveal markedly different figures. Datanalisis has Chávez polling at 49 percent compared … Read more

ChavezRally510_WalterVargas_Oct 4

Electoral Legitimacy and Security Ahead of Venezuela’s Presidential Election

Late last week, Venezuelan presidential candidate Henrique Capriles Radonski released a video with his final appeal to voters. Looking straight at the camera, the former governor of Miranda state addressed the fears that prevent some Venezuelans from supporting him fully: being fired from government jobs; being passed over for a social program; or being banned … Read more

 

Santos to Undergo Cancer Surgery as Peace Talks Approach

Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, 61, will undergo surgery in Bogotá today to remove a non-aggressive tumor located in the prostate gland. Details of the condition and the procedure were revealed by the president on Monday, hours after the tumor was discovered and only a week before the awaited peace negotiations between the Colombian government … Read more

 

Libya’s Lesson For Latin America

We are still wondering just what happened in Benghazi, Libya, with the deaths of Ambassador Christopher Stevens, the State Department’s Sean Smith, and former Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods. That this tragedy happened on the anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attack that claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 Americans makes it all … Read more

 

IDB Supports Bolivia’s Highway Expansion

On Thursday, The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) approved a $122 million loan to help expand and upgrade a 69.7 kilometer (43.3 mile) segment of Bolivia’s Santa Cruz-Cochabamba Highway. Developing the highway has been declared a national priority due to its high traffic volume of 9,000 vehicles per day. More than 20 percent of trucks using … Read more

 

Colombia, Guatemala and Mexico Ask UN to Revise Drug War Tactics

In remarks to the UN General Assembly in New York on Wednesday, Mexican President Felipe Calderón, Guatemalan President Otto Pérez Molina and Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos called on the UN to begin a serious debate on alternative ways to combat drug trafficking. “Today, I am proposing formally that [the UN]…carry out a far-reaching assessment … Read more

 

The Irony of ALBA’s Rejection of USAID Funds

The Russian government’s announcement last week that it would refuse over $50 million of U.S. development assistance for democracy and public health programs echoed a similar trend in the Western Hemisphere. In June, the Venezuela-led Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América (ALBA) asked its members to “immediately expel” the U.S. bilateral development agency … Read more

 

Colombia Marks International Day of Peace

The annual celebration of International Day of Peace today holds special significance in Colombia given recent developments to try to end decades of conflict. Established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly, this day is meant to coincide with the opening session of the UNGA as well as raise public awareness on issues related … Read more

 

Chávez Again Refuses to Debate Capriles

At a rally on Tuesday in the town of La Grita in Táchira state, Henrique Capriles Radonski, the candidate from the opposition’s Democratic Unity coalition, again invited President Hugo Chávez to join him in a debate that would be broadcast on television and radio and would focus on their respective platforms and views for Venezuela’s … Read more

 

UN Finds Drop in Bolivia’s Coca Cultivation

The production of coca leaves in Bolivia is down since last year, according to an annual United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime (UNODC) report published yesterday. The area used for cultivation of coca decreased 12 percent, from 31,000 hectares (76,600 acres) in 2010 to 27,000 hectares (66720 acres), the 2011 national coca monitoring survey … Read more

 

[i]AQ[/i] Slideshow: Post-Spill Effects in Peruvian Mining Communities

Extractive industries have made a considerable contribution to Latin America’s economic growth this century, especially in countries along the Pacific Rim (i.e., Chile, Colombia, and Peru). Of those nations, perhaps greatest recent impact of the resource boom has been in Peru—contributing a large share to the country’s remarkable GDP growth of 6.9 percent in 2011. … Read more

 

Where Have All the Standards Gone?

Three days before the national vote, electoral observers cite grave concerns: unequal access to media outlets for the opposition candidate; media bias favoring the incumbent; smear campaigns against the opposition; and use of state resources for electoral advantage. Could these courageous observers be finally calling out the abuses of President Hugo Chávez and his government … Read more

Sign up for our free newsletter