Central America

US launches secret bid to stop release of hunger-striking Guantánamo detainee

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Objection to freeing Tariq Ba Odah, who is 56% of his ideal body weight, comes as Obama administration fights to stop detainees seeking freedom in federal courts The Guardian – Spencer Ackerman in New York @attackerman In an extremely rare legal manoeuvre, the Obama administration has challenged a legal request to free a hunger-striking Guantánamo Bay detainee entirely in secret. ... Read More »

How El Salvador’s Supreme Court Is Undermining Democracy—With Washington’s Help

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WikiLeaks has exposed US government collusion with the chamber’s destabilization strategy. The Nation – By Hilary Goodfriend On July 20, 2015, the government of El Salvador issued an official warning that right-wing forces are orchestrating “a movement for a coup d’état,” against the “government of the people, a legal government, a legitimate government that fights every day for the interests ... Read More »

Puerto Rico misses debt payment with string of defaults to come

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Pressure on U.S. Congress to allow Chapter 9 bankruptcy for troubled territory CBC News – Puerto Rico default – Video Puerto Rico is in technical default on a $58-million debt bill due Monday, reflecting an economy in trouble amid an extended drought in the U.S. territory. The island paid just $628,000 toward a $58-million payment due to creditors of its Public Finance Corp., ... Read More »

Clinton says GOP is clinging to the past on Cuba

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MIAMI — Calling the trade embargo against Cuba a relic of a failed Cold War policy, Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton on Friday challenged Republicans in Congress and in the 2016 race to finally do away with it. The Washington Post – By Anne Gearan * “We have arrived at a decisive moment. The Cuban people have waited long enough ... Read More »

Mexico missing students: Search uncovers 60 mass graves

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Sixty mass graves have been uncovered in the southern Mexican state of Guerrero during a search for 43 student teachers abducted last September, official documents have revealed. BBC - The attorney general’s office says the remains of 129 bodies have been recovered from the graves. None of the remains have been linked to the students who vanished in Iguala. The ... Read More »

How Hedge and Vulture Funds Have Exploited Puerto Rico’s Debt Crisis

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For this island teetering on bankruptcy, debt renegotiation is imminent—but on whose terms? The Nation – By Ed Morales New York–born Puerto Rican activist David Galarza spent a recent sultry summer Monday picketing a meeting of bondholders by day and meeting with professionals, students, and working people in the evening concerned about the increasingly scary crisis over the island’s $72 billion ... Read More »

Mexico opens up oil industry for first time in 80 years

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BBC – For the first time in nearly 80 years, Mexico has opened up its oil industry to foreign investors, selling off 14 exploration blocks in the Gulf of Mexico. However, only two of the blocks were sold in the auction, falling short of the government’s expectations. Bidders were expected to sign new contracts with the Mexican state to explore, produce ... Read More »

The Dominican Republic Must Stop Expulsions of Haitians

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A HUMAN rights crisis is unfolding on the island of Hispaniola, which is shared by the Dominican Republic and Haiti. The New York Times – By ROXANNA ALTHOLZ and LAUREL E. FLETCHER The Dominican Republic is threatening to drive out hundreds of thousands of Haitians who live and work in the Dominican Republic. Many of them came to work in ... Read More »

Central American migrants escape Mexico kidnapping

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BBC – Dozens of Central American migrants say they have managed to escape from a gang that abducted them in southern Mexico. They migrants told police they had been held for hours by armed men who stopped their bus, but later fought back and broke free from their captors. Kidnappings are common in Mexico with gangs often abducting migrants and ... Read More »

Concentration Camps in the Dominican Republic?

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Regarding the pending expulsion of Dominicans of Haitian descent, which I’ve written about hereand here (based on original reporting by Rachel Nolan, here in Harper’s) and which is scheduled to start later this week: The Dominican Republic is sending mixed messages. The Nation – Greg Grandin Andrés Navarro, the country’s foreign minister, says they will wait until August to start deporting. ... Read More »