South America

Brazil’s most populous region facing worst drought in 80 years

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Brazil’s Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira has said the country’s three most populous states are experiencing their worst drought since 1930. ( BBC ) The states of Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Minas Gerais must save water, she said after an emergency meeting in the capital, Brasilia. Ms Teixeira described the water crisis as “delicate” and “worrying”. Industry and agriculture ... Read More »

Colombia: The ELN’s Long and Slow March to Peace

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This blog post by Crisis Group’s Analyst for Colombia/Andes, Christian Voelkel, was published with permission from Razón Pública, where a Spanish version of the blog post was published on 18 January.   ICG – By Christian Voelkel | @voelkelchr When the big moment finally came on 7 January, it was hard to avoid the feeling that an opportunity has been lost. Some ... Read More »

Gold mining affects 1000 km of biodiverse tropical forests in South America

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By Jayalakshmi K – International Business Times Rising demand for gold is being met at the cost of some of the most biologically diverse regions in the tropics. It has stimulated new gold mining activities which come with removal of vegetation, construction of roads and railways and mushrooming of unorganised settlements in the eco-sensitive regions. Researchers from the University of ... Read More »

Venezuelan President seeks prisoner swap with U.S.

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(CNN)President Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela said he is seeking the release of a jailed opposition leader if the United States agrees to release a Puerto Rican nationalist. By Chloe Sommers “The only way I would use (presidential) powers would be to put (Leopoldo Lopez) on a plane, so he can go to the United States and stay there, and they ... Read More »

Cuba and the U.S.: Turning the Page

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The dramatic improvement this week in U.S.-Cuban relations, and the possibility of an end to the decades-long U.S. embargo of the island, is set to transform political relations in the entire hemisphere. In the three posts below, the director of Crisis Group’s Latin America and Caribbean program, Javier Ciurlizza, and our vice president and special adviser on Latin America, Mark ... Read More »

Argentina sentences four to life in jail for crimes against humanity

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BUENOS AIRES: An Argentine court has sentenced four former military officers to life in prison for crimes against humanity during the 1976-1983 military dictatorship. AFP – The Times of India The sentence was handed down Thursday by a Buenos Aires court that found the four guilty of “illegal deprivation of liberty, torture, rape and homicide” involving 204 people held at ... Read More »

Guantánamo prisoners released to Uruguay: ‘We are so happy to be here’

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Six former US detainees who were never charged with a crime, were flown to Uruguay on Sunday to begin new lives as refugees The Guardian – Uki Goñi in Montevideo Over the past 12 years, Ali al-Shaaban has experienced precious little human kindness. Detained in Pakistan as a suspected al-Qaida member in the months after the 9/11 terror attacks, he was ... Read More »

The Day after Tomorrow: Colombia’s FARC and the End of the Conflict

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As they move toward a final peace agreement, the negotiators of the Colombian government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) face the challenge of laying out a credible path for guerrilla fighters to abandon arms and reintegrate into society. ICG Talks to end five decades of civil conflict in Colombia have seen unprecedented progress. But negotiators still need ... Read More »

Caught in the crossfire

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On International Human Rights Day, 51-year-old Colombian indigenous leader, Irrael Irrael Manuel Aguilar Solano writes on the continuing injustices in Colombia faced by his people and his hopes for the future. New Internationalist – Irrael Manuel Aguilar Solano In the last 10 years, 46 men and women from the Zenú indigenous people in Colombia – my people – have been killed in ... Read More »

Peru to take legal action over Greenpeace stunt at ancient Nazca lines

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Government plans to file charges of attacking archaeological monuments after activists set up banner near famed drawings Associated Press in Lima – The Guardian Peru will seek criminal charges against Greenpeace activists who it says damaged the world-renowned Nazca lines by leaving footprints in the adjacent desert during a publicity stunt. “It’s a true slap in the face at everything ... Read More »