News and Politics

Marielle Franco Assassination

March 28, 2018

On March 14th, 2018, one of Brazil’s strongest voices in the fight for equal rights was assassinated in her car along with her driver on the way home from an event to empower young black women in Rio de Janeiro. Marielle Franco had just been elected the city councilor of Rio de Janeiro 18 months prior to her death. At 38 years old, Franco was the only black female representative on the 51-member council, and one of seven women (The New York Times, 2018).

Former Bolivian president put on trial in the U.S. for October Massacre

March 15, 2018

Last week, a long awaited trial against the former president of Bolivia and his minister of defense commenced on Monday with its jury selection.  Defendants did not take to the stand in their home country, though; rather, the eight families who have charged Gonzalo Sánchez de Lozada and José Carlos Sánchez Berzaín traveled to Fort Lauderdale, Florida, to make their case to a U.S. court.  

Opposition coalition bands together--again--in effort to impeach Peruvian President Kuczynski

March 13, 2018

Just this week, leftist leaders in Peru have begun to band together in a movement to impeach sitting president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski on grounds of a ‘moral incapacity’ to lead the country, in part due to his alleged ties to Odebrecht. This effort to oust Kuczynski, better known by the nickname ‘PPK’, comes just a few months after his highly controversial decision to pardon former dictator Alberto Fujimori.

How Latin America is handling the Venezuelan Refugee Crisis

March 7, 2018

As Venezuela faces an economic crisis that has left the nation’s citizens in abhorrent conditions, without access to necessities such as food and medicine, Venezuelans are fleeing to neighboring countries that are already dealing with an unprecedented influx of middle eastern refugees, as well as internal conflicts between gangs, guerilla groups, and corruption scandals. Neighboring countries, though sympathetic to Venezuela’s worsening condition, are struggling to accept Venezuelan migrants.

Brazilian troops storm favelas of Rio de Janeiro to combat rising drug violence

March 6, 2018

Just last week, Brazilian President Michel Temer signed a decree to allow the military to take over as the primary security force in the state of Rio de Janeiro as an extreme attempt to crackdown on rising gang violence in the region’s poor shantytowns, or favelas. The upper and lower houses of Brazil’s Congress both voted overwhelmingly in favor of this decision, in spite of rising public criticism and concern over the protection of human rights under the military’s control.

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