Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Lula charged by Car Wash prosecutors (Sept. 15, 2020)

News Briefs

  • Brazilian prosecutors charged former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva with money laundering yesterday. Prosecutors from the massive Operation Car Wash investigation say Lula received bribes from construction giant Odebrecht disguised as donations to the institute that carries his name, in exchange for Petrobras contracts. Lula's lawyers said the accusations have no evidence, and the former president has previously accused Car Wash prosecutors of political persecution, notes the Associated Press. Lula was released from jail less than a year ago, and is appealing a previous corruption conviction. The previous conviction was seen as politically motivated by many observers, and paved the way for President Jair Bolsonaro's electoral victory in 2018. Last week Lula spoke out against Bolsonaro's pandemic policies, in what some observers considered a possible comeback bid. (See last Wednesday's post.)
  • Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro's approach of playing down the coronavirus pandemic, while raising public spending to blunt its economic impact, appears to be paying off. He is more popular than at any other point in office, reports the Wall Street Journal.
  • Cuban independent media has recently found a big enough audience to pose a challenge to state-controlled media, reports the Miami Herald. And the government has retaliated with increasing force against journalists.
  • The Paraguayan People's Army (EPP) released a former vice president kidnapped in retaliation for a military raid in which two girls were killed, earlier this month. (Guardian)
  • Venezuela's government claims to have disarmed attacks against the country's oil industry and electricity system, and accused a U.S. citizen of spying and plotting to destabilize the Maduro government. Authorities said they detained eight plotters, including the U.S. citizen, traveling with heavy arms, explosives, surveillance footage and cash. Venezuela’s chief prosecutor has announced charges of terrorism and weapons trafficking against Matthew John Heath, who he said was aided by active members of the Venezuelan military. (Washington PostGuardian)
  • Imperfect elections are the best bad option for Venezuela's political opposition, argues Jesús Seguías, president of Venezuelan pollster DatinCorp in the Latin America Advisor. "Venezuelans must overcome the strategy of futile confrontation and begin to rehearse a new dimension of politics based on consensus and democratic tolerance."
  • Inmate deaths in Venezuelan prisons have doubled during the coronavirus pandemic, reports InSight Crime.
  • The violence of angry protesters in Colombia cannot be evaluated on the same scale as the incident that spurred their demonstrations, the murder of a citizen by Bogotá police who tasered him mercilessly, writes Andrés Páramo Izquierdo in the Post Opinión.
  • Chances for a successful implementation of a Mercosur-EU free trade pact -- an agreement was reached last year -- seem increasingly slim. Amazon deforestation is a particularly relevant issue for several countries in Europe that demand better environmental protections from South American countries in order to move forward. A defeat of the pact would be a political loss for the EU, as well as for those who see the European bloc as a counterweight to the U.S.-China battle for influence in Latin America, write Nicolás Albertoni y Andrés Malamud in the New York Times Español.
Turks and Caicos
  • Nearly six months after confirming its first positive case, Turks and Caicos is struggling to contain COVID-19 as its confirmed cases have multiplied, reports the Miami Herald.
  • A lucrative human trafficking ring smuggled people from Haiti, across Latin America to Chile, reports InSight Crime.
  • The Argentine government's 2021 budget proposal incorporates gender perspectives, reports El Cronista.
  • Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is still trying to sell off the country's presidential jet -- the increasingly bizarre spectacle is symbolic of AMLO's controversial leadership style, reports the New York Times.
  • Mexican feminist collectives took over the National Commission of Human Rights (CNDH) last week in response to government inaction in the face of violence against women, writes Pamela Cerdeira in the Post Opinión.
I hope you're all staying safe and as sane as possible, given the circumstances ... Comments and critiques welcome, always. 

1 comment:

  1. Am Laura Mildred by name, i was diagnosed with Herpes 4 years ago i lived in pain with the knowledge that i wasn't going to ever be well again i contacted so many herbal doctors on this issue and wasted a large sum of money but my condition never got better i was determined to get my life back so one day i saw Mr. Morrison Hansen post on how Dr. Emu saved him from Herpes with herbal medicine i contacted Dr. Emu on his Email: Emutemple@gmail.com we spoke on the issue i told him all that i went through and he told me not to worry that everything will be fine again so he prepared the medicine and send it to me and told me how to use it, after 14 days of usage I went to see the doctor for test,then the result was negative, am the happiest woman on earth now thanks to Dr. Emu God bless you. Email him at: Emutemple@gmail.com Whats-app or Call him +2347012841542