Wednesday, October 6, 2021

Brazil wants to revert climate rep (Oct. 6, 2021)

News Briefs

Regional Relations
  • In Latin America, sanctions have become one of the central pillars of U.S. policy to defend democracy and combat corruption -- the U.S. has placed sanctions on more than 300 individuals in Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, in addition to U.S. diplomatic and financial sanctions on the governments of Cuba, Nicaragua and Venezuela. Though sanctions can be an important diplomatic tool when calibrated finely, "they are rarely accompanied by clear measures of their failure or success and criteria for their possible lifting," argues Christopher Sabatini in a New York Times guest essay.
  • Brazil's government hopes to revert its negative climate reputation at next month's UN Climate Change Coference (COP26), where Environmental Minister Joaquim Leite said he wants to show Brazil can reduce carbon emissions even while serving as a major food producer for the world. Brazil needs to cut way back on deforestation, the country's main source of emissions, in order to meet carbon reduction targets. Leite said challenges in Glasgow include an agreement for more funding for greener economies and forest conservation, and to get carbon markets working more effectively. (Reuters)

  • A dozen Brazilian state governors have formed an environmental coalition that will also attend COP26, and hope that Brazilian lawmakers will advance with bill that would create a regulated carbon market. Currently, transactions in Brazil with these credits take place in the so-called voluntary market. Regulation would permit sale of carbon credits internationally, reports Estadão.

  • Brazilian workers hired to transcribe TikTok are payed far below minimum wage and complained that the subcontractors they worked for didn’t make promised payments. (The Intercept)
  • The U.S. government's "unsteady response" to Haitian migrants congregated in Texas last month "has revealed, once again, the broken nature of this country’s asylum system. It also is a grim reminder of the longstanding U.S. tolerance of government corruption and the denial of basic human rights in Haiti," writes Michael Posner in a New York Times guest essay.
  • To avoid a repetition of the scene at the border — or one that’s worse throughout the hemisphere — it is time to consider a long-term, robust U.N. mission in Haiti that matches the scale of the challenge with the size and persistence of the international response, according to analysis by the United States Institute for Peace. (See yesterday's post.)
  • Colombian authorities should ensure independent and impartial investigations against police officers allegedly responsible for the killing of seven protesters during an October 2017 demonstration, Human Rights Watch and Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights said today as they submitted an amicus brief to the country’s Constitutional Court. Four years after the so-called “El Tandil massacre,” no meaningful justice has been delivered.

  • Declassified U.S. State Department and CIA reports that “acknowledge the long-standing relationship between [Colombian] state security forces and the paramilitaries” are among the key evidence behind a historic $12-million judgment against a former Colombian paramilitary leader last week in U.S. federal court in Miami. (National Security Archive)

  • An estimation by Colombia’s top military commander, who says 40 percent of ELN and ex-FARC fighters operate in Venezuela, is speculative, but reflects important shifts in guerrilla dynamics, with consequences for both countries, reports InSight Crime.
  • Twenty-four of Venezuela’s top female soccer players condemned what they said was years of “abuse and harassment, physical, psychological and sexual” by former coach Kenneth Zseremeta, as the sport’s latest #MeToo reckoning goes global, reports the Washington Post.
  • A group of Chilean lawmakers plan to request an impeachment trial against President Sebastián Piñera, after Pandora Papers revelations appear to show the leader and his family benefited from payments allegedly tied to Piñera's environmental policy. (AFP, see Monday's briefs)
  • Argentine Supreme Court judge Elena Highton de Nolasco resigned yesterday -- two weeks after abstaining in an election for court authorities, in which just three of the five judges of the top court participated. Her resignation leaves the court without a female judge, and President Alberto Fernández is expected to nominate a woman to take her place. But political polarization means it will be difficult for him to muster the two-thirds support in Congress needed to confirm a new Supreme Court justice. (Associated Press)

  • Opposition lawmakers refused to grant quorum to debate a bill that would oblige companies to clearly label unhealthy foods. The bill, which has passed the Senate, would force food packages to clearly label a warning if the products include excessive sugar, sodium, saturated fat, total fat, or calories. (Cronista)

  • Jail sentences against Los Monos gang leaders in Argentina are unlikely to loosen the criminal organization's grip on the city of Rosario, reports InSight Crime.
  • Bolivia's opposition called for demonstrations against President Luis Arce to demand the release of former head of state Jeanine Áñez and an end to "political persecution," reports AFP.
  •  Innovative organized crime outfits throughout Latin America are exploiting cryptocurrencies to hide ill-gotten gains, reports InSight Crime.

  • A new series by  AJ+ Español, "Descoloniza" travels through Latin America to meet people who subvert colonial wounds to honor the region's potential.
Did I miss something, get something wrong, or do you have a different take? Let me know ... Latin America Daily Briefing

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