Tag: panam

Venezuelan Regime Attacks Journalists to Hide Protests

Protests Erupted in Caracas against Government’s Decision to Forbid Sale of Certain Food Products

Protests erupted in Caracas on Thursday, June 2nd as the hundreds of citizens waiting in line for their ration of food since the early hours of the morning realized that the local government was not delivering supplies to regular shops. Rather, the food was being delivered in trucks to special government stores.

In Venezuela, Nazi-Like Tactics Prevent Popular Uprising

Organized Revolts in Response to Food Shortages Unlikely

Some analysts have predicted a popular uprising in Venezuela that could eventually topple the corrupt regime of strongman Nicolás Maduro.

Around the country, people desperate for food and medicine have protested against the government in the face of ever-worsening shortages. Naturally, most pundits believe this situation is untenable.

If the Chavista regime does not provide a solution to the food and medicine shortages, many analysts believe people will eventually rise up. What these pundits fail to understand is that Venezuela’s problems are not caused by a collapse in the price of oil and a resulting lack of funds to provide basic necessities for the population.

Child Immigrants Detained at US Border Reach Record High

32,952 Unaccompanied Minors Arrested between October and May

The number of unaccompanied immigrant children detained at the southwestern US border continues to increase and has exceeded the figures recorded for 2015, according to data released by the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection (CPB).

With four months remaining in the fiscal year, which began on October 1, 2015, it was revealed that 32,952 unaccompanied children have been detained by border authorities, compared to 39,970 that were recorded throughout the previous fiscal year.

If we compare the data recorded up to April of this fiscal year with those in 2014 when there was a wave of child immigrating from Central America (described as a “humanitarian crisis”), the numbers show a similar situation could be repeated this time around.

Coca-Cola Halts Production in Venezuela over Sugar Shortage

Coca-Cola has announced that it will be suspending a few days of production in Venezuela due to a shortage of sugar.

The company, whose headquarters are in Atlanta, did not detail at what time it would restart production in the struggling country. Last week, the state-owned company responsible for processing sugar temporarily shut down production, causing problems for the globally popular beverage producer.

Coca-Cola FEMSA will be looking for alternative sources for obtaining the sugar it needs to produce its products within Venezuela. The temporary halt in production will not affect non-sugar drinks, whose production will continue as normal.

What Does Maduro’s New State of Emergency Mean for Venezuela?

Last Friday, May 13, the President of Venezuela Nicolás Maduro signed a new decree establishing an economic emergency that extended the original decree made in January 2016, but which included something called a “state of exception” this time around.

The state of exception is intended to allow the government to take “exceptional” measures to control the country’s crisis, as well as to protect the Venezuelan people from whatever the government may consider a threat. But it’s still not clear what Maduro is going to do with such tremendous power.

What exactly is a state of exception and what does it allow Maduro to do?

Known also as a “restriction of constitutional gaurentees,” Professor of Administrative Law José Ignacio Hernández said he expects the new decree to restrict non-economic rights. In particular, freedom of movement, peaceful protest and freedom of speech. He now has the ability to sidestep the National Assembly, and there’s not reason to think that he won’t.

Colombia: FARC Guerrilla Pledges to Stop Recruiting Child Soldiers

The Colombian Government and Guerilla Group Also Reach Deal for Release of Members Under 15.

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) announced they will no longer recruit children under 15 years of age to be part of its insurgent group officials announced Sunday, May 15.

The Colombian government and FARC agreed to the discharge of members under 15, in accordance with the peace process taking place in Havana.

“Venezuela Is on the Brink of Social Collapse,” National Guardsman

In recent months, Venezuelan citizens have taken to the streets to demand solutions to the current economic crisis from the government. Many have even requested President Nicolás Maduro’s resignation.

The Venezuelan state has responded to these protests with repression. Certain office holders have been accused of committing human rights violations. As a result, political leaders from the opposition have asked the Venezuelan security forces — especially the army and the Bolivarian National Guard — to denounce any crimes that the state has committed.

At the moment, the armed forces’ position vis-à-vis the government is not clear. Some speculate that the Bolivarian National Guard is divided. Others claim that the regime exerts full control over the Bolivarian National Guard’s members. The only certainty is that uncertainty abounds.

Brazilian President Steps Down while Senate Begins Impeachment Trial

The world’s fifth largest economy finds itself in an unprecedented political crisis after its Senate approved Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff‘s impeachment trial, for which she is stepping down for 180 days.

President Rousseff is accused of having broken fiscal responsibility laws while managing the federal budget. During the trial, she will reside in the Alvorada Palace and receive half pay.

Of the 81 senators that were in the debate that began on Wednesday and lasted early into the following morning, 51 voted in favor of impeachment, with 22 voting against. There was one abstention and three absences.

While Rousseff is suspended from office, Vice President Michel Temer is the acting Brazilian president. He has already prepared the cabinet that will accompany him during the 6 months — or longer, if the Senate finds Rousseff guilty.

Venezuela: Countless Wounded after 5,000 Loot Supermarket

Venezuela saw a new wave of looting this week that resulted in at least two deaths, countless wounded, and millions of dollars in losses and damages.

On the morning of Wednesday, May 11, a crowd sacked the Maracay Wholesale Market in the central region of Venezuela.

According to the testimonies of merchants, the endless food lines that Venezuelans have been enduring to do groceries could not be organized that day.

As time went by, desperate Venezuelans grew anxious over not being able to buy food. Then they started jumping over the gates.

Gasoline Shortage Looms in Oil-Producing Venezuela

Venezuelans have yet another hardship to overcome in trying to survive the country’s economic crisis, as it was announced Monday, May 9 that the El Palito Refinery — the main supplier of fuel in Venezuela — has halted operations with less than 10 days of inventory remaining.

The newspaper La Verdad reported that the stoppage will last 45 to 60 days.

Executive Secretary for the United Federation of Oil Workers Rober González told the newspaper that Venezuelan refineries may have been sabotaged by some contractors and managers.

Mexico Will Issue Birth Certificates to Illegal Immigrants in United States

The Mexican Chamber of Deputies endorsed a Senate bill that will allow the issuing birth certificates to unregistered Mexicans living within the country as well outside of it.

The bill, which received unanimous approval with 423 votes, will now be sent to President Enrique Peña Nieto, who has the power to make it a law.

The bill supports an amendment to Article 44 of the Mexican Foreign Service Law, which states that heads of consular offices can act, when appropriate, as judges of the Civil Registry. However, it does not make explicit their authority to issue birth certificates.

Hollywood Stars Cavort in Cuba while Arrests of Dissidents Hit New High

Apparently, Barack Obama’s visit to Cuba was just what the island needed to kick off its popularity. In the last few weeks, it has played host to a concert, a fashion show, the filming of a Hollywood movie, and visits from international celebrities.

All of that happening while, behind the scenes, Raúl Castro’s regime represses dissenters and the number of exiles continues to climb. Demonstrations and protests for the release of political prisoners — such as The Ladies in White and Unpacu — continue to be squashed and silenced.

On Wednesday, May 4, local press revealed that Kim, Khloé, and Kourtney Kardashian as well as rapper Kanye West had arrived to the island to get to know Cuban culture.
This Wednesday also saw Charlize Theron arrive to Havana to participate in the making of Fast and Furious 8, which started filming a week ago.

Hungry Venezuelan Soldiers Steal Goats amid Food Shortages

The Venezuelan military’s reputation has been considerably worsened after its involvement in criminal acts that have taken place in one rural area this Sunday. On May 1, six army officials were arrested for stealing goats from a nearby farm.

The arrest happened in Lara in the Central region of the country when the police noticed an unmarked van, which they later discovered was transporting dead animals.

According to local media reporting, the military officials were interrogated and not only admitted to the crime, but argued they had no choice because they were without food at Fort Manaure.

Hungry Venezuelans Hunt Dogs, Cats, Pigeons as Food Runs Out

Ramón Muchacho, Mayor of Chacao in Caracas, said the streets of the capital of Venezuela are filled with people killing animals for food.

Through Twitter, Muchacho reported that in Venezuela, it is a “painful reality” that people “hunt cats, dogs and pigeons” to ease their hunger.

People are also reportedly gathering vegetables from the ground and trash to eat as well.

The crisis in Venezuela is worsening everyday due in part to shortages reaching 70 percent. This to go along with the world’s highest level of inflation.