South America

Argentina wants debt deal as fiscal deficit balloons

Argentine Finance Minister Alfonso Prat-Gay said the South American country would hold tough debt negotiations with U.S. investment firms suing over unpaid debt, as preliminary talks got underway in New York on Wednesday (January 13). He did say it was imperative to resolve the country’s legal dispute because financing of the country’s fiscal deficit this year may depend on progress on the issue. Solving the more than decade-long debt battle would enable Argentina to return […]

Brazilian protesters clash with police over increasing transport fares

Brazilian riot police on Tuesday (January 12) fired tear gas and stun grenades to disperse further protests over a rise in public transport fares in the country’s largest city, Sao Paulo. Local media reported that some protesters threw stones and rocks at the police. Student protester, Heber Velozo, who suffered head injuries in the clashes, said the police were attacking peaceful demonstrators. “The police do not know how to work, they are not prepared. We […]

Santos defends justice accord with FARC following criticism from rights group

Colombia’s Juan Manuel Santos responded to critcism from the rights group, Human Rights Watch, in relation to a justice accord with the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC), saying that ‘perfect accords’ don’t exist. The rights group likened an accord signed between the government and the rebels in mid-December to a ‘impunity piñata’. The pact establishes that FARC members, military personnel and even civilians who accept resposibility for crimes committed during the conflict and truthfully […]

Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro slams removal of Hugo Chavez portraits from Congress

Venezuela’s Nicolas Maduro slammed on Thursday (January 7) the recent removal of images of socialist leader and former president Hugo Chavez from the new opposition-led Congress. Furious after this week’s unceremonious removal of the giant Chavez photos, Maduro berated the president of the National Assembly, Henry Ramos, saying the move was an insult to 19th century independence hero, Simon Bolivar. “That which happened yesterday [in reference to removal of Chavez photos from Congress] is part […]

Heavy rains trigger mudslides in Bolivia, destroys road

Landslides and mudslides caused by heavy El Niño rains destroyed an important road near Cochabamba in central Bolivia on Monday (January 4), causing a massive traffic jam. According to local media reports, delays extended trips by up to eight hours. Thousands of cars, trucks and buses have been stranded for up to 48 hours on the road that connects the cities of Cochabamba and Santa Cruz in the South American country. Officials said repairs were […]

San Marcos students clash in Lima over demand for rector’s departure

About one hundred students from the National University of San Marcos, Peru’s oldest university in Lima, occupied one of the entrances of the academic institution on Monday (December 4) calling for the ejection of the university’s rector from his post. The students are demanding the full resignation of Pedro Cotillo, who by law, is being forced to abandon his position immediately. Cotillo has been found to be in violation of Peru’s “New University Law,” which […]

Argentina declares state of emergency as ongoing floods continue to devastate northeast

Families continued to abandon their homes on Monday (December 28) in the southern cone of South America, which is seeing its worst flooding in decades and has already forced more than 100,000 people to evacuate. In northern Argentina, some 20,000 people have had to evacuate in what local authorities have called the worst flooding in 50 years. Aerial views showed large swamped areas in the Argentine city of Concordia, in the Entre Rios province. This […]

Venezuelan National Guard helicopter crashes in Colombian border

A Venezuelan National Guard helicopter crashed on Monday (December 28) on the Colombian side of the border amid sporadic diplomatic tensions between the two South American neighbours. The Bell military helicopter, carrying two generals, crashed some 10 metres (32 feet) into the Colombian territory in Paraguachon, located on the northern region of the La Guajira Peninsula. They survived the crash and are receiving medical care. The crash comes after a row earlier in the year […]

Severe weather causes flooding across Southern United States

Severe weather caused flooding across the Southern United States on Monday (December 28), leading to a road collapse in South Carolina and two barges to sink in Mississippi. Storms have battered large parts of the country, bringing with them floods and tornadoes that have killed more than 40 people during the holiday period. In South Carolina’s Anderson County the rain washed away a portion of a road on December 25, local media reports. The partial […]

Amid peace accords, Colombian families receive remains of loved ones

With the Colombian peace process back on track, family members of 29 of the disappeared from the more than half-century long civil war received remains of their loved ones in central Colombian city of Villavicencio Thursday (December 17). The ceremony comes two days after representatives of the Colombian government and leftist FARC rebels signed an agreement on reparations for war victims and the establishment of special tribunals to try former combatants once the two sides […]

Venezuelan parliamentary election goes on smoothly

The parliamentary election of Venezuela went on smoothly on Sunday, with nearly 20 million Venezuelans voting for the parties they support at polling stations. Voters queued early at polling stations, which opened at 06:00 across the country and would remain open for 12 hours. In the election, the governing United Socialist Party (USP) will contend with the opposition and neutral parties for the 167 seats in the National Assembly. The government dispatched more than 160,000 […]

Prince Harry meets young surfers on Africa tour

As part of his four-day tour of Africa, Prince Harry met with disadvantaged young children surfing on the beach in Durban on Tuesday (December 1). Prince Harry, who is on the tour to promote his charitable work in the region, had already met with Archbishop Desmond Tutu and visited various other charitable organizations on the trip to South Africa and Lesotho. On Tuesday, Prince Harry went to the beach and met with children learning to […]