So much news, I can’t even keep up. Here’s Friday.
January 25, 2019
Western Hemisphere Regional
- Katie Mettler, “Trump Again Mentioned Taped-Up Women at the Border. Experts Don’t Know What He Is Talking About.” (The Washington Post, January 25, 2019).
On at least eight occasions in 12 days, Trump has mentioned women with "tape put across their mouths." Human-trafficking experts are perplexed
- Rafael Carranza, “Border Officials Claim ‘Medical Crisis’ Over Arrival of Migrant Families at the Border” (The Arizona Republic, January 25, 2019).
With larger groups arriving more often, an increasing number of the people agents encountered have also needed to be hospitalized, the agency said
- Shasta Darlington, “‘I Have to Stay Alive’: Gay Brazilian Lawmaker Gives Up Seat Amid Threats” (The New York Times, January 25, 2019).
Mr. Wyllys has been the target of death threats for years, but he said those threats had become more severe after Marielle Franco, a human rights advocate who was his friend and political ally, was assassinated
- “Jair Bolsonaro Wants Brazilians to Have More Guns” (The Economist (Uk), January 25, 2019).
Some of Mr Bolsonaro’s supporters are worried. Violence is “going to explode”, warns Plauto de Lima, a former director of state prisons in Ceará
- “¿el Eln Estaria Dispuesto a Defender a Maduro en una Eventual Guerra?” (Semana (Colombia), January 25, 2019).
Informes de inteligencia y otras investigaciones dan cuenta de su presencia en medio país y sus relaciones con elementos del Estado. ¿Cómo se comportarían en caso de una intervención extranjera?
- “El Atentado en Bogota Es una “Accion Irrepetible”: Pablo Beltran” (Semana (Colombia), January 25, 2019).
En entrevista con ‘Caracol Radio’ el jefe guerrillero aseguró que volverán al monte, que descartan pedir asilo político
- “¿Como Actua el Eln? – Fundacion Paz y Reconciliacion” (Fundación Paz y Reconciliación (Colombia), January 25, 2019).
Identificar la presencia y golpear al ELN le llevará tiempo al Gobierno. Lo que está claro es que no se requiere mayor producción de violencia para diezmarlo. La época de los bombardeos quedó atrás y en cambio se requiere una estrategia basada en la inteligencia militar y capturas
- Tony Perrottet, “When Americans Loved Fidel Castro” (The New York Times, January 25, 2019).
The historical ties between the United States and Cuba have been far more complex over the past 120 years than hard-line Republicans care to recall — and that American responsibility for Cuba’s current state also runs deep
- Gladys Olmstead, “Ivan Velasquez se Resigna a No Regresar, y Asegura Que la Cicig Continua” (Nomada (Guatemala), January 25, 2019).
Para Iván Velásquez que él no regrese o que se acabe con la CICIG permite que grupos de pro-impunidad no tengan consecuencias por los delitos que cometan
- Javier Estrada Tobar, “La Ley Que Dejaria Libres a Criminales de Guerra, Explicada en Cinco Minutos” (Nomada (Guatemala), January 25, 2019).
La nueva ley de reconciliación impulsada por Linares Beltranena ya se aprobó en primera lectura. En dos sesiones más el Congreso la puede aprobar
- Gloria Leticia DÍaz, “Militares Le Disparan a una Joven y la Presionan para Que Les de su “Perdon”” (Proceso (Mexico), January 25, 2019).
Durante su convalecencia comenzaron las presiones: bajo amenazas de encarcelarla, enviados del Ejército le arrancaron una firma que quedó plantada en un documento donde ella otorgaba el perdón a los agresores
- “Maya Averbuch” (The Daily Beast, January 25, 2019).
Immigration authorities were unclear last week about whether the visa offer was temporary, but while it lasts migrants from Central America are continuing to arrive at the border with backpacks on their shoulders
Central America Regional, Mexico
- Jeff Ernst, Kirk Semple, “Mexico Moves to Encourage Caravan Migrants to Stay and Work” (The New York Times, January 25, 2019).
The Mexican government initially said it was speeding up the application process for humanitarian visas as an “exception” for the current migrant caravan only. But on Thursday, a spokeswoman with Mexico’s national migration agency said the expedited process would be permanent
- Andrew Degrandpre, David Nakamura, Kevin Sieff, Maria Sacchetti, “Trump Administration to Start Sending Asylum Seekers to Wait in Mexico” (The Washington Post, January 25, 2019).
Tonatiuh Guillén, who heads Mexico’s immigration agency, said he had not received any communication from the United States about when implementation of the measures would begin
- Sarah Kinosian, “As United States’ ‘Remain in Mexico’ Plan Begins, Mexico Plans to Shut Its ‘Too Successful’ Humanitarian Visa Program” (GlobalPost, Public Radio International, January 25, 2019).
Most of the migrants intend to head for the US, a fact Mexican officials have acknowledged. The "remain" policy could force asylum-seekers to wait in dangerous, cartel-controlled Mexican border towns, notorious for high homicide rates, for up to a year
- Dara Lind, “The Us Is Sending Some Legal Asylum Seekers Back to Mexico” (Vox, January 25, 2019).
The provision is ambiguously worded enough that it’s not an open-and-shut case
- Nicholas Casey, “Within Venezuelan Military Ranks, a Struggle Over What Leader to Back” (The New York Times, January 25, 2019).
The opposition has been targeting the middle ranks, holding meetings with midlevel officers to explain a recent amnesty law passed by the opposition-led National Assembly for people who defect
- “Borges: Hay Descontento en la Fanb Pese a las Declaraciones de Lealtad” (El Estimulo (Venezuela), January 25, 2019).
El diputado de la Asamblea Nacional (AN), Julio Borges, afirmó que varios de los oficiales de la Fuerza Armada Nacional Bolivariana (FANB), se han puesto en contacto con la oposición venezolana pese a las recientes declaraciones de los generales chavistas
- “Leading Human Rights Organizations Support a Democratic, Non-Violent Solution to Venezuela’s Crisis” (Conectas Human Rights (Brazil), Dejusticia (Colombia), Washington Office on Latin America, Washington Office on Latin America, January 25, 2019).
The international community must advance a democratic, non-violent solution to Venezuela’s crisis that leads to free and fair elections
- Kirk Semple, “Echoes of the Past in Venezuela Crisis, but Heard More Lightly” (The New York Times, January 25, 2019).
Where in the past the United States might have felt isolated in Latin America, this time it has company
- Alexandra Olson, Cathy Bussewitz, Matt Ott, “Ap Explains: What a Venezuelan Oil Embargo Could Mean for Us” (Associated Press, The Washington Post, January 25, 2019).
Venezuela has consistently been the third- or fourth-largest supplier of crude oil to the United States, and any disruption of imports would be costly
- Claudia Smolansky, “16 Muertos y 175 Detenidos Deja Represion de Maduro en 72 Horas de Protestas” (Cronica Uno (Venezuela), January 25, 2019).
Provea aseguró que el asesinato de las 16 personas durante las manifestaciones de 2019 eleva a 231 el total de fallecidos en acciones de calle durante la “era Maduro”
- Anton Zverev, Maria Tsvetkova, “Kremlin-Linked Contractors Help Guard Venezuela’s Maduro – Sources” (Reuters, Reuters, January 25, 2019).
Yevgeny Shabayev, leader of a local chapter of a paramilitary group of Cossacks with ties to Russian military contractors, said he had heard the number of Russian contractors in Venezuela may be about 400
- Michael R. Pompeo, “Remarks on Venezuela” (U.S. Department of State, January 25, 2019).
Elliott Abrams is coming aboard to lead our efforts on Venezuela
- Dan Lamothe, Missy Ryan, “For Now, Pentagon on Margins of American Response to Venezuela Crisis” (The Washington Post, January 25, 2019).
The reluctance of defense officials to discuss even the position of U.S. military assets underscored the Pentagon’s desire to avoid escalating a potentially explosive situation in a region where the United States has limited military weight