01182017Wed
Last update: Wed, 18 Jan 2017 10am

South America

World - South America

Venezuela opposition renews assault against president CARACAS: Venezuelan opposition lawmakers sought to trigger early elections by passing a key censure motion Monday against President Nicolas Maduro, who is ruling over a national economic crisis and consequent food shortages.The opposition majority in the National Assembly legislature declared that Maduro effectively "abandoned his post" by failing to stem the "economic devastation" in the oil-rich country, according to the speaker of the legislature, Julio Borges.However, the Supreme Court, which has consistently sided with Maduro, was expected to overrule the motion. It has stated that "the National Assembly is not qualified to remove the president."The opposition blames Maduro for an "unprecedented economic crisis" that has prompted deadly riots and looting amid shortages of food and medicine.And it plans to hold a session Tuesday on the grounds of Vargas Hospital, one of the 320 public health facilities wracked by shortages. "People need to know that we are there with them," Borges ...

World - South America

Venezuela boosts minimum wage by 50pc CARACAS: Embattled President Nicolas Maduro on Sunday raised the minimum wage by 50 percent in Venezuela, a country with astronomical inflation.Maduro said he was raising the minimum wage to 40 bolivars, about 60 dollars at the highest official exchange rate, or $12 on the black market."To get the year started, I have decided to raise the minimum wage," the president sad on his weekly show on state television.The wage comes with an additional food bonus ...

World - South America

New Brazil prison clash leaves at least 4 dead in Amazon region SAO PAULO: A new prison uprising in Brazil early on Sunday left four dead, adding to the chaos in Brazil's penitentiary system that has left almost 100 inmates killed in the past week in a gang war. The latest violence took place at the Desembargador Raimundo Vidal Pessoa jail in the center of the jungle city of Manaus, according to an emailed statement from the government penitentiary agency in Amazonas state, where the facility is ...

World - South America

At least 33 prisoners killed in new Brazil prison uprising RIO DE JANEIRO: At last 33 inmates have been killed in a new prison uprising in the Amazon region of Brazil, officials said Friday, just five days after 56 inmates were slaughtered in a nearby state in the country's worst prison massacre for more than two decades. Details were murky about the latest uprising that took place early on Friday in Roraima state's largest penitentiary. However, experts had predicted more violence in Brazil's gang-controlled prison ...

World - South America

UN sacks four Colombia monitors for dancing with FARC BOGOTA: The United Nations said Thursday it has sacked four members of its monitoring mission for the Colombian peace process for dancing with FARC rebels at a New Year's Eve party.The UN is overseeing the FARC's disarmament as part of a peace deal the leftist guerrillas signed with the government to end a more than five-decade conflict.But controversy erupted when Colombian media broadcast videos of UN monitors, dressed in their pale blue uniform vests, swaying ...

World - South America

Venezuela president names new potential successor CARACAS: Venezuela's leader Nicolas Maduro named an ex-security minister Wednesday as his vice-president, who would become head of state if Maduro were removed from office this year as the opposition demands.Maduro told a televised cabinet meeting that he had named to the post Tareck El Aissami, 42, a powerful state governor who cracked down on drug gangs in his time as a minister.Currently governor of the violent northern state of Aragua, El Aissami served as ...

World - South America

Inmates beheaded in Brazil riot, 56 killed MANAUS: Rioting inmates decapitated their rivals in brutal fighting between two gangs in a Brazilian jail that left 56 dead, while 144 prisoners escaped, officials said Monday.The riot broke out Sunday afternoon and lasted through the night at a prison on the outskirts of Manaus, the capital of Amazonas state, state public security secretary Sergio Fontes said.Bloodied and burned bodies were stacked in a concrete prison yard and piled in carts, an AFP photographer at ...