Posts Tagged ‘protests’

Brazil: Why some in São Paulo hate the World Cup

Monday, May 26th, 2014

xcrowd2[Translation of an article from Folha de São Paulo for May 25, 2014. See original here and an op-ed by Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva defending the World Cup here.]

by Rafael Andery

In spite of 1958. In spite of 1962. Of 1970 and 1994. Of 2002. In spite of Pelé and Garrincha, of Bebeto and Romário, of Ronaldo and Rivaldo. In spite of the “homeland of the soccer shoe” and of Nelson Rodrigues. In spite of Neymar and of all the other stars, many natives of São Paulo are not even a little interested in the performance of the Brazilian team in the World Cup.

The reasons for the indifference vary. From high rents to contempt for the commercialization of soccer, to aversion for the sport or the costs imposed by the organizers of the event, the truth is that a little less than a month before the opening of the Cup in Itaquerão, in the eastern area, the competition does not seem to be creating as much excitement as did previous editions. (more…)

Peru’s economy grows but support for the government declines

Friday, August 2nd, 2013

x Ollanta HumalaA bittersweet reckoning for Humala

[Translation of an article from Página/12 of Buenos Aires for July 29, 2013. See original here and related articles here, here and here.]

By Carlos Noriega

In the midst of protests on the streets and a significant fall in the polls, President Ollanta Humala yesterday celebrated the second year of his five-year term in office. Humala comes to his second year with 32% support, which represents a troubling decline of 20 points in three months. While Humala was delivering his address to the nation from Congress, the unions, the universities and the citizen movements were demonstrating against his administration, but also against the political class as a whole. The streets of downtown Lima were heavily guarded by more than 5,000 police officers and the area was cordoned off to keep the demonstrators away from the Government Palace and Congress. More than 10,000 people demonstrated in Lima on Saturday and Sunday, and thousands more demonstrated in cities in the interior of the country. The mobilizations were repressed by the police. (more…)

Dominican Republic: National Police respond with deadly force to protest in Salcedo

Sunday, June 17th, 2012

[Translations of two articles from El Nuevo Diario of Santo Domingo for June 14 and 16, 2012. See originals here and here and related articles here, here, and here. Salcedo, a city of about 45,000 inhabitants, is the capital of the northern province of Hermanas Mirabal.]

Salcedo becomes a battlefield between demonstrators and police

by Miguel Cruz Tejada

Salcedo – The main streets of this city, especially those in the marginal neighborhoods, were turned into chaotic battle fields when demonstrators supporting an indefinite strike called by the Frente Amplio de Lucha Popular (FALPO – Broad Front for Popular Struggle) and other organizations joining the stoppage clashed with agents of the Black Helmet SWAT team, units of the elite “Linces” of the National Police and soldiers of the National Army, who were reinforcing the police, with gunshots, bombs, rocks, bottles and other objects, while more than 90 percent of businesses responded to the call for a strike. Beginning Wednesday morning, the strikers, led by FALPO, have taken to the streets, blocking commercial lanes, stopping the flow of vehicles, throwing stones and confronting the public forces, with the support of thousands of residents who see their protests as justified. (more…)

Chile: Human Rights Institute confirms excessive use of shotguns in Aysén

Friday, March 9th, 2012


((El Mostrador photo))

Lorena Fríes says they were aimed directly at demonstrators

[Translation of an article from El Mostrador of Santiago for March 8, 2012. See original here and related article here.]

The director of the National Human Rights Institute has submitted to the Human Rights Committee of the Chamber of Deputies a report drawn up by professionals in the Institute who were in the Aysén region between February 22 and February 25 as part of the organization’s Police Violence Observation Program.

Fríes stated that, in drawing up the report, “We were able to confirm a disproportionate use of anti-riot shotguns, which apparently are not used to warn but are used directly on the bodies of the demonstrators, which is reflected in the large proportion of persons wounded; more than 50 percent of those arrested have superficial wounds from the pellets that are fired with these shotguns.” (more…)

Argentina: Indigenous peoples of the northwest reject lithium mining

Sunday, July 24th, 2011

[Translation of an article from Página/12 of Buenos Aires for July 22, 2011. See original here.]

By Darío Aranda

“The gold of the future” the mining companies call it. It’s “a strategic resource” for government authorities. But it’s “our life” for the 86 indigenous communities who yesterday blocked National Highway 52 to oppose the lithium mining now spreading across their ancestral lands despite being covered by national and international laws that spell out indigenous peoples’ rights to the land. Lithium is a coveted mineral, used in batteries for cell phones and computers and needed by the automobile industry, which is experiencing the gradual replacement of hydorcarbons with electric vehicles. “We are expressing our rejection of lithium mining projects and we demand the titles to the commuity lands that belong to us,” the community members declared. Last November the spread of lithium mining reached the supreme court of the nation and arrived last week at the United Nations.

Danger of social outbreak in Panama over mining

Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011

Indigenous peoples protest against Martinelli government’s offering their lands to foreigners

“Mining = Death, Hunger, Blood and, for the Congressmen, Benefits” — ContraPunto photo

[Translation of an article from ContraPunto of San Salvador, El Salvador, for February 18. See original here.]

By Fernando de Dios

The reform of the Mineral Resources Code approved last Thursday by Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli has sparked rejection by a number of social sectors led by the indigenous peoples of the Ngäbe Buglé district, in the west of the country.

They have organized protests in the past few weeks and the situation threatens to bring on a re-enactment of the violent repression that occurred in the Bocas de Toro province last July, which cost the lives of ten people. (more…)

Death of Haitian youth sparks new protests against MINUSTAH

Thursday, September 16th, 2010

Sixteen-year-old Gerald Jean Gilles suffocated to death at Formed Police Units base

[Translation of an article from Brasil de Fato of São Paulo for September 14. See original article here.]

by Thalles Gomes

“They are suffocating me,” was the cry heard on August 17 by employees of the Henri Cristophe Hotel, in Cap-Haïtien, capital of the Nord department of Haiti. The call for help came from the Formed Police Units base belonging to MINUSTAH, the United Nations Mission for the Stabilization of Haiti. On that same day, Nepalese United Nations soldiers reported that Haitian Gerald Jean Gilles had entered their military base and had hanged himself.

The report issued by the UN did not explain how the young Gerald had managed to get into the military base, tie a rope on the patio and hang himself without any soldiers noticing.

Their version is contested vehemently by Gerald’s family and friends. According to them, the young man had been doing odd jobs for the Nepalese soldiers for some time in exchange for money or food. And the suspicion that Gerald had stolen 200 dollars from one of the soldiers was the reason the Nepalese soldiers tortured and suffocated him to death. (more…)

Water wars in Ecuador

Thursday, May 13th, 2010

[Translations of two articles from La Prensa of Riobamba, Ecuador, the first, from May 12, based on an Agence France Presse dispatch, the second, from May 13, by La Prensa staff.]

Water war continues in Ecuador
Indigenous demonstrators close Panamerican Highway North

Quito, May 12 – On Tuesday, indigenous people of the province of Imbabura again temporarily blocked the Panamerican highway North in protest of a bill on the management of water that they consider privatizes it.

Police re-opened the roadway without incident, according to authorities.

“We don’t believe what the government is saying,” declared Luis Quilumba, who claims  the bill will privatize water, a claim denied by the government, who in turn accuse the indigenous protestors of trying to depose leftist President Rafael Correa. (more…)