» Is Puerto Rico Going the Way of Greece and Detroit?
Puerto Rican society has been shaken to its foundations by the announcement in February by Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s credit rating agencies that they had downgraded the island’s creditworthiness to junk status. “The problems that confront the commonwealth are many years in the making, and include years of deficit financing, pension underfunding, and budgetary […]
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» Valparaíso Blaze Highlights the City?s Poverty
The blaze that tore through the Chilean port city of Valparaíso revealed the dark side of one of the most important tourist destinations in this South American country, which hides in its hills high levels of poverty and inequality. The fire that broke out Saturday Apr. 12 and was still smouldering two days later claimed […]
» Government, Opposition in Televised Group Therapy in Venezuela
Government and opposition leaders in Venezuela held a nationally televised debate as a first step to working towards solutions for the economic, social and political crisis marked by over two months of protests. The demonstrations and the crackdown have cost 41 lives, including those of seven police officers, and left 600 injured and 2,300 arrested […]
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» Brazil?s FIFA World Cup Preparations Claim Lives
The pressure to complete 12 football stadiums in Brazil in time for the FIFA World Cup in June has meant long, exhausting workdays of up to 18 hours, which has increased the risk of accidents and deaths. Nine workers have already died on the work sites – seven in accidents and two from heart attacks. […]
» Lynchings on the Rise in Argentina
The term ?lynching?, which emerged in the United States and refers to vigilantism or a mob taking justice into its own hands, has now entered the vocabulary in a number of Latin American countries. But while in some countries of Central America and South America?s Andean region mob justice is a longstanding phenomenon, it is […]
» In Peru, Low-Income Cancer Patients Find Fresh Hope
This story is the last installment of a three-part series on how social and economic inequalities impact cancer treatment.
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» U.S.-Colombia Labour Rights Plan Falls Short
Three years after Colombia agreed to U.S. demands to better protect labour rights and activists, a ?Labour Plan of Action? (LPA) drawn up by the two nations is showing mixed results at best, according to U.S. officials and union and rights activists from both countries. Pointing to continuing assassinations of union organisers, among other abuses, […]
» Colombia?s Breadbasket Feels the Pinch of Free Trade
?Things are getting worse and worse,? Enrique Muñoz, a 67-year-old farmer from the municipality of Cajamarca in the central Colombian department of Tolima, once known as the country?s breadbasket, said sadly. ?Over the past five decades, the situation took a radical turn for the worse,? activist Miguel Gordillo commented to IPS, referring to what is […]
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» In Eastern Caribbean, Chronicle of a Disaster Foretold
Christmas 2013 was the most ?dreary and depressing? Don Corriette can remember in a very long time. ?It was a bleak time. People obviously did not plan their Christmas to be like this,? said Corriette, 52, Dominica?s national disaster coordinator. Days of holiday preparations were swept away when a slow-moving, low-level trough dumped hundreds of […]
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» Mercury Still Poisoning Latin America
Latin America is not taking the new global agreement to limit mercury emissions seriously: the hazardous metal is still widely used and smuggled in artisanal gold mining and is released by the fossil fuel industry. After the European Union banned exports of mercury in 2011 and the United States did so in 2013, trade in […]
» Going Green Without Sinking into the Red
Most Caribbean countries are famous for their sun, sand and warm sea breezes. Far fewer are known for their wide use of solar, wind and other forms of renewable energy. It is one of the failings of the region, which is characterised by high external debt, soaring energy costs, inequality, poverty and a lack of […]
» Hard-Hit CDM Carbon Market Seeks New Buyers
Since they first emerged as a result of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, carbon offset markets have been a key part of international emissions reductions agreements, allowing rich countries in the North to invest in ?emissions-saving projects? in the South while they continue to emit CO2. The biggest is the U.N.?s Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) for […]
» Cuba?s Youth Were the Target of USAID?s ZunZuneo
The generations born in Cuba in the last two or three decades, permeated by the influences of societies that differ radically from the one their government is trying to build, are in the eye of the ideological storm that feeds the conflict between Havana and Washington. On Thursday Apr. 3 the White House acknowledged that […]
» Chile Graduates in Earthquake Preparedness
Chile appears to have learned a few lessons from the 2010 earthquake and tsunami, and it successfully drew on them the night of Apr. 1, when another quake struck, this time in the extreme north of the country. Frightened by the intensification of seismic activity in the last few years, local residents fled for the […]
» Brazilian Dams Accused of Aggravating Floods in Bolivia
Unusually heavy rainfall, climate change, deforestation and two dams across the border in Brazil were cited by sources who spoke to IPS as the causes of the heaviest flooding in Bolivia?s Amazon region since records have been kept. Environmental organisations are discussing the possibility of filing an international legal complaint against the Jirau and Santo […]
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