Salvadoran President Nayib Bukele has accused the United States of violating the sovereignty of El Salvador—this time, following the U.S. State Department’s sanctioning of officials engaged in corruption or undermining democracy across four Central American countries.
The “Engel List” adds five dozen names to the U.S. State Department’s corruption map, and the presidents of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras won’t be happy, as now banned from U.S. soil are many officials and business people linked to the Central American leaders.
Bukele’s government told Wall Street investors in March that it hasn’t totally ruled out a deal with the IMF to avoid default, offering backup plans. All scenarios involve massive credits from regional development banks and somehow squeezing more tax revenue.
A trail of images and videos published on social media expose what journalistic publications have shown for months: that the senior leader of MS-13 was illegally freed last year by the government of El Salvador despite 40 years remaining on his prison sentence and a U.S. extradition request.
The Huehuetenango-based crime ring Los Huistas is trafficking cocaine produced by Colombian FARC dissidents for the Jalisco New Generation Cartel through the turf of its rival, the Sinaloa Cartel. The arrests of colluding Guatemalan military officers and the Huistas’ family ties to legislators beg the question of just how far the drug trade has penetrated the government and politics.
Central American leaders are averting their gaze from Nicaragua’s Ortega-Murillo regime, aware that picking a fight with the most consolidated autocracy in Central America would give more oxygen to criticism of corruption and human rights violations in their own countries.
Global financial duress is pummeling cryptocurrencies including Tether, an important piece of Nayib Bukele’s bitcoin project.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. imposed sanctions Friday on Nicaragua’s state-owned gold mining company and the president of its board of directors in part over the Central American nation’s ties to Russia.
Central America, in Brief: After the no-show of the Northern Triangle presidents at the Summit of the Americas, their foreign ministers gave strident speeches defying Joe Biden and named their countries’ terms for U.S. and regional engagement.
Guatemala, in Brief: The persecution of independent judges and prosecutors pressed onward with the order to put former top state attorney Virginia Laparra on trial. The shady Foundation against Terrorism, lead architect of the legal attacks that have already pushed two-dozen anti-corruption operators into exile, has named among its next targets the human rights ombudsman and three of the country’s most influential judges.
Four days before the Summit of the Americas begins on June 6 in Los Angeles, the U.S. is short on friends in the Northern Triangle. Even Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei, once President Joe Biden’s ally of last resort, said he will not attend.
A Supreme Court magistrate appointed by the ruling party was years ago the attorney of “Diablo de Hollywood,” the head of the Mara Salvatrucha. The detail, undisclosed when he was appointed last year, was revealed when the judge recused himself from ruling on the gang leader’s pending extradition to the United States.
SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) — El Salvador’s congress granted a request Wednesday by President Nayib Bukele for a second extension of the country’s anti-gang emergency decree.
El Faro obtained audio files of conversations between a senior Bukele official and the Mara Salvatrucha (MS-13), revealing that the covert negotiations with the gangs fell apart after MS-13 considered the surprise arrest of a group of its leaders a violation of the agreement they brokered in 2019 for a reduction in homicides.
The falling price of bitcoin underscores El Salvador’s precarious debt crisis, financial experts say. President Nayib Bukele, nevertheless, perseveres: On Monday, May 9, he announced a new $15 million state bitcoin purchase and boasted about his mockup of the megaproject Bitcoin City.
Colombia’s constitutional court legalized medically-assisted suicide in a ruling Wednesday, making it the first country in Latin America to do so. Euthanasia has been legal in Colombia since 1997.
A Salvadoran man who claims he was jailed, beaten, and tortured after being wrongfully deported from the United States filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the federal government, seeking damages for his treatment. José Daniel Guerra-Castañeda, 25, has since been returned to the United States and lives in Massachusetts.
Despite unprecedented peacetime policing operations that led to 27,000 arrests in two months, gangs continue to extort businesses as an expression of their territorial control. Human rights groups and the press have also documented at least five in-custody deaths during President Nayib Bukele’s state of exception.
Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador toured Central America and Cuba, from May 5th to the 8th, as part of his government’s strategy to strengthen relations with the Latin American countries.
A name contains so much. But what if one person has two sets of names — two first names and two surnames? How do that shape one identity?