Posts Tagged ‘Enrique Peña Nieto’

The St. Patrick’s Day Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, March 17th, 2014

Happy St. Patrick’s day! If you would like to read a novel about an Irishman in Latin America, I recommend El sueño del celta / The Dream of the Celt: A Novel, by Mario Vargas Llosa. (Warning: It can be gruesome at times)

ARGENTINA
Paris Club invites Argentina to hold debt negotiation

Pope Francis a year on: A friend reveals a very special gift
As Pope Francis marks his first anniversary in the Vatican, an Argentine silversmith explains how he has enlisted millions to help him craft the perfect present for his friend

Soaring Prices Fuel Frustrations Among Weary Argentines
Since the peso was devalued, Argentines have grappled with one of the world’s highest inflation rates, tilling the ground for social unrest, including a strike by schoolteachers and police sit-ins.

BOLIVIA
Petrobras Makes Its Entry into Eastern Bolivia Official

BRAZIL
Brazil World Cup: Fifa scraps speeches to avoid protest

His name is Eduardo Campos: Brazilian Politician Heats Up Election
In Brazil’s poor northeast, an upstart presidential hopeful is shaking up this year’s election race by spotlighting a sensitive issue ahead of the Brazilian-hosted soccer World Cup contest: soaring murder rates.

In Crisis, Rio Tries to Pacify Its Slums
Four community police officers have died in line of duty since February.

CHILE
Chile Earthquake: Magnitude 6.7 Temblor Hits Off Northern Coast Of Chile, Prompting More Than 100,000 To Evacuate

Mysterious underground caves discovered in Chile
A group of researchers in Chile discover 20 underground caves which could help unlock mysteries about how continents are formed

COLOMBIA
Colombian Left Forms United Front for Presidential Contest

Colombia’s elections; a nation divided

COSTA RICA
Costa Rica describes as “outrageous” exclusion from Ethical Traveler list

CUBA
Cuban dictatorship seeks more prison time for 2 imprisoned labor activists

Cuba Participates in “Friends of Assad” Meeting in Iran

ECUADOR
Chevron and Ecuador
Out of Hollywood

EL SALVADOR
El Salvador: Officials Confirm Ex-Guerrilla’s Victory
El Salvador’s electoral tribunal on Thursday confirmed that a former guerrilla commander during the country’s civil war emerged from Sunday’s presidential election with the most votes.

HONDURAS
Judge, Attorney Gunned Down in Honduras

JAMAICA
Jamaica dancehall star Vybz Kartel guilty of murder

LATIN AMERICA
CHAIRMAN SALMON TO SECRETARY KERRY: “WE NEED A BETTER STRATEGY IN THE WESTERN HEMISPHERE”

MEXICO
Don’t Celebrate Mexico’s Reforms Just Yet
Deficit spending is heading higher and the rule of law remains weak.

Enrique Peña Nieto Says He Wants To “Hit Crime Hard” During Michoacan Speech

PANAMA
Deal over Panama Canal expansion
The Panama Canal Authority (ACP) approves a deal to end a dispute over $1.6bn (£1bn) cost overruns that delayed the work to widen the waterway.

PERU
Peru Naked Tourists: Government Wants Visitors To Stop Stripping In Machu Picchu

PUERTO RICO
The Next Financial Catastrophe You Haven’t Heard About Yet: Puerto Rico

URUGUAY
Uruguay not seen setting drug liberalisation trend: U.N. official

VENEZUELA
A Growing Crisis in Post-Chavez Venezuela

The crisis in Venezuela
Another day, more bodies

In Venezuela, Conciliatory Talk but Combative Tactics

One Bottle, Then This: My Afternoon at UCV

Some people never learn: Jennifer McCoy of the Carter Center promotes herself

To Those That Think Maduro Is Not A Dictator: ¿Qué Pasa en Venezuela? by Foro Penal Venezolano

The week’s posts and podcast:
Venezuela: #SOSVenezuela and the war against the Chuckys

#SOSVenezuela: Maria Corina calls for protests today, Maduro warns protesters “We are coming for you”

Ted in tats

Sean Penn: Photoshop, or nitwit?

Colombia: FARC & ELN recruited 1,387 children in the past two years.

#SOSVenezuela in tweets

Puerto Rico: Hedge funds <3 the new bonds

Cuban endurance sports: Meet world-class windsurfer Henry Vergara Negrin

En español: Unidad de quemados

Venezuela: Protesting doctors, 1st foreign casualty

At Da Tech Guy Blog:
Biden goes to Chile

#Chile: Bachelet’s inauguration LIVEFEED

Podcast:
Elections in El Salvador plus other US-Latin America issues.


Mexico: Obama arrives for summit

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

Obama Heads to Mexico Amigos Meeting Strained by Keystone

Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s frustration with U.S. President Barack Obama’s failure to approve the Keystone XL pipeline may make this installment of the North America summit, known as the “Three Amigos,” the frostiest since the annual meetings began almost a decade ago.

At the one-day meeting tomorrow in Toluca, Mexico, with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Harper, Obama is bringing an agenda focused on trade, education, border security and stopping drug trafficking. Yet 20 years after the North American Free Trade Agreement took effect, the U.S. and Canada are at loggerheads over a $5.4 billion collaboration that would carry oil south from the thick sands of Alberta to American refineries along the Gulf Coast of Texas and Louisiana.

Hey, Canada has the oil, and will sell it.

Obama arrives in Mexico for summit that may show NAFTA strains

Rather than re-debate NAFTA, Obama is expected to press Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto and Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper to speak with one voice as they negotiate the Trans-Pacific Partnership, a proposed trade bloc that includes 12 countries around the Pacific Rim.

Comment from prior post:

In the 1980′s Reagan had Saudi Arabia increase oil production to drop the price and hurt the USSR’s cash cow. Why can’t we allow Keystone XL to be completed to kill Venezuela’s cash cow? Canadian heavy blend and Venezuelan crudes are all the same type of crude oil which are used by several very major Gulf Coast refineries. Other crude oils cannot economically replace them.

Indeed!

Mexico: Behind the Peña Nieto-Fidel photo-op

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

Mexican president Enrique Peña Nieto attended CELAC last week and sat with Fidel Castro for the cameras. Carlos Puig explains what’s behind the photo-op:
Mexico’s Pena Nieto Is for Reform, Just Not in Cuba

The picture released afterward by the Cuban government — Pena Nieto talking, Fidel listening — didn’t come cheap. Last year, Pena Nieto’s administration erased $340 million of Cuba’s debt to Mexico, or about 70 percent of the total amount. That’s more than the value of trade between the two countries, which reached $297 million over the first nine months of last year; $274 million of that represented Mexico’s surplus. The bilateral relationship is otherwise limited. From the Mexican side, at least, the main issue may be the influx of Cubans who use Mexico as a way station to the U.S.

Puig poses the question,

Yet it isn’t clear what Mexico gains by ignoring the reality that Cuba has no elections, no political parties, no free press or freedom of expression, and that dissidents are harassed and jailed. Certainly, Mexico stands to gain little economic benefit.

Pena Nieto’s choice also raises interesting questions about the character of a government willing to ignore such human-rights violations in a neighboring country. Isn’t such a government more likely to excuse its own human-rights problems, such as the tens of thousands of murders and disappearances during the last decade of drug war?

Meanwhile, in Mexico, there’s a lot going on in Michoacán’s Tierra Caliente. Enrique Krauze describes Mexico’s Vigilantes on the March

The epicenter of the present vigilante confrontation with the Knights Templar is the area known as the Tierra Caliente, a relatively isolated zone that, since colonial times, has been marked by its torrid climate, fertile soil, aggressive animals, poisonous plants, and a tendency toward violence among its inhabitants. Fray Diego Basalenque, who composed chronicles of Michoacán in the 17th century, wrote about the Tierra Caliente: “For someone not born here, it is uninhabitable. For its natives it is unbearable.” It has become a preferred sanctuary for the Knights.

The national government recently sent a substantial federal force (both military and police) to the region. Corrupt municipal police officers have been stripped of their authority and national troops have established a modus vivendi with self-defense groups. The vigilantes have the support of the majority of the population and of respected clerics.

Unverified rumors have it that some of the self-defense units are connected with a narco gang in a neighboring state called Jalisco New Generation Cartel (Cártel de Jalisco Nueva Generación). Regardless of whether that is true or not, President Enrique Peña Nieto, who came to power in 2012, would be wise to press for the incorporation of the vigilantes into a legal entity, as two powerful presidents in the 19th century, Benito Juárez and Porfirio Díaz, did when they were dealing with crime. They developed a mobile strike force (Los Rurales) that suppressed rampant banditry. The elimination of a gang like the Knights Templar, however, will require much intelligence-gathering and coordination among various law-enforcement agencies. And it will take time.

Joshua Partlow, on the other hand, last week posited that A Mexican militia, battling Michoacan drug cartel, has American roots.


Mexico: Will the teachers imperil reforms?

Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013

Mexico Girds for Education Standoff After Contentious Bill Passes
President Peña Nieto Vows to Press on With Overhaul Plans, Urges Lawmakers to Ignore Pressure as Teachers Clamor in Street
. Key point:

Passing the education bill was crucial for Mr. Peña Nieto. If pressure from the street demonstrations had blocked the passage of the bill, the rest of Mr. Pena’s reform agenda, which includes a tax revamp to boost the country’s revenue, could have been jeopardized.

Peña Nieto’s reform agenda is called “the pact for Mexico”, and the teachers’ protest put Mexico’s reform agenda at risk

Mexico’s political establishment, the president’s foes, the media, and the international community are watching carefully whether Peña Nieto will defend the pillar of his education proposal in the face of fierce resistance. Unless he musters the courage to salvage his reforms, he will embolden the populist left, demoralize advocates of reform, and undermine his plan for building a more competitive Mexico — particularly the modernization of the energy sector.

Frankly, the legacy of Peña Nieto’s six-year mandate hangs in the balance.

Mexico could pass Brazil as top LatAm economy in 10 years

Mexico could become a ‘jaguar’ economy, similar to the fast-growing ‘tiger’ economies of East Asia, if its newly-elected government succeeds in kick-starting lackluster growth with ambitious economic reforms, Nomura said.

There’s a huge protest scheduled for tomorrow. The fate of our hemisphere hangs on how this is resolved.

Mexico: Striking teachers dig in their heels

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

Strikes by Mexican Teachers Challenge New President

Teachers in Guerrero, one of Mexico’s poorest states, are defying Mr. Peña Nieto’s administration by opposing the education measure signed into law in February, which for the first time requires teachers to be evaluated by an autonomous body. Those that fail the evaluation can be dismissed.

Last week, tens of thousands of teachers, some armed with metal bars and Molotov cocktails, marched in Guerrero’s capital, Chilpancingo. They again blocked for hours the highway that connects Mexico City with the Pacific port of Acapulco, hurting a key economic and tourist hub. The demonstrations have been held sporadically since the overhaul bill was signed.

Since this is affecting some 42,000 students, parents are holding lessons in parks, public squares and restaurants, which in itself may be hazardous,

Initial plans to start the lessons Monday were put off for fear of reprisals from striking teachers, and the parents association is working with state authorities to guarantee safety for the classes, he added.

The lessons would be conducted like summer-school workshops, with hundreds of children expected to attend the first classes, Mr. Castro said. The idea is to teach grade-school students mathematics, Spanish and other basics, and the parents association is trying to get local education authorities to give credit for completed work.

For now,

Mexico consistently ranks near the bottom among the members of the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development in education indicators such as average years in school and student skills, including reading.

The photo in the WSJ article is captioned, “Protesting teachers on Thursday forced their way into the Congress building in Chilpancingo where lawmakers were debating education legislation.”

What I see is masked men breaking into a door. Thugs hired by the teachers’ union? Or are they really teachers?


Mexico: Obama not attending inauguration

Thursday, November 29th, 2012

Enrique Peña Nieto likes Obama’s immigration plan, but O’s sending Biden to the inauguration,
Mexico’s President-Elect Praises Obama on Immigration: ‘We Fully Support Your Proposal’.

It’s probably a good idea that Obama’s not going; you wouldn’t want to appear to be favoring the PRI.

Who’s going?

Obama congratulated Peña Nieto on his electoral win, noting that Biden will be leading the U.S. delegation to his inauguration ceremony early next month.

“We only send the vice president to inaugurations if your county is at the very top of the list,” Obama said, eliciting a chuckle from Biden.

Let’s hope Joe doesn’t add a new gaffe to the list.

Seals vs El Chapo?

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

The UK’s Daily Mail has this today,
Is the U.S. sending Seal Team Six to capture top drug cartel kingpin? American military ‘plotting military operation similar to bin Laden mission’

  • Joaquin ‘El Chapo’ Guzman is one of Mexico’s most wanted drug cartel kingpins
  • He escaped from prison in daring breakout in 2001
  • Mexican President Felipe Calderon reportedly reached out to U.S. for help in taking out Guzman in military raid
  • U.S. agencies have allegedly grown frustrated with Mexico’s inability to catch Guzman
  • Bin Laden killed in Seal Team Six raid in Abbotabad, Pakistan, on May 2, 2011

It’s an extraordinary story in many levels, not the least of which is this,

Mexico’s Procesor magazine (English translation) reported that a new plan to get Guzman was hatched by Mexican President Felipe Calderon, who felt the only way to catch him was through a military raid.

But when Calderon was turned down by Mexico’s army and naval forces, he turned to the U.S. government, which has made catching or killing Guzman a priority.

Sources told Procesor that the U.S. has grown increasingly more frustrated with Mexico’s failure to bring Guzman to justice – especially after a joint effort by U.S. agencies provided the information needed to catch him.

The original article on Proceso is based on unnamed sources in the US and Mexican military. Apparently the mission has been delayed because the US insists on going alone, which the Mexican Marines and Army flatly rejected. Felipe Calderón will soon be out of office as Mexico’s new president, Enrique Peña Nieto, is scheduled to take office on December 1, 2012,

And then there’s the fact that the politicians in Washington are running for re-election. Who’s going to want to stir another hornet’s next now?

In all, color me skeptical.

UPDATE,
Linked by The Mex Files. Thanks!
(“The far right-wing Latin American website”? Hah!)

The PRI’s return Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Welcome to this week’s Carnival of Latin America and the Caribbean. The week’s big story: the PRI’s back in power in Mexico.

ARGENTINA
“Do as I say, not as I do”: Kirchner tells Olympic athletes to avoid ‘stupidity’

BRAZIL
Women and the labour market in Brazil
Amazons at work
A revolution in the workplace meets little resistance

Iranians’ anger at Ahmadinejad over Brazilian snubs
The Iranian president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, is facing domestic political embarrassment after enduring a series of damaging snubs on a visit to Brazil, Iran’s erstwhile close ally.

COLOMBIA
Parliamentary immunity in Colombia
Monkey business
A much-needed judicial reform misfires

Colombian officials order preventative evacuation after volcano erupts

CUBA
Read the full report on Castro, Inc.: A Global Conglomerate

Cholera outbreak in Cuba kills two, dozens hospitalized

New Cuban exile Dr. Darsi Ferrer to Cubans: ‘Take to the streets and reclaim freedom’

The real Che was no hero, via M.

Castro political police arrests ten Ladies in White to prevent them from attending church services

ECUADOR
Leaving the oil in the ground may cost too much
Ecuador’s plan falters
The Yasuní initiative seemed to break a deadlock: it proposed the world should compensate Ecuador for not extracting oil from a biodiverse national park. But the money is not rolling in

Diane Feinstein, US senator calls to prosecute Assange

Julian Assange defies police to stay at Ecuador embassy
A member of the WikiLeaks founder’s defence fund says Julian Assange is refusing a police summons and will not be leaving the Ecuador embassy in London until he hears about his asylum bid.

FALKLAND ISLANDS
Britain files White Paper officially pledging to defend Falklands
The British government tabled a White Paper on Thursday officially pledging to defend the Falkland Islands and declared there would be “no weakening” in the country’s resolve.

MEXICO
Travelers run for cover as cops kill cops at Mexico City airport

THE KINGPINS: The fight for Guadalajara.

A Left-Wing Comeback in Mexico’s Presidential Elections?

Mexico Campaign Bypasses Drug War
Country’s Defining Problem Gets Few New Ideas From Presidential Contenders in Sunday’s Election; ‘Calderón’s Victory’

Profiles of Mexico’s Presidential Candidates

Sharyl Attkisson double-taps Eric Holder on CBS News: perjury, cover-up and retribution confirmed

NICARAGUA
Quite a haul: Coast Guard unloads $48 million in seized cocaine
In ongoing operations, the Coast Guard — working with other Caribbean nations and other U.S. agencies — seized 3,800 pounds of cocaine on the high seas.

The seized drugs were obtained through three different stings — off the coasts of Nicaragua and Colombia — across Caribbean waters.

PARAGUAY
Imperialists Gang Up on Paraguay
After the small democracy constitutionally removes its president, Chávez and Castro call it a coup. Canada recognizes the new president; the U.S. is missing in action.

Paraguay’s impeachment
Lugo out in the cold
Why did Paraguay’s Congress mount a constitutional putsch against the president? And what happens now?

Mercosur suspends Paraguay over Lugo impeachment

PERU
Cocaine Expansion in Peru Raises Fears of Global Spread

PUERTO RICO
Puerto Rico Police Hit with ACLU Lawsuit

URUGUAY
Uruguayan drug legalisation
Thinking the unthinkable
A bold, if fuzzy, proposal

The week’s posts:
Border security for pu**ies: The Sir Robin border patrol strategy

In Silvio’s podcast

Happy in Haiti

At Real Clear World,
Mexico: The PRI’s back

At Hot Air,
Venezuela and Iran prepare for war?


#Mexico: PRI back

Monday, July 2nd, 2012

Enrique Peña Nieto will be Mexico’s next president, and

In other races, exit polls suggested that the PRI would pick up at least one more governor’s post, giving the party control of 21 of Mexico’s 31 states.

In the megalopolis of Mexico City, Miguel Angel Mancera captured 60 percent of the vote, allowing the left to continue to run one of the largest and most complex cities in the world.

Mexico Restores Ex-Ruling Party to Power

Enrique Peña Nieto, a telegenic former governor of the Institutional Revolutionary Party, or PRI, won with about 38% of the vote versus 31% for his closest challenger, leftist Andrés Manuel López Obrador, according to a partial vote count by Mexico’s election agency.

Josefina Vázquez Mota, Mexico’s first major female presidential candidate and a member of President Felipe Calderón’s National Action Party, or PAN, trailed with 26%.

The final official result might vary slightly, election officials said.

Ms. Vázquez Mota conceded defeat, but Mr. López Obrador said he would wait for final results in the coming days to decide what to do. Associates said he would likely contest the results in court, alleging that the PRI broke campaign spending limits and had favorable coverage in the media.

The return of the PRI, which ruled Mexico for 71 years through an extensive patronage system that Peruvian writer Mario Vargas Llosa dubbed “the perfect dictatorship,” marks a stunning comeback for a party that nearly fell apart after it lost its first presidential election in 2000. After a third-place showing in 2006, the party has united around its new face: Mr. Peña Nieto, a 45-year-old former state governor.

Even in victory, the party was supported by only four in 10 Mexicans. In his victory speech, Mr. Peña Nieto told cheering supporters that the PRI had been given a second chance at power, and must show voters that it can govern better than in the past, when it was dogged by corruption scandals. “We have to show that we understand Mexico has changed,” Mr. Peña Nieto said.

Sr Peña-Nieto will succeed as president if he is willing to “de-PRI” the PRI. The question is,can he?

While the 45-year-old presents himself as part of a more-
democratic generation of leaders, many PRI governors continue to rule their states like “fiefdoms” and won’t take easily to centralized control, said Enrique Krauze, a historian and author of “Mexico: Biography of Power.” Pena Nieto also faces the threat of protests from an anti-PRI student movement and supporters of second-place finisher Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

“Pena Nieto has proved during these months that he has political instincts, that he’s a political animal,” Krauze said in an interview in Mexico City prior to yesterday’s balloting. “But he won’t have an easy ride now in the sense that he’ll
have to fight both inside and outside” his party.

While the PRI will control at least one house of Congress, amending the Constitution – a step required to end Pemex’s grip on oil production, as Peña Nieto promised – would require at least a two-thirds majority.

Cross-posted at Real Clear World.