Regional News • Americas • South America
Facebook freezes Maduro's page for Covid-19 misinformation
Nicolás Maduro
Nicolás Maduro Credit: Presidencia El Salvador (Public Domain)

Facebook has frozen the page of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, a company spokesperson said, after the leader was accused of violating the platform's policies about the spread of Covid-19 misinformation.

A spokesperson for the company also told the AFP news agency that a video from Maduro's page had been removed "for violating our policies against misinformation about Covid-19 that is likely to put people at risk for harm".

Regional News • Americas • South America
Argentina has formally withdrawn from the Lima Group
Argentinean Flag
Argentinean Flag Credit: Érico Andrei (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The Foreign Ministry issued a statement in which it stressed that, since the arrival of Alberto Fernández to the Casa Rosada, "Argentina has never participated in meetings or signed documents" of the Lima Group and emphasised that his administration "the only thing it has done" with respect to this alliance was to "distance itself". "Once again, we reiterate that the best way to help Venezuelans is to facilitate an inclusive dialogue that does not favour any particular sector, but rather to achieve elections accepted by the majority with international control," the letter from the San Martín Palace states.

Argentina also maintains that, in "a context in which the pandemic has wreaked havoc in the region, the sanctions and blockades imposed on Venezuela and its authorities, as well as the destabilisation attempts that occurred in 2020, have only aggravated the situation of its population and, in particular, that of its most vulnerable sectors".

Regional News • Americas • South America
Biden will continue Trump's Recognition of Guaidó Coup Regime and Deadly Sanctions in Venezuela, top diplomat says
Juan Guaido
Juan Guaido Credit: Alexcocopro (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

In perpetuation of Trump administration policy and nearly two centuries of U.S. imperialism in Latin America, Antony Blinken, President Joe Biden's nominee for secretary of state, told senators Tuesday that the United States will continue to recognize the coup leader Juan Guaidó as the legitimate president of Venezuela.

Reuters reports Blinken told senators during his confirmation hearing that Venezuela needs "an effective policy that can restore... democracy" to the nation of 28 million people.

Although Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has alienated allies and adversaries alike with his government's numerous and serious human rights violations, he was democratically elected in 2013 and reelected in 2018.

Regional News • Americas • Brazil
Brazilians celebrate arrival of Venezuelan oxygen supplies to struggling Manaus
Brazilians celebrate arrival of Venezuelan oxygen supplies to struggling Manaus
Credit: Twitter Reproduction

Venezuela had announced on January 14 that in light of the humanitarian crisis provoked by a drastic increase in Covid-19 cases in Amazonas, it would send 130,000 litres of oxygen to support the struggling public health system. In addition to the oxygen tanks, the Venezuelan government also formed a brigade with 107 Brazilian and Venezuelan doctors, graduates of the Salvador Allende Latin American School of Medicine in Caracas, to help combat the pandemic in the State.

Brazil has been one of the worst impacted countries during the pandemic, which progressive movements have largely attributed to the mismanagement of the public health crisis by the federal government under far-right Jair Bolsonaro.

Regional News • Europe • United Kingdom
UK bans travellers from South America
UK bans travellers from South America
Credit: Illustration: Pendect, Ashley Winkler. (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The UK has banned people who are from or have travelled through Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Cape Verde, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guyana, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Suriname, Uruguay and Venezuela in the last 10 days. The ban will come into force from Friday and is due to a new variant identified in Brazil. British, Irish and foreign nations may enter the country but must isolate for 10 days.

Regional News • Middle East
Special Report: UAE shipping firm is helping Venezuela avoid U.S. oil sanctions

Tankers managed by firms based in the United Arab Emirates have transported millions of barrels of oil produced by state-run Petroleos de Venezuela SA, or PDVSA, since June, according to the internal documents and a publicly available shipping database. A shipping document shows that on July 31, the newly rebranded ships under a newly rebranded firm set sail carrying some 650,000 barrels of Venezuelan Boscan crude after a ship-to-ship transfer from the Alasfal, a Crude Oil Tanker flagged in Liberia, off Venezuela's coast.

The three supertankers - the Kelly, Marbella and Rene - each transported nearly 2 million barrels of Venezuelan crude and fuel in the first half of 2020 after coming under Issa's management, a batch of internal PDVSA shipping documents show.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Venezuela: Nicolas Maduro won total control of legislature after Sunday's election
Nicolas Maduro
Nicolas Maduro Credit: PR via Fotos Públicas

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro won total control over the country's legislature, the National Assembly (AN) after his party claimed almost 68% of the vote, in an election that was mostly boycotted by the opposition and had only over 31% turnout. The National Assembly was the last institution in the country not yet headed by Maduro.

The opposition, parts of which participated in the election despite the opposition's call for a boycott, received 18% of the vote.

The EU and the Organization of American States (OAS) refused to send observers to Sunday's election and said the conditions for a democratic process in Venezuela do not currently exist.

Climate & Environment
Venezuelan oil tanker now under "minimal" risk to sink
Nabarima Credit: Twitter (Reproduction)

After taking on water and tilting to one side, a damaged Venezuelan oil tanker poses no significant risk of spilling and causing an environmental catastrophe, officials of Trinidad & Tobago said Thursday.

The Venezuelan-flagged Nabarima, a 264-meter (866-foot) long ship believed to be almost filled to its capacity of 1.4 million barrels of crude — had fallen inactive with the recent plunge in global energy demand due to the Covid-19 pandemic and to U.S. sanctions on the Venezuelan government that have scared away potential buyers of the country’s heavy crude.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Survey: Mexican police is the second least trusted in Latin America
Survey: Mexican police is the second least trusted in Latin America
Credit: Thayne Tuason / via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0)

The results of the Gallup survey show that Mexican security forces continue to be immersed in an image crisis due to corruption and violence.

Of all Latin American countries only in Venezuela the population feels less safe and distrusts the police more. Arturo Alvarado Mendoza, author and doctor of sociology at the Colegio de México, says that the current police force is at the service of the government and that it must "begin to attend to citizens' problems and improve its relationship with the population" in order to change its perception.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Spanish Foreign Minister announces support of Venezuelan elections if they are democratic
Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya
Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya Credit: International Trade Centre (Creative Commons Attribution 2.0)

Spanish Foreign Minister Arancha Gonzalez Laya has assured this Monday that she will support the Venezuelan elections if the requirements are met. "If there is space, however small, for elections to be held with democratic conditions, Spain will support it," she summarized in a press conference from the ministry's headquarters.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Venezuela court sentences two U.S. ex-soldiers for 20 years after failed incursion
Venezuela court sentences two U.S. ex-soldiers for 20 years after failed incursion
Credit: Twitter (Reproduction)

A Venezuelan court sentenced Luke Denman and Airan Berry, two former United States Army Special Forces soldiers, to 20 years in prison for their role in a failed incursion aimed at ousting President Nicolas Maduro in early May.

Chief prosecutor Tarek William Saab said on Twitter "Said gentlemen ADMITTED having committed crimes of conspiracy, association, illicit trafficking of weapons, war and terrorism typified in the Penal Code".

Regional News • Americas • South America
Venezuelan opposition parties announced a boycott to the December election
Nicolás Maduro
Nicolás Maduro Credit: Kremlin (Public Domain)

The opposition parties of Venezuela announced Sunday a success to boycott the legislative elections of December 6, calling it a "fraud".

In a document signed by all of them, it is noted that all local and international efforts have fallen to achieve a fair process. "The Chavista dictatorship ended up with the possibility of having any kind of free and competitive election", the parties denounced.

Science • Medicine
German Red Cross: More violence against medical personnel

Since March 2020, more than 200 cases in the Middle East have been documented - e.g. Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, but also Venezuela. Basically, however, more cases have to be assumed, since the documentation in such crisis areas is difficult.

However, it can be said that the behavior of people in conflict areas does not change due to a pandemic.

Regional News • Americas • South America
USA to send troops to Colombia

USA will send on Monday June first the Security Force Assistance Brigade (SFAB), an elite unit of the Army to Colombia in what declared is assistance in the fight against drug traffic. It's the first time such unit is deployed to Latin America.

Opposition and independent legislators considered this unconstitutional without Congress approval, a violation of sovereignty and a preparation to a possible attack against Venezuela from Colombian soil, threatening peace in the region.

On April the USA doubled it's number of ships in the Caribean and offered 15 million dollars for information tying Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro and other party members to drug trafficking.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Venezuela tries to get $1 billion in gold from it's reserves stored with the Bank of England

The central bank of Venezuela has filed a lawsuit against the Bank of England in order to get its hands on gold reserves worth over $1 billion in order to combat the Covid-19 pandemic in the country. Venezuela wants to sell the gold reserves and then transfer the proceeds to the United Nations Development Programme in order to circumvent the US sanctions and get the country funds in order to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Venezuela detains three more people allegedly involved in the Maduro kidnap attempt

Venezuelan forces have detained three more people that allegedly have been involved in the failed attempt to kidnap Nicolás Maduro. In total, more than 40 people have now been arrested after the failed attempt of a group of 60 mercenaries to kidnap president Maduro.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Report: Security firm to overthrow Venezuelan government was hired by opposition

According to a document published by the Washington Post, the opposition of the Venezuelan government lead by Juan Guaido hired the US security firm SilverCorp that tried to invade Venezuela and overthrow president Nicolas Maduro. Guaido had previously denied any involvement in the matter.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Two US citizens arrested by Venezuela in invasion attempt - Trump denies ties

Two former US special forces Luke Denman and Airan Berry were arrested in Venezuela after a failed infiltration attempt.

Trump denies US involvement.

Florida based private security company Silvercorp USA claims responsibility and its founder, Jordan Goudreau, accuses Juan Guaido of failing to pay him.

Guaido denies any relationship.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Ex-Green Beret claims he led foiled raid into Venezuela

An attack aimed at overthrowing Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro ended with eight dead.

Interior Minister Nestor Reverol said on state television that armed maritime incursion with speedboats came from neighboring Colombia. Authorities said they found Peruvian documents, high-caliber weapons, satellite phones, uniforms and helmets adorned with the U.S. flag. Both U.S. and Colombian officials dismissed the Venezuelan allegations.

Regional News • Americas • South America
Venezuela thwarts paramilitary infiltration attempt from Colombia

Several dead and two detained in failed infiltration attempt by speedboat from Colombia into Venezuela. Dead include former captain of the Venezuelan armed forces Robert Colina. Several high caliber weapons, satellite communication equipment and vehicles seized.