Raúl Castro steps down as Communist Party head – Latin America News Dispatch

Today in Latin America

April 19, 2021



CUBA: Raúl Castro introduced that he will step down as chief of the Communist Party of Cuba, bringing to finish an over 60-year interval the place a member of the Castro household held a management function within the nation’s political system.

Castro made the announcement on the opening of the Party’s eighth congress on Friday.

The 89-year-old politician fought in the Cuban Revolution and held a number of high-level positions within the post-revolutionary state led by his older brother Fidel, together with Minister of Defense, vice chairman and second secretary of the Communist Party. He took over as president after Fidel retired from that function in 2008, and as first secretary in 2011. Raúl handed the presidency on to Miguel Díaz-Canel in 2018, however remained chief of the Party. Díaz-Canel is anticipated to succeed Raúl as first secretary as effectively.


At the congress, which coincided with the sixtieth anniversary of the failed Bay of Pigs invasion, the Party has also approved a decision “reaffirming the leading role of the Communist Party of Cuba” and one other to “recognize and diversify different forms of property and management.” 


BRAZIL: The Supreme Court voted Wednesday 10-1 to approve a Senate investigation into President Jair Bolsonaro’s dealing with of the pandemic. Brazil’s dying rely surpassed 362,000 this week, making it the second-highest on the planet. On Tuesday, the nation’s day by day dying rely peaked at over 3,800. Reports additionally emerged this week {that a} medication shortage additional threatens Brazil’s already overwhelmed well being system. Throughout the pandemic, Bolsonaro has downplayed the scenario and refused to impose restrictions like lockdowns to lower the virus’ unfold. As a end result, his approval charges have plummeted. Also final week, former President Luiz Inácio “Lula” Da Silva introduced that he’s willing to run for president in 2022, if his candidacy is critical to maintain Bolsonaro from successful one other time period. 

CHILE: Chile introduced Wednesday that it has vaccinated more than 60% of the inhabitants, making it one of many nations with the quickest vaccine rollouts on the planet. Over 7.5 million folks have acquired their first dose, and 5.2 million have acquired each doses, out of a complete inhabitants of about 19 million. Despite the success of its vaccination marketing campaign, the nation has been experiencing a worrying surge in COVID-19 circumstances not too long ago, with intensive care units near capacity and many of the inhabitants again in lockdown. Critics say that the surge is said to untimely optimism over the early success of the vaccine marketing campaign, which pushed the nation to open up too quickly. In December, the federal government relaxed journey restrictions and commenced permitting native and worldwide tourism in time for the southern hemisphere summer time holidays, regardless that most individuals had not but been vaccinated. Health specialists additionally imagine that the variant of the coronavirus first detected in Brazil final November has contributed to the rise in circumstances. 


BOLIVIA/VENEZUELA: Venezuela and Bolivia introduced plans this week to amass doses of the Soberana 02 COVID-19 vaccine produced by the Cuban authorities. The Bolivian authorities began negotiations with Cuba to purchase the jab, which is in part 3 trials and can be prepared this summer time. Bolivia hopes to vaccinate its complete inhabitants by September, and is in dialogue with a number of pharmaceutical corporations around the globe about buying doses. In Venezuela, a state laboratory in Caracas has been accredited to begin producing Cuba’s Abdala COVID-19 vaccine, which remains to be in part 2 trials. Cuban and Venezuelan officers inspected the plant collectively, however didn’t specify when manufacturing would start or speculate about month-to-month manufacturing charges. 


VENEZUELA: The Venezuelan military introduced this week that they’ve captured a number of members of the Mexican Sinaloa Cartel alongside the Colombian-Venezuelan border. The alleged cartel members have been collaborating within the armed battle that has ravaged the border between the nations during the last three weeks. The violence has displaced 5,000 Venezuelans, who have been compelled to hunt refuge throughout the border in Colombia. Previously, Venezuela had averted naming the armed teams concerned within the battle, that are presumed to incorporate dissident members of the FARC who didn’t lay down their arms after the 2016 peace settlement. 


HAITI: President Jovenel Moïse introduced that he had accepted the resignation of Prime Minister Josephe Jouthe final week, and that he had nominated Foreign Minister Claude Joseph to steer the federal government on an interim foundation. In a tweet, Moïse stated that the reshuffling will permit the nation “to address the growing problem of insecurity.” Jouthe had served as prime minister since March 2020. Claude Joseph is the sixth individual to serve within the function underneath President Moïse.


HONDURAS: Presidential candidate Xiomara Castro and her husband former President Manuel Zelaya are struggling to unite a divided field of opposition candidates for the presidential election in November. Castro, who will symbolize the LIBRE occasion, hopes to deliver collectively candidates Yani Rosental, of the Liberal Party, and Salvador Nasralla, of the opposition Salvador Honduras Party, to create a united entrance towards Nasry “Tito” Asfura, of the ruling Nationalist Party. The candidates will meet on Monday to debate the potential of becoming a member of up.

Nasralla, who ran for president in 2017 in an election marred by fraud accusations, expressed his skepticism final week in regards to the try and kind a coalition, predicting that it’ll fail as a result of Zelaya is a “poor interlocutor.”  

Meanwhile, three candidates who misplaced major elections for opposition events plan to kind an alliance known as “Los Honestos.”

HONDURAS/GUATEMALA/MEXICO: The United States authorities introduced final week that it had reached agreements with the governments of Honduras, Guatemala and Mexico for army and police motion towards migration. Under the agreements, the nations will station 1000’s extra troopers and police on their borders to cease unlawful crossings. According to White House press secretary Jen Psaki, “the objective is to make it more difficult to make the journey, and make crossing the borders more more difficult.”


MEXICO/UNITED STATES: The United States Treasury included Mexico in a “monitoring list” of countries that will face enhanced scrutiny for potential forex manipulation in a report launched on Friday. The report famous that Mexico meets two of the three standards to be declared a forex manipulator: a fabric account surplus of a minimum of 2% of GDP, and a bilateral commerce surplus with the United States of a minimum of $20 billion. To be declared a forex manipulator, Mexico would additionally must be proven to have made internet purchases of international forex totaling a minimum of 2% of GDP. Mexico is the one Latin American nation to be included on the list.

MEXICO/UNITED STATES: President Andrés Manuel López Obrador will suggest to U.S. President Joe Biden that a Mexican green jobs program be prolonged to Central America as a part of an help bundle geared toward decreasing emigration from the area when the 2 presidents meet on Thursday.

The Sembrando Vida program, which subsidizes small-scale agriculture and the planting of fruit and timber bushes, was arrange by López Obrador as a program to address rural poverty and environmental degradation, and has over 420,000 beneficiaries. In a video forward of his assembly with Biden, López Obrador stated that such a program might make use of as many as 1.3 million folks in Central America and southern Mexico. He additionally stated that he’ll recommend to Biden that beneficiaries of the program be given non permanent work visas to the United States and a path to citizenship.

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