World Bank rejects El Salvador request for Bitcoin help

The World Bank has rejected a request from El Salvador to help with the implementation of Bitcoin as legal tender. The international lender cited concerns over transparency and the environmental impact of Bitcoin mining. Earlier this month, the Central American country announced plans to become the first nation to formally adopt the digital currency. It aims to use Bitcoin as a parallel legal tender alongside the US dollar. The World Bank’s decision could mean the country faces problems in hitting its deadline to ensure that Bitcoin is accepted nationwide in the next three months. “We are committed to helping El … Continue reading World Bank rejects El Salvador request for Bitcoin help

Racism: Argentine president apologises for ‘jungle’ comment

Argentine President Alberto Fernandez has apologised after triggering a Twitter storm and a regional race debate after telling visiting Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez that modern-day Mexicans originate from Indigenous peoples, Brazilians “from the jungle”, and his own country’s inhabitants from Europe. Fernandez made the comments on Wednesday in an apparent attempt to stress the close ties between Argentina and Spain. “The Mexicans came from the Indians, the Brazilians came from the jungle, but we Argentines came from the ships. And they were ships that came from Europe,” Fernandez said, claiming the words had been written by Mexican poet Octavia … Continue reading Racism: Argentine president apologises for ‘jungle’ comment

Puerto Rico blackout after fire at power station

A power plant fire in the US territory of Puerto Rico has left thousands of households without electricity. Pictures on social media show plumes of smoke rising from the flames at a sub-station in the capital, San Juan. The fire broke out shortly after the firm reported a cyber-attack, which has not yet been linked to fire. The Caribbean island has struggled with rolling blackouts ever since Hurricane Maria largely destroyed its electrical grid in 2017. Some Puerto Ricans were left without electricity for nearly a year after the storm. A private company known as Luma Energy, took over operation … Continue reading Puerto Rico blackout after fire at power station

Keiko Fujimori edges ahead but lead is narrow in Peru’s Presidential election

Partial results show right-wing candidate Keiko Fujimori has a narrow lead over left-wing Pedro Castillo in Peru’s presidential election. With more than 75% of votes counted, Ms Fujimori had a lead of 3.9 percentage points over newcomer Pedro Castillo. However many votes from rural areas are yet to be counted, and this is where Mr Castillo’s support base is. This is Peru’s most polarized election in recent history, and both candidates have called for calm during the count. The new president will be taking on a country in crisis as Peru struggles with a recession and the highest coronavirus death … Continue reading Keiko Fujimori edges ahead but lead is narrow in Peru’s Presidential election

Hunter Becoming The Hunted: Police in Mexico say drug cartels targeting their homes

Police in Mexico are reporting Mexican drug cartel members have recently been targeting officers in their homes for torture and killings, according to multiple outlets. The Jalisco cartel are going after members of an elite law enforcement force called the Tactical Group in the Mexican state of Guanajuato, roughly 222 miles northwest of Mexico city, according to the Associated Press. A banner was printed and hung from a building in the city, saying, “If you want war, you’ll get a war. We have already shown that we know where you are. We are coming for all of you,” adding, “For each member of our … Continue reading Hunter Becoming The Hunted: Police in Mexico say drug cartels targeting their homes

Former Bolivian minister charged in US with bribery, money laundering

A former Bolivian minister and four others have been charged by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for bribery and money laundry, the department said Wednesday. Former Minister of Government of Bolivia Arturo Carlos Murillo Prijic and former Bolivian government official Sergio Rodrigo Mendez Mendizabal were arrested last week for an alleged bribery scheme that took place between November 2019 and April 2020. Three U.S. citizens – Luis Berkman, Bryan Berkman, and Philip Lichtenfeld – were also arrested. All five men have been charged with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, and face up to 20 years in prison … Continue reading Former Bolivian minister charged in US with bribery, money laundering

Mexican state police director ambushed, shot dead

Gunmen ambushed and killed the director of state police in the cartel-plagued Mexican northern state of Sinaloa, local authorities said. State Public Safety Secretary Cristobal Castaneda said Joel Ernesto Soto was found dead in his bullet-riddled car on a highway on Monday morning, near the state capital, Culiacan. “In a cowardly attack, this morning, unfortunately, the director of the State Police, Joel Ernesto Soto, lost his life,” Castaneda said in a tweet. “Our condolences go out to the family and the people of Sinaloa who have lost a great man.” Pictures circulating on social media showed a white vehicle riddled … Continue reading Mexican state police director ambushed, shot dead

14 killed in Peru attack before presidential election

At least 14 people, including two children, have been killed in a remote region of Peru known for coca production, the military said on Monday, less than two weeks before voters head to the polls for a presidential runoff. Peru’s police chief, César Cervantes, told local television channel N that at least 18 people were killed, while the military said in a statement there were 14 victims. “I strongly condemn the murders of these 14 people,” interim Peruvian President Francisco Sagasti tweeted on Monday, saying that he had ordered army and police patrols in the area “so that this terrorist act … Continue reading 14 killed in Peru attack before presidential election

Several inmates beheaded in gang violence in Guatemala

At least seven inmates have been killed, most of them beheaded, in clashes between rival gangs at a prison in western Guatemala, according to officials. Hundreds of police have been deployed to restore order at the Cantel Prison, which houses inmates from both the Mara Salvatrucha gang and their sworn enemies, the Barrio 18, following the violence on Wednesday. “Preliminarily, the death of seven inmates is known,” the Ministry of the Interior said in a statement, describing the situation as a “riot”. The figure was confirmed by the Prosecutor’s Office, whose staff managed to gain access to the prison, located … Continue reading Several inmates beheaded in gang violence in Guatemala

Mexican president apologizes for 1911 massacre of Chinese

Mexico’s president presented an apology Monday for a 1911 massacre in which over 300 Chinese people were slaughtered by revolutionary troops in the northern city of Torreón.Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador The apology is the latest in a series of ceremonies in which President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has sought to make amends for the mistreatment of Indigenous and minority people in Mexico in past centuries. López Obrador said the point of the apology was to ensure “that this never, ever happens again,” noting that during the period, Chinese were mutilated or hung from telegraph poles. “The discrimination was … Continue reading Mexican president apologizes for 1911 massacre of Chinese

Erosion fells Darwin’s Arch in the Galapagos

A famous rock formation off the Galapagos Islands known as Darwin’s Arch has collapsed. The Ecuadoran Ministry of Environment said it was due to “natural erosion”. “The collapse of Darwin’s Arch, the attractive natural bridge found less than a kilometre from the main area of Darwin Island, was reported,” the ministry said. The formation, named after the English biologist Charles Darwin, is considered a top diving location. The Galapagos Islands, 563 miles (906km) west of continental Ecuador, are a Unesco World Heritage site renowned worldwide for their unique array of plants and wildlife. The archipelago is made up of 234 … Continue reading Erosion fells Darwin’s Arch in the Galapagos

Ten bodies found on former El Salvador police officer’s property

The buried bodies of seven women and three children were discovered on the property of a former police officer in El Salvador. Hugo Osorio Chavez Osorio, 51, is being investigated on suspicion of sex crimes and 13 murders, the country’s attorney general’s office said. He was originally arrested last Saturday for the murder of a woman and her adult daughter, to which he confessed, according to The Associated Press. That arrest came after neighbours in the western city of Chalchuapa called the police and reported hearing a woman crying for help. Officers found the bodies of a 57-year-old woman and … Continue reading Ten bodies found on former El Salvador police officer’s property