Latest News
of OCTOBER 201



0CTOBER 30, 2019


The Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances of the United Nations demanded that the Cuban regime "immediately clarify the fate and whereabouts" of the leader of the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU), José Daniel Ferrer, who has been detained since the past 1 of October and of which 26 days ago there is no information about their status or whereabouts. The secretary general of the agency made a request for urgent action on the case to the Cuban Government through a communication addressed to the permanent representation of Havana before the United Nations Office in Geneva. The UN also reacted in identical terms on the detention of UNPACU activists Fernando González Vaillant and José Pupo Chaveco. A similar action petition is being pending on the also detained Roilán Zárraga. Everyone has been missing since they were arrested along with Ferrer.

      In the resolution, the United Nations asks to "immediately clarify the fate and whereabouts" of Ferrer, "to inform relatives, relatives and representatives (...) as well as the Committee" on Enforced Disappearances of the measures taken to protect it, " ensure that it is under the protection of the law "and allow" his relatives and representatives to have immediate contact with him ". The document also warns that, if Ferrer's whereabouts are unknown, the Cuban authorities must "take all necessary actions (...) for their search and for the investigation of their alleged disappearance." It also clarifies that, if it is confirmed that the UNPACU leader is being detained, the State must inform the place where he is and allow his relatives to visit him periodically, in addition to "presenting him immediately" before a judge informing him of the charges for which He is charged, giving him access to a lawyer. He also clarified that this is not a "courtesy letter", because Havana has to fulfill what is required "as it is said there."

     The Cuban government "has a diplomatic problem in progress of the first magnitude with the UN, as a result of the barbarity it has done in the abuse of rights of José Daniel and his companions," he warned. CPD recalled in its demand to the UN that all legal steps have already been taken in the case: "complaints before the Police, prison, Human Rights Commission, Habeas Corpus, right of petition, etc". The Habeas corpus procedure, presented on October 17, and which is internationally standardized, was rejected by the Popular Provincial Court of Santiago de Cuba. So far, about a month after the arrest, no official institution has issued a document that allows to know the causes of Ferrer's arrest, except for a file number in preparatory phase that refused to deliver and that is not the document mandatory for the precautionary prison when the seven days of retention are exceeded. "Since October 4, there is no news of José Daniel Ferrer who is formally and reliably corroborated by the authorities, nor proof of his life, being also held incommunicado," insisted CPD.


    BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA   -- Alberto Fernandez has yet to take office in Argentina. But already diplomats in Buenos Aires are anxiously awaiting what’s set to be yet another pendulum swing in the country’s foreign policy, this time to the left. That may mean a less fulsome embrace of Donald Trump than incumbent Mauricio Macri, under whom Argentina aligned more with U.S. goals in regional affairs, especially regarding Venezuela. Fernandez has signaled that Argentina will return to its alignment with the left-wing governments of Latin America. That could see closer ties with Mexico and Venezuela, and greater tensions with Brazil, the region’s biggest economy.

      Fernandez doesn’t take office until Dec. 10, but the first signs of change were on show within hours of his election win. In an address to supporters at his campaign headquarters, he congratulated Evo Morales -- the socialist who’s South America’s longest-serving leader -- for securing a fourth term in Bolivia. That’s even as the results are still being verified and as Morales’s opponents allege fraud. He also called for the release from jail of Brazil’s former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, a hero for the Latin American left who is serving nearly nine years for graft and money laundering. That drew immediate disapproval from current President Jair Bolsonaro, signaling a rift between the two largest members of the regional trade bloc known as Mercosur.

      Fernandez is also poised to make Mexico the destination of his first international trip, according to a person with knowledge of the matter. There he would meet on Monday with Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, one of the most popular left-wing presidents in the world with an approval rating over 60%. The initial actions point to a shift from the U.S.-focused, business-driven foreign policy of Macri toward the more ideological approach favored by the radical left elements in Fernandez’s coalition, who see international relations as an extension of domestic politics. His running mate adds to that perception. The incoming vice president is Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, who in her time as president favored alliances with leftist leaders and invited tension with western nations.



      BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA      --   Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, newly elected as vice president of Argentina, asked on Monday for a new authorization to travel to Cuba, where she has already gone on six other occasions to see her daughter Florencia Kirchner, who receives medical treatment at a hospital in the Island. According to the state agency Télam, Fernández requested permission the morning after his electoral coalition, the Frente de Todos, headed by Alberto Fernández, won the Argentine presidential elections before the current president, Mauricio Macri, of Together for Change.

      Fernández must request permission from the federal oral courts 2 and 7, who judge her for alleged corruption offenses, every time she wishes to travel to Cuba, where she allegedly accompanies her daughter, who since last February has been treated for a "stress disorder post-traumatic "and secondary ailments, such as a purpuric syndrome and a slight lymphedema in the legs, according to documents made public by Fernández herself. The ex-president, whose most recent trip to Cuba occurred between the end of September and the beginning of October, would be in Havana between November 1 and 11, so she would fly to the Island next Friday. Precisely, the governor Miguel Díaz-Canel congratulated Cristina and Alberto Fernández on Monday for his "deserved victory" in the presidential elections held on Sunday in Argentina.

      "Deserved triumph that leads to a defeat of neoliberalism. Congratulations dear Cristina and also to Alberto from Cuba. The Patria Grande is celebrating," the president wrote on Twitter, who is in Russia on a work visit. Florencia Kirchner has been treated since February at the Center for Surgical Medical Research (CIMEQ). The young woman had traveled to the Island to take a course for film writers, but after the flight her health condition would have deteriorated significantly and at the time of evaluation she was forbidden to travel by plane. The daughter of the former president is prosecuted in her country, like her mother, for alleged money laundering and illicit association in the operations that Kirchner family companies carried out with public works adjudicators during Fernández's previous presidential term.

9, 2019


    WASHINGTON, D.C.  --     
The political crisis in Venezuela has settled into a stasis. International pressure has weakened DICTATOR Nicolás Maduro’s regime, but it remains in control. The Venezuelan economy, however, is spiraling into the abyss. Hyperinflation and scarcity of basic staples and commodities have forced millions of Venezuelans to leave the country. Their departure has expedited the collapse of social services, which has created a vicious cycle, further accelerating the exodus, even as the Trump administration continues to push for more sanctions.

     Colombia is now home to the largest population of people displaced from Venezuela: a group made up of Venezuelan migrants and refugees, as well as Colombian returnees who had escaped the country’s various internal conflicts to settle in Venezuela. They are now joining the millions of internally displaced Colombians, who have been struggling on the margins of society and the economy. In 2020, the number of Venezuelan refugees is set to surpass the number who have fled Syria—although they have received only 1.5 percent as much international aid. According to some estimates, another 4 million Venezuelans could seek refuge in Colombia by 2021. The number of Venezuelans in the country could then total 6 million, equivalent to some 10 percent of Colombia’s population.

     Colombia is and has been a close ally of the United States. Over the past decade, it has made great strides in fighting narco-trafficking, ending internal conflicts, and creating a vibrant economy. Signs of progress are evident across Colombia. Washington lauded these achievements and contrasted them with the failings of socialist and populist experiments in Colombia’s neighboring countries. The refugee crisis is now threatening much of what Colombia has achieved. Columbia does not have the depth of social services to shoulder many more refugees. Without additional international assistance, the crisis will provoke social tensions and political reaction of the kind that has rocked Chile. The debacle in Venezuela is a testament to socialism’s bankruptcy and a cautionary tale against the promises of populism. But in its failure, Venezuela could succeed in defeating the Colombian model. The United States should not allow that to happen.


     SANTIAGO, CHILE   -- TheSE have been extremely convulsed weeks in the region. Weeks of much confrontation, blood, violence and a heyday of lies to stoke the flame of resentment in Latin America and try to bring down the legitimate governments of South America. First it was Lenín Moreno and then Sebastián Piñera, two leaders who were forced to fight dictator Maduro, but not with force, but with diplomacy.

      The tyrant of Miraflores answered them, but he did not go to dialogues or ask his spokesmen to issue warnings. Maduro sent delegations of terrorists to the capitals of their countries: Quito and Santiago, Chile, and began to destroy everything that would politically harm them. The result in Chile and Ecuador ended up being the same: unfortunately both Piñera and Moreno retracted reasonable economic decisions that they had established to improve the economies of their nations.

    Now they will have to continue  subsidies to please the whims of destabilizing groups financed by the Sao Paulo Forum. Maduro told them last Sunday: «The plan is perfect, you understand me. All the goals we have set for the Sao Paulo Forum have been met ». It is not the first time that Chavismo takes responsibility for the destabilizing currents of the region. Diosdado Cabello had already said on a couple of occasions that after Ecuador was going to come Colombia, that the Bolivarian breeze would attack the entire region, that they be prepared in the rest of the continent. His threats have been repeated.



      LA PAZ, BOLIVIA     --   There are also protests and opposition blockades in at least five cities, and both groups called for demonstrations LAST Monday over the dispute over the results of the presidential elections. Various blockades maintain the tension in Bolivia, where both opponents of Evo Morales and defenders of the Bolivian president are manifested by results of Sunday 20, which the leftist leader proclaims as a triumph. The sectors that report fraud in the elections are mobilized in urban areas of Cochabamba, Santa Cruz, Chuquisaca, Tarija and Potosí. In addition, miners supporters of the president block from Sunday night the route that connects Cochabamba with Oruro and La Paz. Vehicles trying to move forward were threatened with dynamite to drive them back, according to El Dut, which reported at least six detonations.

     These groups related to Evo blocked two interdepartmental routes to try to affect the sectors that protest in urban areas. For this Monday, a new day of mobilizations and stoppages is planned to protest the possible fraud, while the followers of President Evo Morales will celebrate his questioned victory in the first round. The protests that lasted for seven days in important cities such as La Paz, Cochabamba, Santa Cruz, Chuquisaca, among others, demanding a second round between Morales and the opponent Carlos Mesa will continue this week. The Paceñidad Assembly called for an indefinite strike in La Paz with blockade of streets from 00.00 on Monday in the form of a protest over the results of the elections and in "defense of democracy."

     The former president and main opponent Carlos Mesa spread a message through his social networks expressing his support, admiration and commitment “with the popular mobilization actions that have not stopped for a minute” and highlighted the “great challenge” that La Paz It has Monday. “Today, the city of La Paz, seat of Government, has a great challenge of a general strike that establishes our decision to carry out this democratic struggle incessantly, in a peaceful and democratic way, but blunt and clear. We will be firm, ahead, with all the conviction to win this democratic battle, for democracy itself and for the respect of the inalienable will of the Bolivian people, ”said the opponent, who was on the edge of the 10-point margin that would force a second round After the blockades in the streets and the protests summon the Bolivians to a concentration on Costanera Avenue in the southern part of La Paz.

0CTOBER 28, 2019


     WASHINGTON, D.C.  --     
The president of the United States, Donald Trump, makes a statement at the White House after reports that US forces attacked the leader of the Islamic State Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi in northern Syria, in Washington, USA. UU., October 27, 2019. The president of the United States, Donald Trump, confirmed the morning of this Sunday, October 27, the death of the leader of the Islamic State (IS). "Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi committed suicide by detonating a vest with explosives," the head of state said during a press conference from the White House. "He was a sick and depraved man, and he's gone," Trump said, in a televised message to the nation. “He died like a dog, died like a coward. The world is today a much safer place.

     The leader of the jihadist group Islamic State, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, detonated a suicide vest that killed him and three of his children after members of the US special forces caught him in a dead end tunnel in Syria, the chief of North American State “His body was mutilated by the explosion. The tunnel also collapsed on him. But the results of a test identified him in a certain, immediate and totally positive way. It was him. ” "The criminal who tried so hard to intimidate others spent his last moments with absolute fear, in total panic and fear, terrified by American forces looming over him," he said.

      jihadist flag hangs from the Mosul Al-Habda minaret in the Great Mosque, where the leader of the Islamic State Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi declared his caliphate in 2014, while Iraqi forces fight to expel Islamic state militants from the western part from Mosul, Iraq, March 16, 2017. A man who was supposedly the lone leader of the militant Islamic State Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi made what would be his first public appearance in a mosque in the center of the second city of Iraq, Mosul, according to a video recording published on the Internet in 5 July 2014, in this still image taken from the video. Abu Bakr Al Baghdadi was borne of his life on July 28, 1971 in Samarra, about 120 kilometers north of Baghdad, Iraq, in a rigorously Sunni family. Born under the name of Ibrahim Awwad Ibrahim Ali al-Badri al-Samarrai, he chose his war identity in honor of Muhammad's father-in-law, first caliph of Islam, Abu Bakr Al Siddik.


     WASHINGTON, D.C.   -- The Department of Transportation suspended authorization to US airlines to fly from the United States to all destinations in Cuba except for the José Martí International Airport in Havana. That measure was taken "at the request of the State Department," authorities said in a statement specifying that the rule will take effect in 45 days. The head of US diplomacy, Mike Pompeo, asked in a letter to the Department of Transportation to suspend the flight authorization to strengthen sanctions against the government of Cuba for the "repression of his own people, in addition to his continued support" to the government of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela.

      According to the Department of Transportation, this measure affects nine international airports, including Santiago de Cuba. The president of the United States, Donald Trump, has intensified the blockade that applies against the island since 1962, reversing the opening that was with his predecessor, Barack Obama, and applying measures that affect tourism, investments and fuel delivery. Last week, the Commerce Department announced restrictions to prevent the Cuban government from leasing planes for its state airlines. This measure forced the Cuban state airline of Aviations to suspend its flights to Mexico, Venezuela and other Caribbean destinations. Last Monday a new batch of measures came into force to further tighten the US trade embargo on Cuba, as its inclusion in the list of states sponsoring terrorism.

     A spokesman for the US State Department told Efe that the sanctions were imposed in retaliation for the support Havana offers to the Maduro regime. "Cuba's excessive support for Maduro in Venezuela demonstrates the regime's willingness to export its system of repression and human rights abuses, destabilizing the entire region," said the spokesman. That source declined to comment on the "deliberations or potential deliberations" related to the process to include a country in the list of countries sponsoring terrorism prepared by the State Department, from which Cuba left in 2015, during the thaw open then among the two countries The new sanctions establish that, as of that Monday, the United States prohibited the rest of the world from selling items containing 10% of US components to Cuba, which represents a substantial change because until now products that had up to 25% could be exported of pieces made in the USA.



       BOGOTA, COLOMBIA     --   The Government of Colombia asked the UN and the OAS to evaluate the "threats" made by the vice president of the official United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV), Diosdado Cabello, referring to that country has Russian missiles aimed at two neighborhoods inhabited by civilian population in Bogota. During the broadcast of his television program "With the mallet giving," Cabello accused Colombian President Ivan Duque of bribing Venezuelan officials in exchange for information on Sukhoi fighter jets and the Igla-S missile, both Russian-made and that Caracas has as part of the support that the Government of the Russian Federation provides to the administration of Nicolas Maduro."They are offering up to a million dollars for pieces of a Sukhoi, they are desperate to see the Pechora, because they know that the Pechora are pure fire," said Cabello in relation to the Pechora missile system, installed by Russia in his country .


     La Candelaria is a neighborhood in the historic center of Bogota, next to the Plaza de Bolivar, considered a tourist, educational and commercial hub in which different district and state agencies also have a seat, such as the City Hall, the Congress of the Republic and the Narino Palace (seat of the Government). The accusations of Cabello were backed by the defense minister of Venezuela, Vladimir Padrino Lopez, who added that "the Colombian oligarchy, in its eagerness to overthrow, to destabilize Venezuela, has activated all its intelligence agencies to be buying consciences within the Bolivarian National Armed Forces", but that "the officers have denounced it, they have passed their novelty". In its statement, the Foreign Ministry called on the international community to reject "in the strongest terms" the words of Cabello, which he described as "direct threats … to the Colombian population".

0CTOBER 25, 2019


     BOGOTA, COLOMBIA           --
The Presidential Commissioner for Foreign Affairs of Venezuela, Julio Borges, gave a press conference on Thursday, October 24 "to present the evidence of regional destabilization promoted by Nicolás Maduro and the Cuban regime." “I want to start country by country, the most important events in different countries. A very clear case is the issue of Ecuador. According to official information, of the 57 foreign people who were arrested during the protests, 41 people were Venezuelans, and they obtained from them the declaration in which they had been paid to go to protest and support the protests, ”he said.

     He added that "it is important to mention that former President Rafael Correa was in Venezuela on September 10 and September 14 was in Cuba, and that a part of his cabinet, ministers and ex-ministers, were staying in Venezuela for months before the protests" . “Then there is the case of Colombia; A month after the Sao Paulo Forum meeting, the video of Jesús Santrich and Iván Márquez is being released, relaunching the Farc. Clear evidence emerges from the presence of the ELN and the FARC in Venezuela, ”he added.

     He pointed out that, as for Chile, “in the Sao Paulo Forum, Senator Navarro said that the constitution is rotten and smelly. Nicolás Maduro later assured that Chile would resume Allende's path ”. "Cuba uses Maduro to create focuses in different countries of the region," Borges said. "In Venezuela there is no money for food or medicine, but there will always be money to finance everything that has to do with destabilizing or destroying the possibility of democracy in the region," he concluded.


     WASHINGTON, D.C.   -Speaking from his office in Washington a recent day, Francisco Santos, a long-term diplomat and former vice president, said one of his key duties is to keep Washington focused on Venezuela as a threat to the region. Santos regularly leads visits by Americans to the chaotic border of Venezuela and Colombia, which tens of thousands of Venezuelans cross daily in search of food, medicine and freedom. UN General earlier this month, Santos was part of the team that circulated a classified report that says details the relations between the Maduro government and the two main Colombian guerrilla groups: the National Liberation Army (ELN) and factions of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) that did not accept the 2016 peace agreement.

     Santos said the report offers details about the places where the guerrillas operate deep in Venezuelan territory "and many evidence of how Maduro uses the ELN and the FARC there." In particular, he said that the Venezuelan government and the ELN have close relations, similar to how the Hezbollah terrorist organization functions as a representative of Iran. "The dossier shows where the [guerrilla] camps are, where the airstrips are in Venezuela," he said. "That makes the ELN a kind of Hezbollah in the Americas ... And this happens here in the neighborhood." The accusations against Venezuela date back at least two decades, but Santos said the report comes out in the midst of an increasingly strong regional consensus that Maduro should leave power.

     Asked how long it would be politically viable for Colombia to keep its open arms policy, Santos said it was the "million dollar question." "If you look at the health budget, education, the burden is huge," he said. “We have been able to face it, but it is reaching a turning point, so I don't know how much longer. But the problem is that we don't have an alternative. ” Washington, Bogotá and other capitals say that the only real alternative is for Maduro to leave power. In that sense, they have supported the president of the National Assembly of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó. Although Guaidó has been actively challenging Maduro since January, Santos said that this is not the time when the international community must lose faith in Guaidó.


     havana, cuba      --   The Cuban state airline Aviation announced on Wednesday the cancellation of its flights to seven international and two national destinations, and blamed the recent tightening of the US embargo on the Caribbean country. The international itineraries affected are Mexico City, Cancun, Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic), Caracas (Venezuela), Port-au-Prince (Haiti), Fort-de-France (Martinique) and Pointe-à-Pitre (Guadeloupe), as reported by the State Cuban News Agency (ACN). It will also be affected the itineraries between the capital and the eastern cities of Santiago de Cuba - second in importance of the island - and Holguin, according to the state agency, which did not offer
more details about it.

     The deputy director of the airline, Arsenio Arocha Elías-Moisés, said that Cubana de Aviacion was notified of the closing of two aircraft lease contracts by third-country companies -which it did not identify-, and blamed them for the latest sanctions provided by Washington's administration against Cuba. Arocha said that the suspension of operations to the aforementioned destinations will harm about 40,000 passengers until December 31 and economic damages are estimated at about 10 million in “freely convertible currency” (this is interpreted to be equivalent to dollars) until That date.

     He considered the actions of the US they cause “indirect damages” to the image of the Cuban commercial aviation company, which incapacitate it to fulfill the commitments already made. However, the manager indicated that the Cuban company is looking for alternatives to this situation and that, despite the escalation of pressures by the US government, examines the relevant solutions to continue providing services. The most recent report by the Cuban government to quantify the economic damage caused to the island by the US "blockade" (as the embargo in Cuba since 1960 is called in Cuba) argues that they amount to 138,843 million dollars at current prices and 922,630 million at constant prices . According to these data, Cuba recorded losses of 4,343 million dollars between April 2018 and March 2019, and the transport sector has suffered damages of more than 170 million dollars in that period.

0CTOBER 24, 2019


     SAN ANTONIO , TEXAS          --
 The US Southern Command posted a message in Spanish on social networks to announce that on Wednesday its commanders will meet at the Army headquarters in San Antonio, Texas, to discuss security threats, the campaign plan, and the strategy for the region, where a discussion about the crisis in Venezuela would be included. On October 8, after the government of Donald Trump applied sanctions against state oil company PDVSA, the Southern Command denounced that Nicolás Maduro's regime remains in power thanks to illegal businesses. According to Admiral Craig Faller, the sanctions imposed by the US Department of the Treasury "have caused Maduro and his officials to seek other ways of financing." In that line, he accused the regime "of relying on drug traffickers and using commercial airlines to send drugs out of Venezuela."

     Faller denied that the United States plans a military intervention and said his concern is to support the democratic transition after the end of the regime. “The military focus of the Southern Command is to plan the day after Maduro. Our priority is to support the efforts of the United States Government to pressure Maduro, which are efforts designed to facilitate a democratic transition in Venezuela, ”he said. According to the admiral, the Venezuelan crisis became a threat to continental peace and another disaster that America has to deal with, despite being a man-made disaster. “We have to collaborate to address our challenges, such as some man-made disasters, as is the case in Venezuela. Those challenges require us to work together, ”he said.

    According to the head of the Southern Military Command, the reaction of the international community to that disaster has focused on efforts to press for a democratic transition. He added that these efforts can bear fruit due to both the weakness of the Maduro regime and the union of other countries. “Maduro is isolated and losing friends. And the international community is united, ”he said. In another order, David Smolansky, coordinator of the Organization of American States (OAS) for the Venezuelan migrant and refugee crisis, said it is estimated that there are already 4.6 million citizens who have left the Venezuelan territory to emigrate to other countries . The data collected by the OAS indicates that Colombia is the country with the most Venezuelans in its territory, with 1.6 million. They are followed by Peru, with 900,000, the United States, with 422,000, and Chile with 400,000.


     WASHINGTON, D.C.   -- The U.S. government strongly condemns the Cuban regime’s unconscionable detainment of human rights defender José Daniel Ferrer, founder of the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU). We call on the Castro regime to immediately disclose Mr. Ferrer’s location and condition, to treat him humanely, and to release him from detention without condition.

     On October 1, Castro regime officials detained Mr. Ferrer and several other human rights defenders in Santiago de Cuba. Mr. Ferrer reportedly has still not been informed of any charges against him, and has been denied access to a lawyer and to medical care. Mr. Ferrer’s family has not been permitted contact with him since October 4. Fellow UNPACU activists Roilan Zarraga Ferrer, José Pupo Chaveco, and Fernando González Vailant also remain in custody.

     José Daniel Ferrer’s case is one more example of the Castro regime’s continuous and flagrant violation of human rights, which has recently escalated into a wave of repression against freedoms of speech, expression, and religion. The United States will not allow these abuses against the Cuban people to go unnoticed or unanswered. We will continue to increase sanctions and trade restrictions to diminish the resources available to the Cuban regime, which uses its income to suppress its own citizens and to prop up other regimes with shameful human rights records, including the former Maduro regime in Venezuela.


CARACAS, VENEZUELA      --   China’s leading oil contractor in Venezuela terminated deals with local providers at oil projects due to lack of payment from the state oil company. But exiting is proving a challenge to both sides. China Huanqiu Contracting and Engineering Corp., known as HQC, an affiliate of China’s biggest energy company China National Petroleum Corp., told local providers that their contracts were being terminated, citing “the extremely difficult situation of this project,” according to a document seen by Bloomberg. Local oil service companies were invited to negotiate exit terms and payments due with HQC officials. The move follows HQC’s decision in early September to halt work at the biggest China-Venezuela joint venture due to lack of payment on the part of Petroleos de Venezuela SA.

       The additional pullback by the Chinese firm threatens to further slow production that has plunged amid a lack of investment, made worse by U.S. sanctions that have cut off income from oil sales and imports of needed equipment and chemicals. China’s ventures with PDVSA accounted for about 13% of the country’s total output in August, according to PDVSA internal data obtained by Bloomberg. Negotiations haven’t yielded results. HQC asked Venezuelan service providers to open accounts in China in order to receive payments in yuan, amid concern that if it paid contractors locally, HQC’s accounts in the U.S. financial system could be frozen for violating sanctions against PDVSA, according to people with knowledge of the situation.
     Venezuelan companies view the proposal as impractical and costly, as their financial resources are located in the Western Hemisphere. Beijing banks’ rules for opening accounts are cumbersome and other options, such as banks in Hong Kong, were ruled out by CNPC’s affiliate, the people said. Several companies are lobbying the Chinese embassy in Caracas in an effort to seek a mediated solution, the people said. They are owed over $30 million, according to a person withknowledge of the situation. CHQ said last month it was halting expansion work at the jointly managed 130,000 barrel-a-day upgrader, alleging lack of payment by PDVSA. Just two months earlier, Nicolas Maduro‘s government went on state TV with CNPC officials to launch the expansion.

0CTOBER 23, 2019


     CARACAS, VENEZUELA          --
 Days ago Ecuador experienced the worst social crisis after the last economic announcement of President Lenín Moreno. The same happened in the last hours in Chile. In both countries violent protests were unleashed that left dead, thousands injured and detained. Despite the demands of the social movements, the Moreno Government accused former President Rafael Correa and Venezuelan dictator Nicolás Maduro of being behind the violence. This Sunday, the Chavista leader responded to these accusations with a suggestive message.

      “I can tell the Forum of San Pablo, from Venezuela, we are fulfilling the plan, it goes as we did, it goes perfect, you understand me ... Forum of San Pablo, the plan is in full development, victorious. All the goals that we have set for ourselves in the Forum are being met one by one, ”said the dictator during an event in Caracas. This Saturday, the Supreme Court of Justice (TSJ) of Venezuela in exile accused the São Paulo Forum of encouraging recent violent demonstrations in Chile and Ecuador. The TSJ in exile warned that the Forum, the annual meeting of organizations and leftist movements created in 1990, "is the machinery used by organized crime to destabilize democracy in the Hemisphere."

     The statement issued by the judicial body highlights that since the last edition of this forum, which was held last July in Caracas (Venezuela), there have been "factual situations in the Republics of Peru, Ecuador, Colombia and now Chile" that have altered the tranquility of these countries. “It is the union of social, progressive, revolutionary movements, throughout Latin America, the Caribbean and beyond the world. The Forum has been revitalized, and so we must continue, articulating the progressive political parties. We are going better than we thought, and still what is missing ... I can not say more, they are super mustache secrets, I can not say more, ”said Maduro, with a hint of irony.


SANTIAGO, CHILE  --  The number of deaths in violent protests affecting Chile increased to 15, adding three victims to the previous official report, the government said Tuesday. "We have a total of 15 dead nationwide, eleven of them in the Metropolitan region (...) associated with burning and looting, mainly of shopping centers," said Under Secretary of the Interior, Rodrigo Ubilla, at a press conference. Of the cases of deaths that occurred outside the capital, three were due to bullet impact, he said. The Police of Investigations (PDI) informed that it is moving towards the place to investigate how the events happened and to verify the death.
According to Carabineros, the man hid inside the supermarket when he saw the uniformed arrive to control the situation and hid in a warehouse behind a refrigerator that produced an electric shock that caused his death, according to several local media. Before midnight the Navy confirmed another deceased, in the city of Talcahuano, about 500 kilometers south of the capital, after being hit by a Navy truck when the soldiers came to intervene in another looting and the mob ran out of the place.

Santiago and the entire Metropolitan region, to which the capital belongs, remain for the third night under curfew, extended measure for Monday in the region of Valparaíso, the province of Concepción (south), and the cities of Antofagasta, La Serena and Coquimbo (north); Rancagua and Talca (center) and Valdivia (south). Violent groups have radicalized a social protest due to the rise in the price of the Santiago metro as a trigger and that led to violent demonstrations that have already claimed at least a dozen lives and that have sown the streets of various parts of the country with terror, with barricades, fires and looting.


QUITO, ECUADOR     --   Tens of thousands of protesters descended on Ecuador’s capital LAST Wednesday as unrest sparked by rising gasoline prices continued to metastasize into chaos and violence that seemed to threaten the presidency of Lenín Moreno. With one death, more than 700 arrests, and millions in property damage, Moreno, 66, had fled the capital and was blaming his political rivals and Venezuelan leader Nicolás Maduro for the discontent. On Wednesday, Ecuador Foreign Minister José Valencia said there were reasons to hope the conflict might be resolved through dialogue. But he also claimed there are factions that are within the protests and are trying to topple Moreno.

       “Undoubtedly, there is the presence of agitators, people who are trying to create chaos in the country,” he told the Miami Herald. “It’s extremely clear that they are trying to change the government and end the constitutional order in Ecuador.” Protests began gathering steam last week when Moreno announced that he was eliminating a four-decade-old fuel subsidy that he said was costing the nation $1.4 billion a year. On Monday, the protests turned violent amid clashes with the police in the historic center of Quito, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

     During an interview late Tuesday, Moreno reiterated his claims that the protests had been co-opted by political actors with outside help. In particular, he said that former President Rafael Correa, his bitter political enemy, had met with Maduro recently in Caracas. In Venezuela “they set the stage for how to agitate the country,” Moreno said, without offering proof. “They know how to steal and kill without anyone realizing it.” Aumenta a 15 los fallecidos He also said that an attack on the Comptroller and Attorney General’s Office was planned as a way to destroy corruption evidence that the government was collecting against Correa and members of his Cabinet.

0CTOBER 22, 2019


     WASHINGT0N, D.C.         --
 The United States on Monday asked Bolivia to restore "already" the "credibility and transparency" of the electoral process, following the interruption of the publication of the results of the vote on the eve, in which President Evo Morales risks losing a fourth consecutive term. The chief diplomat of the State Department for Latin America called on the Bolivian authorities to respect the will of the voters, AFP reported. "The United States is watching closely the first round of elections in Bolivia, especially the sudden interruption of the electronic tabulation of votes," tweeted the Acting Assistant Secretary of State for United States Western Hemisphere Affairs, Michael Kozak.

"Electoral authorities must restore credibility and transparency to the process and to respect the will of the people," he added. The official results remained parked on 84% of the votes counted, without explanation by the electoral tribunal, which led to an observation mission of the Organization of American States (OAS) to request clarification. According to preliminary results, Morales obtained 45.28% compared to 38.16% of his closest contender, former president Carlos Mesa.

     This would lead to a ballot, since to win in the first round, Morales needs 40% of the valid votes and have an advantage of at least 10 points over Mesa. Morales, a former leftist leader and trade union leader, has had a difficult relationship with the United States, especially because of Washington's requests to stop drug trafficking. The president, 59, seeks a controversial fourth period after being favored by a ruling of the Constitutional Court that enabled him in 2017 for indefinite reelection, claiming that it is his human right, one year after losing a referendum he consulted to the population on the subject.


  CARACAS,  VENEZUELA     -- For the VENEZUELAN INTERIM PRESIDENT  Juan Guaidó, the murder of the social leader Edmundo "Pipo" Rada is part of the "macabre strategy of the regime to generate fear in the popular sectors" that oppose it. This Sunday, the parliamentarian was present at “La Casa de Los Abuelos de Petare,” where the ex-council member, social leader and coordinator of the Voluntad Popular (VP) was held, whose body was located partially calcined and with bullet impacts in the neck in the Guaicoco sector of the Petare-Santa Lucía highway, in the Miranda State.

      The parliamentarian reiterated his complaint against the regime of Nicolás Maduro thst was responsible for this and other crimes against members of the Venezuelan opposition. Guaidó says that those responsible for the murder of this neighborhood fighter were "members of the Maduro regime", who "wanted to send a message of violence" with this repudiated fact. "The message sent by the dictatorship was clear to everyone who dissents, but the one we give back is clearer and even more powerful, we are with his family, we are with Petare, we are with Venezuela, we get up and accompany the teachers, the nurses and we will continue to fight, "said the president of the AN.

     Iván Simonovis, special commissioner of Security and Intelligence appointed by the National Assembly, expressed through social networks that the inquiries that advance on the crime of former Radaconcejal indicate that it is "another case of political sicariate of the regime." According to Simonovis, "the investigation points to another political sicariate of the regime, since the FAES is already mentioned as responsible. Which officials will sign the minutes of a case they do not know and in which they never participated, while the true perpetrators remain unpunished in their positions "said the special commissioner.


   BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA     --  At the shout of “Yes, you can!”, A hundred Venezuelans went to the massive political ceremony of Mauricio Macri on Saturday before his campaign closure for Sunday's elections. And from the stage, the president greeted Venezuelans who defend their "same values." “We came in support of Macri, that the Argentines understand that their vote is the best weapon so that they do not let socialism be installed,” says Alcalante, under an immense Venezuelan flag. Although it is not the Latin American country that hosts the greatest number of Venezuelan migrants, its arrival in Argentina has grown exponentially. Of 2,278 in 2013 they now add about 170,000.

      These people are marked by the worst economic and political crisis in recent Venezuelan history, with an unstoppable hyperinflation, shortage of food and medicine, power and water cuts, as well as violent demonstrations and allegations of torture and extrajudicial executions. Fernández's favoritism in the face of presidential elections, with 48% of votes obtained in the primaries, puts Venezuelans on alert. “I tell Argentines that I come from the future, I know what socialism is, I know the lie,” laments Leticia Rodríguez, a veteran security analyst, who sells arepas and empanadas in Buenos Aires.

     Fernández does not define himself as a socialist, but he caused controversy by ensuring that in Venezuela there is no dictatorship but an "authoritarian government." His companion of formula, former President Cristina Kirchner (2007-2015), was an ally and friend of the late president Hugo Chávez, mentor of Nicolás Maduro. Leticia acknowledges her fear as she dips the empanadas in boiling oil: "Let insecurity, scarcity return again ... and we have to go out again," he confesses. With Macri, Argentina recognized Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó as interim president as well as half a hundred countries, and integrated the Lima Group, which makes common cause in the face of the Venezuelan crisis.

0CTOBER 21, 2019


   The NGO UNITED NATIONS  Watch, which is an observer in the United Nations Organization and is dedicated to denouncing human rights violations of the member nations of the organization, launched a global campaign that seeks the expulsion of the regime of Nicolás Maduro from the Human Rights Council of the ONU. Diego Arria, former president of the UN Security Council and former governor of Caracas, chairs the initiative that consists of collecting thousands of signatures. “UN Watch, a human rights foundation based in Geneva that defends our rights for years, has appointed me to chair a global campaign to evict Maduro from the UN Human Rights Council. We will achieve it with your support,”he said in a Twitter social.

      WATCH, a human rights foundation based in Geneva that for years defends our rights has appointed me to preside over a global campaign to evict Maduro from UN Human Rights. We will achieve it with your support. The text promoted by the Geneva-based NGO emphasizes that the initiative stems from the serious and systematic violation of human rights, such as extrajudicial executions, torture, life-threatening prison conditions, existence of political prisoners, restrictions on press freedom, corruption , repression and trafficking in persons, among others. “It was a bad day for human rights, not only in Venezuela, but in the world. And, in turn, a lousy day for the reputation of the Council, which was able to get into a drug trade such as Maduro, which has a horrible record for crimes against humanity prepared by the Human Rights Council itself, ”he said This week, in dialogue with Infobae, Arria himself.

      The diplomat stressed that Cuba, China and Russia were the ones who helped the regime get the necessary votes: “The vote was fundamentally achieved by Cuba, which has a lot of experience and knowledge of the environment. They made sure that his successor is Venezuela. ” He also recalled that many Caribbean countries for years "were financed by Chavism." The regime secured a seat in the Council with the support of 105 member states, while Brazil retained its bank with 153 votes. Third was Costa Rica, with 96 votes, which just two weeks ago ran as a candidate with the explicit objective of preventing the dictatorship from taking a seat. In fact, the announcement made by its president, Carlos Alvarado Quesada, received strong support from many Latin American countries and human rights organizations, such as Human Right Watch (HRW). But the effort did not achiev its objective.


  CARACAS,  VENEZUELA     --   Nicolás Maduro, the dictator of a regime that tortures, murders and imprisons citizens and political opponents, in addition to plunging hunger and misery into millions of Venezuelans, spoke in favor of violent protests and looting in Chile. “ All my solidarity with the noble Chilean people, who are in resistance against the neoliberal political criminals implemented by capitalism. I advocate the cessation of violence and the brutal repression that violates the human rights of the population. A hug Chile! ”, Wrote the chavista dictator in his Twitter account.
       A few hours earlier, Vice President Chavez, Delcy Rodríguez , recriminated the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights , Michelle Bachelet , to remain silent in the face of events in Chile. “Bachelet's deafening silence in the face of the terrible repression of the Pinochet dictatorship of Sebastian Piñera (president of Chile) undermines the spirit of the UN Human Rights Council, denatures its origin and offends the dignity of Latin America! Enough of repression! Let's raise our voices against ignominy (sic), ”Rodriguez wrote on his Twitter account.

      The encounter against the former Chilean president is understandable if one takes into account the blunt and the lapidary report that Bachelet published in which he denounces the human rights violations committed by the Nicolás Maduro regime and that he left exposed and documented before the world the atrocities committed by Chavismo against his people. For this reason, the message of the Venezuelan dictator's support for the violent demonstrations in Chile can also be read as a dart addressed to the United Nations High Commissioner.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.     --   The Secretary General of the Organization of American States (OAS), Luis Almagro, spoke Friday afternoon about democracy in Latin America, or the lack of it, in a conversation at the Florida International University (FIU) moderated by the Director of the Center for Latin American Studies, Frank Mora. Almagro said that the Venezuelan people cannot be asked to continue taking to the streets when they are "hungry, fleeing and are victims of Cubans infiltrated in the country, terrorist groups and drug traffickers." The Secretary declared that Venezuela and Cuba are the most serious cases in Latin America, but that the case of Venezuela is more urgent.

     "The people of Venezuela have paid the higher cost than any other country trying to recover democracy," said Almagro. The OAS Secretary added that the unique and impressive figures on the number of emigrants, political prisoners, torture and the dead are the reason he qualifies Venezuela as the most serious case in Latin America. Almagro mentioned several times that problems must be resolved peacefully, through international pressure. He said that the OAS has done everything possible, including the decision to include Gustavo Tarre, the envoy of Juan Guaidó who now occupies the seat of Venezuela, and the approval of the application of the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance (TIAR).

     "I want the TIAR resolution to be a peaceful [resolution] to bring peace to Venezuela," Almagro said. The Uruguayan Secretary said that if Venezuela still has the opportunity to recover democracy, it will be thanks to the United States, and although the US country has imposed enough sanctions, they can "do more" to reach a peaceful resolution. Almagro said he was not surprised at Venezuela's recent election as a member of the United Nations Human Rights Council. "The UN is made up of many countries that are not democratic and violate human rights," he said. "Today a battle began to expel the Venezuelan regime from the Council," said the Secretary.

0CTOBER 18, 2019


     WASHINGTON, D.C.        --
   THE full statement of the US Department of State:  The report of the UN High Commissioner on Human Rights published last July documented atrocious human rights abuses of the former Maduro regime in Venezuela. It is no surprise that Maduro has shamelessly sought a seat in the UN Human Rights Council in an effort to block any limits to his repressive control of the Venezuelan people. However, what is really tragic is that other nations voted to give the Maduro representative for Venezuela a position in the UN Human Rights Council. This is a hard blow not only against the victims of the Venezuelan regime, but also against the cause of human rights throughout the world.

     The Human Rights Council should be a protector and defender of the human rights of people around the world. He should be talking about the daily abuses of the old Maduro regime, and similar ones. Instead, the Council has become an exercise in shameless hypocrisy, with some of the world's most serious criminals sitting on the Council itself. His membership includes authoritarian governments with unequivocal and abominable human rights records, such as China, Cuba and Venezuela. These are some of the reasons why the United States withdrew from the Human Rights Council in 2018.

     The United States strongly supports multilateral organizations that work sincerely and effectively to protect human rights. The election to the representative of the Human Rights Council of Maduro is a farce that further undermines the fragile credibility of the Council. We wish to work with our allies and partners in support of the efforts of Venezuelan interim president Guaidó to restore human rights and democracy in Venezuela, a critical objective that reflects the United States' commitment to human rights and freedom.


  HAVANA, CUBA    --   Amnesty International on Tuesday demanded the Cuban government explain the charges against the head of the country's largest opposition group, whom Havana arrested a week ago, or release him from jail. Jose Daniel Ferrer, leader of the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU), was detained in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba on Oct. 1 after a police raid on his home which also serves as the group's headquarters, UNPACU activists told Reuters. "Cuban authorities have imprisoned, harassed and intimidated José Daniel Ferrer García for more than a decade due to his political activism," Amnesty said, recalling that he was held incommunicado for more than 10 days last year.

     Ferrer should be informed of the charges or otherwise released, have access to lawyers and medical care and be able to communicate with his family, Amnesty said. Ferrer was one of the 75 dissidents arrested in 2003 during a nationwide crackdown known as the Black Spring. He was released on parole in 2011 and soon after formed UNPACU. Ferrer's partner, Nelva Ismarays Ortega, said that during a visit Ferrer told her police threatened to charge him with a fabricated common crime so he would not be heralded as a political prisoner. "They told him they were fed up with his activism ... and that they were very uncomfortable with how he'd supported the measures of the U.S. government against the Castro regime," Ortega told Reuters by phone. Ortega said authorities would not allow her to give Ferrer his medication for conditions such as the chronic gastroenteritis developed during his eight years in jail. "He was in a lot of pain," she said. "But he said he wasn't afraid, and he was prepared to spend more years in jail as long as the truth were known."

     Cuba's Communist government, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment, does not discuss police activity such as the detention of dissidents, whom it dismisses as provocateurs financed by the United States. The government regularly detains them for a few hours or days, in what rights activists describe as a long-running campaign of harassment and repression. But a detention of more than a week is unusual, especially for a prominent figure. Critics say the government appears to be tightening control, fearing unrest over deepening economic woes especially since internet service was expanded, increasing access to information and the ability to mobilize.


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA     --    Venezuelans are now protesting more than never before, according to a new report by a leading NGO, as National Assembly President Juan Guaidó says Tuesday they have not “bend a knee before the (Maduro) regime”.
“The regime hates critical thinking and not only from universities, they hate the critical thinking that has risen and been sustained by the Venezuelan people. Today, the vast majority of the country wants change because they refuse to bend knee before the regime, which has only brought disgrace to Venezuela”, Guaido said minutes before Tuesday’s legislative session was scheduled to commence.

      In January, Guaido claimed the mantle of interim President after Maduro’s fraudulent 2018 reelection. So far, 60 countries have recognized the lawmaker as the rightful leader of Venezuela. However, Maduro, in spite of various and severe U.S. and international sanctions, refuses to abandon power and still calls himself President. The two men have coexisted uneasily since, in a surreal situation where police loyal to Maduro arrest Guaido's colleagues and U.S. courts have granted the Guaido administration power over key Venezuelan assets there.

     With 12,591 recorded protests in the first nine months of 2019, Venezuela is looking at a second record year in a row when it comes to demonstrations, according to “Observatorio Venezolano de Conflictividad Social”, the Venezuelan social conflict observatory, or OVCS. Protests have become more diversified, with those demanding better water or health service sometimes being joined by demonstrators asking that Maduro step down, OVCS says. OVCS has been operating for the last eight years, since the days of Maduro’s mentor and predecessor Hugo Chavez, and during that period of time it says some 70,000 documented protests have taken place, meaning that this year alone has seen around 11% of that total.

0CTOBER 17, 2019


  The Government of Chile on Wednesday called on the international community to prevent Venezuela from being elected tomorrow as a new member of the UN Human Rights Council. The Chilean Foreign Minister, Teodoro Ribera, considered that the election of the Venezuelan candidacy would be "a disrepute for the UN and for the whole world" given the violations of human rights that, said the minister, has committed the regime of President Nicolás Maduro.

       "(Venezuela) is a country that has been publicly sanctioned for human rights violations," said Ribera, who recalled that UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Michelle Bachelet, presented a report last July in which the He denounced, among other crimes, more than 6,000 murders allegedly committed by Venezuelan security forces since January 2018. "It is really incredible, of a total unconsciousness, that a country with these situations apply to a body responsible for ensuring respect and promotion of human rights," he insisted. Therefore, Ribera said that the Chilean Foreign Ministry has "mobilized" to warn other countries of the situation and prevent "in one way or another" that Venezuela is part of the UN Human Rights Council.

     "Our embassies throughout the world have contacted other foreign ministries to present this circumstance and we hope that our efforts, plus those of other democratic countries, will bring a good result," he said. In that sense, Ribera expressed Chile's preference for the candidacies of Costa Rica and Brazil, the other two countries competing in the vote for the two seats available for the Latin American and Caribbean region. Thursday's elections will serve to renew 14 of the 47 members of the Human Rights Council. If Venezuela finally wins the vote, the Chilean Foreign Minister considered that it would be a result that would contribute to the discrediting of the UN and would also subtract “relevance and legitimacy” from the Human Rights Council.


  ASUNCION, URUGUAY     --   The favorite opposition candidate to reach a ballot in the presidential elections of October 27 in Uruguay, Luis Lacalle Pou, harshly on Wednesday ruled the policy of the ruling Frente Amplio towards Venezuela, which he described as "national shame." "It is a national shame what the government of the Frente Amplio has done with the dictatorship of Nicolás Maduro," said Lacalle Pou, of the National Party, in a forum with businessmen in Montevideo. "We are very embarrassed," said the 46-year-old senator, second in the polls (25%) behind the official candidate Daniel Martínez (33%).

      The Uruguayan government has had a tolerance policy towards the Chavista regime - which it has avoided condemning in international forums -, which has generated controversy before and during the electoral campaign. According to the polls, Lacalle Pou and Martínez will dispute the Presidency in a second round to be held on November 24 after the first round that will define the composition of parliament. The surveys indicate that, for the first time since 2005, the Broad Front will not have an absolute majority in Congress.

      Lacalle Pou estimated that the uncertain political situation that Mercosur is going through - with Argentina for defining its next government in elections that coincide with Uruguayans, and Brazil's threat that it could leave the block if Peronism returns in Argentina - is an opportunity to Uruguay. “Uruguay between the two great monsters, among the stridences of some rulers”, will be able to use “the tradition of certainty, of respect for the legal system, of institutionality, of peace (…) to become a center to come to invest, to live, to stay, ”Lacalle Pou launched. Shared power. The October and November elections are a litmus test for the ruling Frente Amplio, which seeks a fourth consecutive period of government.


   HAVANA, CUBA     --    Spain and the European Union will protect their investments in Cuba, which are under threat of demand in the United States for operating with goods confiscated by the 1959 revolution, Spanish Foreign Minister Josep Borrell said Wednesday. “Spain will mobilize all its diplomatic and legal resources as a sovereign state, as a member of the EU and the EU will also do so within the framework of its powers to reject the extraterritorial application of the laws of the United States,” said Borrell, after a meeting on the island with his Cuban couple Bruno Rodríguez.

     After a historic rapprochement between Washington and Havana during the administration of Barack Obama, the Donald Trump government reinforced the blockade that the United States has applied against the island since 1962. Among the pressure measures that seek a change of government in Cuba, he activated the third chapter of a law, known as the Helms-Burton, which dates back to 1996 and allows companies to sue national assets for the Fidel Castro revolution in US courts. Borrell admitted that "these types of measures are not incentives for investment or activity." Some Spanish companies "are negatively affected by the extraterritorial application of US laws" and "have a very important and very long presence on the island," said the Spanish foreign minister.

      Rodríguez, meanwhile, thanked Borrell "the permanent and firm opposition of his government to the economic, commercial and financial blockade that applies against Cuba and the extraterritorial application (of US standards) that affects the sovereignty of third countries." Spain is the third largest trading partner of Cuba after China and Venezuela, with a trade of 1,390 million dollars in 2018. The total investment was 371 million euros in 2016 (about 415 million dollars). The Spanish presence is especially sensitive in the tourism sector, with 80 hotel management contracts. Chains such as Iberostar, Barceló and Meliá are affected by the activation of US law.

0CTOBER 16, 2019


  The elected president of Guatemala, Alejandro Giammattei, and the leader of the Venezuelan National Assembly (AN, Parliament), Juan Guaidó, pledged Monday to work hand in hand to restore "democracy in Venezuela after last Saturday when the Government of Nicolás Maduro forbade Giammattei from entering Venezuela for entering with An Italian passport. This Monday, in this virtual conversation, the future president of Guatemala said he has the "willingness to work hard" for Venezuela to achieve democracy and said Guaidó is the "right person" to do so because he is protected by the Constitution and is recognized For more than 50 countries.

      He also reiterated that as soon as he assumes the Presidency of Guatemala on January 14, he will analyze how to "press" for the international community, through the Lima Group or the Organization of American States (OAS), to have a "much more leading" role. , that humanitarian aid "flow" and that there are no longer political prisoners in Venezuela. "Make sure that democracy that takes 20 years to be kidnapped in Venezuela does not continue to be caused by that dictatorship," he proclaimed, and added, before inviting him to his inauguration: "Rest assured that we will work hand in hand to restore the democracy in Venezuela. "

     For his part, Guaidó said that in Venezuela they are still standing to "recover democracy," which is always at stake, and reminded Giammattei that he will always be "welcome to his country." In this same sense, he thanked him for responding to his invitation to go to Venezuela, despite not being able to enter, and assured that his gesture shows that his country continues to have "allies" in the world to achieve change.


  HAVANA, CUBA     --   Amnesty International on Tuesday demanded the Cuban government explain the charges against the head of the country’s largest opposition group, whom Havana arrested a week ago, or release him from jail. Jose Daniel Ferrer, leader of the Patriotic Union of Cuba (UNPACU), was detained in the eastern city of Santiago de Cuba on Oct. 1 after a police raid on his home which also serves as the group’s headquarters, UNPACU activists told Reuters. “Cuban authorities have imprisoned, harassed and intimidated José Daniel Ferrer García for more than a decade due to his political activism,” Amnesty said, recalling that he was held incommunicado for more than 10 days last year.

      Ferrer should be informed of the charges or otherwise released, have access to lawyers and medical care and be able to communicate with his family, Amnesty said. Ferrer was one of the 75 dissidents arrested in 2003 during a nationwide crackdown known as the Black Spring. He was released on parole in 2011 and soon after formed UNPACU. Ferrer’s partner, Nelva Ismarays Ortega, said that during a visit Ferrer told her police threatened to charge him with a fabricated common crime so he would not be heralded as a political prisoner. “They told him they were fed up with his activism ... and that they were very uncomfortable with how he’d supported the measures of the U.S. government against the Castro regime,” Ortega told Reuters by phone.

     Ortega said authorities would not allow her to give Ferrer his medication for conditions such as the chronic gastroenteritis developed during his eight years in jail. “He was in a lot of pain,” she said.  “But he said he wasn’t afraid, and he was prepared to spend more years in jail as long as the truth were known.” Cuba’s Communist government, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment, does not discuss police activity such as the detention of dissidents, whom it dismisses as provocateurs financed by the United States. Critics say the government appears to be tightening control, fearing unrest over deepening economic woes especially since internet service was expanded, increasing access to information and the ability to mobilize.


   BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA     --    The Venezuelan Ambassador to Argentina, Elisa Trotta Gamus, highlighted the Argentine Government's commitment to Venezuelan democracy, which was once again demonstrated with the delivery in the International Criminal Court of a report that includes allegations of torture, abuse and executions committed by the dictatorship of Nicolás Maduro.

      On Tuesday, the Argentine Minister of Justice and Human Rights, Germán Garavano, presented in The Hague the document prepared with testimonies of Venezuelans based in Argentina, who were victims or witnesses of crimes committed by officials of the Chavez regime. “The defense of human rights has no border. Faced with heinous crimes, which have been recognized by the UN High Commissioner, Michelle Bachelet, cannot be neutral, because neutrality is complicity.

    For this reason, we Venezuelans are grateful for the firm commitment of the people and the Argentine Government to democracy and freedom, and that today is demonstrated again with this complaint before the International Criminal Court, which will be an impetus for justice and not remain unpunish these violations, ”said Ambassador Elisa Trotta. Between July 24 and August 22, the Argentine Government authorized an office and a telephone line so that Venezuelans could present their testimonies of the crimes suffered under the Maduro regime, with the aim of preparing this report that was presented in the International Criminal Court.

0CTOBER 15, 2019


 WASHINGTON, D.C.      --
  For weeks, Spain has rejected repeated U.S. requests for the extradition of former Venezuelan spy chief Hugo Carvajal, wanted in the United States on drug trafficking and narco-terrorism charges. Now, the reasons for Madrid's refusal are emerging: he is cooperating in Spain's efforts to mediate Venezuela's drawn out political crisis. Spanish court documents say Carvajal was operating under "directions and orders from the Presidency of Venezuela," and analysts say Spain's protection of him may be influenced by his importance as an intelligence asset to the Spanish Foreign Intelligence Service, CNI.

     The weight of the charges levied by the United States is hefty. The indictment, sent to Voice of America by the Department of Justice, alleges that Carvajal “worked with terrorists and other drug traffickers to dispatch thousands of kilograms of cocaine” to the United States. U.S. Justice department officials say that to accomplish this, he worked with the leadership of the militant Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, FARC, during his near decade-long tenure as head of Venezuela’s powerful military counterintelligence service, DGCIM.

      Carvajal and his alleged shady dealings have long been on the U.S. radar. In 2008, the United States Department of the Treasury accused Carvajal of assisting the FARC in protecting Colombia’s Arauca Department, a region known as a center of cocaine production, and providing the FARC with official Venezuelan government identification. FARC used profits from its drug trafficking networks to fund its decades-long insurgency against the Colombian government. The United States designated the FARC as a terrorist group in 1997. The Department of Justice further alleged that Carvajal was a member of the Cartel De Los Soles. According to the indictment, the cartel is a group of high-ranking Venuezelan officials who not only cooperate with the drug traffickers, but also provide heavily armed security, military grade weapons, and intelligence to protect some of these drug shipments.


  BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA    --    Last Saturday, the president of Argentina, Mauricio Macri, ordered the expulsion of diplomats from the Government of Nicolás Maduro from the Argentine territory, thus affirming his recognition of the head of Parliament, Juan Guaidó, also recognized as president in charge of Venezuela by over fifty countries. Argentine Foreign Minister Jorge Faurie, during an interview for Infobae, reported on the decision of the president of that country, because their visas have already expired.

      "The diplomatic visas of the representatives of the Maduro regime have expired and we ask that they be returned to the Argentine Foreign Ministry" and clarified that they cannot be renewed because Argentina does not recognize Maduro, therefore they must be withdrawn. The Government of Argentina has a list of five diplomatic representatives of Maduro with the expired documents, and two military officers stationed in the city of Buenos Aires, destined to fulfill functions for the Union of South American Nations (Unasur), a multilateral forum that ended at the beginning of the year.

      In all seven cases, the Government of that country does not know for sure if Venezuelan officials are in Argentina or not. Faurie urged Interior Minister Rogelio Frigerio, through the Migration Directorate, to confirm whether diplomats are illegal in Buenos Aires or have already returned to Caracas. Argentina is one of the 58 nations that support the opposition leader Guaidó. On January 29, the President of Parliament appointed Elisa Trotta Gamus as representative and "maximum authority of Venezuela in Argentina."


   QUITO, ECUADOR      --    Weeklong protests that have shaken Ecuador and driven its government from the capital threaten to aggravate wider regional tensions, with President Lenin Moreno accusing Venezuela and its allies of scheming to foment the unrest. Moreno suggested in a speech broadcast Monday that Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro had plotted with Ecuador's former leftist leader, Rafael Correa, to stir up the nationwide protests that were sparked by IMF-ordered austerity measures, including the elimination of fuel subsidies in the oil-producing nation.

      Maduro "has activated a destabilization plan together with Rafael Correa," Moreno said. "They are the ones who are behind this coup attempt." Maduro, who has also been accused of encouraging unrest in Peru and Colombia — where the FARC rebel movement threatens to renew its insurgency — laughed off the allegations Thursday. "It seems all I have to do is twitch my moustache to topple a government. Let me think of what governments I will topple next," he joked.

     Correa, who is now living in self-imposed exile in Belgium, similarly ridiculed suggestions he is involved in the protests. "They say I am so powerful that with an iPhone from Brussels I could lead the protests," he told Reuters this week. "People couldn't take it anymore, that's the reality." Appearing as a guest on Spain's main television news channel, Ecuador's ambassador in Madrid, Cristobal Roldan, blamed the unrest on a "conspiracy orchestrated from Venezuela." Roldan said plans to infiltrate agitators, fund opposition groups and "manipulate" indigenous organizations were hatched at meetings between Correa and Maduro in Caracas last month.

0CTOBER 14, 2019


 WASHINGTON, D.C.      --
  US President Donald Trump announced today that the United States will impose "powerful sanctions" against Turkey, after the Turkish incursion into the Syrian border after the withdrawal of US troops. “I am negotiating with (the respublican senator) Lindsey Graham and many members of Congress, including Democrats, on the imposition of powerful sanctions on Turkey. The Treasury is ready. (…) There is a great consensus on this, ”Trump warned in his Twitter account.

     The announcement of these future sanctions, of which Trump did not give more detail, came after US Defense Secretary Mark Esper hinted that some of the actions of the Turkish forces in their incursion into northern Syria, initiated when Washington ordered the withdrawal of its troops in that area, "appear to be" war crimes. "They seem to be," Esper replied when asked in the Sunday program "Face the Nation" of the CBS network about whether some of Turkey's behavior against Kurdish forces can be classified as war crimes, including group executions of Kurdish captives. “It's a very terrible situation there, a situation caused by the Turks. Despite our opposition, they decided to make this raid, ”said the Pentagon chief.

     For his part, US President Donald Trump considered his decision to withdraw troops from his country from the conflict zone, which has been criticized by both Republicans and Democrats in Congress for considering it a "betrayal" of his Kurdish allies It was "very smart." “Very smart not to participate in the intense fighting along the Turkish border. Those who put us by mistake in the wars in the Middle East are still pressing to fight. They have no idea of the bad decision they made. Why don't you ask for a declaration of war? ”Trump said on Twitter. In this sense, Esper defended that the US Executive is doing “what is in the interest of the members of the (military) service so as not to put them in danger”.


  WASHINGTON, D.C.     --    "Another genocide is happening in Venezuela," he said in an interview with Venezuela 360 of the Voice of America, the Republican senator for the state of Florida, Rick Scott. Following his statement, the legislator explained the reasons why he considers that the situation in the South American country is comparable to the Nazi holocaust. He categorically criticized what he classifies as the neutral position adopted by the UN in the face of the crisis facing Venezuela Senator Scott questioned the United Nations for what he defines as "the lack of action" to contribute to a peaceful transition in the South American nation.

     Right now it is important to ensure that oil does not flow between Venezuela and Cuba, and every day we must think about what else we can do to put more pressure on Maduro to get him out of power. I believe that the only reason why Cuba has 20,000 Cubans or whatever the number of people supporting Maduro in Venezuela is because they are getting oil. If we make sure that they do not receive oil back, it will be very difficult for Cuba to continue sending criminals from Cuba to support Maduro.

     The military option is very important at the table. But President Trump does not want to go to war. I don't think he wants a war, but we have the option on the table, and we have to see how Maduro gets out. Maduro is killing children. I went to Cucuta, I saw it. I saw those poor children starving. It is disgusting what he is doing. The UN is crossed arms. The United Nations is sitting watching a genocide happen. We all focus on the holocaust, on the horrible things that happened, on how many Jews were killed in Europe. We see that another genocide is happening in Venezuela, where children are starving. Children do not survive because they do not have the right medicines. All for one man, Maduro.


   QUITO, ECUADOR      --  Ecuadorian President Lenin Moreno congratulated the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities (Conaie) today for his opening to dialogue, but said he decided to apply a curfew in Quito to restore peace of mind, in the face of intense protests against his Government. "It is important that this call for dialogue made by the President of the Republic (on Friday) has been welcomed by them (the natives) and I thank and congratulate them," said Moreno in statements reproduced by the General Secretariat of Communication of the Presidency.

     The president said that he will "restore order throughout the country" and that for this he established the "curfew" in the Metropolitan District of Quito, where protests have been concentrated against economic adjustments that he applied at the beginning of the month. "I have arranged for the Joint Command of the Armed Forces, immediately to take the measures and operations that are necessary" to restore order, insisted the ruler after offering his countrymen that "of this we will go out together." Moreno, as he has done on other occasions, said that behind the indigenous protests there are groups that generate vandalism and identified among them drug gangs, a youth gang and the followers of former President Rafael Correa, who he accuses of the crisis that Face your country.

     “Everything is completely clear and so is it for the indigenous brothers,” since it is “the traffickers, the drug traffickers, Latin King (gang), criminals and correists who are dedicated to doing these acts of vandalism,” he repeated and said that, “ advantageously ”the peasants have already“ detected ”them and are separating them from their ranks. The curfew in Quito, which entered into force at 3 pm local time (20.00 GMT), has forced citizens to take refuge in their homes, although the bulk of indigenous mobilization is still maintained in the area of the House of the Ecuadorian Culture, which has become the center of the demonstrations that have happened for ten days.

0CTOBER 11, 2019


 Former Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa rejected on Wednesday accusations of trying to stage a coup in the protest-racked South American country and called on successor Lenin Moreno to call fresh elections. Correa, a democratic socialist who was in office from 2007 to 2017, made his remarks to reporters at the European Parliament in Brussels. “If I need to be a candidate, I will. They quote-unquote disqualified me from being president ... it was all illegal. It was all unconstitutional. But from vice president on down I don’t have a problem with participating,” he said at the news conference, having been invited by Spain’s United Left party.

      He said the administration headed by Moreno – who was Correa’s vice president and hand-picked successor but made a sharp turn to the right after taking office – will “invent anything to stop me from running” because “they know we’ll defeat them.” The former president, who currently lives in his wife’s native Belgium, said he has faced a series of fabricated lawsuits since Moreno took office that are aimed at preventing him from returning to politics in the Andean nation. He added that if he returns to his homeland he will find himself behind bars.
“Let them put me in prison, but let me run in the campaign. No, they will put me in prison first and then not let me run,” he said.

     The 56-year-old Correa denied accusations that he is behind recent huge indigenous marches and protests in Ecuador against the government’s scrapping of fuel subsidies and other austerity measures. Moreno has been implementing those budget-cutting measures under a $4.2 billion financing deal agreed in March with the International Monetary Fund. Correa also denied allegations that he had traveled to Venezuela to orchestrate the protests along with that nation’s leftist incumbent, Nicolas Maduro. “They say that right now I’m in Venezuela ... Look at the detailed reports (saying) I met yesterday with Maduro, and that he’s the one financing the destabilization. This is madness. It’s demented,” the ex-president said. “They’re the coup perpetrators,” Correa said, adding that “what we’re calling for is a solution provided by the constitution, a democratic solution.”


  WASHINGTON, D.C.     --    Unipec, the largest tanker charterer in the world, seems to have stopped renting ships that have had a commercial link with Venezuela, including calls to ports, in the last 12 months. The measure, which coincides with the same decision of ExxonMobil last week, occurs in the middle of an already adjusted tonnage and maximum rates in 11 years on tankers. Chinese giant energy trading Unipec has matched the movement of ExxonMobil to stop renting any vessel which has done business with Venezuela in the last 12 months, reported in a note Lloyd's List.

      Unipec is the commercial arm of the Chinese state oil company Sinopec Corp. Unipec is one of the main vehicles for Sinopec, which owns the largest refinery in Asia, to carry out its oil coverage. Unipec markets around 2.2 billion barrels of oil each year, 60% of which are imports to China, according to the company. That represents about 43% of the total annual imports of crude oil from ChinatIt is likely that the decision of the world's largest tonnage charterer will accelerateincreases in the high rates of tankers, which have reached a maximum of 11 years this week, as the US sanctions against Iran and Venezuela have created an imbalance in the market.

      A text of the contract clause that is believed to have been issued by Unipec, and seen by Lloyd's List , reveals how the charterer is now forcing the owners to assume all the risks associated with Venezuela and effectively stops any negotiations with ships that have had links with Venezuela in the last year. The Lloyd’s list List understands that the clause was issued by Unipec last week and the implications of the decision, the details of which coincide with the ExxonMobil contract clause, imply that more than 200 tankers could be affected, dramatically adjusting the already limited list of ships available immediately to rent.


   WASHINGTON, D.C.      --  A decision would allow Crystallex to auction Citgo's shares to get what Venezuela owes after being expropriated. Venezuela could lose its largest US asset after a court allowed a Canadian gold company to keep shares of the Citgo parent company. A US Court of Appeals He ruled that Crystallex can seize shares in the North American country of Citgo, which is part of Venezuela's state oil company, to cover compensation of US $ 1.4 billion for nationalization of gold deposits.

     Unless it is reversed by an appeal or blocked by the Donald Trump government, the decision would allow Crystallex to auction the actions to get what Venezuela owes it. That means that the country, currently in the midst of its worst recession, could lose control of the refinery, a source of hard currency that it desperately needs. It also complicates the efforts of the president in charge, Juan Guaidó, to maintain control of Venezuelan assets while fighting a power struggle with the current leader, Nicolás Maduro . Guaidó asked Trump to prevent creditors from taking over the country's assets.

      "The only thing that could prevent Venezuela from losing Citgo is a successful appeal to the US Supreme Court, which seems unlikely, or that Trump decides to issue an asset protection order as Guaido has been requesting," said Francisco Rodriguez. , chief economist of Torino Capital. "For too long Venezuela refused to compensate Crystallex for its illegal expropriation of Crystallex assets," said Bob Fung, chief executive of the mining company, in a statement sent by email. He added that the ruling is a "crucial step to get Venezuela to finally comply with its legal obligations."

0CTOBER 10, 2019


    QUITO, ECUADOR    --
 Hundreds of indigenous people briefly occupied Ecuador’s National Assembly on Tuesday before being evicted by security forces amid continuing nationwide protests against the economic austerity policies of President Lenin Moreno. Police and troops forcibly removed the activists from the building. Mounted police and K9 units then established an extended perimeter around the legislature, which adjourned late Monday after altercations between protesters and security guards. The assembly building is not far from a Quito park where some 10,000 indigenous people were gathering ahead of a march planned for Wednesday to demand that Moreno either roll back the austerity measures he announced last week or resign the presidency.

      The protesters pushed aside security barriers surrounding the building and poncho-clad elders carrying ceremonial staffs followed in their wake, entering the building with their hands raised, Radio Calle said. The indigenous leaders asked the demonstrators to remain calm and avoid confrontation with the security forces, but Quito radio stations reported confrontations between cops and protesters gathered in the park. Protests began last Thursday with the Moreno administration’s enactment of a package of austerity measures adopted at the urging of the International Monetary Fund.

     The most controversial aspect of the plan was the end of fuel subsidies, which spurred a 123 percent increase in the price of diesel, but the government also slashed public employees’ pay by 20 percent and took steps toward the privatization of pensions. Moreno, who responded to the protests by declaring a state of emergency, abandoned Quito on Monday for the coastal city of Guayaquil, Ecuador’s economic hub, In a nationally televised address from Guayaquil, Moreno said the unrest was being orchestrated by unidentified elements from the government of his predecessor and political mentor, Rafael Correa. Moreno, who served for a time as Correa’s vice president, won election on a promise to maintain the center-left policies of the Alianza Pais party. Instead, it has moved to reverse virtually all Correa initiatives and programs. to reverse virtually all of Correa’s initiatives and programs.


  WASHINGTON, D.C.     -- The Trump administration is preparing new sanctions on Cuba for its support of Nicolás Maduro, and is "watching more closely" the role of Russia to help him remain in power, the US special envoy in Venezuela, Elliott Abrams, said to Reuters. President Donald Trump's frustration over the failure of his “maximum pressure” campaign to overthrow Maduro has stimulated foreign policy aides to prepare new US actions and press for tougher sanctions against Venezuela by European and Latin American partners, said a second senior official of the administration. condition of anonymity.

      Abrams said that Washington sees Cuba and Russia providing a lifeguard to Maduro, nine months after the Trump administration and dozens of other countries decided to no longer recognize the socialist leader as the legitimate president of Venezuela. "We are always looking for ways to squeeze (Cuba) because we do not see any improvement in their behavior either with respect to Venezuela or human rights internally," Abrams said in an interview at the State Department office.

      The new sanctions under consideration for communist Cuba, expected “in the coming weeks,” are likely to target the island's tourism sector, as well as Venezuela's reduced-cut oil delivered to Havana, based on the blacklist of the US oil tankers used to transport supplies, a senior official said. While US sanctions against Cuba stem from accusations that it provides training, weapons and intelligence to Maduro's security forces, attacking Russia would be based largely on Moscow's financial support for Caracas. Oil giant Rosneft (ROSN.MM) has helped Venezuela market its crude since Washington imposed sanctions on state oil company PDVSA in January.


   RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL      --  The Brazilian government continues to investigate the origin of the mysterious oil stains that appeared on more than a hundred beaches in northeastern Brazil, which the president attributes, for the moment, to a criminal act. “It is a volume (of crude) not constant. If it were a ship that was shipwrecked, oil would continue to flow out. It seems that something was thrown criminally ”into the sea, said Jair Bolsonaro with Environment Minister Ricardo Salles, in a brief meeting with journalists in Brasilia. On Monday, the president said that the authorities identified "a country that may be the origin of oil" that is spread over some 132 beaches, in nine northeastern states, but this Tuesday avoided giving details about the alleged responsible. “It's reserved, I can't accuse a country.

        If it turns out that it is not that country, I do not want to create problems with other countries, ”he told reporters who asked him if the oil would come from Venezuela. The Folha de San Pablo newspaper cited a confidential report by Petrobras that points to that nation as a possible origin. Salles, who traveled to the affected area on Monday, said that the government's priority is to “react quickly to remove what is on the ground and deepen the investigation to discover the origin” of the spots, which began to be reported since 2 September. One of the areas with more damage is the Sergipe state, where a dense black material floated over large areas of the coast, covering rocks and sand.

      The president of Petrobras, Roberto Castello Branco, reiterated on Tuesday that the oil spilled is not “produced or sold by the company,” stating that an analysis of samples taken in several affected areas was carried out. Until Monday "133 tons of oily waste were collected," said the director before a committee of the Parliament, to which he assured that Petrobras deployed all its "available resources" to help in the cleaning. “So far it is a very strange phenomenon, there are no signs that it is decreasing. It is a very worrying disaster, ”added Castello Branco.

0CTOBER 9, 2019


    QUITO, ECUADOR    --
   Ecuador is witnessing major unrest after President Lenin Moreno announced the elimination of fuel subsidies and other measures. His anti-austerity measures are based on the IMF (International Monetary Fund) agreement which stipulates that public spending must be reigned in. Therefore, Moreno is seeking to abide by the demands of the IMF and ease Ecuador’s debt burden. However, austerity measures have sparked political unrest, notably among the indigenous community that is up in arms about the ending of fuel subsidies. After all, these subsidies have provided people on the margins with a certain degree of security.

      The Guardian reports, “Indigenous protesters have paralyzed roads around Ecuador and blocked a main highway into the capital in a fifth day of action against government austerity measures that have sparked the worst unrest in years, resulting in 477 arrests.”Hence, with Moreno fearing more disruptions in Quito, he decided to move government business and operations to Guayaquil. Despite increasing protests and the threat of further political polarization, Moreno is adamant that fuel subsidies must end.

      Moreno blames Rafael Correa (his predecessor) and President Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela. Thus, Moreno claims that the “destabilization plan” is based on the intrigues of Correa and Maduro. In other words, anti-Moreno supporters are being incited to sow the seeds of mayhem. Moreno says, “The lootings, vandalism and violence show there is an organized political motive here to destabilize the government, and break the constitutional order, break democratic order.” The seriousness of the crisis is clearly visible with Moreno temporarily moving government operations. Equally, he announced a national-emergency for two-months based on the political unrest.


  QUITO, ECUADOR     -- The president of Ecuador, Lenín Moreno, moved the government headquarters to the port city of Guayaquil on Monday and accused his predecessor, Rafael Correa, and the disputed president of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, of an attempted coup after announcing Last week a rise in fuel prices. Moreno spoke on the national radio and television network, and explained that the transfer of the government headquarters from Quito to Guayaquil was fulfilled in accordance with the constitutional powers.

      "The looting, vandalism and violence show that here there is an organized political intention to destabilize the government and break the constituted order," and noted that it is no coincidence that Correa and other senior officials of that government (2007-2017) have meeting in Venezuela in recent weeks. "The satrap of Maduro has activated along with Correa his destabilization plan (...) they are the ones behind this coup attempt and are using (...) and instrumentalizing some indigenous sectors," said the Ecuadorian president . They demonstrate the political intention of Correa, Maduro and the corrupt who must respond to justice and the country for destabilizing this democratic government.

      He added that he will not back down in his decision to raise fuels because "the right thing has no nuances." From Venezuela, the interim president, Juan Guaidó, praised Moreno's actions in a Twitter message, denounced Maduro's allies and expressed his solidarity with Ecuador. While President @ Lenin Moreno works to maintain and strengthen the Republic and institutions of Ecuador, a group financed by Maduro's accomplices in America, taking advantage of the most vulnerable, seeks to end the country's stability. Moreno's announcement took place after a day full of blockages on roads and cities in some provinces, amid clashes between protesters and the police. The first protests last week were from the carriers, but the natives joined the weekend.


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA    --  Seven Latin American countries announced on Tuesday their "strong support" for Lenin Moreno and rejected "all action" by Nicolás Maduro, and his allies to "destabilize" Ecuador, which is experiencing strong protests over rising fuel prices. "The governments of Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Peru and Paraguay express their resounding rejection of any destabilizing attempt of legitimately constituted democratic regimes and express their strong support for the actions undertaken by President Lenin Moreno," said a statement issued in Bogotá by the Colombian Foreign Ministry.

      The seven nations also condemned any influence of Maduro, which they oppose, and their allies to "destabilize" the Ecuadorian president. "Likewise, they reject any action aimed at destabilizing our democracies by the regime of Nicolás Maduro and those who seek to extend the guidelines of their disastrous work of government to the democratic countries of the region," they said. Moreno told Maduro and former Ecuadorian president Rafael Correa on Monday to activate a "destabilization plan" to get him out of power. The Ecuadorian president was forced that day to move his government headquarters from Quito to Guayaquil before the stalking of the protesters to the unoccupied presidential palace today.

     Moreno announced on October 1 the end of fuel subsidies and their consequent price increase in compliance with an IMF requirement to lend him more than 4,000 million dollars. The decision has since caused massive protests, which have touched the country's economic fiber. The support of the group of Latin American countries joins the one given Monday by the United States, Moreno's ally, to Ecuador, where demonstrations caused the overthrow of three rulers between 1997 and 2005.

0CTOBER 8, 2019


   Venezuela has hit a worrying milestone. The United Nations says more than 4 million refugees and migrants have left the country, which is suffering from political chaos, food shortages and hyperinflation. The U.N. has called this exodus the "largest in the recent history of Latin America and the Caribbean." "The pace of the outflow from Venezuela has been staggering," the U.N.'s refugee agency UNHCR and the International Organization for Migration said in a joint statement. The numbers make it clear that the pace is escalating. The U.N. says one million people have left since November 2018. And the high rate of departure is a recent development: at the end of 2015, the U.N. says there were about 695,000 migrants and refugees from Venezuela.

     Most of the people who have left Venezuela remain in Latin America. Colombia is hosting the largest number of them, with 1.3 million, and Peru is the next-largest, with some 768,000. Chile, Ecuador, Brazil and Argentina all are hosting more than 100,000, the U.N. says. "These alarming figures highlight the urgent need to support host communities in the receiving countries," Eduardo Stein, joint UNHCR-IOM Special Representative for Venezuelan refugees and migrants, said in a statement. "Latin American and Caribbean countries are doing their part to respond to this unprecedented crisis but they cannot be expected to continue doing it without international help."

     In November, eight countries from the region met in Quito and signed an agreement to work together to work together on a humanitarian response to the refugee and migrant influx. People walk from Venezuela to Colombia through an unauthorized border crossing recently in Villa del Rosario, Colombia. Many people are leaving Venezuela by foot. People crossing the border are often without any savings because of the hyperinflation. They walk for miles – in some cases, hundreds of miles – as our team reported.


  CARACAS, VENEZUELA    -- Russia’s deputy prime minister Yuri Borisov met with Venezuela’s embattled incumbent Nicolas Maduro in Caracas on Saturday as the two countries boosted their military ties in Moscow’s apparent sign of continued support for the embattled South American leader who is resisting an intense Western pressure to quit. The meeting between Borisov and Maduro was held in the framework of the high-level intergovernmental commission (CIAN) between Caracas and Moscow, Russia’s official news agency reported. The Venezuelan leader thanked Russia for the military cooperation between the two countries, saying his nation had a solid defense grid to resist any outside aggression.

     He said that the two sides also renewed their agreements on the military-technical area during the meeting between the leaders. “The cooperation that according to the schedule perfectly and we have renewed all contracts for support, advice, and progress in the very important military-technical aspect,” said Maduro. He also indicated that the two countries have made progress in advancing agreements on the exploration of oil and gas. “There are new economic ventures with technology transfer, the participation of Russian companies in all strategic (oil and gas) production areas of the country. We have advanced tremendously throughout the oil, gas, basic business area,” he said.

    The two countries have also agreed to launch new projects in agricultural cooperation with Russian investment, technology, and support. The two sides have signed 264 agreements in the sectors like energy, mining, finance, agriculture, industries, commerce, and transport. Maduro stressed the importance of Borisov’s visit as an opportunity to consolidate the progress made during his recent trip to Moscow where he met with his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, in September. The two presidents were said to have discussed Caracas’ sovereign debt of $3 billion to Moscow which has acted as a lender of last resort for the South American nation.


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA    -- For Mayor Antonio Ledezma in exile, "getting into another session of dialogue with this tyranny would be to sit Venezuela in an electric chair." He maintains that “every day that vanishes in the middle of these dialogist darkness, it is a fatal loss to hope that reached euphoria levels on January 23, once Juan Guaidó assumed the powers of interim president of Venezuela, according to the article 233 of our National Constitution ”. Ledezma believes that “Guaidó should focus its efforts on the activation of the TIAR, to avoid that this resource is diluted in rhetoric, so I suggest that we do an urgent and intense task accompanying Ambassador Tarre Briceño, in the idea of sensitizing governments from America to assimilate the dimension of the Venezuelan tragedy and the threats that drug trafficking entails for the region, whose peace and stability are seriously threatened. ”

      The mayor in exile fulfills a work agenda in Colombia that has allowed him to hold work meetings with President Iván Duque, with Vice President Martha Lucia Ramírez, with Foreign Minister Carlos Holmes Trujillo, with former Presidents Pastrana and Álvaro Uribe, as well as with the Venezuelan deputies in exile. He confirmed that he held a meeting with Foreign Minister Julio Borges to whom he ratified his determination to continue supporting the route with which we are all committed and that he has his unalterable starting point in the cessation of usurpation.

      In his presentation at the forum organized by the Conservative party on the occasion of celebrating 170 years of foundation, Antonio Ledezma explained why he questions the reinstatement of those who, for Ledezma, "are former deputies of the party that serves drug trafficking." According to Ledezma “those parliamentarians lost their respective jurisdiction once they assumed other responsibilities, in ignorance of articles 191 and 197 of our magna Carta. "In addition, what Maduro and his partners are looking for is to disturb the functioning of the National Assembly, they will try to implode it, while keeping it unfairly in contempt," he said.

0CTOBER 7, 2019


    HAVANA, CUBA     --
  The Cuban government asked Russia that Venezuelan oil ships carrying oil to the island be escorted by Russian cruisers to which the Eurasian power responded with evasion, as reflected on Saturday by the state news portal Sputnik. In an interview granted by Russian Prime Minister Dimitri Medvedev to the Vesti v subbotu program (Saturday News), when the presenter asked about the Cuban proposal to escort oil tankers militarily, the Prime Minister said they will find “other methods to help Cuba to receive oil and its derivatives ”. Medvedev has just finished a two-day official visit to the island, struck by the economic crisis of his ally and benefactor, the government of Nicolás  Maduro, as well as by the US sanctions and the chronic inefficiency of the national economy.

      During his visit, the Russian Prime Minister did not promise that his country will replace Venezuela, as the main energy support, but signed numerous collaboration agreements, among which is the restoration and modernization of the railway infrastructure in Cuba worth $ 2,064 millions and an implementation period of ten years. Medvedev also attended the inauguration of the first horizontal oil drilling well in Cuba, a joint project between the Eurasian country and the Island, under the signatures Zarubezhneft and the Cuba-Petroleum Union. According to Medvedev, Miguel Díaz-Canel, reiterated during the negotiations the willingness of his country to pay all the debt.

     Medvedev stressed that Cuba "is a sister country" for Russia. "A large number of Cubans studied in our land, and we simply know that country well," he added. However, Russia's lukewarmness at the Cuban request to escort the tankers is bad news for the Plaza de la Revolución de la Habana at a time when at least three Venezuelan ships of the six planned are headed for Cuba loaded with oil as part of a flotilla. The total shipment will be about 3 million barrels of refined products and heavy crude from Petróleos de Venezuela S.A. (PDVSA), according to Argus Media, a portal specialized in the sector.


  CARACAS, VENEZUELA    -- Terepaima, Paramaconi and Manuela Sáenz, owned by the state-owned Petróleos of Venezuela (PDVSA), are on their way to Cuba. They are expected to arrive at the ports of Cienfuegos and Matanzas, reports the Argus Media portal, specializing in the energy market. These shipments are understood as a challenge by Nicolás Maduro to the president of the United States, Donald Trump. This issued sanctions to cut the supply of Venezuelan oil to Havana, understanding that without these resources the Raúl Castro regime would crumble.

     In fact, an energy crisis broke out in Cuba in September, causing blackouts, queues at gas stations and problems in public transport. Before the situation got older, Maduro broke the blockade in the second week of September and was able to deliver oil to Havana. Not happy with that, he now redoubled his challenge and incidentally, he threw all the consequences on his back.

     As the newspaper 14ymedio, of the Cuban journalist Yoani Sánchez, said on the recent visit of Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev to Havana, Russia signed agreements on all types of matters, but on energy. That responsibility is assumed by Maduro. According to Argus, Maduro intends to quadruple its shipments of crude oil to Cuba. Up to three million barrels of refined products and heavy crude will ship PDVSA in the first half of October.


   Washington, d.c.    -- Exxon Mobil Corp banned this week the use of freighters that have been linked to oil flows from Venezuela during the last year, according to four sources familiar with the matter, which increases the pressure against the South American country in times of rate hikes of oil transportation.
     Washington has imposed several sanctions on Venezuela this year to overthrow President Nicolás Maduro, whose 2018 re-election has been considered a farce by the United States and dozens of other countries. Some measures have led oil tankers to stop transporting for the Venezuelan state-owned company PDVSA The contractual clause of the US oil giant would affect about 250 freighters, two of the sources estimated. Exxon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

      More than 25 foreign ships arrive in Venezuelan ports every month, according to data from PDVSA and Refinitiv Eikon. It is known that some turn off their transponders to avoid harsh US sanctions. The lack of vessels willing to transport Venezuela's oil exports is hurting Cuba, the country's main political ally devastated by the crisis, which imposed new austerity measures last month due to power outages and acute fuel shortages. Reuters

0CTOBER 4, 2019


  The DICTATOR of Venezuela, Nicolás Maduro, called on Wednesday to strengthen military and intelligence cooperation with Cuba, during a farewell ceremony by the Cuban ambassador to the country, Rogelio Polanco, after 10 years of diplomatic work. "Let us continue military cooperation with Cuba and at the intelligence level to strengthen the integral defense capacity of Venezuela, of Cuba," the president said in a message about the brotherhood between Caracas and Havana.

     Maduro defended this type of cooperation with the Miguel Díaz-Canel Administration by arguing that his country has the right to defend itself and that, he added, "love and Cuba unite Venezuela." The president also urged to continue with the energy exchange, whereby Venezuela sends oil to the island, as well as with cooperation in the areas of health and education, which includes the hiring of thousands of Cuban professionals in the South American country.

     Maduro, who decorated the Cuban ambassador, celebrated that "a group of doctors, educators and military officers" were present at the event. Polanco, on the other hand, said he received the distinction "on behalf of the thousands of compatriots who fulfill their internationalist work in Venezuela," and said they have "few hours" left to return to the island. "Cuba will never renounce or betray its principles or Venezuela," said the diplomat after denouncing the "genocidal blockade" that the United States has imposed on the Maduro Executive and his highest representatives.


  CARACAS, VENEZUELA    --  The vice president of the Criminal Forum, Gonzalo Himiob, provided a balance of current figures of political prisoners where he clarified that they are not given full freedom to those released, “we have 470 prisoners registered since the beginning of this week, however We are confirming, because yesterday there were some releases within what is the context of the agreements reached with Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner. He pointed out that since last week four people have been released, including two women with a release card. In turn, the director explained that they do not give the guarantee of anything to the people who are arrested, for walking in "improper places", including the military or other adherents to the ruling party, generating an increase in the ranks of political prisoners,

       "Nobody has a guarantee, we have people who were arrested for being in the wrong place at the wrong time, including militants of the ruling party who had the bad luck of passing near a protest in 2014 and officials were obliged to cover a kind of detainee fee That happened with many people and we were very surprised to see that cases of people in street situations were taking us, no one is exempt from this barbarism not knocking at his door, ”Himiob urged in an interview with Roman Lozinski. Alerted about the "full freedom" not granted and that by right corresponds to them. "For at least we have a total of 8,908 people subject to criminal proceedings for political reasons but under precautionary measures, they are not so imprisoned but have their freedom restricted either with a ban on leaving the country or filing regime," he said.

     Meanwhile, the director of the Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) denounced the conditions in which prisoners live daily, using "procedural delay" as the use of punishment where prisoners are forced to admit alleged acts they have not committed. "Of these 470 people, 20 are convicted and because they have been forced or forced to admit the facts, but the rest are prosecuted because their trial is delayed a lot and there is a very serious situation because the criminal process becomes a different tool from the search for the truth that is an applied sanction, what they show is that the criminal process is not to seek the truth but a punishment,” he said However, he revealed that the cases of the detained military are the most serious. “The military prisoners are more serious issues because not only is it sought to punish with an unjust prison but with the mistreatment they suffer to send a message to the rest of the military world, the message is not only that I will put you in prison but that I will torture you."


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA    --  Deputy Julio Borges, commissioner of the National Assembly (AN) for Foreign Affairs, assured the Colombian Congress that the crisis in Venezuela is no longer a state problem to become a regional crisis. "It is no longer a" dictatorship, "or a" failed state, "but a" sanctuary where terrorism and organized crime are promoted, "he said. In the framework of the meeting of parliamentarians of the region in defense of the AN, held in the Colombian capitol with the assistance of Venezuelan deputies “persecuted by the government of Nicolás Maduro”, Borges said that Colombia and the other countries of the region must have clarity about the situation in Venezuela as a threat to the peace and democracy of the region.

       Borges said in Bogotá that, by the Venezuelan opposition, "all efforts" have been made and "thousands of times" have been taken to the streets, mechanisms have been activated and "the dictatorship has thrown us the door of freedom in the face". He recalled that the opposition put on the negotiating table, established in Barbados through the mediation of the Kingdom of Norway, a concrete exit to the crisis in Venezuela. Deputy Tomás Guanipa asked the Colombian Congress for protection for Venezuelan migrants, who have had to flee in search of a better quality of life. "12 countries receive Venezuelans with expired passports, which means an advance in this serious crisis that the Venezuelan population is experiencing," said the opposition legislator.

     Guanipa called on the region to close ranks and continue to exert pressure against "the dictatorship of Nicolás Maduro." "We must continue to push all international pressure for the dictatorship of Nicolás Maduro out of power and Venezuelans can go to free elections, this translates into more diplomatic encirclement, more sanctions to those responsible for the crisis and unanimous condemnation of rape of Human Rights, ”said Guanipa. The Zulian deputy stressed that Maduro means a "danger to the region" for its "clear links with irregular groups on the Colombian-Venezuelan border."

0CTOBER 3, 2019


  The President of the National Assembly (AN), Juan Guaidó, presented through a video call the humanitarian crisis that is going through Venezuela which is due to the mismanagement of the Government of Nicolás Maduro in the economic, social and political aspect, which is affecting Colombia and other neighboring countries due to the high Venezuelan migration. He also pointed out that "today the complex humanitarian emergency affects Colombia, Chile, and other countries in the region" and in turn, thanked all the representatives of Congress and the countries of the region, for the efforts they have made to achieve a peaceful solution to the Venezuelan crisis.

     Therefore, the opposition leader said he was also grateful for the request of the Organization of American States (OAS) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (Acnur) to grant refugee status to Venezuelan migrants. . Guaidó emphasized that international pressure against Maduro must be maintained until Venezuela's freedom is achieved. The session of the Upper Chamber of Colombia was attended by Venezuelan deputies in exile, as well as parliamentarians from Ecuador, Chile, Argentina, Paraguay and Colombia.

    For his part, the deputy in exile, Tomás Guanipa, said that there are many things we have to do "to keep pushing Maduro out. Our effort outside is to be useful to Venezuelans who are emigrating from the country . " On the other hand, the deputy Julio Borges, said that "between Colombia and Venezuela is generating the third country of violence promoted by Maduro, by the dictatorship of Cuba and organized crime." He added that "all efforts have been made, we have gone to the streets thousands of times, we have activated mechanisms and the dictatorship has thrown us the door of freedom in the face."


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA    --  The members of the Accidental Commission of Follow-up of the Declaration of Cúcuta by Venezuela of the Colombian Senate, met on Wednesday, October 2 with more than 20 Venezuelan deputies and members of the congresses of Ecuador Chile and Paraguay with the intention of coordinating actions that contribute to mitigate the suffering of Venezuelans leaving the country due to the existing crisis. During the meeting, the President of the National Assembly and President (E) of Venezuela Juan Guaidó, made a videoconference intervention where he thanked the parliamentarians present for their cooperation in the midst of the critical situation generated by the dictatorship.

     Guaidó reiterated the political route proposed to achieve the cessation of usurpation, the transitional government and free elections; Our route and objectives remain the same and are contained in the agreement approved yesterday in the National Assembly. Tal como lo propuso el senador @Rodrigo_Lara_ y acogimos en esta Comisión, vamos a continuar la presión al regimen de Nicolas Maduro y perseguir sus capitales y cualquier actividad ilícita asociada a sus aliados dentro de los países.

     After the words of Cepeda, it was the turn of the Presidential Commissioner for Foreign Affairs of Venezuela, Julio Borges, who said that the Venezuelan crisis was no longer a state problem to become a regional crisis; Borges also reiterated that in Venezuela there is no longer a dictatorship or a failed state, but a sanctuary of terrorism and organized crime.


     WASHINGTON, D.C.  --  Citgo was able to quickly respond to a de facto ban that the United States imposed on crude business with its parent company PDVSA in January, which immediately boosted imports from Canada, Latin America and West Africa at its US refineries, he said Wednesday. The president of the company. "That is one of the things we accomplished and I think we did it very successfully," said Luisa Palacios, president of Citgo, during an energy conference. But imminent bond payments and creditors' drive to seize the company threaten the stability of the US subsidiary of PDVSA.

      "There is a world of creditors who want to have Citgo in their hands," said Risa Grais-Targow, director for Latin America of the Eurasia Group. "It is a foreign asset [of PDVSA] and this is a government that owes a lot of money to many people." Most urgent is a bond payment of more than 900 million dollars that expires at the end of this month in the PDVSA 2020 bonus, backed by a majority stake in Citgo. Control of the company's US assets, including complex refineries in Lake Charles, Louisiana, Corpus Christi, Texas and Lemont, Illinois, is at stake.

      Guaidó, who is the leader of the National Assembly of Venezuela and recognized by the US and other countries as the legitimate leader of Venezuela, has pressured the Trump administration to order an executive order to protect Citgo from creditors and has so far opted for a similar option with the United Nations. Palacios said Wednesday that Citgo has carried out an aggressive campaign to consolidate its debt, including replacing overdue credit lines of 1.2 billion dollars with a five-year term loan and 1.2 billion dollars. , and bonds for 1.87 billion dollars with a four-year loan. Still, he said it was not clear why the Trump administration would not issue such an order, since the debt is a subject of the "legacy" created by the Chavez regime of Nicolás Maduro.

0CTOBER 2, 2019


 The president in charge of Venezuela, Juan Guaidó, offers a press conference to take stock of the situation in the country and ensures that he is in the immediate search to achieve a solution to the humanitarian emergency that is being experienced in the country. “The message is very clear from them when they put more pressure on the regime of Nicolás Maduro. The reflection of this was last week at the UN general assembly. We have said it again and again. We are looking for, quickly, a solution to this emergency that the country is going through, ”President Guaidó told national and international media.

      “It's time to find a real solution to the crisis the country is going through. It is vitally important to highlight what we have been doing before the international instances. The regime of Nicolás Maduro is increasingly isolated. That is why we tell the Maduro regime: make a comparison of how they received them before and how they receive them now in other countries. Today while the regime does political tourism and does not fulfill agreements between them, while they are left alone and exposed, we are advancing internationally. To them, the international community does the ‘fo '”, he said.

      "The fight in Venezuela, has nothing to do with a position, it has to do with a political proposal that seeks the solution to the political crisis," he said. Regarding the reinstatement of official deputies to the National Assembly, Guaidó insisted that “for us, in the framework of the Constitution, all the deputies will be given the right to speak. Hopefully, with the reinstatement of some members of Chavismo, they respect the national Parliament. ” On the other hand, regarding the number of Venezuelan migrants in the world, he reiterated that “the Maduro regime continues to deny the number of migrants, they said at the UN. According to the Maduro regime there is no migration here. ”


   CARACAS, VENEZUELA   --  What the Minister of Defense, G / J Vladimir Padrino López, subscribes in resolution NO. 032776, dated September 20, 2019, throws several unknowns. In that document, the high official expresses that he goes on an active reserve , as they now disguise the retirement of the Armed Forces, to 21 colonels of the Bolivarian Army component. But he does not do so because these officers requested it, but because Nicolás Maduro ordered that an article called “ maximum permanence in the grade ” be applied , which Hugo Chávez dusted at the time to remove the untrustworthy officers from the military institution .

     When a military man is not promoted, they can apply maximum permanence in the grade , arguing that he already has a lot of time in the military degree he holds. Let's see what the Organic Law of the National Armed Forces says, which Chávez handled and modified a lot. In section III, called Jobs, is article 128, which is cited in the decree signed by the military owner and says: “ It is up to the President of the Republic to confer jobs in the National Armed Forces, according to the needs of the service and the capacity of the designee . " The immediate article, 129 states that "to confer a job must take into account not only the degree, but also the seniority in relation to the other Officers who serve in the same Unit or Military Unit." The incumbent will grant the military in command the attributions, the rights, the responsibility and the remunerations that are inherent to him in accordance with the respective Law.

    The interim implies the effective possession of the job for a certain time and places the person who performs it on equal terms to the one who holds it as the holder. The accidental constitutes a momentary replacement due to the absence or impediment of the holder or the interim and only gives the right to command and attributions, during the time in which it is exercised. The other reference article is 138, which emphasizes that " in no way may an Officer of lesser rank than the highest or oldest officer in the unit, service or unit be appointed to command ." All that the Law says is very good and would be very valid in other conditions of the Armed Forces, but it is not justified at all at this time when the level of desertion in the armed institution is alarming.


     HAVANA, CUBA  -- Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez declared Tuesday to be “extremely optimistic” about relations with the United States and said there is no turning back on what was achieved when former President Barack Obama brought together the two nations in 2014. "There is a historical trend that is irreversible," Rodriguez said during an interview with The Associated Press. “The relations between the United States and Cuba can never be the same as those before December 2014. There have been essential events. There have been levels of communication and mutual knowledge between both peoples that are irreversible. ”

     Rodriguez stressed that the cooling of the relations under the government of President Donald Trump and the intensification of his sanctions against the island are partly due to his campaign to try to be re-elected to the White House. "It is unfortunate. We expect it to be a temporary situation, ”he said. Since he came to power in 2017 Trump has restricted the trips of his citizens to the island, has limited the remittances that migrants can send, has formed blacklists of Cuban companies, canceled permits for cruises to the island and repatriated almost everyone officials of the newly opened US embassy in Havana, while the rhetoric intensified against senior Cuban officials.

     These measures represent a reversal of Obama's policy, who along with the then Cuban president Raúl Castro declared in 2014 the restoration of diplomatic relations. On Tuesday Rodriguez stressed that these achievements represent "a historical accumulation." "I do not believe that it is in the hands of any government to prevent, in a globalized world and between two countries that have many common cultural aspects and a long common history, that these links increase or that the flows of free and true information are restricted," said the chancellor, who traveled to New York on the occasion of the annual meeting of the United Nations General Assembly.

0CTOBER 1st., 2019


Venezuela's national oil company, PDVSA, plans to restart limited oil processing this week at its Amuay refinery of 635,000 b / d capacity, after a blackout and fire that closed the plant on September 20. According to four PdV workers who spoke with Argus during an unauthorized tour in Amuay over the weekend, PDVSA expects to partially restart the distillation unit and the 104,000 b / d fluidized catalytic cracking of the refinery in the middle of this week. But workers warned of possible delays. Four other distillation units in Amuay are out of service indefinitely because US sanctions prohibit PDVSA from importing the necessary spare parts, workers said. Amuay had been the only one of the PdV refineries that was operating before the close of September 20.

      Amuay and the nearby Cardon refinery of 305,000 b / d capacity comprise the CRP refining complex of 940,000 b / d of PDVSA on the Paraguaná peninsula in Falcón state. The CRP represents more than 72% of the internal refining capacity of 1.3 million barrels per day of the company, which is currently out of service. The state-owned company Corpoelec restored the electricity supply to the CRP within 36 hours after the blackout, which oil and electricity ministries attributed to lightning during a thunderstorm. But the blackout that affected the entire Paraguaná peninsula did not give PDVSA time to implement secure shutdown protocols for its few operating units, workers said.

     Amuay, once considered among the largest and most modern refineries in the world, had been processing around 120,000 b / d of crude before the blackout and the subsequent explosion in a hydrotreatment unit of 85,000 b / d. The Cardón refinery has been inactive since July. Argus could not access Cardón's facilities. The Amuay 85,000 b / d hydrotreatment unit (HDAY3) was destroyed by the fire and will remain out of service indefinitely, workers said. It is not clear how PDVSA expects to replace Amuay's lost hydrotreator, which is essential to remove sulfur from vacuum diesel intended for the Fluidized Catalytic Cracking Unit ( FCC).


   BOGOTA, COLOMBIA    --  Colombia on Monday publicly defended a dossier it says proves Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro supports guerrilla groups and drug traffickers, but removed the armed forces’ head of intelligence after widespread criticism of the report. Colombia has long accused Maduro of sheltering rebel fighters and crime gang members. The allegations reached a fever pitch last month when several former commanders from the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia

      (FARC) said they were re-arming in a video Colombian officials say was filmed in Venezuela.  President Ivan Duque announced in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly last week that he would give the organization a dossier of “conclusive proof,” including photographs, of Maduro’s support for terrorist groups. The dossier included years-old, uncredited photos from news agencies taken in Colombia - not in Venezuela - which led Maduro to dismiss the dossier’s contents and sparked widespread criticism of Duque from media outlets and nongovernmental organizations. The armed forces’ head of intelligence, General Oswaldo Pena, was removed from his post because of the photographs, high-level government and military sources told Reuters.

      A statement from the defense ministry made no mention of Pena being fired, but said in a statement that he had presented his resignation because of “the necessity of responding for my actions.” “What’s important is the grave threat of the Maduro regime to the peace and stability of Colombia, the grave threat of the Maduro regime to the peace, the security and stability of the region,” Trujillo said. The head of the national police, General Oscar Atehortua, presented photographs of three leaders from the National Liberation Army (ELN) rebels he said had been taken in public in Venezuelan cities and obtained from devices confiscated in military operations.


     TEHRAN, IRAN  --  Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) commander on Monday said that wiping Israel off the map is now an “achievable goal” thanks to the country’s technological advances. Gen. Hossein Salami’s comments, delivered before an audience of IRGC leaders, were carried by multiple news outlets, including the state-funded IRNA agency. “This sinister regime must be wiped off the map and this is no longer … a dream (but) it is an achievable goal,” Salami said.

      He added that the country has “managed to obtain the capacity to destroy the imposter Zionist regime,” four decades after the Iranian Revolution. “The second step of the revolution is the step that rearranges the constellation of power in favor of the revolution. Iran’s Islamic evolution will be on top of this constellation,” Salami said, adding, “In the second step, we will be thinking of the global mobilization of Islam.” Salami’s incendiary comments come amid heightened tensions between Tehran and Western allies over the United States' withdrawal from a controversial pact that promised eased sanctions if Iran curbed its nuclear ambitions.

     Tehran also made recent headlines after its Saudi neighbors accused Iran of attacking its oil facilities. On Monday, Iran said that the missile-and-drone attack was an act of “legitimate defense” by Yemen’s Iran-allied Houthi rebels. The Sept. 14 assault was claimed by the Houthis, though Saudi Arabia said it was “unquestionably sponsored by Iran.” The kingdom has been at war with the Houthis in Yemen since March 2015.