Today in Latin America
Top Story — Rio de Janeiro’s former commander of police has been accused of leaking information about the arrest of 30 cops, The Associated Press reports.
The federal police accuse Allan Turnowski of telling at least one of the 30 officers arrested that an investigation had been initiated against Rio’s police. Turnowski could face two years in prison if formally charged and convicted. He denies the allegations.
Turnowski resigned from his post Tuesday, following the arrest of a ring of allegedly corrupt cops who face accusations of selling guns to drug dealers, participating in paramilitary activites and providing illegal private security. Turnowski’s second-in-command, Carlos Oliveira, is accused of taking bribes from drug traffickers in exchange for information, Reuters reports.
Turnowski was replaced by Martha Rocha, who became the first woman to head Rio de Janeiro’s police forces.
The controversy surrounding Brazil’s police comes as Brazil is trying to ramp up security and root out corruption in preparation for the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics, both of which will be held in Rio de Janeiro.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- The United States Thursday denounced the attack on two U.S. immigration agents in Mexico earlier this week.
- A man and his eight-year old son were shot to death and their car was set on fire in the northern Mexican border city of Ciudad Juárez.
- Immigration activists gathered in Newark, New Jersey to protest the proposed immigration detention center in New Jersey’s Essex County.
- The U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on Thursday asked Cuba to learn from the example of recent events in the Arab world to carry out democratic reforms on the communist island.
- Former Haitian first lady Mirlande Manigat and singer Michel Martelly officially opened Thursday their run-off campaigns for the Haitian presidency with a little more than a month to go before the March 20 elections.
- Months of unrest at the University of Puerto Rico seemed to be reaching a finale over the last 10 days.
- Fifteen Cuban immigrants arrived on a Honduran beach after a 12-day boat journey from their country.
- An emergency hearing has been set for Friday in Miami in the dispute over the final burial site of former Venezuelan President Carlos Andrés Pérez.
- Chevron asked a judge in Ecuador for clarification of a ruling ordering the firm to pay $9.5 billion dollars for environmental damage in the Amazon.
- Farmers in Peru plan to send 1,500 varieties of potatoes to a “doomsday vault” in the Arctic Circle in order to safeguard the tubers’ future.
- Brazil’s Catholic bishops criticized the country’s reality television shows as “attack on the human dignity of participants, who are fascinated with monetary prizes and a short-lived status as a celebrity.”
- The U.S. State Department said it was “surprised and concerned” by an incident last week in which a U.S. military aircraft was searched and items aboard were seized.
- Former Chilean President Michell Bachelet will teach a course will teach a special seminar at the University of California, Berkeley beginning this week.
- Uruguayan Vice President Danilo Astori is in India on a seven-day visit to sign economic deals between the two countries.
Image: Kelly Sandoval