Today in Latin America
Top Story — Mexican President Felipe Calderón criticized U.S. agencies Tuesday for failing to do their part in the fight against powerful drug cartels.
In his comments, from an extensive interview with the Mexican daily newspaper El Universal, Calderón said that the U.S. had failed to curb drug consumption or the flow of weapons into Mexico, even as it is sending $1.4 billion in training, equipment and other aid to help combat Mexico’s drug cartels.
Calderón also said that recently leaked cable from U.S. diplomats have hurt and distorted the relationship between the two nations and that the diplomats “pour lots of cream on their tacos,” Calderón said, meaning they exaggerate, according to The Los Angeles Times.
The Mexican president also said that the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the CIA and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) tried to outdo each other while all evading responsibility.
“The reality is that they don’t coordinate with each other, they’re rivals,” Calderón said, according to Reuters.
Calderón’s comments also coincided with Mexican marines discovering 72 sticks of commercial synthetic explosives at a camp in the southern state of Guerrero.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- Jesús “El Mamito” Rejón, a former corporal in Mexico’s elite forces and current top leader in the Zeta cartel, is one of the people the U.S. believes was involved in the slaying of a I.C.E. agent last week.
- At least 11,333 migrants were kidnapped in Mexico during a six-month span of 2010, according to Mexico’s National Human Rights Commission.
- Delivery of a Chinese-built drilling rig that will open the first full-scale exploration for oil in Cuban waters looks unlikely until at least August in the latest delay to beset the project, sources said this week.
- The Dominican Republic says it will burn fresh meat and seafood from Haiti that does not have a certificate demonstrating it is free of cholera bacteria.
- A Guatemalan official says a mob beat and burned to death four men suspected of stealing a truck carrying sacks of flour.
- Nicaragua’s leftist President Daniel Ortega says he has telephoned Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi to express his solidarity.
- A 23-day hunger strike by Venezuelan students demanding the release of people they identified as political prisoners came to an end Tuesday, the strike’s leader said.
- The president of Ecuador’s Electoral Council, Omar Simón, said Tuesday that a controversial referendum could be held in May.
- Federal prosecutors in Brazil filed a suit against former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and a former Cabinet minister, charging them with misusing public funds.
- The U.S. Supreme Court Tuesday rejected Argentina’s appeal to unfreeze some assets held in trust since 2007.
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