Today in Latin America
Top Story — Amnesty International and press freedom groups condemned Wednesday the killing of a critical Dominican reporter and urged the government to ensure the protection of journalists in the Caribbean country. Amnesty called for a full investigation into the killing of José Agustín Silvestre, who was found dead by three gunshot wounds Tuesday morning shortly after he was taken by gunmen in the southeastern city of La Romana. Silvestre was the director of the magazine “La Voz de la Verdad” (Voice of the Truth) and host of a Caña TV program of the same name, who had accused political figures and a priest of having involvement in drug trafficking and money laundering. Both Amnesty and the Committee to Protect Journalist (CPJ) said that the government needs to let the public know if his death could have been prevented. “We condemn the brutal killing of José Agustín Silvestre,” said Carlos Lauría, CPJ’s senior program coordinator for the Americas. “We call on Dominican authorities to fully investigate this crime and bring those responsible to justice.”
Just Published at the Latin America News Dispatch
- Violence against Mexico’s LGBT community is darkening what should be its shining moment — the passage of milestone legislation, including a law legalizing gay marriage in Mexico City. Daniel Hertz reports from Mexico’s capital.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- The National Rifle Association Wednesday filed a lawsuit that challenges a new federal regulation requiring gun merchants along the U.S.-Mexico border to report bulk sales of certain semiautomatic rifles.
- All nine kidnapped polling company workers were released by the unidentified group that kidnapped them in the western Mexican state of Michoacán.
- A Hispanic family in Southern California claims that Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents raided their home, pushed a 46-year-old woman to the floor and kicked her during a drug raid.
- Cubans are preparing for the legalization of home sales for the first time since the 1960s.
- Haiti braced for Tropical Storm Emily on Wednesday night. Over 600,000 remain homeless from the devastation of the Jan. 12 earthquake last year.
- The U.S. Coast Guard intercepted a semi-submersible drug submarine off Honduras’ Caribbean coast, carrying 7.5 tons of cocaine worth approximately $180 million.
- The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights will take Costa Rica to court for failing to lift a ban on in-vitro fertilization.
- Ice-cream seller Dairy Queen expanded the company’s operations to Guatemala, after reaching a franchise agreement with Grupo Buen Rollo.
- A roadside bomb killed an oil worker and wounded six others in the southern region of Caquetá, Vice President Angelino Garzón said Wednesday.
- Hugo Chávez’s cancer isn’t affecting his popularity, which remains at 50 percent, according to Venezuelan firm Datanalisis.
- Ecuador, which uses the U.S. dollar as its currency, will limit some imports to stem currency outflows and reduce the country’s exposure to volatility in the wake of the contentious U.S. debt ceiling debate.
- Peru’s mining companies face energy shortages in the north of the country.
- The International Monetary Fund’s executive board said Wednesday that despite the Brazilian economy’s generally favorable outlook it is showing signs of overheating.
- Union leaders and management at the world’s largest copper mine in Chile met Wednesday to discuss an end to the 13-day old strike.
- The city council of São Paulo called for a Heterosexual Pride Day to be celebrated on the third Sunday of each December.
- An Argentine Supreme Court justice is in trouble for allegedly renting out apartments that were used as brothels.
- Police in Paraguay raided a farm that was allegedly used by a member of the Brazilian drug gang, the PCC, who had escaped from prison in May.
- Argentine President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner announced Wednesday that state pensions would be increased less than two weeks before presidential primary elections.
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