Today in Latin America
Top Story — Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA) told Fox News Sunday that the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee will subpoena Attorney General Eric Holder and other top Justice Department officials this week in connection with Operation Fast and Furious. The operation, run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), allowed suspected members of drug gangs to purchase weapons and take them across the border, with the goal of building a case against Mexican drug cartels. The program caused a storm of controversy, however, after the AFT lost track of more than 1,000 guns — two of which were found in December at the murder scene of U.S. Border Patrol agent Brian Terry.
Holder’s role in authorizing the failed plan has come under scrutiny. He told Congress in May that he only learned about Operation Fast and Furious a few weeks before, but congressional investigators later released memos addressed to Holder dating back to July 2010 that refer to the program by name. “We want to know what did they know and when did they know it,” Issa said. “But more importantly we have to understand, at what level did the authorization come?”
Read more from The Houston Chronicle, and watch the interview with Issa in the video below.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- A large cache of weapons from the ATF’s Operation Fast and Furious has been found inside the home of a top Sinaloa cartel enforcer in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico.
- An Arizona judge has found manipulation in a recall vote for a race between a staunch anti-immigration candidate and a Mexican immigrant.
- Adding to an already large number of deaths attributed to drug violence, Mexican authorities found ten more bodies over the weekend in the port city of Veracruz.
- Hurricane Jova made its way Sunday along the southwestern Pacific coast of Mexico and forecasters warned that it could pick up strength.
- The president of Cuba’s Parliament, Ricardo Alarcón, discarded the possibility of a unilateral humanitarian release of jailed U.S. Aid subcontractor Alan Gross.
- Dominican President Leonel Fernández spoke in favor of Palestine’s bid for statehood on Friday, during a visit from Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas.
- Spain’s Queen Sofia visited Haiti for two days this weekend to tour projects finished by the Spanish government and her own charity.
- Puerto Rico’s Justice Department denounced a U.S. federal report criticizing the island’s police forces for abuses, even though Gov. Luis Fortuño and other Puerto Rican authorities accepted the report’s conclusions and promised improvements.
- According to a U.N. report, Honduras and El Salvador have the highest homicide rates in the world.
- Gunmen killed four people near in the Government Ministry in Guatemala City on Saturday.
- El Salvador’s Supreme Court will not order the detention of five former military officers indicted in Spain for the 1989 killing of six Jesuit priests.
- Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez criticized the United States Saturday for its “horrible repression” of the Occupy Wall Street protesters.
- The Colombian army said it has killed five ELN rebels during a search for a kidnapped girl near the Venezuelan border.
- Bolivia is threatening to end its contract with India’s Jindal Steel and Power due to an alleged failure to meet investment commitments for a large iron ore mine.
- Consumer prices in Ecuador rose at the fastest pace in two years last month as food costs jumped.
- Archaeologists claim to have discovered the remains of Peru’s oldest Roman Catholic Church outside the northern coastal city of Piura.
- Chilean student leaders called Friday for shutting down the nation’s economy for a day in response to a police crackdown on education reform demonstrations.
- Recent opinion polls in Argentina shows President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner winning a second term by more than 50 percent — enough to avoid a runoff election.
- Paraguay held a referendum to determine whether citizens living outside the country can vote in general elections.
- A new study shows that many young Brazilian’s are leaving their Catholic upbringings for a more secular life.
- Chile’s Supreme Court said Friday that the government unconstitutionally revoked a company’s permit to grow medical marijuana.