Today in Latin America
Top Story — Former Brazilian President Luiz Inácio “Lula” da Silva is scheduled to begin chemotherapy today to treat a malignant tumor in his throat discovered over the weekend. Da Silva visited São Paulo’s Hospital Sírio-Libanês for medical exams Friday for a sore throat that had bothered him for the last few weeks. The doctors say the tumor is small and they caught it early enough to be hopeful of curing it without surgery. Lula da Silva left office with record-level approval ratings and continues to influence the current administration of President Dilma Rousseff.
Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- The hacker collective Anonymous has threatened to reveal the photos, names and addresses of Zetas drug cartel-affiliated cops and taxi drivers if the gang does not release one of the group’s members.
- Hundreds of shoppers were trapped for two hours inside a shopping mall in the Mexican resort town of Cabo San Lucas when security forces traded fire with gunmen in the parking lot and then searched stores for suspects.
- Other immigrant groups are less concerned about Alabama’s strict new immigration than Hispanics because they feel authorities are targeting that group.
- A U.S. Airways flight attendant was found dead inside a hotel room while on a layover in Mexico City and authorities are investigating the death as a homicide.
- Puerto Rico’s police have struggled over the last two decades to solve murder cases, as the island’s homicide rate continues to soar.
- Haitian lawmaker Arnel Belizaire was released Friday, after being jailed on charges that he escaped prison following last year’s massive earthquake.
- Honduras has become a major trans-shipment point for cocaine coming to the United States, as almost half of the cocaine that reaches the U.S. comes through the Central American nation.
- Residents of the rural Guatemalan town of Huehuetenango were finally able to bury in their own cemetery nine men killed by guerrillas in 1982.
- Three inmates were stabbed to death at a prison in El Salvador, allegedly by members of their own gang.
- Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli said that his country’s economy is expected to grow 11 percent this year, higher than previously estimated.
- A 6.9-magnitude earthquake hit southern Peru on Friday, injuring at least 83 people and damaging buildings.
- Peruvian prosecutors will investigate the alleged forced sterilization of thousands of women during the 1990-2000 government of former president Alberto Fujimori.
- Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa stormed out of a summit of Latin American and Iberian leaders on after a presentation from a World Bank representative.
- Colombians voted in regional elections on Sunday, with the mayor of Bogotá up for election.
- Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff suspended government money transfers to NGOs in Brazil for 30 days in light of evidence showing that newly resigned sports minister Orlando Silva was diverting government funds this way.
- Chile’s Constitutional Tribunal rejected legalizing gay marriage in a 9-1 verdict that is to be formally released next week.
- Chilean officials evacuated at least 119 people from the zone surrounding Hudson volcano, which shot steam and ash more than 3 miles high on Friday.