Top Story — Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos on Wednesday revealed an internal e-mail communication allegedly written by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia that suggests the rebel group is planning to kill him. The author of the e-mail is not named, but the message was reportedly sent to a FARC commander named “Lubin Loro,” saying that the deaths of top FARC commanders at the hands of the Colombian government “demands a forceful and radical response” and that the FARC aspires to “eliminate Santos in any way possible”. Santos received the communication when he was in the southwestern province of Cauca meeting with the Nasa Indians, who have clashed with both the government and the guerrillas for intruding on their land and who demanded a direct audience with the president to air their grievances.
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Headlines from the Western Hemisphere
- After authorities in Veracruz, Mexico announced Wednesday that seven members of a Sinaloa cartel offshoot had been arrested for connections to journalist murders, press freedom advocates say the suspects’ confessions seem suspicious.
- U.S. and Mexican peace activists will travel as part of the Caravan for Peace through 20 U.S. cities to draw attention to drug-war violence.
- The new president of the Dominican Republic, Danilo Medina, was sworn in at an official ceremony in Santo Domingo on Thursday.
- Thirteen suspected members of the Puerto Rican gang known as “The Butchers” were indicted for killing a lawyer in a drive-by shooting.
- Three members of the Cuban Patriotic Union were arrested Thursday by state security agents as they handed out leaflets critical of the Cuban government’s human rights record.
- U.S. citizen Jason Puracal, who is serving a 22-year sentence in Nicaragua for drug smuggling and money laundering, maintained his innocence in an appeal that began Thursday.
- A Salvadoran court said that McDonald’s may be banned from El Salvador if the company fails to pay $23.9 million to a former franchise owner whose contract it ended in 1995.
- Costa Rican national parks are increasingly being used as places for drug traffickers to transport drugs and hide them.
- Ecuador’s foreign minister said there was no reason to suspect that Ecuador is breaking its relations with Britain after granting asylum to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.
- The Peruvian military said five soldiers were killed by Shining Path rebels in Junin province on Thursday morning.
- Chilean police forcibly evicted students occupying three secondary schools in Santiago and arrested 139 people, most of them teenage students, for continuing protests against the Chilean government’s education policies.
- The Uruguayan government said that it had made a mistake after an official communication was released which referred to the Malvinas Islands by their British name, the Falkland Islands, and said the error was being investigated.
- Paraguayan President Federico Franco said that he wasn’t concerned about the Paraguay’s continued suspension from UNASUR after former president Fernando Lugo was impeached in June.
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