Since the re-election of the Movement Towards Socialism (MAS) government in 2020, led by former economic minister Luis Arce, the Bolivian government has ensured that the social progress initiated by Evo Morales’ government continues across all sections of society. These progressive steps can be seen in a range of measurers: the introduction of progressive and pluralistic economic policies, the implementation of bold education policies centred around improving access to education for every community in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the initiation of partnerships with fellow progressive governments across Latin America and leading the fight to bring justice to those who have previously been victimised by the Bolivian ruling class.
Latin Americans Reject Resource Plundering By Same NATO Countries Fueling Military Conflict In Ukraine
On August 6 we celebrated 197 years of independence here in Bolivia. We listened intently to the speech by President Luis Arce delivered in Sucre, the capital city in Bolivia’s Chiquisaca department. Among other issues, he spoke about the current military conflict in Ukraine and the need for peace in today’s world. President Arce said there cannot be peace in the world so long as there is continued foreign military intervention and economic blockades and sanctions, so very painful to humanity. He went on to say that Bolivians are placing much attention on the conflict taking place in Ukraine. He cautioned against the propaganda being generated in Western countries about all of the harm and violence that people are suffering as a consequence of this conflict.
Tech workers, warehouse employees and baristas have notched many victories in recent months at major U.S. companies long deemed long shots for unions, including Apple, Amazon and Starbucks. To me, these recent union wins recall another pivotal period in the U.S. labor movement several decades ago. But that one was led by migrants from Central America. I’ve been researching human rights and immigration from Central America since the 1980s. In today’s polarized debates over immigration, the substantial contributions that Central American immigrants have made to U.S. society over the past 30 years rarely come up.
On August 7, 2022, Gustavo Petro and his running mate, Francia Márquez, were inaugurated as the President and Vice-President of the Republic of Colombia. This was one of the most historic events in Latin America for at least a century. For the first time since the liberation of Colombia from Spain by Simón Bolívar, Colombia now had leaders who promised to radically transform Colombia, and with it, all of Latin America. I was fortunate enough to be present at the inauguration ceremony which was just as exciting as one could have hoped for. As I was told by Colombians while in Bogotá, this was the first time in memory that throngs of people came to Plaza Bolívar to celebrate the inauguration of a new President and Vice-President.
When Dobbs vs. Jackson was decided by the U.S. Supreme Court on June 24, overturning Roe v. Wade, the case drew all eyes to reproductive rights issues in the United States. For half a century, advocates around the world looked to Roe v. Wade as a landmark decision and advocacy model for reproductive justice. But the Dobbs decision now places the United States behind other countries that center women’s autonomy and human dignity in the regulation of abortion. As Latin American feminist advocates, we have seen firsthand how the lack of access to safe and legal abortions has impacted the life and health of many women, girls, and pregnant people across the Western hemisphere. Making access to sexual and reproductive health services a reality is a matter of social justice, democracy, and human rights.
On June 24, the candidate of the Historic Pact of Colombia, Gustavo Petro, officially became president-elect of the country. Among the political decisions that Petro promised to implement is the official reestablishment of diplomatic ties with the constitutional government of Venezuela, a link that was broken when Colombia, under former President Iván Duque, recognized the fake government of Juan Guaidó, a plan devised by Washington, and helped organize an invasion attempt, disguised as a “humanitarian intervention,” through the Colombia-Venezuela border in 2019. Consequently, President Nicolás Maduro of Venezuela announced the end of relations with Colombia. After a lapse of three years, the relationship between the two countries has taken a new direction. Let’s examine some aspects that are already being worked on for mutual benefit.
Mexico City, Mexico – Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro celebrated the inauguration of Gustavo Petro as president of Colombia, with leaders pledging to rebuild the long but fraught relationship between the two Caribbean countries. “I extend my hand to the people of Colombia, to President Gustavo Petro, to rebuild fellowship on the basis of respect and love between peoples,” said Maduro on Sunday. For his part, Petro called for Latin American governments to leave aside their political differences and work toward regional integration. “It is time to leave behind the [political] blocs, the groups, and the ideological differences in order to work together. Let us understand once and for all that there is much more that unites us than what separates us and together we are stronger,” said Petro during his inaugural address to his country from Bogotá’s Bolívar Square.
Hundreds joined international guests, solidarity campaigners and elected representatives for ¡Viva la solidaridad! Latin America’s Left Leads the Way: a session organised by Labour Friends of Progressive Latin America as part of this year’s Arise Festival. Chairing the event, Arise’s Sam Browse went through examples of electoral successes and resilience in the face of aggression by the region’s left, and emphasised the importance of international co-operation amongst progressive forces: “those winning gains in the fight for a better future are an inspiration to us all”. Secretary of the Presidency in Honduras Rodolfo Pastor outlined how the country faced “a dark period of history” following the coup against elected President Manuel Zelaya in 2009, with those who took power implementing “repression to benefit a small elite at the expense of our natural resources and the rights of the majority”.
When Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador traveled to Washington, DC, on July 12, his most exciting encounter for Mexicans in both the United States and Mexico was not his meeting with President Joe Biden but his impromptu encounter with well-wishers outside his hotel room at the Lombardy. Some of them had driven from places like Chicago and New York City just to get a glimpse of their president. The video of the encounter, which must have been a nightmare for the Secret Service protecting him, went viral. It showed the president (known by his initials AMLO) sticking his head out the window, blowing kisses, catching a bouquet of flowers thrown to him, and being serenaded by mariachis singing the song “Amigo” (“You are my my soul brother, a friend that in every way and day is always with me”).
China and Latin American and Caribbean countries have agreed on deeper cooperation in poverty reduction, with joint efforts in areas such as post-pandemic economic recovery, infrastructure construction and digital technology, officials and experts said at the second Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC)-China Forum on Poverty Reduction and Development, held virtually on Wednesday. At the forum, officials and experts from CELAC also praised China’s efforts to eradicate absolute poverty, especially through rural-urban integration and digital technology support, which are seen as valuable for Latin American countries to alleviate poverty and promote the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. CELAC estimates that the number of people living in extreme poverty rose by about 5 million between 2020 and 2021 due to the deepening of the social and health troubles prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, official data showed in January.
For the Landless Rural Workers Movement of Brazil (MST), the dialectic between nationalism and internationalism occurred in a peculiar way: we acknowledged receipt of the influences of internationalism, of the historical experiences of the working class and peasants of the world, just when we were just beginning to stammer out the construction of our organization. We already had experience in the struggle for land, but it took us two or three years to form ourselves as a movement, to build a program, to elaborate a doctrine, and above all to build the organizational principles that govern us to this day. By studying these principles, by taking a look at the organizations that preceded us, whether in Brazil or internationally, we realized that internationalism should not be one activity among many, but a guiding principle.
It was inconceivable, just five years ago, that ultra-conservative Colombia would decriminalize abortion, or that Catholic, neoliberal Chile would be gearing up to vote on a new constitution that enshrines sexual and reproductive rights, including on-request abortion. Yet in February, Colombia’s constitutional court removed abortion (up to 24 weeks) from the criminal code in response to a court case brought by Causa Justa—the spearhead of a wide-ranging social and legal campaign of more than 120 groups and thousands of activists. Colombia is now “at the forefront of the region and the world,” according to doctor and feminist activist Ana Cristina González, a spokesperson for Causa Justa.
Gustavo Petro won Colombia’s presidential election on June 19. This will make him the first left-wing leader in the South American nation’s history. In the video, podcast, and written analysis below, Multipolarista editor Benjamin Norton discusses Petro’s historic victory, what it means for Colombia, Latin America, and the world, and how difficult it will be for him to govern. Gustavo Petro won the first round of Colombia’s presidential election on May 29. In the second round, he defeated far-right candidate Rodolfo Hernández, a real estate mogul with an estimated $100 million in wealth. Petro previously served as mayor of the capital Bogotá, and long before that a former guerrilla in the armed socialist group M-19.