: The Trump administration is considering putting up billboards that display migrants
who have violated the law to bolster Trump’s law-and-order message leading up to the election. // ICE raids are planned to take place
in “sanctuary cities” across the U.S. as a part of Trump’s pre-election campaign.
📰 Honduran Caravan:
A migrant caravan from Honduras
entered Guatemala this week, en route to the US. // The Mexican government deployed army
to the country’s southern border to block entry of the caravan and President AMLO believes
the caravan to be a U.S. election ploy. (More in Guatemala and Honduras sections.)
📰 Policies and Courts:
The Trump administration plans to limit refugees admissions
to a maximum of 15,000 for fiscal year 2021, reaching a historic low. // Federal judge blocked fee increase
for citizenship, asylum and work permit applications. Here’s why
. // // In March, Vice President Pence ordered the Center for Disease Control to use emergency powers to close the borders
in light of COVID-19 despite lack of evidence that border closures would reduce the spread.
📰 Border Patrol
: Border Patrol snipers and FBI surveillance drones were brought in by local police during George Floyd’s burial to quell any unrest
📰 Land Politics
: The Government of Belize introduced a “land tax break” with the hopes of supporting farmers
who have suffered due to the pandemic // Tensions arose in the Cayo district over the distribution of land
among local residents, who did not consult the village council.
Demonstrators organized three days of road blockades
against the government’s plan to negotiate with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) over a $1.75 billion dollar loan to alleviate the economic hardships caused by COVID-19. The proposal included new taxes and an increase in other taxes as well. On Sunday night, President Alvarado announced that the proposal with the IMF will not continue and called for a national dialogue.
Costa Rica signed an agreement with the pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and BioNTech to guarantee the country’s timely access to vaccines
against COVID-19 where the country would receive 3 million doses, after authorization from the ministry of health.
📰 Human Rights:
Hundreds of Nicaraguan exiles
protested outside the Nicaraguan embassy in Costa Rica against a set of “gag laws” that would limit the actions of independent media or media critical of the government of Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega.
The Ministry of Tourism announced that beginning on November 1, Costa Rica will allow the entry of tourists from any state
in the U.S. into the country.
📰 Media Repression:
Salvadoran journalist and human rights defender Mónica Rodríguez was fired
after nine years working for Televisión El Salvador. Rodríguez is on the board of directors for Asociación de Periodista de El Salvador
which demanded an end to ongoing hostilities against the press
📰 El Mozote:
The Salvadoran army,
as informed by the Bukele administration to the judge, maintained to block the investigation
of files regarding the massacre in El Mozote. Colonel Carlos Vanegas cited the constitution to protect “secret military files” from the 1981 massacre. Human rights groups believe Bukele is committing the crime of covering up the files.// There’s ongoing pressure
to further investigate and prosecute the murder of five priests in 1989.
📰 San Julián Murders:
Five people were reported murdered
in a village of San Julián in Sonsonate on Thursday. While the murder rate in El Salvador has dropped by 56% since 2019, there were 2,829 reported murders between January and September.
📰 Lote Ocho Lawsuit:
Affidavit documents have surfaced detailing Canadian mining company, Hudbay Minerals Inc.’s collusion with Guatemalan officials
to evict indigenous communities from their land in 2007. There is a current lawsuit against Hudbay Minerals which includes rape charges against their security personnel who assaulted several Lote Ocho women.
Journalist Lucía Ixchiú was covering news on forest depredations and environmental issues while she was attacked
by a group who are illegally logging trees.
Thousands of people gathered in various groups to migrate to the U.S
., but many faced militarized borders and security forces in Guatemala. The reasons to migrate include poverty, unemployment and violence, which deepened due to COVID-19. One young migrant known as “Kike” died
. After 2,000 were deported back to Honduras, smaller groups have continued walking north. The governments of Mexico and Guatemala declared that the caravan has been dismantled
📰 Human Rights:
Pedro Canales, land defender, denounced that powerful families in the Zacate Grande (southern Honduras) have increased the attacks
against community members due to their fight against the installation of the economic development zones. // David Castillo, one of the alleged masterminds of Berta Caceres’ murder, will remain in prison under pre-trial detention
for 8 months and 23 more days, after a Court denied the defense’s appeal.
The mayor of Tegucigalpa and presidential candidate, Nasry Asfura, is being investigated
by the Specialized Fiscal Unit Against Corruption Networks (UFERCO) for acts of corruption. He belongs to the same party as President Juan Orlando Hernandez, Partido Nacional.
The Honduran Agricultural Development Program, which had been entrusted to the Armed Forces, was declared, through an appeal, unconstitutional
for violating constitutional articles related to defense, national security, and the comprehensive agrarian reform process.
The army retained
and later released members of the Kriol branch communal government and ignored their political authority, while allegedly allowing settlers to invade indigenous territories
📰 New Laws:
The law proposals “Law of Regulation of Foreign Agents” and “Special Law of Cyber crimes”, will be discussed and likely approved
by the parliament on October 13. The “Foreign Agents” law will affect NGOs “that have political aspirations” and the “Cybercrime” law will affect freedom of speech with jail time for those who share “fake news”. Various sectors interpret these laws as political instruments of control and repression.
📰 LGBTI rights:
The Inter-American Court of Human Rights (IACHR) held a virtual hearing on the rights to and recognition of same-sex marriage in Panama
. // Panamanian Fundación Iguales
emphasized the need for the modification of legislation to be more inclusive and less discriminatory of LGBTI people.
📰 Vaccine Testing:
The COVID-19 Vaccine Research Consortium began with the Phase 2 testing
of German vaccine CureVac. 250 people are participating in the testing, including Governor Judy Meana
📰 Economic Stimulus:
The National Assembly is currently debating a legislative project
to establish mandatory rest days for employees of specific companies to promote reactivate internal tourism.
📰 Medical Honor:
Doctor José Manuel Fábrega
, Surgery professor at the University of Panama, will be named a 2020 Honorary Fellow of The American College of Surgeons. On 4 October 2020, he was recognized as one of nine most prominent surgeons in the world
📰 Animal Rescue:
Units of the National Police rescued 68 animals
from a San Miguelito house, where it is inferred they would have been used as sacrifices in rituals.