Journalist, Washington D.C.
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Jul 25, 2013

Pope Francis scolds rich in visit to muddy Brazilian slum

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Pope Francis on Thursday issued the first social manifesto of his young pontificate, telling slum dwellers that the world’s rich must do much more to wipe out vast inequalities between the haves and the have-nots.

History’s first Latin American pope, who has rallied the Church on behalf of the poor and who lives more austerely than predecessors, called for a “culture solidarity” to replace the “selfishness and individualism” prevailing in modern society.

Jul 22, 2013

After post-protest flurry, Brazil’s politicians resist reform

BRASILIA (Reuters) – One month after demonstrators climbed onto the roof of Congress demanding an end to corruption and the clean-up of Brazil’s political stables, lawmakers are procrastinating.

In an initial flurry of activity, rattled congressmen abandoned a constitutional amendment that would have made it harder to prosecute corrupt politicians, senators voted to stiffen penalties for corruption, and Brazil’s Supreme Court ordered the arrest of a lawmaker convicted of embezzlement.

Jul 16, 2013

Rousseff’s popularity sinks after Brazil’s protests

BRASILIA, July 16 (Reuters) – President Dilma Rousseff’s
approval rating plummeted and her re-election chances have
dimmed in the month since massive protests of poor public
services, corruption and other complaints shook Brazil, a new
poll published on Tuesday showed.

The number of Brazilians who approve of her government’s
performance fell to 31.3 percent in July from 54.2 percent in
June. The number of those who think it has done a bad job soared
to 29.5 percent from 9 percent, the survey by polling firm MDA
Pesquisa said.

Jul 11, 2013

Angry Latin America wants answers on allegations of U.S. spying

BRASILIA/BOGOTA, July 10 (Reuters) – Latin American
governments urged the United States on Wednesday to be more
forthcoming in answering allegations of U.S. spying programs
there that have set off a wave of outrage that could damage its
standing in the region.

Colombia, Washington’s closest military ally in Latin
America, joined the chorus of governments seeking answers
following reports the United States used surveillance programs
to monitor Internet traffic in most of the region’s countries.

Jul 10, 2013

Latin American nations fuming over NSA spying allegations

BRASILIA, July 9 (Reuters) – Irate Latin American nations
are demanding explanations from the United States about new
allegations that it spied on both allies and foes in the region
with secret surveillance programs.

A leading Brazilian newspaper reported on Tuesday that the
U.S. National Security Agency targeted most Latin American
countries with spying programs that monitored Internet traffic,
especially in Colombia, Venezuela, Brazil and Mexico.

Jul 2, 2013

Brazil’s Rousseff pushes political reform to quell discontent

BRASILIA (Reuters) – President Dilma Rousseff sent Congress reform proposals on Tuesday intended to make Brazilian politics more representative in a bid to recoup popularity she lost in a wave of angry protests against the country’s political establishment.

Making good on a promise in the wake of the protests that rocked Brazil in June, Rousseff asked Congress to hold a non-binding national vote, or plebiscite, to see what Brazilians want changed. In the request, she listed broad themes that she wants to see addressed, including campaign finance reform, an end to anonymous votes by lawmakers in Congress, and a possible shift from proportional representation to district voting.

Jun 28, 2013

Analysis: Brazil’s mass protests peak, ball in politicians’ court

BRASILIA (Reuters) – The massive protests that paralyzed Brazil last week appear to have peaked after sending the country’s shaken political establishment a loud message that it needs to change its ways.

It’s now up to the politicians to deliver improvements to the country’s deficient public services and more transparent and accountable government demanded by frustrated Brazilians, or the crescendo of angry protests could suddenly return.

Jun 28, 2013

Brazil’s mass protests peak, ball in politicians’ court

BRASILIA, June 28 (Reuters) – The massive protests that paralyzed Brazil last week appear to have peaked after sending the country’s shaken political establishment a loud message that it needs to change its ways.

It’s now up to the politicians to deliver improvements to the country’s deficient public services and more transparent and accountable government demanded by frustrated Brazilians, or the crescendo of angry protests could suddenly return.

Jun 26, 2013

Fresh protests in Brazil despite government concessions

BRASILIA/BELO HORIZONTE, June 26 (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of Brazilians took to the streets on Wednesday in new demonstrations calling for a crackdown on corruption and better public services, just a day after Congress ceded to some of the key demands galvanizing protests across the country.

In Belo Horizonte, some 50,000 people gathered to demand improved education and healthcare as Brazil’s third-largest city hosted a Confederations Cup semi-final soccer game between Brazil and Uruguay in a warm-up for the 2014 World Cup.

Jun 26, 2013

Fresh protests under way in Brazil despite government concessions

BRASILIA/BELO HORIZONTE (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of Brazilians took to the streets on Wednesday in new demonstrations calling for a crackdown on corruption and better public services, just a day after Congress ceded to a handful of the key demands galvanizing protests across the country.

Police deployed in force and shut down traffic in the central esplanade of the modernistic capital of Brasilia ahead of Wednesday’s marches.