Jack's Feed
Feb 7, 2012

Colombian ex-militia chief nabbed in Venezuela

BOGOTA (Reuters) – One of Colombia’s most-wanted former paramilitary commanders with suspected links to the cocaine trade has been captured in neighboring Venezuela, both nations said on Monday.

After years of acrimony, improved relations between Caracas and Bogota since Juan Manuel Santos came to power in Colombia in 2010 have led to the capture of a growing number of fugitive Colombians by Venezuela.

Feb 4, 2012

Colombia cenbank restarts dollar buying program

BOGOTA, Feb 3 (Reuters) – Colombia’s central bank on
Friday re-established buying at least $20 million daily for at
least three straight months to help stem gains in the currency
amid pressure from exporters.

Emerging market nations such as Colombia have faced a flood
of cheap money in recent months as near-zero interest rates in
developed markets prompt investors to seek higher yields,
pushing up their currencies and strengthening their economies.

Feb 3, 2012

Colombia extends ban on requests for mine permits

CARTAGENA, Colombia, Feb 3 (Reuters) – Colombia has
extended a suspension on receiving new requests for mining
concessions for two months to handle a backlog of permits, the
Andean nation’s energy ministry said on Friday.

The world’s No. 4 coal exporter has been hit by a series of
mine explosions that killed dozens of workers over the last
couple of years, prompting calls for stricter oversight at a
time when Colombia’s mining sector is enjoying a mini-boom.

Jan 16, 2012

Colombia rebels selling cows as drug money drops: Santos

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said on Monday the country’s largest rebel group was increasingly selling its cattle to finance South America’s longest-running insurgency as income from trafficking cocaine drops.

Colombia’s Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, has been reeling from more than a decade of a U.S.-backed military offensive that has dealt it major blows and cut cocaine output in one of the world’s top producers of the drug.

Jan 10, 2012

Colombian rebels call for peace negotiations

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Colombia’s new FARC rebel leader has called on President Juan Manuel Santos to revive failed peace talks from a decade ago and help bring an end to nearly 50 years of war.

Latin America’s oldest insurgency movement is, however, at its weakest in years after a U.S.-funded crackdown, and Santos has made clear he will not open talks unless the rebels first give up arms, release hostages and halt attacks.

Jan 10, 2012

Colombian rebels call for peace talks

BOGOTA (Reuters) – Colombia’s FARC rebel leader has called for negotiations with President Juan Manuel Santos’ government to end nearly five decades of war.

Latin America’s fourth-largest oil producer has battled leftist rebels and drug gangs for decades and nearly every government since the 1980s has tried peace talks with a myriad of armed groups to varying degrees of success.

Dec 15, 2011

Cuba’s cigars: a black market tale of survival

HAVANA (Reuters) – Packing long cigars into a white box picturing Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, a Cuban man delicately places a thin wax-paper stamp of quality inside.

He then finishes the job with an official guarantee.

Now, no one will be the wiser that these stogies are black market cigars.

“We have to do this just so we can live,” the man, who asked to remain anonymous, said in the Cuban capital. “To make a living here, you have to be constantly doing business.”

Dec 13, 2011

In Cuba, old clunkers and Soviet cars now for sale

HAVANA (Reuters) – Want to buy a blue 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air for $11,000 or a Soviet-made Lada 1600 for $15,000? Or for that matter, sell one?

In communist Cuba, now you can.

For the first time since the 1959 revolution Cubans have the right to buy and sell any car – something that was only done before with the government’s ‘okay’ – or on the black market by illegally purchasing vehicles licensed to somebody else.

Dec 12, 2011
via FaithWorld

Cubans honor Catholic patron ahead of papal visit in early 2012

Photo

(Cuba's Catholic Church leader Cardinal Jaime Ortega (2nd L) takes part in a procession to honor the statue of Our Lady of Charity, the patroness of Cuba, in Havana December 6, 2011. REUTERS/Enrique De La Osa )

White-robed priests burned incense as they marched slowly through Havana’s narrow streets, giving Catholic faithful a rare glimpse of Cuba’s patron saint outside her remote eastern home. The ceremony was one of many witnessed by tens of thousands of people across the communist-led island in recent weeks, after the Roman Catholic Church was given permission for the first time in decades to stage processions with Cuba’s beloved Virgin of Charity of Cobre icon.

Dec 12, 2011

Cubans honor Catholic patron ahead of papal visit

HAVANA (Reuters) – White-robed priests burned incense as they marched slowly through Havana’s narrow streets, giving Catholic faithful a rare glimpse of Cuba’s patron saint outside her remote eastern home.

The ceremony was one of many witnessed by tens of thousands of people across the communist-led island in recent weeks, after the Roman Catholic Church was given permission for the first time in decades to stage processions with Cuba’s beloved Virgin of Charity of Cobre icon.

    • About Jack

      "Jack covers commodities, economics and politics in Colombia. He joined Reuters in 2006 and has since worked throughout east Africa including Kenya, Eritrea, Sudan, Somalia and Uganda. He has also done stints in Iraq."
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