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Mike Gatehouse

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The Synod on the Amazon

A synod is a meeting of representatives of Church communities to discuss issues of doctrine or Church governance.  So far, for most people, so boring.  But when, in February 2019, General Augusto Heleno, President Jair Bolsonaro’s senior security adviser, described October’s Catholic Church synod on the Amazon as ‘relevant to Brazil’s national security’ and having a ‘left-wing agenda’, he was...
A lone man in the garb of a nineteenth century mambi Cuban freedom fighter sits high on a lamp post above a sea of people in Havana’s Plaza de la Revolución. Alberto Korda, Cuba (b.1928): El Quijote de la Farola (The Don Quijote of the lamppost), Plaza de la Revolucion, Cuba 26...
By: Rodrigo Acuña. Source: LAB The recent announcement by Iván Márquez – the second highest commander of the original Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) – that sections of South America’s largest demobilised guerrilla movement are returning to war, should come as little surprise to some observers of Latin America. In a recent...

Chile: La caravana de las Danzas

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The 2018 Caravana de las Danzas 2018, dancing in La Plaza de Talca and taking a walk around the Barrio en Colores, an open air museum in the población Brilla el Sol, with murals evoking the customs of the region such as rodeo, the Cueca, etc. Wendy Tyndale, with her book...
Amazon fires show Bolivia needs a new economic model Global coverage of the recent Amazon fires has focused on Brazil, but Bolivia has suffered a similar catastrophe. Over the last two months, some 2.4 million hectares of the country have burned, almost half of which is forest. At least six people have died and around 2,000 families have...

Lula: I’m on the side of truth

This interview, by special correspondent Bruno Meyerfeld, appeared in Le Monde on 12 September 2019. The original, in French, can be read here. It was translated for LAB by Francis McDonagh. With a firm stride Lula comes into an anonymous room at the headquarters of the Brazilian Federal Police...
Dear LAB Supporter and Friend, 11 September 2019 Amazon fires caused by land-grabbing on an industrial scale Amazon burned -- at Terra Nossa, near Altamira, Pará. Neighbouring land occupied illegally by grilheros, was untouched. Photo: José Cícero da Silva/Agência Pûblica. In addition to our...
This open letter, from a distinguished group of Brazilian mental health academics and professionals, was first published in El Pais Brazil on 2 September 2019. You can read the original here. It was translated for LAB from the Portuguese by Diane Grosklaus Whitty. Greta Thunberg gives life to the climate cause, just as the climate cause gives her...
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Interview with British marxist geographer David Harvey in which he addresses Brazil's current problems. "You went through far worse things," he says, "during the military dictatorship." He regards the Bolsonaro ascendancy (and that of Trump and other populists) as strictly temporary. He also addresses climate change and events in the Amazon. Video: BrasilDeFato...
***** to sign, click here Rainforest fires: put Amazonian people's rights first. LAB partner Christian Aid is inviting the public to sign a new petition calling on the UK Prime Minister to put the Amazonian people at the heart of any response to the wildfires raging in the...
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