Latest blog posts

Guatemala: presidential hopefuls inspire little confidence

Written by Nathalie Mercier, Christian Aid’s Programme Officer in Guatemala Decision day is fast approaching for Guatemalans awaiting the result of the country’s presidential elections. Neither of the two front-running candidates - Sandra Torres from the centre party National Union for Hope (UNE), and Alejandro Giammattei from the far-right party Vamos - achieved the majority needed for victory in the first round (in June). Torres received 26% of the vote, and Giammattei 14%. 2019 Presidential Candidates A growing trend in the country’s elections in recent...

Mining: The Rivers are Bleeding

The vast expansion of British mega-mining in Latin America is displacing communities, destroying ecosystems, costing lives and polluting our planet. The Rivers are Bleeding: British Mining in Latin America documents 56 UK-mining operations – 32 of which have ongoing conflicts –to produce a damming indictment of one of the world’s most powerful industries. Mining conflicts are fuelled by environmental degradation, competition over water, the dismantling of local organisations, fraud, corruption, dispossession, repression and the criminalisation of community opposition. The proliferation of catastrophic conflicts associated with the mining industry has been widely analysed by various environmental and social...

Structural violence and displacement in Central America and Colombia

This article was prepared for Christian Aid by Nathalie Mercier (Guatemala), Maria Useche (Colombia), Tania Grande (El Salvador) and Javier SanVicente (Honduras) Main image: migrant child detained at the US border. Source: Guardian podcast: 'What is happening to migrant children at the US border' The devastating image of Salvadoran immigrant, Óscar Martínez, with his two-year-old daughter, Valeria, their lifeless bodies found drowned in the Río Bravo; the photographs of children and adolescents held in cages in detention centres, described by congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio Cortéz as...

The lesson of Brumadinho: put rights before profits

This edited extract from a Christian Aid report, dated 11 June 2019, was prepared by LAB When a dam at Vale SA’s iron ore mine collapsed in Córrego do Feijão in southeastern Brazil on 25 January, Christian Aid provided funding for local partner MAB (Movimento dos Atingidos por Baragens) to deliver urgent lifesaving assistance to families that were directly affected by the ‘tidal wave of sludge that devoured everything in a 5km path’. It is estimated that 300–400 people are still missing, while at least 231 and possibly as...

First Festival of Peruvian Cinema in Native Languages

The festival took place in Trujillo and Cusco from 18-21 July 2019. It followed on from the success of ‘Winaypacha’ (Eternity), the first Peruvian film entirely shot in Aymara language, opening up possibilities for indigenous filmmakers and their stories to reach an international audience. In recent years many Peruvian films were produced in native languages, but there was no space or festival that showcased them. The festival aimed to change that. https://youtu.be/GGyQF-QPr8A Before the Festival began, Karoline Pelikan, Director of Pelikan Pictures, interviewed its artistic director,...

Four generals, two monarchs, a judge, guns and gays: a week in the life...

The last few days have seen President Jair Bolsonaro begin to show his true colours as an authoritarian populist.  The ex-army captain sacked four generals seen as moderates, strengthening instead  the influence of Bolsonaro’s very own Rasputin, the extreme right-wing guru Olavo de Carvalho, and reinforcing his social media image of a strongman and crusader in a holy war against left-wing ideology and cultural Marxism. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H10UUrDVM74 General Augusto Helena defending Moro's conversations with prosecutors as 'absolutely normal', condemning the work of hackers which amounts to a 'cyber-war' against Brazil. Video: Morning...

The Peace Agreement three years on – Afro-Colombian and Indigenous perspectives

Three years ago, the Colombian government and its armed opponents of fifty years signed a peace agreement that offered a framework for ending violent conflict and starting to build peace. While the peace agreement was in its final stages of negotiation, Christian Aid’s Research, Evidence and Learning team was beginning to design Ten Years, a study exploring changes in the lives of people in poor and marginalised communities in Colombia and Kenya, and changes in their national contexts. As part of Ten Years, the study team have been documenting and understanding...

The Amazon comes to Cologne

Letter No 2 from Elisa Dias, Cabelo Seco, Marabá, 13 June 2019 Dear Friends, My experience in Belgium was really extraordinary.  We learned so much in just a few days. I’m gradually getting used to meeting a new organizing team twice a day, so my experience in Germany pushed me outside my comfort zone to begin to appreciate living with the unexpected. We reached Germany after an hour and a half’s train journey and were met at the super-modern station of the mediaeval city of Cologne by...

An Amazon view of Brussels

Letter from Elisa. Rios de Encontro. 4 June 2019 Dear Friends, When I was leaving Marabá, I realised I was entering on a new phase of my life, one which I'd always fought to reach. It’s not just through the knowledge I've gained thanks to the hard work I've put in and the training I've received in the Rios de Encontro project, and of wanting to be someone who is well-informed. But through being an artist, an art educator, and an active member of the afro-indigenous community, capable of defending...

Indigenous Brazilian electronic art comes to London’s British Academy

by Shafik Meghji A fishing net that recreates the sound of the ocean. An earthenware pot that emits traditional stories and songs. A cocoon-like structure that pulses with light to the rhythm of your beating heart. These are some of the results of an innovative project that paired non-indigenous artists and indigenous communities in north-eastern Brazil and asked them to produce joint pieces of electronic art. Four of the artworks will be displayed at the British Academy’s Summer Showcase in London on 21-22 June. ‘The...

El Salvador: reconciliation or impunity?

El Salvador’s Legislative Assembly is expected to vote soon on a controversial new 'Special Law of Transitional and Restorative Justice for National Reconciliation'. Despite its title, the law would provide both army and guerrilla soldiers with de facto impunity for crimes against human rights committed during the country’s bitter conflict in the 1970s and 1980s. The proposed legislation is supported by both the right-wing ARENA party and, surprisingly, by the party of the FMLN former guerrillas, some of whom have their own war-crimes to exonerate. Opposed by incoming president Nayib Bukele and roundly condemned by most victims'...
video

Bolsonaro: beginning or end?

Is this the beginning of the end or the end of the beginning for Bolsonaro? São Paulo, 27 May. Crowds dressed in green and yellow took to the streets this Sunday in support of President Jair Bolsonaro. The more extreme protesters demanded the closing down of the Supreme Court and Congress, but others wanted the immediate approval of the government’s Pensions Bill and anti-crime measures. A giant inflatable Sergio Moro, the Justice Minister, dressed as Superman, towered over protesters on the grass in front of Congress in Brasilia. Demonstrators...

Voices launched in New York

Martin Paddio of Monthly Review Press Hosted by Monthly Review Press, NACLA, Voices editor Tom Gatehouse, and the New York Latin America Bureau team, Voices of Latin America: Social Movements and the New Activism was launched in Brooklyn, New York on 16th May at the Verso loft in Jay Street, on the East River under the shadow of the historic Brooklyn Bridge.The event was chaired via Skype by Marcos Orellana, Director of Environment and Human Rights at Human Rights Watch.In addition to human rights work, Marcos represented the eight-nation Independent Association of...

Ayahuasca, colonialist mysticism and the exploitation of indigenous people

A year ago, a video spread online where the Canadian Sebastian Woodroffe was lynched and killed by indigenous people in the Peruvian Amazon. He had previously shot dead the 81-year-old environmental activist and medicine woman Olivia Arévalo, after she denied him ayahuasca. Olivia Arévalo was a Healer and not a Shaman, Kevin Tucker explains. The latter is a colonial construction, and that is very important to the context. Throughout her whole life, Olivia Arévalo had defended her culture and nature's rights, while trying to survive in a post-...
WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By : XYZScripts.com