Hello, hivers. Here you have the eleventh delivery of my #latamreports series, where I review the last trends in Latin America's political and economic landscape. Today we follow the track of corruption for the second day in Venezuela, as well as the situation in Colombia. Let's go ride on it ya.
The Latin American Report | Deep Dream Generator
A Colombian military officer was killed in the Caribbean province of Córdoba, in an act that the government attributes to the "Clan del Golfo" (Gulf Clan), the largest criminal organization there that is already known to us from previous reports. All this after the government announced the end of the bilateral ceasefire with this criminal gang, after linking it to a mining strike and other actions against security forces.
The Colombian Army informed in a statement on Monday that soldier Joe Luis Galván Doria was killed while he was in a "state of defenselessness" in a commercial establishment. Authorities affirmed too that the crime was carried out by several individuals on motorcycles, who were apparently members of the Gulf Clan.
Regarding the miners' strike that keeps the aforementioned department of Córdoba and Antioquia in a state of extreme tension, "safe caravans" have been set up there to avoid more vehicle incinerations and other violent acts. Authorities in Antioquia in particular claim to be on "maximum alert" to dissuade protesters from advancing any action against institutions or the population.
Tracking corruption in the region
- The Venezuelan National Assembly, with a pro-government majority, lifted this Tuesday the parliamentary immunity of Deputy Hugbel Roa, one of its members, and gave its approval to submit him to a judicial process in a corruption case that we introduced here yesterday and that links the state oil company PDVSA with shady handling of US$ 3 billion in cryptocurrencies. So far, 19 people have been charged in this operation coordinated by the National Anticorruption Police.
- The Dominican Justice postponed until next Sunday the hearing on the request for preventive detention formulated by the Public Prosecutor's Office against three ministers of the former president Danilo Medina, and the others accused in the framework of an intense anti-corruption operation whose follow-up alert was activated yesterday by us. Among those indicted are the officials in charge of the following ministries: Public Works (in this case we are talking about a former candidate for the 2020 elections), Treasury, and the Comptroller General of the Republic. Also two former directors of Casinos and Gaming.
Andrés Manuel López Obrador returned to his always controversial rhetoric against the United States, this time defending Donald Trump. AMLO associated the process against Trump with a political game, saying that it's all about "not appearing on the ballot". He also charged again against U.S. authorities in the diplomatic crisis surrounding fentanyl consumption. "Why is it allowed in the United States to operate a cartel or several cartels that freely distribute in that country the fentanyl that does so much harm to young people?", he asked.
Finally, there were also comments on the "findings" of the State Department's annual report on human rights in the world, where a red dot is placed on the exercise of members of the Mexican army, municipal police, and government officials accused of rights violations. López Obrador called the State Department officials "liars", and affirmed that "they think they are the government of the world (...) and they only see the speck in someone else's eye and not the log in their own".
The region maintained positive dynamics for the second consecutive day, closing higher on Tuesday, amid renewed investor appetite for risky assets, which pushed back the dollar as all eyes are focused on the start of the U.S. Federal Reserve's monetary policy meeting.
The U.S. currency lost close to 0.1% against a basket of six currencies in the region that make up the dollar index. The Mexican peso gained 1.01% against last Monday's Reuters reference price when it rose 0.37% in foreign trading. The S&P/BMV IPC stock index, which concentrates on the 35 most liquid companies in the Mexican market, climbed +1.4%.
The Brazilian real fell by 0.05%, while the Bovespa index of the B3 Sao Paulo stock exchange closed positive with +0.11%. The Argentine peso lost 0.24% in central bank-regulated depreciation, with the Merval stock index rising 3.5%, as renewed interest in financial and energy papers complemented recent declines. The Chilean peso ended with a positive balance of +0.21%, anchored by the rising price of copper, the country's main exportable commodity; the leading index of the Santiago Stock Exchange followed suit, rising 2.50%. The Colombian peso outperformed by 0.85% concerning the previous day, while the MSCI COLCAP benchmark index of the stock exchange was leveraged in positive by 1.73%.
This is all for our eleventh report. I have referenced the sources dynamically in the text, and remember you can learn how and where to follow the LATAM trail news by reading my work here. Have a nice day.