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One Union

Pope Francis: Listen up!

Pope Francis highlights
 the need to listen as rule
 for good communication
by Luis Linares Petrov
January 24th, 8:57am (Prensa Latina) 


Pope Francis expressed that good communication
means to pay attention to the reasons of another 
and to seek an understanding of the complexity 
of reality.


The Supreme Pontiff issued a statement on the 
occasion of the 56th World Day of Social 
Communications... pointing out that: 
“what makes communication good
 and fully human... is precisely 
listening to who we have in 
front of us”, whom “we 
approach... with loyal, 
trusting and honest 
openness”.


“Listen up!”  was the theme chosen by Francis, to
 celebrate this year the initiative promoted by the
 Catholic Church since 1967 to draw attention to
 “the vast and complex phenomenon of modern
 social communication tools.”


Unfortunately, as the Pope pointed out, the lack of 
listening we often experience in everyday life...
is also evident in public life, in which, often...
instead of listening to the other, what we
 like... is to listen to ourselves.


After referring to the impossibility of doing good
journalism without an ability to listen, Francisco
stressed: “in order to provide solid, balanced
and complete information, it is necessary
to have listened for a long time.”


In the pontiff’s opinion, in order to recount an event 
or describe a reality in a report, it is essential to 
have known how to listen, with a willingness
 to change one’s mind and modify one’s 
starting hypotheses.


Listening to different sources “ensures the reliability
 and seriousness of the information we transmit,” 
said the Pope, and stated that “the ability to 
listen to society is extremely valuable in
 this time---  wounded by the 
long pandemic.”
 
 

Dollar round-a-bout an illusion

 
US is doing everything to 
undermine confidence
 in dollar — Lavrov
January 26th, 4:39pm (TASS) 
 
The US is doing everything possible to undermine
 confidence in the dollar and make it risky for
 international settlements, Russian Foreign 
Minister, Sergey Lavrov, said Wednesday. 
He was speaking at the government hour
during the plenary session of the State
Duma, the lower house of parliament.
 
"We are striving to reduce our dependence on the
dollar & the Americans are actively helping us 
with it, as they are doing almost everything
possible, to undermine confidence in this 
currency, make it risky for international 
settlements, not only for Russia, but 
for any country," he said.
 
Lavrov also stressed that Russia is "sharply
 reducing" its foreign exchange reserves, 
which are held in dollars.
 
"We are, in every way, encouraging the transition 
to settlements in national currencies, and this
is
 already starting to cause such disturbing 
discussions among political analysts 
and economists in the West.''
 
''Not only in the West, in the US, they are beginning 
to wonder, where the real problems will begin for 
them, but also our economic operators also feel 
relief... as the issues related to the transfer of 
funds are being resolved," the Russian 
Foreign Minister noted.
 
According to the minister, the payment system
 developed by the Bank of Russia, is not as 
established as SWIFT, but it is functional.
 
"I think that we should follow this path. It is very
 important to keep the economy balanced," 
Lavrov said.
 
 
____________________________________



Brent Crude Tops $90 
Per Barrel, First Time 
Since 2014
January 26th, 4:16pm (Sputnik) 
 
 Global oil prices rally almost 2% on US statistics 
on Wednesday, and benchmark futures for Brent 
crude rose above $90 per barrel, for the first
time 
since October 13th, 2014.
 
As of 3:53pm, the price of March futures for 
Brent crude... grew by 1.88% to $89.86 per 
barrel. Minutes earlier, the price reached 
$90.02. 
 
The price of April futures for Brent, rose by 1.85% 
to $88.79, the price of March futures for WTI was 
up 1.96% to $87.28.
 
 
___________________________



 
HRW Says Staffer Targeted
 with Israeli-Made Pegasus
 Spyware
January 26th, 2:14pm (FNA)
 
 Human Rights Watch (HRW) announced:  one of its 
senior staff members was targeted five times last 
year with Pegasus, a spyware made by the Israeli 
company NSO Group.
 
The software was used against Lama Fakih, director
 of the New York-based group’s Beirut office who 
also oversees its crisis response in countries 
including Afghanistan, Ethiopia, Israel, 
Myanmar, the occupied Palestinian
 territory, Syria and the US, HRW 
said on Wednesday,
 Al-Jazeera reports.
 
Fakih’s phone was breached five times between April
 and August of 2021, but the organisation stated it 
did not know who targeted her.
 
The NSO Group... which does not disclose its client
list, has been mired in controversy in recent years
following investigations by researchers, at the
University of Toronto’s Citizen Lab, along with
several rights groups and media outlets, that 
found that the technology has been used by
governments across the world, to access
the smartphones of political opponents, 
activists and journalists.
 
Recounting being notified by Apple in November 2021
 that she had been a victim of a “state-sponsored”
 attack on her iPhone, Fakih noted she “felt
 dread and disbelief”.
 
“You have a million thoughts going through your
 head. Why would I be targeted in this way and 
how? What government did this?” Fakih 
added, in a Q&A published by HRW
 on Wednesday.
 
“What does this mean for my security, and for the
 security of everyone whose data may have been 
compromised as a result of the attack?” 
Fakih asked.
 
She said HRW later determined that her phone had
 been hacked using Pegasus. The conclusion was
 peer-reviewed and confirmed by Amnesty
 International’s Security Lab.
 
“After all this, we decided to make this state-
sponsored attack, public, in order to raise 
awareness of this risk, to civil society 
partners and contacts more broadly,”
 Fakih continued, adding, “Speaking 
out about these attacks, is critical
to 
stopping the unchecked use of 
surveillance technology.”
 
The NSO Group’s software has proven particularly
 difficult to protect against, because it uses so-
called “zero-click” technology --- meaning a 
user does not have to click on a malicious 
link, for hackers to access their device.
 
Facebook & Apple have both filed lawsuits against
 the Israeli company, over hacks against their 
products. The US - meanwhile - has black-
listed the company, saying its tools have 
been used by repressive governments, 
and barred it from using US-
developed technology.
 
The company maintains it has safeguards in place 
to ensure its products are only used to target 
suspected criminals and “terrorists”.
 
In a January 24 letter made public by HRW, NSO Group
 said it was “not aware of any active customer” using
 the technology against a staff member of the 
rights watchdog.
 
The company added it was conducting an initial
 assessment... to determine if an investigation 
would be launched, noting that the targeting 
of a rights group staffer would be a “serious 
misuse” of its technology, if the individual 
was not suspected of committing a crime.
 
The firm has also expressed support for an
 “international regulatory structure” --- to 
constrain the use of spyware tech., but
has shrugged off calls to suspend
 the
use of Pegasus, until one is created.
 
For her part, Fakih said “it is no accident that
 governments are using spyware to target 
activists and journalists, the very people 
who uncover their abusive practices”.
 
“They seem to believe, that by doing so, they 
can consolidate power, muzzle dissent, and
 protect their manipulation of facts,” 
she added.
 
 
____________________________________
 


Lavrov states ---- deep, non-
positive
 changes happening
in 
international arena
January 26th, 2:12pm (TASS)
 
 Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov stated
on  Wednesday, that the international arena 
currently lives through deep, and not
 entirely positive changes, and the
 entire international system, 
is feverish.
 
"[Russian President Vladimir Putin] spoke about the
 situation in the international arena, and our foreign
 policy goals and initiatives, repeatedly. He recently
 made all principal emphases, during the expanded 
meetings of Foreign Ministry and Defense Ministry
 boards, as well as in his other addresses, & press
 conferences. There are deep changes happening 
in the international arena, and not too positive 
ones, to put it mildly. The entire system is 
feverish," he said.
 
Lavrov noted that the Western states are still not ready
 to accept the reality of the emerging multipolar world, 
which must be fairer and more democratic, than a 
world dominated by a single state.
 
According to the Foreign Ministry, "the westerners, led
 by the US, seek to oppose the objective development 
of history, seek to ensure unilateral advantages to
 themselves," without taking the interests of 
others into account.
 
 
____________________________


 
‘Fewer willing to pull US-EU
chestnuts out of fire’: Lavrov 
notes unipolar order declining
January 26th, 12:05pm (TASS) 
 
There are fewer and fewer countries willing to
 sacrifice their national interests for the West, 
or pull chestnuts out of the fire, for the US &
EU, Russia's 
Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov
said, in 
an address to the State Duma
(lower 
house of parliament)
on Wednesday.
 
According to him, the world is no longer US-centric 
or even Western-centric and the unipolar global 
order will never be restored. "The number of 
those willing to sacrifice their core national
 interests and... so to say... pull chestnuts
out 
of the fire for their superiors from 
Washington and Brussels... is
declining,"
the Russian top
diplomat emphasized.
 
He pointed out that the vast majority of countries
shared Russia’s principled approaches  ---  which
rejected the West’s diktats in terms of ideology
 and its geopolitical "zero-sum games."
 
 
________________________________



US improperly fulfills
its 
obligations on
aid to Syria 

Russian mission to UN
January 26th, 6:56am (TASS)
 
The US was unconvincing in the implementation 
of its obligations on cross-border aid for Syria, 
the Russian Permanent Mission to the UN said 
in a commentary on the US mission’s report,
on Wednesday.
 
"Pretending to care about the Syrians, held against
their will, by the [former Nusra Front terror group, 
outlawed in Russia] terrorists in Idlib as a human 
shield, US diplomacy uses the taxpayer money,
to effectively support the militants," 
the Russian mission said. 
 
"At the same time --- the US spares no efforts to rebrand
the Idlib cutthroats and present them as an alternative 
to the government in Damascus. By reinforcing the
[terrorists’] positions, Washington shoots itself in
the foot, while stating its commitment to the
territorial integrity of the Syrian 
Arab Republic."
 
The mission noted, that the US occupied not only
a part of Syria near At-Tanf, but the entire Syrian
northeast — the oil-rich and fertile region.
 
"By presenting itself as a ‘key donor’... the US must
be consistent in its position and leave the illegally
occupied territories, return the fertile lands 
across the Euphrates River to Damascus
-  and 
stop robbing the country by
exporting the 
oil extracted in
Syria’s northeast, with 
truck
convoys every month,"
the 
commentary says.
 
 
____________________________


US, misuses status of UN host 
country to deter Moscow, says 
Russia’s Permanent Mission
January 26th, 1:43am (TASS) 
 
The United States, in its Russia deterrence policy,
misuses the status of the UN host country, 
according to a commentary of Russia’s 
Permanent Mission to the UN, after
the US 
Permanent Mission’s 
press release... on the
American activities 
in the UN.
 
"As we can see, the US, in implementing its course to 
‘deter’ Russia, descends to obviously misusing the
 status of the UN host country, violating the norms
 of international law," the commentary said. "Such
 behaviour, can hardly serve as an example of a 
‘fair game’.. worthy of a permanent member of
the Security Council," the Russian diplomatic 
mission noted.
 
It also mentioned visa problems for Russian 
delegations created by the US authorities. 
 
"The American authorities either refuse delegates
from Moscow visas, or provide them in the very 
last moment," the mission said, adding that  "it 
is the US’ international legal obligation to issue
visas to such events, as soon as possible -- not
as a matter of moods or political preferences.".
 
 
_______________________________________



Cuba receives over 24 tonnes of
humanitarian aid from Russia
 — embassy
January 25th, 7:50am (TASS)
 
 Moscow has delivered more than 24 tonnes of
humanitarian cargo to Havana, on Monday 
evening, the Russian embassy told TASS.
 
"Russia delivered over 24 tonnes of humanitarian 
aid to Cuba, including medical protective suits 
and injection syringes. The aid was sent by 
the Russian government," the embassy 
noted. In December 2021 and in mid-
January of this year... Moscow has 
already supplied similar cargoes 
to Havana.
 
On Monday, Cuban President, Miguel Diaz-Canel,
thanked over the phone his Russian counterpart 
Vladimir Putin.... for providing the humanitarian 
assistance -  "which had greatly contributed to
countering the aftermath of the pandemic.".
 
 
 
__________________________




Nicaraguan Farmers Seek
 Compensation from huge
Chemical Corporations
January 24th, 4:53pm (teleSUR)
 
On behalf of the families of 1,234 Nicaraguan 
farmers, lawyers Pierre-Olivier Sur and Clara 
Gerard-Rodriguez began, on Monday, a legal 
process in the Paris Court, to claim 
compensation of US$1 billion... 
from Shell Oil, Dow Chemical, 
and Occidental Chemical.
 
This unprecedented process accuses the world's
 largest chemical groups for the damage caused 
by their pesticides to Nicaraguan workers 
during the last decades of the 
20th century.
 
The lawsuit is filed before the French Justice, 
because the United States courts refused to 
execute the sentences issued in 2002 and 
2007 by Nicaraguan courts, which forced 
these three companies to compensate 
workers who had been affected by a 
pesticide labelled Nemagon.
 
The Nicaraguan rulings showed that Shell Oil, 
Dow Chemical, and Occidental Chemical sold
 this product in the Central American country 
...despite the fact that it had been banned in 
the US since 1977 due to its harmful effects.

 Among the health effects suffered by
banana
 workers are neurological
problems, 
blindness, infertility,
and prostate 
and liver cancers.
 
Years later, however, US courts dismissed the
 Nicaraguan rulings, arguing that the local 
judges were suspected of corruption.
 
"Corrupted by whom? The victims were penniless 
& they're all dead. This is a fight between David 
and Goliath," attorney Sur stressed in response
 to the US judges' interpretation.
 
In order to obtain the payment of compensation, 
based on the assets owned by the transnational
 companies, the farmers' lawyers based their 
claim on the "Exequatur," a legal principle 
that has been used previously to achieve
 recognition of a foreign sentence.
 
The plaintiffs' lawyers chose France because here 
a decision related to the Exequatur, which has 
been applied to divorce cases, in French 
courts, implies its immediate execution 
in all the European Union since 2012. 
 
In addition, Nicaragua's legal system is based 
on the Napoleonic Code, which is the civil
liability
 mechanism applied in France.
 
 
_________________________


Maduro mocks failed US bid 
to impose its 'puppet' on 
Venezuela, vows justice
January 24th, 2:21pm (PressTV)
 
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has decried 
US attempts to impose a puppet on his country,
 insisting that he has emerged victorious in face 
of such plots and continues to remain in power.
 
Addressing his supporters at an event on Sunday 
held to commemorate the anniversary of the end 
of the military dictatorship in 1958, Venezuela's
 leader said the White House intended to 
replace him with their “puppet”, an 
oblique reference to the West-
backed opposition leader 
Juan Guaido.
 
''There was a move intended to impose a puppet 
on Venezuela and I say three years later, where
 is Donald Trump's puppet”... asserted Maduro,
 referring to Guaido, who declared himself as
 the interim president of Venezuela in 2019 
with the backing of the former 
US administration.
 
“We show the world, the people of Venezuela, on
January 23rd, 2022, that we are standing here,
 victorious, and in political power,” he added.
 
Maduro referred to Guaido as a “puppet thief” and
 vowed to send him to prison, three years after the
 latter’s highly-publicized swearing-in ceremony 
as the ''interim president''.
 
“Fair and constitutional justice often takes time, but it
will come, it will come. Rest assured, the people of
Venezuela that there will be justice here,” Maduro
declared in his speech at Miraflores presidential 
palace, noting how the unpleasant political 
events of recent years in the Central 
American nation... have brought 
“more awareness” to people.
 
Earlier this month, Venezuela’s National Assembly 
President, Jorge Rodriguez, rejected calls for 
dialogue with the US-backed opposition, as 
long as Washington maintains pressure 
on Caracas, including the freeze on
foreign assets.
 
“Enough with the hypocrisy of dialogue! If you want
 talks, show respect. If you want talks, free Alex 
Saab. If you want talks, return our gold, which
 you stole,” Rodriguez remarked on January 
5th, referring to Colombian businessman 
Alex Saab, an ally of President Maduro 
who has been extradited to the US..
on
 ''money laundering'' charges.
 
Negotiations between the Venezuelan government and
 the Western-backed opposition came to a halt late last
 year, after Saab was taken into custody and rendered
 to the US. 
 
The negotiations, mediated by Norway and hosted by
 Mexico, were aimed at resolving the years-long crisis
 in the Latin American country. Rodriguez led the
 government delegation in Mexico.
 
Guaido, meanwhile, used the commemorative
 occasion on Sunday to call on his supporters 
to take part in “peaceful” marches, against 
Maduro on February 12th, as the country's 
vastly divided opposition gears up for the 
2024 presidential elections.
 
Maduro’s government “fears the streets, fears
the organization of the base,” Guaido told 
journalists after the event... held to
mark 
the anniversary of the end
of 
Venezuela’s military 
dictatorship.
 
The US-backed opposition... suffered a massive 
defeat in regional elections, in November 2021.
 
“We are talking about organizing ourselves from now,
 we’re talking about a presidential election,” Guaido 
asserted, insisting that opposition parties must 
unite in order to prepare for the 2024 
presidential vote.
 
Many US-allied western countries...  originally
 recognized Guaido as Venezuela’s president, 
but since the 2021 legislative elections, a 
number of Western countries, as well as 
the European Union, see him as an 
opposition figure.
 
The US has imposed several rounds of crippling
 economic sanctions on Venezuela, aimed at 
ousting Maduro and replacing him 
with Guaidó.
 
The sanctions, which include the illegal confiscation
 of Venezuelan assets abroad, plus an economic
 blockade, have caused poverty, lack of access 
to basic goods, gasoline shortages, and 
power cuts.
 
Despite the US sanctions, Venezuela has, however, 
managed to double its oil production over the past 
months, thanks to Iran's help --- in defiance of the
 sanctions against Caracas.
 
Iran’s own oil sales have been targeted by 
US sanctions since 2018 -- when a former 
administration in Washington unilaterally 
pulled out of an international agreement
on Iran’s nuclear program and imposed
 sanctions on the country.
 
Both Iran and Venezuela have managed to 
withstand the economic pressures of the 
unprecedented sanctions... while
gradually finding ways to get
 around them.
 
 
 
___________________________

 
 
Putin and Diaz-Canel 
discuss strategic 
cooperation
by Ileana Ferrer Fonte
January 24th, 12:31pm (Prensa Latina) 
 
Russian President Vladimir Putin and his Cuban
 counterpart, Miguel Diaz-Canel, on Monday 
held an in-depth dialogue on economic
and
 commercial cooperation and the
 investment projects between 
the two countries, the 
Kremlin reported 
on Monday.
 
During the talks, Diaz-Canel thanked Russia for 
the humanitarian assistance provided to Cuba
 to deal with the effects of the Covid-19 
pandemic, the communiqué stated.
 
Putin and Diaz-Canel also discussed the importance 
to achieve greater coordination of joint actions in 
the international sphere, according to the 
principles of the strategic partnership 
and the traditions of friendship and 
mutual understanding.
 
The two heads of State confirmed the intention of
 working closely together to strengthen bilateral 
relations, and agreed to intensify contacts at
 several levels.
 


______________________________



National Police reiterate 
support for Honduran 
president-elect
 by Ileana Ferrer Fonte
January 24th, 12:16pm (Prensa Latina) 
 
The National Police on Monday reiterated its full
 support for Constitutional President Xiomara 
Castro, representative of the Liberty and 
Refoundation (LIBRE) Party, and elected 
by Honduras' people in the November 
28th general elections.
 
The Honduran authorities alluded to Article 293 of 
the Constitution on police duties, “a permanent 
professional institution of the State, apolitical 
in the party sense, of a purely civilian nature,
 in charge of watching over the preservation 
of public order.”
 
In a communiqué, the National Police recalled the
 nature of that corps, which is attached to the
 Secretariat of Security, one of 16 belonging
 to the Executive Power, and its condition 
subjected to the final authority of the
 president elected by popular vote.
 
The National Police members, the text referred, are
expecting instructions, and calling on the unity of 
all Armed Institutions of the country, to defend 
and fight for the citizens’ decision and avoid
attacks on the physical integrity of the
highest authority.


 
______________________________


 
 
Iran’s UN Rights Restored After
 Paying Off Membership Arrears
January 24th,11:42am (teleSUR)
 
South Korea confirmed that it has paid 
Tehran's delayed membership dues,
 amounting to US$18 million, to the 
UN, from Iranian funds frozen in 
the country.
 
Iran's ambassador to the United Nations Majid 
Takht-Ravanchi, announced that his country 
regained its right to vote at the UN General 
Assembly after its membership dues to the
 organization were paid by South Korea 
with frozen Iranian funds.
 
He said that as soon as Iran's arrears are received 
in New York, the country's voting rights should
 naturally be restored. South Korea confirmed
 on Sunday that it has paid Tehran's member-
ship delayed dues, amounting to US$18 
million, to the UN from Iranian funds 
frozen in the country.
 
Earlier, Takht-Ravanchi said that negotiations were 
underway between Tehran and the world body to 
lift the suspension of the country's right to vote 
at the General Assembly, and enable the 
country to pay its membership dues to
 the organization, expressing hopes 
that the talks would soon yield 
favorable results. 
 
He noted that Iran, as an active UN member,
has 
always been committed to paying its 
membership dues on time, and has 
proven this in practice.
 
The ambassador stressed -- that Iran has faced
 problems with the payment of its membership
 fee for the second consecutive year -- due to 
the sanctions imposed by the US, which
have not only undermined Iran's ability
to purchase humanitarian items
 and
medical devices... but are also 
impeding the UN's work.
 
Iranian assets of over 7 billion U.S. dollars are frozen
 in two South Korean banks. UN Secretary-General
 Antonio Guterres announced earlier this month 
that Iran and seven other countries, have had 
their voting rights suspended over late dues.
 
Iran had also lost its voting rights last year when the
 U.S. sanctions had blocked Iranian access to its 
billions of dollars frozen abroad. These U.S. 
sanctions have been imposed since 2018, 
when ex-President Donald Trump 
withdrew from Iran's 2015 
nuclear deal.
 
Since April 2021, rounds of talks have been held
 between Iran and other remaining parties, 
namely: Russia, China, Britain, France, 
and Germany, in Vienna - to restore a
nuclear pact 
officially known as the
Joint 
Comprehensive Plan of 
Action...  with the US
 indirectly involved.
 
 
_________________________
 
 
 
Peruvian Congress Obstructs 
Constituent Assembly
 January 24th, (teleSUR)


The Peruvian right managed to pass a legal reform
 that seriously limits the possibility of the Executive
 branch calling a referendum.
 
On Sunday, Peru's President Pedro Castillo strongly
 criticized the opposition-controlled Congress for
 approving a bill that modifies... the "Law on 
Participation Rights and Citizen Control" 
(PRC). As a result, the conditions for 
calling referendums change in an 
unconstitutional sense.
 
He pointed out that Congress insists to maintain
 a Constitution that mutilates the right to a
referendum for a Constituent Assembly. 

According to current legislation... the 
Castillo administration can challenge 
the reform of the PRC law before the 
Constitutional Court.
 
The refusal of the Peruvian elites to change the 
constitution imposed during the dictatorship of 
Alberto Fujimori (1990-200), contradicts the 
democratic order...  explained President 
Castillo, who recalled that the political 
power in a republic emanates from 
the People.
 
Castillo's statements are essentially motivated by
 the action of the Congress, which established 
ad-hoc protections for Article 206 of the 
Constitution so only a parliamentary 
majority can approve any 
constitutional reform.
 
The actions of the Congress were also harshly
 criticized by progressive social and political 
organizations... because they seek to 
obstruct the call for a Constituent 
Assembly.
 
According to the current laws, the Executive Branch
 can initiate a legal action before the Constitutional 
Court... if a norm approved by the Congress
 infringes the participation of citizens in 
political processes aimed at carrying 
out structural changes.
 
The Council of Ministers also warned that the norm
 approved by the opposition-controlled Congress
 violates citizens' political participation rights
 recognized in international treaties.
 
 
 
___________________________________



Ethiopia has received
significant 
support for
Tigray in recent months
by Luis Linares Petrov
January 24th, 9:16am (Prensa Latina) 
 
Several organizations have supported Ethiopia's
 efforts to help the population of Tigray with 
significant amounts of medical and food 
supplies during the last six months.. the 
Ministry of Foreign Affairs says today.
 
According to the Foreign Ministry, the country
 received around 1,480 million birr (approx.
 298 million dollars) in food products and 
about 128 million (2,575,000 dollars) 
destined for medical care.
 
The contribution, in the case of medicines and
 pharmaceuticals, should have increased what
 the Ministry of Health deposited in centres in 
Mekelle, the state capital, and Shire, when 
the government declared a humanitarian
 ceasefire, according to the communiqué.
 
As of last July, “658 metric tons of medicines and
 other supplies for the health system were 
delivered to the region in 18 trucks
 through seven organizations.”
 
According to the same communiqué, Tigray also
 received ready-to-use therapeutic food - for the
 treatment of malnourished children, pregnant 
and lactating mothers - as well as various 
high-quality dietary supplements.
 
The Ministry also denounced that the government 
is facing obstacles to guaranteeing access to
collaboration ---- such as the aggression 
by the Tigray Popular Liberation Front, 
which prevented its passage through 
Abala city, in Afar, in December.
 
A war has been raging in Tigray... since November
2020, between the federal army and the TPLF, an
 organization declared as terrorist by Parliament 
and accused of violating human rights, among
 various crimes.
 
 
__________________________________

 
 
Ethiopia describes US 
sanctions as obsolete
by Ileana Ferrer Fonte
January 24th, 7:40am (Prensa Latina)
 
Ethiopia describes the United States' sanctions to
 pressure the government to end the war against
 the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) as
 obsolete, according to an official state-
ment 
released on Monday.
 
''I believe that the sanctions by the US Government are
 a mode of obsolete engagement, especially because
 countries such as Ethiopia are developing and are
 developed in many aspects,'' Billene Seyoum,
 Foreign Press Secretary for the Office
of 
the Prime Minister, said.
 
Seyoum commented that Washington’s decision to 
exclude the country from the African Growth &
Opportunity Act (AGOA)... an agreement 
established to facilitate and regulate 
trade exchanges between the US
 and countries of the continent.
 
The White House announced on January 1st, 2022, 
Ethiopia’s exclusion from the AGOA, due to its
 “concerns about human rights violations 
perpetrated by the Government and 
other parties in the widespread 
conflict in northern Ethiopia.”
 
AGOA’s suspension provoked complaints and other
 reactions, included that of Prime Minister Abiy 
Ahmed, who accused the US of not taking
stand against the TPLF.
 
This group has been accused of violating human
 rights and has been declared as terrorist 
by Parliament.
 
 
 
____________________________________



 In 'phone call with Erdogan,
 Raeisi says Iran eyes
long-
term strategic
ties with Turkey
January 22nd, 7:07pm (PressTV)
 
Iran’s President Ebrahim Raeisi says the Islamic 
Republic seeks to promote long-term inclusive
 relations with Turkey and welcomes plans to
 boost bilateral strategic cooperation.
 
The Iranian president made the remarks in a 'phone
call with his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip 
Erdogan, on Saturday, saying the two 
countries have potential to expand 
cooperation in mutual and 
regional issues.
 
“Tehran supports the establishment of lasting
 peace and stability in the region,” Raeisi added.
 
He emphasized that respect for the countries’ national
sovereignty and territorial integrity, is the sole way to
establish sustainable security and stability across 
the region.
 
During a telephone conversation with his Turkish
 counterpart in December, President Raeisi had 
said the region does not need foreigners' 
meddling because its problems should 
be resolved through intra-regional 
interaction.
 
"We insist that the region's problems should
be 
resolved among the regional countries
t
hemselves, and through the active 
participation of the countries [of
the region]," the Iranian 
president had said.
 
Iran, reliable partner of Turkey 
in energy sector: Erdogan
 
Erdogan, for his part, said Turkey regards Iran 
as a reliable supplier of its energy demands 
and seeks to increase cooperation 
with Tehran.
 
He added that Ankara has drawn up plans for
 strengthening economic cooperation with 
Tehran in various fields... and voiced 
optimism that he will visit Iran soon.
 
Pointing to the Iranian president’s recent meeting
 with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in
 Moscow, Erdogan expressed hope that the 
entire region would witness the useful 
outcomes of the trip.
 
The Turkish president also voiced his country’s
readiness to cooperate with Tehran on finding 
possible ways to increase regional security.


 
_____________________________________



Saudi Deposited in Lebanon’s 
Central Bank $1 Billion, 
Plundered $40 Billion
January 22nd, 3:28pm (al Manar)
 
With the advent of the former prime minister, Rafik
 Hariri, Lebanon adopted the rentier economy 
policy -- which is based on supporting the 
services sectors at the expense of the
 productive ones.
 
According to that policy, the banking sector was
 prioritized, to the extent of raising the interest
 rates in order to attract capital.
 
Thus, the investors tended to deposit their funds in
 the banks in order to benefit from the high interest
 rates and avoid running businesses which may
 not be lucrative.
 
Among those depositors were Saudi royals and
 businessmen who took the advantage of a 40%
 interest rate, in order to gain huge amounts 
of money.
 
According to reports, the Saudis gained around  
$40 billion, while their government deposited 
only $1 billion in Lebanon’s Central Bank.
 
Meanwhile, Saudi deals with Lebanon with abundant
 superiority and alleges to be the basic funder of the 
Lebanese government and sets political conditions
 to pursue its ‘support’ policy. Whereas, facts say 
that it exploited its relation with some political 
parties in Lebanon, in order to make huge 
amounts of money.
 
Source: Al-Manar English Website
 
 
 
_______________________________

 
 
Violence in Colombia 
tarnishes electoral
 atmosphere this week
 by Aleynes Palacios Hurtado
January 22nd, 1:03pm (Prensa Latina) 
 
Two attacks, in which a person was killed and 
several people were injured, and a failed one, 
10 masaccres and the assassination of nine 
social leaders were reported in Colombia 
this week in the run-up to the
 legislative election.
 
On Wednesday, a car bomb exploded in Saravena
 Municipality, in the Arauca Department --- and 
damaged the premises of the Transportation 
Terminal and other institutions and killed a 
security guard.
 
The explosion also damaged the Hector Arilo Building,
 seemingly the main target of the attack because of 
the presence there of leaders of several social
 organizations from this territory, five of 
whom were injured.
 
On Friday, the police confirmed they found a bomb set
 to be activated at Casa Alternativa (Alternative House)
in this capital, a productive venture undertaken by
 peace signatories, in which pre-election 
activities take place.
 
On the other hand, 10 massacres against Colombians
 have been perpetrated in the first three weeks of the
 new year, and 9 social leaders assassinated in this
 period, something that shows the spiral of 
violence in that South American nation.
 
The Arauca Department, on the border with Venezuela,
 is one where violence is more serious due to clashes
 between armed groups of the so-called dissidents of 
the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia and 
soldiers of the National Liberation Army.
 
Given this scenario, worsened since early 2022, the 
Comprehensive System for Peace on Friday urged 
the Colombian government to encourage or 
facilitate humanitarian talks between the 
armed groups involved in the
 escalation of the conflict
 in Arauca.
 
In a statement, it reported that at least 34 homicides
 have been committed in the first 20 days of 2022; 
269 forced displacement complaints have been 
filed, that is, about 1,000 displaced people;
two
 kidnappings have been committed,
and 
indigenous communities, have 
been confined.
 
 
_____________________________



Bolivian President praises 
new Latin American model
by Ana Luisa Brown
January 22nd, 1:15pm (Prensa Latina) 
 
Bolivia's President Luis Arce said today, in a tweet,
that the new model being debated in Latin America 
brought positive economic and social results.
 
“We are very honoured to receive the Simon Bolivar
 Medal, a distinction of the Andean Parliament, for
 having contributed to improving the quality of 
life in our country and that Latin America is 
debating a new model, with positive 
economic and social results,” the
 president wrote on his 
Twitter account.
 
The regional legislative chamber conferred its 
highest distinction to the economist and 
professor for his contribution to 
development, democracy 
and integration.
 
Arce received the award from the head of the Andean
 Parliament, Juan Pablo Letelier, at the Casa Grande
 del Pueblo (government headquarters) on the 13th
 anniversary of the founding of the 
Plurinational State.
 
Letelier, for his part, reiterated that the Simon Bolivar 
Award for Latin American Integration is the highest
 distinction conferred by the regional parliament 
to personalities who contribute to regional 
development with an integrationist vision.
 
 

____________________________________



 
Bolivia ratifies commitment 
with the defense of natural 
resources
by Ana Luisa Brown
January 22nd, 12:34 (Prensa Latina) 
 
The President of Bolivia, Luis Arce, called today for 
unity, particularly within the governing Movement 
Towards Socialism (MAS), against destabilization
 attempts, as he ratified his government's 
commitment to defend the country's
natural resources.
 
“Our struggle will not succeed if individual ambitions
 and internal confrontations flourish”, he affirmed,
 while calling on social movements, popular and 
professional sectors to make common cause 
in defense of the model promoted by MAS 
against the destabilizing actions of 
the opposition.
 
In his speech, delivered at the Casa Grande del 
Pueblo on the occasion of the 13th anniversary 
of the founding of the Plurinational State, the 
chief executive --- highlighted the economic 
progress, that places the South American
 nation in the third place of growth in 
the region.
 
In this regards, Arce assured that his government 
will continue to defend the nation’s natural 
resources, on behalf of sovereignty 
and independence.
 
The ceremony began with the laying of wreath (wajta)
dedicated to the Pachamama (Mother Earth) - with the
participation of the President and the vice president, 
David Choquehuanca.....  among other government 
authorities and the national Legislative Assembly.
 
Representatives of the Unity Pact that brings together 
social organizations associated to the Movement
 Towards Socialism, the Bolivian Workers’ Union 
and other sectors of society accompanied the 
ancestral event, with the request for unity, 
progress and integrity.


 
________________________________

 
 
Syria suspends work in
 state institutions due
to 
energy crisis
 by Aleynes Palacios Hurtado
January 22nd, 11:33am (Prensa Latina)
 
The Syrian government on Saturday decided to
 suspend work or reduce working hours at 
ministries and public institutions to the 
minimum, due to the fuel shortage... 
caused by the economic blockade.
 
According to a notice issued by the government, 
this decision will take effect next week and was 
made due to low temperatures, and the need to
 allocate the country’s fuel reserves to heating
 citizens’ homes.
 
The notice stresses that the fuel crisis is the result 
of unjust economic sanctions imposed by the US
 and the EU, which have been exacerbated by
 extreme weather conditions.
 
Meanwhile, the Ministries of Education and Higher
 Education, announced the suspension of classes 
in all schools & universities across the country, 
& the postponement of exams until a later date.
 
Syria blames the worsening of the fuel crisis on the 
US occupation of over 90 percent of its oil fields, 
the blockade and the economic sanctions 
imposed by Washington and its allies.
 
Before the war, this country produced over 380,000 
oil barrels per day and, due to the occupation and
terrorist attacks --- that figure has currently 
dropped to just 100,000 barrels, 80,000 of 
which are being looted by US soldiers. 
The country needs over 165,000 
barrels per day.
 
According to weather forecasts... a cold front 
will affect the country in the next eight days, 
and temperatures will drop to -10 degrees
 Celsius in some mountainous areas.
 
 
_________________________________
 
 
 
Nicaragua expects to export 
lobster to EU countries
 by Ana Luisa Brown
January 22nd, 11:07 (Prensa Latina) 
 
Nicaragua plans today to export lobster to European
 Union countries, after the regional bloc authorized it,
 and the Central American nation passed verification
 of quality standards of fishery products.
 
According to the Minister of Finance and Public 
Credit, Ivan Acosta, representatives of that 
community reviewed the seafood 
processing plants and verified 
the health measures, before 
admitting the application 
for entry into.... that 
demanding market.
 
He recalled that the sector receives annual profits 
of more than 200 million dollars, with an increase 
of 27 percent in international sales last year, and
 predicted a rise in 2022, as a result of the
 establishment of more favorable prices 
and better management of the 
production chain.
 
According to Acosta, the government of the 
Sandinista National Liberation Front (FSLN) 
attends and promotes small and medium 
fishing producers, through technical 
assistance and the delivery of 
equipment such as... sea 
engines, boats, vacuum 
flasks and fishing 
equipment.
 
The official also mentioned.. that the Ministry 
of Community, Cooperative, and Associative 
Family Economy, assisted 25,097 business
-men last year through training, and the
strengthening of community forestry
 and resin management, especially
 in the Northern Caribbean.
 
 
__________________________________


Latin America and the Caribbean
 are nobody’s yard, Cuba says
by Aleynes Palacios Hurtado
January 22nd, 9:14am (Prensa Latina) 
 
Latin America and the Caribbean are nobody's
 back nor front yard, Cuban Foreign Minister, 
Bruno Rodriguez, said, after US President 
Joe Biden made a statement about it.
 
The foreign minister tweeted that the Pan-American
 hegemonic system that has been promoted by the
 United States, since the 19th century, pursues
that
 racist and colonialist ambition.
 
He added that those concepts “have been in
 crisis, for a long time, and will not recover.”
 
Also on Twitter, Director General for Latin America 
and the Caribbean, at the Ministry of Foreign
A
ffairs, Eugenio Martinez, noted that the
US 
president talks about “back yard”,
“front 
yard”, in order to improve
his image in 
the region.
 
However, he said, Biden “cannot help to show his 
true intentions, through the worst in US policy, 
which seeks to limit sovereignty, in order to 
guarantee domination interests.”
 
Deputy Director for Europe and Canada at the Cuban
 Foreign Ministry, Nelson Tamayo, also condemned
 Washington’s hegemonic attempts on Twitter.
 
He said the US administration cannot handle its
 domestic crises, and “causes instability in
 international relations by creating chaos
 and taking advantage of differences in 
favour of its domination interests.”
 
 
 
______________________________



China says suspension of
 its airlines in the US
is unreasonable
by Martin Hacthoun
January 22nd, 8:28am  (Prensa Latina) 
 
China, today, considered very unreasonable, 
(and demanded the United States to revoke)
 the recently announced suspension of 44 
flights operated by four of its airlines.
 
Beijing urged Washington to stop interfering and
 restricting... the normal flow of trade routes 
served by its domestic carriers between
 the two countries.
 
Its call followed the White House’s decision 
to suspend the routes of:  Air China, China 
Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines 
and Xiamen Airlines, scheduled from
January 30th, to next March 29th.
 
The US Department of Transportation said Friday
 that it took the action in reciprocity to a similar 
one applied by China to Delta Air Lines, United 
Airlines and American Airlines, because they 
recently transported passengers with 
Covid-19.
 
According to the claim, China’s actions violated
 treaties on airline access between the
 two countries.
 
In the context of the Covid-19 pandemic, the
two
 powers had other frictions on passenger 
flight operations, due to sanitary protocols.
 
 
 
_____________________________________
 



Call to take Plaza de Mayo 
to protest IMF demands
 by Elsy Fors Garzon
January 22nd, 1:52am (Prensa Latina) 
 
Social movements in Argentina called to take Plaza
 de Mayo, next week, to reject the conditions 
proposed by the International Monetary 
Fund to ''adjust'' the external debt, 
local media reported here.
 
The demonstrators will express their support for
 President Alberto Fernández and the Economy 
Minister Martín Guzmán who, in the opinion
 of the organizers  ---  have shown firmness 
and courage in the face of the demands 
of the financial institution, whose 
proposals, if applied, would 
prevent the exercise of 
social policies in the
 southern country.
 
Daniel Menéndez, the national coordinator of
SOMOS/Barrios de Pie, expressed that they 
are willing to “turn the tables and support
 the government’s arm-wrestling with
the IMF,”
 --- highlights the Buenos
Aires Deputies
 web platform.
 
In turn, Menéndez attacked on Twitter against 
the national right --- that supports the Fund.
 
“A serious agreement -- they say. Those who asked 
for 57 billion dollars to return in a couple of years. 
Those who never called Congress: to take the 
debt with the IMF. They have a cement face,”
 he sentenced.
 
The IMF wants the current Argentine government
 to emulate the former President Mauricio Macri 
(2015-2019), the Minister of Public Works,
 Gabriel Katopodis, denounced
 last Wednesday.
 
In statements to Uncover Radio, Katopodis argued
how complex it is, to overcome the macrism 
pandemic, and, he assured, they are not 
willing to risk, or stop, the recovery 
achieved;  “We're going to continue
leveraging Public
 Works,” he said.
 
Likewise, the official commented that, upon his arrival
 in office, there were 300 public works with paralysis
 of 70 percent, however, today 3,500 are undertaken 
...and no governor or mayor can denounce not 
having them in their territory.
 
The Argentine Minister of Public Works wonders what
 the macrism did with the 44 billion dollars disbursed 
by the IMF, the reason for the external debt, that 
today, suffocates the national economy.
 
 

______________________________________



 
Syria recovers five 
archaeological pieces 
smuggled from Palmira
by Ana Luisa Brown
January 22nd, 00:30am (Prensa Latina) 
 
Lebanese cultural authorities returned to Syria 
five ancient pieces, including statues, stolen 
in 2011 from the ancient city of Palmira, in 
this country's desert.
 
The ceremony to hand over the antiquities took 
place at the National Museum of Beirut in the 
presence of sector officials from the
 two nations.
 
During the ceremony, Lebanese Minister of Culture
 Muhammad Wissam Al-Murtadha commented that 
the return of the pieces is part of their bilateral 
cooperation --- and stressed that his country 
and Syria share a common history and the
 aspiration for a better future.
 
 For his part... Syria's Ambassador to Lebanon, Ali
 Abdulkarim, pointed out how his nation managed
 to preserve a large part of its antiquities, and
 transferred them to the Damascus Museum, 
and other similar facilities to prevent them 
from falling into the hands of terrorism.
 
Damascus is awaiting the return of other pieces 
that belong to it ....and are currently in the 
National Museum, in Beirut, he said.
 
 
 
_______________________________________



 
President Aoun Cites Efforts 
Underway --- to Complete 
Economic Recovery Plan
January 21st, 9pm (al Manar)
 
President of the Republic, General Michel Aoun, 
hoped that the new year will be the beginning 
of Lebanon’s revival --- from the successive 
crises it had witnessed, & that Lebanon 
would be stronger than it was before, 
“Because it is a country worthy 
of life”.
 
The President stressed -- that he will
 make all efforts to achieve this goal.
 
In addition, President Aoun affirmed: that work is
 underway, especially with the Cabinet, in order 
to complete the expected recovery plan, 
wishing everyone cooperation for the 
benefit of the Lebanese people,
who 
can no longer tolerate
more life 
complications.
 
The positions of President Aoun, came, while
meeting the members of the consular corps, 
on the traditional annual visit... to exchange
greetings with the advent of the new year.
 
 
Source: NNA
 
 
____________________________
 


Hezbollah Attitude towards State
 Budget, Economic Recovery Plan
 to Prioritize Citizens’ Interests
-- MP Fadlallah
January 21st, 8:56pm (al Manar)
 
Member of the “Loyalty to Resistance” bloc, MP 
Hasan Fadlallah, indicated that Hezbollah will 
study thoroughly, the state budget, and the 
economic recovery plan... before finalizing 
its attitude towards them, adding that the
 Party’s stance will prioritize the interests 
of the citizens.
 
During a political seminar, in Beirut’s southern 
suburb, MP Fadlallah reiterated that Hezbollah 
and Amal Movement's decision to resume 
attending the cabinet sessions, springs 
from... their commitment to the socio-
economic conditions of the citizens.
 
Some political parties tried to politically exploit
the Hezbollah and Amal Movement decision to 
boycott the ministerial council’s sessions - 
over the unconstitutional performance of 
the judicial investigator into Beirut Port 
blast - according to MP Fadlallah.
 
MP Fadlallah noted that the US sanctions hit a 
Hajj tour company, adding that Washington’s 
pressures on Hezbollah's social incubation, 
will never affect the resistance in the face 
of the Zionist enemy.
 
MP Fadlallah indicated that the US administration
deludes the Lebanese public, because it imposes
sanctions on Hezbollah while it sends mediators 
to coordinate a direct contact with the Party, 
adding that the Resistance... has always 
rejected the US attempts in this regard.
 
Hezbollah and Amal Movement announced 
on Saturday they both agree to attend the 
ministerial council sessions... devoted to 
approve the state budge, the economic 
recovery plan, and all the decrees 
related to the improvement of the
 socio-economic conditions of 
the Lebanese people.
 
We will attend the government sessions in refutation
of the false deactivation accusations thrown on us 
and in response to the needs of the honorable 
citizens, as well as the call of the economic,
 professional and syndicalistic sectors,  
Hezbollah and Amal Movement added.
 
In a joint statement, Hezbollah, Amal Movement
 reiterated their rejection of politicizing the 
judiciary's work, adding that they both 
will continue endeavoring to correct
 the judicial path and restore justice.
 
The statement explained that the deep crisis
manifested in the unprecedented inflation, 
the detainment of the depositors’ funds in
the banks, the deterioration of the public 
services, and the political complications
imposed on Hezbollah &Amal Movement
made them exert much effort and make 
concessions, in order to facilitate the 
cabinet formation.
 
The two parties stressed... that the basic way of
resolving the crisis and alleviating the citizens’ 
agonies, lies in the presence of a strong, 
capable and well-trusted government.
 
The judicial investigator into Beirut Port blast 
Tarek Al-Bitar’s unconstitutional performance,
legal violations, and a blatant politicization of 
the file imposed on Hezbollah and Amal 
Movement --- led them to suspend 
attending the ministerial council 
...as all the legal, political and 
popular attempts of pushing 
Al-Bitar to recuse himself, 
were blocked.
 
In this regard, the two parties called on the 
executive authorities to correct the judicial 
path and preserve a commitment to the 
Constitution: which rejects involving 
a humanitarian cause in anyone's
political interests.
 
Al-Bitar had issued arrest warrants against 
officials as well as military figures, on an 
illogical basis, pushing the defendants 
and observers, to cast doubts on 
his probe.
 
On August 4th, 2020, a massive blast rocked 
Beirut Port, killing around 195 citizens 
and injuring over 6,000 others.

The 
explosion also caused much 
destruction in the capital 
and its suburbs.
 
Source: Al-Manar English Website
 
 
_____________________________



Chilean President-Elect Boric 
Presents Cabinet Members
 January 21st, 4:22pm (teleSUR)
 
His cabinet includes members from traditional centre
-left organizations that did not support him in the first
 round of elections. Among them are militants of the
 Liberal and Radical parties.
 
In a ceremony held on Friday at the Chilean Natural
 History Museum, President-elect Gabriel Boric 
made public the names of those politicians 
who will compose his cabinet.
 
Fourteen of 24 ministries will be headed by women: 
Antonia Urrejola (Foreign Affairs), Maya Fernandez 
(Defense), Jeanette Vega (Social Development),
 Marcela Rios (Justice), Jeanette Jara (Labour),
 Maria Yarza (Health), Marcela Hernando 
(Mining), Javiera Toro (National Assets), 
Maria Rojas (Environment), Alexandra 
Benado (Sport), Antonia Orellana
 (Women), Julieta Brodsky
 (Culture), Camila Vallejo 
(General Secretary), and
 Izkia Siches (Interior).
 
The rest of the cabinet is made up of Marco Avila
 (Education), Esteban Valenzuela (Agriculture), 
Juan Carlos Muñoz (Transport/Telecommun-
ications), Claudio Huepe (Energy), & Flavio 
Andres (Science &Technology).
 
"Today a new chapter in our democratic history
 begins to be written. We do not start from 
scratch: we know there is a story that 
elevates and inspires us," Boric said 
implicitly referring to former leftist 
President, Michelle Bachelet’s 
cabinet, which was gender-
balanced. 
 
"We are accompanied in this team by ministers 
from different backgrounds and formations: 
our cabinet we will be diverse, like our
country,"
 he stated. 

The San Sebastian University Director Jaime
 Abedrapo welcomed this strategy, stressing 
that it will help Boric to find support to his 
structural reforms, in the new-elected 
parliament, in which pro-government 
lawmakers’ representation only 
reaches 25 percent.
 
"We are going to make all the changes we proposed...
 because we are convinced that most Chileans want
 structural changes that allow them to have a 
decent life," he stressed.
 
 
______________________________
 
 
 
Repsol Oil Spill Causes 
'Ecocide' in Pacific Ocean
 January 21st, 4pm (teleSUR)
 
On Thursday, Peru's President Pedro Castillo
 announced urgent actions to sanction those 
responsible for the oil spill at La 
Pampilla refinery.
 
From these facilities, which are operated by the
Spanish company Repsol, at least 6,000 barrels 
of oil were poured into the Pacific Ocean. They 
contaminated an area of 1.2 square kilometres.
 
"The ecological damage to our coastline is
 inadmissible. The State has ordered 
criminal, civil, and administrative 
actions, so as to protect our 
country's sovereignty and 
wellbeing," Castillo said, 
after visiting one of the
 most affected beaches
 in the Callao province.
 
"We are facing one of the largest ecocides that have
occurred on our coasts and seas. The government 
will sanction those responsible for damage, that
tragically affects flora and fauna," he stressed
...noting that the oil spill also endangers the 
livelihoods of thousands of Peruvians who
make their living from marine and 
coastal resources.
 
Castillo was also emphatic in pointing out that his
 administration will not tolerate that corporate 
actions: "trample our ecosystems and the
honour of our people, with impunity."
 
On Thusday, the Environmental Ministry's Agency for
 Environmental Assessment and Enforcement (OEFA)
 determined that the oil spill had directly affected a 
marine area of at least 1.2 square kilometres. Due
 to the movement of the waves, however, the
 contamination reached land and affected 
1.7 square kilometres of beaches.
 
The Spanish company holds that the spill was 
a consequence... of the intense waves that 
occurred after the eruption of a volcano 
in Tonga. The opinion of experts,
 however, is different. 
 
The Peruvian Navy affirms that the waves had 
nothing to do with the rupture of the oil 
infrastructure that preceded the spill,”
outlet El Comercio reported...  adding
that navy technicians are conducting 
an in-depth investigation into what 
happened.
 
 
 
_________________________
 
 
 
Castro to Take The Oath 
As Honduran President 
Before A Judge
January 21st, 3:43pm (teleSUR)
 
She will not attend a swearing-in ceremony carried
 out by a Congress whose President was elected
 through political treason.
 
Xiomara Castro announced she will swear 
as president of Honduras before a judge
instead of doing it before Jorge Calix, 
who was elected as president of 
Congress on Friday... when a 
betrayal was consummated 
within the ranks of the 
future ruling party.
 
In October 2021, her Freedom and Refounding Party 
(LIBRE) nominated lawmaker Luis Redondo for the
 presidency of Congress as part of an agreement 
with the Saving Honduras Party (PSH). On Friday
 morning, however, an unprecedented event 
altered that possibility.
 
In an act described as a political betrayal, 20
 lawmakers from the president-elect's own 
party allowed the election of Calix as 
speaker of the Congress with
 their votes.
 
"The Honduran people voted in the elections.. for a 
true change to eliminate the neoliberal model that
 prevailed for years in the country. Fanned by the
 ambition for power, a group has decided to 
continue the regime...  of corruption and 
impunity," Castro condemned, recalling
 that the legislators of the conservative
 National Party (PN) nominated Calix. 
 
According to Castro, the action of the 20 
treacherous lawmakers generates a 
wake-up call for the Honduran 
people to be vigilant and 
ready to enforce their 
will for change in 
the future.
 
"I will rule by the hand of our people, and I will 
fight tirelessly until we re-establish the rule 
of law," she assured, stressing how political 
unity will be fundamental to achieving 
this goal.
 
The Parliament’s board of directors will be
 permanently installed on Sunday and will
 begin its legislative term on Jan. 25, two 
days before Castro’s swearing-in.
 
 
______________________
 
 
 
New Migrants Caravan 
Leaves Tapachula 
Heading To US
January 21st, 1:02pm (teleSUR)
 
This is the first migrant caravan to leave 
Tapachula, so far, in 2022. Last year, 
several caravans with thousands 
of migrants left this city.
 
On Thursday night, a new caravan made up 
of some 500 migrants left for the US from 
Tapachula city in the state of Chiapas
 near the border with Guatemala.
 
Before undertaking their long journey on foot, the
 asylum seekers were concentrated in the offices
 of the National Institute of Migration, where
 they tried to obtain documents that would
allow 
them free transit through
Mexican territory.
 
This group of migrants is mainly made up of Central 
Americans, Colombians, Haitians, and Africans.
 Among them, families traveling with minors.
 
When leaving, the migrants asked human rights 
organizations for help to provide them with 
food and water during their journey to the
 northern border.
 
On Tuesday.... the caravan members marched through
 the streets of Tapachula demanding that the Federal
 government regularize their situation --- through
 documents that allow them to move through 
Mexican territory, without fear of being
 deported.
 
This is the first migrant caravan to leave Tapachula, 
so far, in 2022. Last year, several caravans with
 thousands of migrants left this city. Most of 
them, however, were stopped and 
dismantled by the Mexican 
security forces.
 
Despite the controls, the migrants usually reach the
 northern border. In fiscal year 2021, for example, 
the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office 
(CBP) detected over 1.7 million undocumented
 immigrants on the border.
 
 
______________________________



Mexican president demands
 IMF’s fair treatment 
of Argentina
 by Ana Luisa Brown
January 21st, 1:01pm (Prensa Latina) 
 
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador 
on Friday --- demanded that the International 
Monetary Fund (IMF) treat Argentina fairly, 
and urged it to assume its responsibility
 for Argentina's excessive debt.
 
At his morning press conference at the National
 Palace, the president noted that the IMF now 
wants to impose conditions on Argentina, 
which he knows will further impoverish
 the Argentine people.
 
He demanded that the IMF leaders act with honesty
 and ethics and just recognize that they made the
 mistake of giving credits to a bankrupt 
government (of the former President 
Mauricio Macri).... beyond what is
reasonable for political reasons 
....in order to try to see Macri
win the 
elections again.
 
They wanted him in power... and gave him money
 to try to do so, but what they did was aggravate
 Argentina’s economic and financial crisis.

Now
 they want the new government to pay them
 immediately for what they caused, and they
 are imposing completely unfair and
 immoral conditions, he said.
 
Hopefully the IMF will rectify this, and accept its
responsibility, as well as those allied foreign
 governments that promoted those credits
 (to Macri) that should have never been 
granted, he added.
 
 
___________________________
 
 
Colombian Left Starts
Process ------- 
To Elect
Presidential Candidates
January 21st, 12:20pm (teleSUR)
 
"We will promote the transition from a male-dominated
 society to a democratic system that defends women, 
from two centuries of violence to an era of peace," 
Senator Petro stated. 
 
On Friday, Senator Gustavo Petro and environmental
 activist Francia Marquez announced that they will
 participate in the primary elections that the 
"Historic Pact” coalition will hold on March
 13th, to define its candidate for the 
presidency of Colombia.
 
"We will promote the transition.... from an economy
 based on fossil fuels to a clean energy one, from a
male-dominated society to a democratic system 
that defends women, from two centuries of 
violence.. to an era of peace," 61-year-old 
politician, Petro, vowed.
 
He also pointed out that the Colombian parliament is
 in the hands of corrupt politicians, who are in 
charge of promoting anti-grassroots laws
 that respond to the interests of the elite.
 
"This reality is inconceivable. Regardless of their 
political orientation, the mission of every law-
maker must be to represent the people,"
Petro
 stated and thanked the former
Brazilian 
Presidents Lula da Silva
and Dilma
 Rousseff ------ for
supporting 
his campaign. 
 
"Our candidacy is an historic event for Black peoples,
Indigenous communities, women, LGBT citizens and
all oppressed and excluded persons," stated
Marquez, whom the BBC outlet included in
its list of the world’s 100 most inspiring 
and influential women, in 2019.
 
She vowed that her government will have a dignified, 
fair, equitable, egalitarian policy, that prioritizes 
the citizens' well-being, and eliminates the 
mismanagement  ---  of the anti-popular 
politicians who've governed Colombia.
 
So far, 13 politicians have registered as pre-
candidates for the first-round elections. 

According to... a voting intention 
poll conducted by the Strategic 
measurements firm -- Petro 
is likely to win this process 
with 34,72% of the ballots.
 
 
_____________________



Lopez Obrador makes official
--- possession of Deer Park
refinery
by Ana Luisa Brown
January 21st, 11:22am  (Prensa Latina) 
 
The President of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez
 Obrador, made official, on Friday, possession 
of the Deer Park, Texas refinery, which he 
described as transcendental in a plan to 
process all the oil that Mexico extracts.
 
In his morning press conference...  at the National
 Palace, the President referred to the capabilities
 of the new factory, previously dominated by the
transnational Shell... 
with control of 50.01% of
the shares, 
which are now Mexican.
 
In this way, he explained, Mexico is in a position to
 produce all the fuel it consumes, and become
an
 exporter, for which, it will fully process
1,8 billion barrels of crude oil per day.
 
The strategy that this country is applying, he recalled,
 is to eliminate dependence on the international 
market and use the crude oil that it extracts
 fundamentally in shallow waters and on 
land, in the production of gasoline, 
diesel and other fuels that it 
currently has to import.
 
The President explained that in order to achieve these
 goals, the Dos Bocas refinery is being built, the
 largest and most modern refinery in the world 
at this time --- and five others are being 
rehabilitated, which will enable this
 nation to be self-sufficient in a 
relatively short time, and 
become an exporter.
 
Lopez Obrador referred to the reasons for 
the electricity reform being promoted by
his administration... and what is being 
done...  to solve the serious problems 
inherited from previous governments,
during which, corruption and private 
businesses that affected the public 
treasury and the people, prevailed.
 
 
_____________________________


Haitians Demand Release
Of The 
Cuban Doctor
Kidnapped 
by Gangs
 January 20th, 2:06pm (teleSUR)

On Wednesday, Haitian citizens took to the streets
 to demand the release of Cuban doctor Daymara 
Perez, who was kidnapped by gangs in Petit 
Goave province, on January the 13th.
 
The demonstration led to a transport disruption on
 National Route 2 and businesses closure. "Crime
 cannot reign in our country. If Perez isn't freed, 
we will intensify our demonstration,"
protesters warned.
 
A resident in Haiti since 2020, Perez was heading
to work on a public bus --- when gang members 
grabbed her in the Martissant neighbourhood. 
 
“She was the only passenger who was kidnapped,”
 lamented her boss, the Notre Dame Hospital 
Director Fred Jasmin, who also confirmed 
that the abductors have demanded a 
US$100.000 ransom.
 
Although the doctor is not a special envoy of the
 Cuban government, its Embassy assured, that it 
will support her relatives and coordinate efforts 
with the Haitian Police to speed up her release. 


On Wednesday, Haitian Health Minister Laure Adrien
 denied reports of the Cuban government’s with-
drawal of 78 doctors from their missions
in Haiti, 
due to the increase in the
kidnapping of 
foreign residents.
 
“Over the last 15 days, only 28 Cuban co-operators
 have left the country: 10 of them traveled abroad, 
for vacations, and the other 18 left because they 
had already finished their missions,” 
Adrien detailed.
 
Between 2020 and 20021, the Centre for Human 
Rights Analysis and Research (CARDH) counted
 1,000 kidnapping cases, 81 of which, had
 foreigners residing in Haiti, as victims. 
 
 
_____________________________
 
 
 
Car Bomb Attack Leaves 
One Dead & 3 Injured 
in Colombia
January 20th, 1:30pm (teleSUR)

On Tuesday, Colombia’s Social and Popular Political
 Mass Movement (CPSMM) reported that a car bomb
 attack against the Joel Sierra Human Rights
 Foundation in Saravena municipality in the 
Arauca department, killed one citizen
and 
injured three others.
 
"We cannot allow that the intolerance of illegal armed 
groups continues to affect the peace of the Saravena
 municipality’s community," the JSHRF stated, adding
 that the attack caused significant economic losses
 since it destroyed houses, shops, and 
government buildings.
 
Around 22:15, a white van parked near the
 foundation’s building where social leaders
 were giving a workshop on human rights. 

Upon blowing up the vehicle, the attackers 
fled the scene, shooting at the people
 inside the establishment.
 
The Arauca Governor Alejandro Navas promised to
 lead an extraordinary security council to speed 
the apprehension of the crime's perpetrators,
 whose identity remains unknown. 
 
The Arauca department is currently undergoing a 
humanitarian crisis due to paramilitary groups, 
which seek to extort the population to gain 
new territories... for their drug trafficking 
activities. On January 5, President Ivan 
Duque deployed two 600-soldier Army
battalions, which were 
supposed to
boost intelligence
 and counter
-intelligence 
operations in
the area.
 
The JSHRF denounced that this military 
deployment..... has only served to 
guarantee the oil infrastructure 
of transnational companies but
not to protect the population.
 
"We emphatically call on the armed groups 
to bring the civilian population out of the 
conflict, since it deserves to leave in 
peace,” the JSHRF representative, 
Sonia Lopez, highlighted.
 
 
______________________________
 
 
 
Labour Party Wins All 30 
Constituencies In Barbados
January 20th, 11:50am (teleSUR)
 
Thanks to overwhelming popular support, Mia 
Mottley secured re-election to the post of 
Prime Minister in the world's youngest
 republic.
 
In the early hours of Thursday, the electoral
 authorities of Barbados... issued the final 
results of the elections that closed the 
day before at 6 pm. The Barbados 
Labour Party won a landslide 
victory and clearly prevailed
 in all 30 constituencies of
 the country.
 
In the first electoral process Barbados held after
becoming a republic, the political opposition 
was mainly represented by the Democratic 
Labour Party (DLP), led by Verla De Peiza, 
and the Alliance Party for Progress, led 
by Joseph Atherley. None of these 
political organizations managed 
to capture the preferences 
of citizens.
 
Thanks to this resounding victory, Mia Mottley easily
 managed to be re-elected to the position of Prime 
Minister, thus marking another triumph in her
 outstanding career as a social and political
 leader on this Caribbean island.
 
"Shortly after becoming the world’s newest Republic, 
Barbados Prime Minister Mia Mottley called snap
 elections in December 2021, saying she didn’t 
want her country to “enter the new year by 
being a divided nation,”'' the Associates 
Times recalled.
 
Mottley stressed that the resounding Labour victory
 will --- “lead the country, first to safety, and then to
prosperity,” as reported by the Caribbean Block, 
which added that the Prime Minister seeks to 
prepare Barbados to resolve the challenges 
it will face in the next decade.
 
"Mia Motley's reelection as Prime Minister of Barbados
is good news.  A brilliant woman 
who, one day, would
make a strong UN 
Secretary General," said Alfred de 
Zayas, a former United Nations independent expert
on the 
promotion of a democratic and equitable
international order.
 
The Barbadian elections were carried out normally. 
However, it is estimated that some 5,700 citizens 
sick with COVID-19, were unable to vote, due to
 their health condition.
 
 
_______________________________________



Japan donates to Cuba
 ultrasound equipment 
to produce Curmeric
 by Ileana Ferrer Fonte
January 20th, 7:12am (Prensa Latina) 
 
Japan's Mitsui Onnetsu Co., Ltd., has donated
to 
Cuba, ultrasound equipment that will help 
produce Curmeric, a natural medicine with
 proven antibacterial and antiviral action, 
diplomatic sources reported 
on Thursday.
 
According to the Cuban Embassy in Japan, the 
device left this, Thursday, for the Caribbean 
nation... and should arrive on Saturday.
 
“This equipment will be destined to the Calixto Garcia
Hospital’s Theragnostic Laboratory to
 contribute to
the production project of 
Curmeric...  a natural
product.. that 
contains extracts of curcuma 
longa and is registered in Cuba’s National
Institute 
of Hygiene, Epidemiology
 and Microbiology,” the
 mission indicated.
 
It recalled that the formula showed high effectiveness
 to fight respiratory system infections, it began to be
 administered to suspected patients and contacts
of
 Covid-19 cases in Ciego de Avila (centre) and
its 
use was extended to Havana (west) and 
Granma (east).
 
Curmeric, the Embassy added, is included in the
 rehabilitation protocol for convalescents of that 
disease and curcuma longa supplements lower 
glycemia, cholesterol and triglycerides, in 
patients with diabetes and dyslipidemias.
 
 
 
___________________________________




 Fiscal agreements ----- are a 
challenge for Latin America
 says ECLAC
by Elsy Fors Garzon
January 20th, 5:18am (Prensa Latina) 
 
Despite important political changes in Latin 
America, reaching fiscal agreements will
be
 a challenge for the administrations
and the 
officials of the Economic
Commission
 for Latin America
and the Caribbean
 (ECLAC).
 
The agency’s executive secretary, Alicia Bárcena, 
pointed out that the area started 2022 more 
indebted, poor and angry, but the current
 transformations can be opportunities to 
reduce tax evasion, eliminate tax
havens 
and illicit financial flows
--- pressing 
problems of
its economy.
 
Speaking at the colloquium:  Biden’s fiscal revolution.
 What consequences will it have for Europe and Latin
 America?, organized by the Spanish Alternatives
 Foundation, and Casa de América, Bárcena
 highlighted the importance of joint action.
 
“We are not acting with a single voice. Faced with
 global issues, the region must have a much 
clearer and more unified position,” the 
executive secretary insisted ----- 
according to the commission’s 
Twitter account.
 
In her words, the directive addressed the asymmetries
 between developed and developing countries, which 
deepened during the Covid-19 pandemic, & warned
 that the fiscal stimuli applied in Latin America and 
the Caribbean, are more to alleviate the crisis...
 and not so much for reconstruction.
 
In this regard, she commented that the area has not
 entered the recovery and strategic planning phase, 
which she described as very worrying.
 
Bárcena pointed to tax evasion by multinationals 
as one of the main problems in Latin America, 
which has annual losses of 40 billion dollars
 for this reason.
 
Likewise, she underlined the harmfulness of
 asymmetries and the culture of privilege, 
which at the international level, favours 
those who have more resources, since 
“the winners always receive
 the benefits.”
 
She specified that the tax redistribution proposal 
only applies to large companies with revenues 
of over 22 billion dollars, so there are many 
pending tasks and one of them is to over-
come this culture of privilege that 
encourages evasion.
 
This phenomenon currently reaches 6.1 percent 
of the gross domestic product, according to 
ECLAC, for which, a new generation of tax
 policies is required: to improve the level 
of collection and its composition.
 
Latin America and the Caribbean... is the region 
with the lowest level of investment in the world 
with 19 percent, when the rest is around 26%, 
Bárcena stressed.
 
 
__________________________________



Water released
by Afghanistan
 definitely aimed
at Iran:
 Governor
January 19th, 6:41pm (PressTV)
 
 
Water released from Kamal Khan Dam in Afghanistan
 is set to reach Hamun Lake, in the eastern Iranian
 region of Sistan where locals have complained 
about the declining share of water coming
from
 the Helmand River in neighboring
Afghanistan.
 
A local official in southeast Iran has denied claims
 made by the Taliban in Afghanistan... suggesting 
that the group had released water from a major 
dam to feed farms located south of the country 
....as he insists the water will reach Iranian 
territory, within the next few days.
 
Hossein Modarres Khiabani, who serves as the
 governor of Sistan and Baluchestan province, 
said Wednesday that the Taliban’s decision
day earlier, to release water from Kamal
Khan Dam in Afghanistan, was definitely
aimed at 
Iranian territory.
 
“With recent precipitation and through follow-ups
 made by various departments (in Iran), including
 the presidential envoy to Afghanistan, the Energy
 Ministry and the Foreign Ministry and even local 
(Afghan) officials, two gates of Kamal Khan Dam 
have been opened to release water toward the
 territory of the Islamic Republic of Iran,” said 
Modarres Khiabani.
 
He said water was moving toward Iran and it will 
reach a regional lake in the Sistan region, within
 two to three days.
 
The announcement came after Taliban’s Acting
 Minister of Energy & Water Abdullatif Mansoor 
said in a video published online that water had 
been released on requests by local Afghan 
farmers in Nimruz province, as he denied 
the decision was meant to give Iran its 
water rights... based on a treaty
signed
 nearly 5 decades ago.  
 
That comes as Iranian president’s special envoy
 to Afghanistan Hassan Kazemi Ghomi, welcomed
 the Taliban’s move to release water from Kamal 
Khan Dam, as he suggested the decision had
 been taken to comply with a recent 
agreement between the 
two countries.
 
“I declare my gratitude to the Taliban authorities for
 sticking to their promises in releasing water from
 Kamal Khan Dam,” Kazemi Ghomi was quoted 
as saying by semi-official Fars news agency
 on Wednesday.
 
Iran is entitled to over 800 million cubic metres per
 year of water from Helmad River, which is called
 Hirmand on the Iranian side of the border, 
based on a landmark treaty signed
between the two countries
 in 1973.
 
 
______________________________


Venezuela Restores 
Electric Service 
After Sabotage
January 19th, 6:30pm (teleSUR)
 
On Wednesday...  the Venezuelan Energy Ministry
reported that the National Electrical Corporation
 (CORPOELEC) fully restored electrical service
 in the southwestern region of the country.
 
Previously, the Public Works & Services Minister
Nestor Reverol, who monitored the actions from 
the National Dispatch Centre, confirmed that the
 attacks on the electrical infrastructure... were 
part of sabotage actions the Venezuelan far
-right deploys... to destabilize President 
Nicolas Maduro's administration and 
generate citizen discontent.
 
The latest sabotage of the National Electric System
 (SEN) was carried out through the fall of a tower of
 the Central Plant-Valle Seco line in the Taborda 
sector in Carabobo.
 
"CORPOELEC workers do not stop before these
 actions --- and work 24 hours to restore the 
electrical service in the entity," Reverol 
said on Tuesday.
 
This terrorist attack, however, has not been the 
only one in the last month. On January 7th, the
 electrical system suffered an attack amid the
 elections called to renew the governor of 
the state of Barinas.
 
A few days later, on January 11th, unidentified
 individuals... also sabotaged the Western Pipe-
line in Naricual municipality, 
Anzoategui state
from which, 
all fuel is distributed to 
Venezuela's eastern states.
 
Recently, President Maduro recalled that the US
 blockade against the Bolivarian nation is
related
 to these attempts to create
political 
destabilization and
internal conflicts.
 
 
_________________________________



Venezuela Gains New
 Cargo Of COVID-19 
Vaccines From China
January 18th, 6:48pm (teleSUR)
 
This is the fifth shipment sent through COVAX
 to strengthen the immunization campaign in
 this South American country.
 
On Tuesday, Venezuela’s Vice Minister of 
Resources, Technology and Regulation, 
Gerardo Briseño, received 3.1 million 
Sinopharm vaccines from China
 
So far, Venezuela has managed to obtain over 
12 million COVID-19 vaccines through COVAX, 
a multilateral mechanism which is managed 
by the World Health Organization (WHO).
 
The Bolivarian Health Ministry confirmed the 
arrival of the new charge... and indicated
that 
the Chinese vaccines will be used
as 
booster doses in the national 
immunization plan.
 
The Sinopharm vaccines were acquired with 
state funds, as part of a far-reaching 
vaccination system that comprises
 Russian and Cuban vaccines too.
 
“Venezuela has made a great effort to release funds 
to acquire these doses,” Briseño said and recalled 
that his country's gross domestic product (GDP) 
has contracted in recent years... as a result of
the 
U.S. economic blockade.
 
On January 4th, the Bolivarian authorities also
 received over 3 million Sinopharm vaccines, 
which were acquired through the revolving 
fund managed by the Pan-American Health
 Organization (PAHO).
 
As of Tuesday morning, Venezuela had
recorded 456, 641 COVID-19 cases and 
5,383 related deaths.
 
 
__________________________
 
 
 
Barbados To Hold
First
 Elections
Since Becoming 
A Republic
January 18th, 6:10pm (teleSUR)
 
At least 3,700 electoral officials will verify a voting
 process, in which, 108 candidates seek to hold 
a seat in parliament.
 
Over 230,600 Barbadians will go to the polls on
Wednesday, to participate in the first elections 
of Barbados as a republic, after Prime Minister 
Mia Mottley cut its ties with the UK monarchy 
on November 29th, 2021.
 
Currently, 108 candidates compete for the 30 seats in
 Parliament. Mottley’s Barbados Labour Party (BLP),
 and the opposition Democratic Labour Party (DLP) 
nominated 30 candidates each, nine candidates
are
 independent, and the remaining ones
represent 5
 minority political parties.
 
At least 3,700 electoral officials will verify the voting
 process. Electoral & Boundary Commission (EBC)
President, Leslie Haynes, warned that there will
be 
a delay in the dissemination of results, due
to 
COVID-19 protocols.
 
"We have spent a lot of time training our staff, and 
we hope the delays will not be so long. However, 
we assume that there will be more delays than 
usual," Haynes said and stressed that several 
polling stations were established to avoid
 overcrowding.
 
Mottley, whose BLP now controls 29 out of 30 seats,
 stated the vote would help promote unity in the face
 of the pandemic, which has heavily hit the country’s
 tourism-focused economy.
 
“We have to learn to live with the COVID-19, which is
 not likely to disappear soon,” the Prime Minister
 insisted and advised voters to wear masks at 
polling stations. 
 
As of January 18th, Barbados had reported 35,734
coronavirus cases and 269 related deaths, two of
 which occurred on January 13th.
 
 
__________________________________
 
 
 
Brazilian Public Employees 
Demand Wage Increases 
Amid Inflation
January 18th, 6pm (teleSUR) 
 
Besides still being in a critical situation, the Brazilian
 economy closed last year with increases in interest 
rates, unemployment, and inflation.
 
On Tuesday, thousands of public employees staged
 protests across Brazil, to demand President Jair
 Bolsonaro index their salaries according to 
the current inflation rate.
 
Over 200,000 workers gathered in the Permanent
 National Forum of State Careers (FONACATE) to
ask that the salary rise not be less than 28%.

Besides still being in a critical situation, Brazil's
economy closed 2021  ----  with increases in
interest 
rates, unemployment and inflation.
 
The FONACATE President Rudinei Marques recalled
 that the last salary increase for public workers
 happened in January 2017. Since then, the 
citizens' purchasing power has eroded a 
lot given that the current National 
Consumer Price Index is located 
at 27.2 percent.
 
Among the workers demanding changes in the
Bolsonaro Administration's policies, are the 
officials of the Central Bank of Brazil. From 
10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. local time, they 
carried out a partial strike.. to demand 
salary increases. This came, after the
far-right President said that he would
support salary increases for the 
security forces.
 
“We are no longer going to accept the mistreatment
 that the Bolsonaro government has given to public
 employees,” the FONACATE President stressed.
 
The energy generated with the Central Bank strike
 "has spread and other public unions decided to 
join the demonstration in solidarity," Brian
Mier, 
teleSUR correspondent reported.
 
"On Friday, workers will stage a general strike ---
against the neoliberal policies of Jair Bolsonaro 
and his Finance Minister, Paulo Guedes, the 
Chicago Boy, who sank the Brazilian 
economy since taking office three
years ago, by applying austerity
policies during a recession," 
he added.
 
 
______________________________

Gasoline smuggling network 
dismantled - in Venezuela
by Aleynes Palacios Hurtado
January 18th, 2:15pm (Prensa Latina) 
 
Venezuela's Oil Minister, Tareck El Aissami,
on Tuesday... reported the dismantling of a 
gasoline smuggling network in the border 
state of Tachira, during an operation by 
security forces.
 
“We have deployed an Anti-Mafia Plan to combat
 distortion. Consequently, on Monday, we have
 dismantled one of the gasoline smuggling 
mafias,” this high official announced 
on Twitter.
 
He said that, in coordination with state security
 agencies, the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP) 
and Petroleos de Venezuela (PDVSA), three
 Venezuelan citizens were arrested.
 
He added they found 100,000 litres of gasoline 
in makeshift tanks of this mafia, equipment 
used for the transfer, hoses and motor 
pumps in the illegal warehouse used
 to store the stolen fuel.
 
On Saturday, during his speech before the 
National Assembly (AN, in Spanish), 
President Nicolas Maduro... urged
the relevant authorities to put an 
end to the proliferation of mafias 
in the country’s gasoline stations.
 
For his part, Attorney General of the Republic, 
Tarek William Saab, reported on Twitter that
 the MP activated the telephone line 
0800-FISCA-00 to receive 
complaints about fuel 
trafficking.
 
Gasoline shortage has been one of the problems in
this South American nation in the past two years,
essentially as a consequence of the deficit of 
raw materials for its production, due to the
coercive, unilateral measures imposed
by
 the United States.
 
 
_______________________
 
 
 
Russian president reaffirms 
support for Nicaragua’s 
sovereignty
by Erich Tellez Corrales
January 18th, 1:04pm (Prensa Latina) 
 
Russian President Vladimir Putin, on Tuesday,
 reaffirmed, in a telephone conversation with 
his Nicaraguan counterpart, Daniel Ortega,
 his country's continued support for 
Managua's efforts to guarantee
its 
national sovereignty.
 
Putin expressed Moscow’s readiness to continue
 contributing to Nicaragua’s socioeconomic
 development, the Kremlin press 
service said.
 
The Russian president congratulated Ortega on his
 reelection to the highest governmental office and
 on his inauguration as president of Nicaragua, 
last week.
 
The heads of State discussed important issues
of
 bilateral cooperation in various spheres, in 
particular, in the field of transportation and 
agriculture, the statement said.
 
In addition, they paid special attention to effective
 collaboration in the fight against the spread of 
the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, including the 
supply of Russian vaccines to Nicaragua 
and their joint production in that
Central 
American country.
 
The parties stressed the importance of continuing
close coordination in the international arena, in
line with the Russia-Nicaragua strategic 
partnership.
 
Ortega expressed his gratitude to Russia for its
 solidarity with the Nicaraguan people. Both 
leaders agreed to keep in touch.
 
 
_______________________
 
 
 
Mexico protects by law its
indigenous & Afro-Mexican 
cultural heritage
by Ileana Ferrer Fonte
January 18th, 11:41am (Prensa Latina)
 
Mexico made official, this Tuesday, a decree that
issues the Federal Law for the Protection of the
Cultural Heritage of Indigenous & Afro-Mexican
Communities, whose objective is to recognize 
and guarantee them, that property right.
 
Mexico’s Official Journal, or official gazette, 
has already established as law, that right 
of indigenous and Afro-Mexican peoples 
& communities over the elements that 
make up their traditional cultural 
knowledge and expressions, 
as well as the collective
 intellectual property.
 
It also establishes penalties for the misappropriation, 
use, commercialization or reproduction of the 
cultural heritage, knowledge and traditional 
cultural expressions of those ethnic groups.
 
At the same time... a decree was also published in 
which Article 16 of the Law-General of Linguistic 
Rights of Indigenous Peoples is amended... to 
establish that the National Council will also 
include a representative of the National
 Institute of Indigenous Peoples.
 
In addition, the Secretariat of National Defense
 published another decree, by which, several 
provisions of the Military Education Act 
and the Act of the Mexican Army and 
Air Force, are amended, which 
indirectly also favors those 
ethnic groups.
 
 
________________________
 
 
 
Angola launched
 technological
 incubator
 by Erich Tellez Corrales
January 18th, 10:42am (Prensa Latina)
 
 With the name Digital.ao, Angola today 
launched a public institution to help 
the success of entrepreneurial 
projects ---  through the use of 
information & communication
 technologies.
 
The so-called technology incubator occupies 
two buildings in the urban district of Rangel,
 in Luanda, and was officially inaugurated 
by the President of the Republic, 
João Lourenço.
 
Angolans with innovative technological ideas, 
capable of generating business, will be able 
to receive support from the entity until they 
become companies, said the president.
 
After touring several rooms, the president told the
 press that the centre represents an opportunity 
for the professional training of young people, 
who will be better absorbed by the labour 
market and, above all, will be able to 
create businesses independently,
 without the need to wait for 
an employer.
 
The investment was financed with state resources 
and the support of external partners such as
the
 Chinese company Huawei, Afrione, a 
manufacturer of mobile telephones 
and laptops, the African 
Development Bank and 
the World Bank.
 
According to the Minister of Telecommunications,
Information Technologies & Social Communication
Manuel Homem, Digital.ao will offer training for
the
 development & production of multimedia
content, graphic design, digital marketing
and
management of social networks.
 
The infrastructure inaugurated today “was not born
 in isolation, but is part of the medium and long 
term strategy for the massification and digital 
inclusion throughout the national territory”, 
which involves various sectors, he said.
 
According to the general director of the National
 Institute for the Promotion of the Information 
Society, André Pedro, the facility will also 
offer services in the areas of .ao domain
 registration, software manufacturing, 
web page & corporate mail hosting, 
equipment repair & international 
certification.
 
 
_______________________________



Syrian Foreign Minister: 
US is the greatest ---
violator of human rights
 by Luis Linares Petrov
January 18th, 10:40am (Prensa Latina) 
 
The United States is one of the countries that 
most exploits and violates human rights in 
the world, Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal 
al-Mekdad said today in statements to 
the press.
 
The official considered that the criminal practices 
of Washington in the Syrian city of Raqa, totally
 destroyed by the air strikes of the international
 coalition, constitute the greatest testimony of
 U.S. brutality.
 
Al-Mekdad considered moreover that the illegal 
military presence of Turkey is the greatest 
threat to northern Syria.
 
Ankara supports terrorist organizations 
with weapons & money, and continues 
its expansion policy, in the areas it 
occupies, al-Mekdad denounced.
 
The Foreign Minister also demanded the envoy 
of the Secretary General of the United Nations
 Organization, Geir Pedersen, to act impartially
 and objectively and not to intervene at all in 
Syrian affairs outside his competence.
 
“We reject Pedersen’s constant defense of the 
opposition delegation in the Constitution 
Discussion Committee, whether in his 
statements... or during the briefings 
before the Security Council,” the 
Foreign Minister concluded.
 
 
________________________________



 Izvestia: Oil may rise in 
price to $90 per barrel
January 18th, 10am (TASS)
 
Over the past week, a barrel of oil has risen in price 
by almost 3% to $85.80, and over the month by over
 16.5%. The main reasons for this growth are the 
failed insurrection in Kazakhstan & the surging 
demand for energy, OPEC+’s well-coordinated
 policy, as well as declining production in 
Libya, experts told Izvestia.
 
The hike in oil prices may continue to $90 per barrel 
in Q1, Deputy Head of Alpari Information & Analysis
 Centre Natalya Milchakova told the newspaper. By
 the end of January... an increase to $87-88 per 
barrel can be expected, she added. Important
 factors in shaping the price are the global 
economic recovery after the pandemic 
and the rising demand for energy,
the 
expert believes.
 
"The price of oil will gradually rise, as its global
 consumption continues to increase  ----- and 
production may not keep up with demand," 
leading analyst at the National Energy 
Security Fund Igor Yushkov 
told Izvestiya.
 
According to Head of the analytical department at
 AMarkets, Artem Deev, the reasons for the recent 
hike in prices have been Kazakhstan’s unrest and
 fears of reduced production in the Central Asian
 country. The situation was also influenced by 
traders’ hopes that the new coronavirus 
variant wouldn’t cause severe damage 
to the global economy, the 
expert added.
 
At the same time, the probable restoration of the
 nuclear deal between Iran and the United States 
could negatively affect prices, analyst at FG 
Finam Alexander Potavin told Izvestia.
 
 
_________________________________
 


Vedomosti: Russia outpaces 
US and China in industrial 
production in 2021
January 18th, 10am (TASS)
 
At the end of 2021, Russia was ahead of the United
 States and China in the industrial production index, 
according to an analytical review by the Institute
for
 Natural Monopolies Research. In the final 
months of 2021, its industrial performance 
outpaced that of... China, Brazil, India, the
US, 
Japan & Germany in terms of growth 
dynamics, the institute noted, citing
the data 
from the Russian State
Statistics Service 
(Rosstat). 
 
Thus, in November, the industrial production index in
 Russia amounted to 7% against 3.8% in China, -4.4%
 in Brazil, and 0.5% in the US. Experts told Vedomosti 
that this growth would continue in 2022, amid high
 commodity prices.
 
A state statistics representative told the newspaper...
 that data for November 2021 really shows a recovery
 in industrial production by 7%. Extractive industries
 grew by 10.2%, manufacturing jumped by 5.3%, 
while the energy sector, heat and gas supply,
saw a rise of 3.9%.
 
Deputy Head of the Fuel & Energy Complex
 Research Department at IPEM, Evgeny 
Rudakov explained to Vedomosti that 
by the end of 2021, this increase is 
expected.. in all sub-sectors of the
mining & manufacturing industries.
 
According to Rudakov, Russia is not very involved
in
 the global high-value-added production chains,
and the impact of the coronavirus pandemic
on 
the economy was minimal.

Overall, through
-out the world the service sector
suffered, 
but Russia’s portion of this sector is
lower
 than in developed countries, so this
factor 
did not have a key impact
on domestic 
demand for
industrial products.
 
 The bulk of Russian exports are fuel & energy
 sector products, the demand for which, has 
dipped somewhat moderately in the world,
the expert added. The growth of industrial 
production was also facilitated by the high 
share of the state in the economy, he said.
 


______________________________




Haitian peasants encourage 
the installation of an 
interim government
by Erich Tellez Corrales
January 18th, 9:24am (Prensa Latina) 
 
Haitian peasant organizations grouped in the 
4G Kontre platform today encouraged the 
signatories of the Montana Agreement to 
close the discussions to allow the 
installation of a government next
 February 7th.
 
According to the platforms including Mouvman 
peyizan Papay, Mouvman peyizan nasyonal 
kongrè Papay, Tèt kole Ti peyizan ayisyen 
and the Regional Coordination of 
Organizations of the Southeast,
the current Prime Minister Ariel
Henry, can't participate in that 
executive because his name is
linked to the assassination of 
President Jovenel Moïse.
 
“Ariel Henry must... make himself available to
answer 
the questions of justice,” they wrote
in a 
communiqué... in which they invited all 
structures seeking change, to organize 
mobilizations...  to pressure for the 
installation of a new government.
 
According to 4G Kontre, the socio-economic crisis
has worsened in Haiti  --- with inflation over 24%
while three quarters of the population is facing
 starvation. With 50% of citizens dependent on
 agriculture, the country produces only 35% 
of its annual needs, the organization 
complained.
 
With only three weeks to go before February 7th, 
there are several agreements calling for the 
installation of a new administration, while 
the Prime Minister calls for dialogue and 
assures that there is no constitutional 
way to install a president.
 
The day before, economist Fritz Alphonse Jean and 
former senator Edgard Leblanc Fils presented their 
documents to the National Transitional Council to
 aspire to the position of head of state of the 
interim government.
 
Henry, for his part, insisted on holding elections as 
the only way to return to democracy... and called 
for putting aside fratricidal struggles for power.
 
 

______________________________________
 
 
 
Right insists on
 ''investigating'' 
election in Peru
by Elsy Fors Garzon
January 18th, 6:03am (Prensa Latina) 
 
A parliamentary commission controlled by 
far-right factions, insisted, on Monday, on 
investigating the 2019 general elections, 
despite the fact that the Public Ministry 
ruled out fraud in the presidential 
election, invoked for
 the investigation.
 
The head of the commission, Jorge Montoya, 
from Renovación Popular (RP), said that... 
despite an opinion that filed a complaint 
about allegations of falsification of 
signatures of members of voting 
tables, the congressional group 
also intends to elaborate
 modifications to the 
electoral law.
 
The alleged falsification, basis of the narrative of 
fraud of the neoliberal candidate Keiko Fujimori, 
of Fuerza Popular (FP), a group allied to RP, was 
ruled out in the cases of the towns of Huari,
 Moyobamba, Tacabamba, Mariano Melgar 
and Sicuani. Some other analogies were 
pending to be discarded, whose filing is 
imminent, out of a total of hundreds of 
cases that, according to FP, had tilted
 the result of the ballot...  in favour of 
Pedro Castillo and against Fujimori.
 
“Simply...  we are going to prepare the report, that 
will come out at the end of the investigation (next
 September), and we are working on recommend
-ations to modify the electoral issue,” 
Montoya declared.
 
Alonso Cárdenas, a political scientist, asserted 
 the commission was created, by “a whim of
powerful group that did not want to 
recognize the results of the 
elections” and the matter 
was definitively settled.
 
Salas affirmed that the challenges sought to stop 
the electoral process or postpone the results...
to 
avoid the proclamation of the one who the
 majority of the citizens defined with his 
vote (Castillo).
 
He recalled the harassment of violent groups, 
& other pressures that he and other electoral
authorities suffered - to stop defending the
electoral results of the June 2019 ballots.
 
 
 
______________________________________
 
 
 
 
UN warns of fragile uneven
 economic recovery
by Elsy Fors Garzon
January 18th, 2:03am (Prensa Latina) 
 
The global economic recovery is fragile and 
uneven, amid the persistent Covid-19 
pandemic that affects all countries,
 UN Secretary General António 
Guterres warned on Monday.
 
In his virtual intervention before the World Economic
 Forum (known as the Davos Forum), Guterres also
 referred to the challenges of the labour market, 
the continuous interruptions in the supply 
chain, the increase in inflation and debt
 traps that are coming.
 
“The last two years have demonstrated a simple 
but brutal truth: If we leave anyone behind, we 
leave everyone behind,” he stressed.
 
He also stated there is a lack of action regarding 
global solidarity... and an inability to support 
developing countries in their hour of need.
 
In this sense, the Portuguese diplomat asked the
 world business community for its support, ideas, 
financing and voice to face the pandemic with 
equity and justice, starting with achieving a 
better distribution of vaccines against
 Covid-19.
 
He also stressed the need to reform the global
 financial system so that it works for all nations.
 
According to the highest representative of the United 
Nations, there are three fundamental areas in which
 international efforts in terms of recovery should be
 concentrated.The first is to confront the Covid-19 
pandemic and the second is to push for urgent 
action in the global financial system.
 
As a third point he talked about climate action 
in developing countries: even if all developed 
nations fulfill their promises to drastically 
reduce polluting emissions by 2030
 ...they will still remain too high to
reduce global warming, he said.
 
Due to the pandemic, the World Economic Forum
 canceled its annual meeting in Davos, 
Switzerland for the second year
 in a row.
 
Instead of a face-to-face meeting, they opted
for
 a series of plenary sessions and online 
debates, under the banner of The 
Davos Agenda.
 
According to Guterres, this year’s event takes place
 “in the shadow of an enormously difficult period
 for economies, people and our planet.”
 
According to United Nations estimates released
 last week, the world is emerging from the 
depths of a crippling economic crisis,
 but the recovery remains fragile
 and uneven.
 
 
_______________________________________



Africa Recalls 61st 
Death Anniversary 
of Patrice Lumumba
January 17th, (teleSUR)
 
This anti-colonial leader was deposed from his
 position as Congo's Prime Minister in 1960 
and assassinated by troops backed by
the
 U.S. and Belgium a year later. 
 
On Monday, Africans remember the 61st anniversary
 of the death of Patrice Lumumba, an anti-colonial 
leader who fought for the independence of the 
Congo from Belgium and became this 
country's prime minister.
 
Born on July 2nd, 1925, in Katako-Kombe municipality, 
Lumumba studied in a Catholic school and later in a
 Swedish-run Protestant school. Since his youth, 
he stood out for his academic results and links
 to anti-imperialist and pacifist organizations.
 
In 1958, he founded the Congolese National 
Movement, which advocated the creation 
of an independent and secular State, 
whose unitary political structures... 
would overcome social differences. 
 
The movement became the first
 national political party.
 
In that year, Lumumba also participated in the 
Pan-African Accra Conference, in which he 
met anti-colonial leaders Frantz Fanon 
(Argelia), Kwame Nkrumah (Ghana), 
& Felix-Roland Moumie (Cameroon)
and was 
elected a permanent 
member of its coordination 
committee.
 
After winning the first Congolese free elections in
 1960, Lumumba was appointed Prime Minister 
and started promoting social policies that 
pleased the population, but caused the
 Belgian entrepreneurs to prompt the
 rebellion of some army units, to 
preserve their interests.
 
Amid the revolt, the Katanga province was declared
 an independent republic under the rule of the
anti-
communist leader Moise Tshombe. For 
allegedly protecting Belgium citizens, 
King Balduino sent troops to this 
province that supported the 
Tshome government.
 
To counteract this situation, Lumumba appealed to 
the United Nations (UN), which sent a few military
 personnel, who could not restore order. Finding
 himself isolated... he asked for the support of 
the Soviet Union, with which he threatened 
Western interests amid the tense political 
atmosphere of the Cold War.
 
Following the Colonel Mobutu Sese Seko military
 coup, Lumumba was arrested as he attempted 
to meet his supporters in the eastern Congo 
and killed by U.S.-backed Katanga rebel 
troops in 1961.
 
For posterity, Lumumba has remained a martyr of 
African nationalism. His aspirations... for peace 
and social justice have inspired the resistance
 of a Lumumbist movement in the Congo. 
 
"Without dignity, there is no freedom, without 
justice, there is no dignity, and without 
independence, there are no free 
human beings," he once stated.
 
 
________________________
 
 
 
South Sudan Signs
 Peace Deal With 
Splinter Opposition
January 17th, 5pm (teleSUR)
 
The agreement offers amnesty to the leadership
 and forces of SPLM/A-IO Kitgwang, that has 
been fighting Machar's faction in the oil-
rich Upper Nile state.
 
South Sudan's government has reached a peace
 deal in the Sudanese capital, Khartoum.... with
the
 break-away faction of the Sudan People's
Liberation Movement/Army-In-Opposition
(SPLM/A-IO) under Simon Gatwech Dual.
 
The deal, negotiated by the Sudan Transitional 
Government on Sunday --- includes 
recommitting to the cessation of
hostilities  --- signed on 
Aug.
8, 2018 in Khartoum, 
that
paved the way... to an
eventual inking of
the 
revitalized
peace deal.
 
President Salva Kiir's security advisor Tut
Gatluak
 Manime, signed on behalf of the
SPLM-In-
Government (SPLM-IG) and
Dual signed 
on behalf of his SPLM/
A-IO, that 
splintered in Aug. 2021
from
 the mainstream party led
by 
First Vice President 
Riek Machar.
 
The deal offers amnesty to the leadership and 
forces of SPLM/A-IO Kitgwang that has been 
fighting Machar's faction in the oil-rich 
Upper Nile state.
 
The clashes between the two opposition factions
 since August 2021 --- have left hundreds of 
soldiers killed on both sides after
 Dual's decision: to denounce 
Machar's chairmanship of 
the former rebel
movement. 
 
Dual accused Machar of weakening the party
 (SPLM/A-IO) in the coalition government 
formed in February 2020.
 
He blamed Machar for practicing nepotism and not
 doing enough to push President Kiir to implement 
the security arrangements to pave way for the
reintegration of former rebel fighters. 
 
SPLA-IO shall establish coordination offices in 
Juba, Malakal and Bor towns, to assist the 
process of assembling and reintegration.