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Security & Strategic Review - August 2020

LEADER
Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has conducted a much-anticipated official visit to the US, where he met his counterpart, Donald Trump...
ANDEAN COUNTRIES
By April 2021, four elections are scheduled to take place in the Andean region – general elections in Bolivia, Ecuador, and Peru, and a legislative election in Venezuela...
Following a series of violent attacks against protesters in the K’ara K’ara area of Cochabamba city, the capital of the eponymous department, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) issued a warning on 3 July regarding the role of “private actors” in these attacks, “with the alleged acquiescence of some authorities”...
The news that seven Colombian soldiers had pleaded guilty to the sexual assault of a 12-year-old girl from the indigenous Emberá tribe prompted widespread public outrage, and led to a barrage of similar cases from across the country making national headlines in June and July...
BRAZIL & SOUTHERN CONE
As the world is racing to find a vaccine against the coronavirus (Covid-19), a number of immunological firms are turning to Brazil as a test site...
The political differences which divide Argentina, notably over the response to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, are also playing out in the criminal justice sphere...
A historic move to increase transparency in Paraguay has laid bare the sometimes extraordinary wealth accumulated by public officials while in office...
MEXICO & USMCA
It is often said that Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador is not interested in foreign policy...
The Mexican government has secured the extradition of a key figure implicated in some of the major investigations into corruption by the previous administration led by Enrique Peña Nieto (2012-2018)...
CENTRAL AMERICA
“An institutional crisis instigated by those who seek impunity for corruption”.  This was the response by Acción Ciudadana (AC), the national branch of international NGO Transparency International, to tensions which have erupted following an order by the constitutional court (CC) for the process of electing supreme court (CSJ) judges and appellate magistrates to be suspended...
In late June the Organization of American States (OAS) General Secretary Luis Almagro announced that he would request that OAS members declare a “rupture of the democratic order” in Nicaragua...
The US government led by President Donald Trump has already drawn criticism from local and international human rights groups over its increasingly hard-line on migration - evident in moves such as the inking last year of three bilateral migration accords known as Asylum Cooperative Agreements (ACAs) with El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras [SSR-20-01]...
CARIBBEAN
On 3 July, the prime minister of Trinidad & Tobago, Keith Rowley, called a general election for 10 August, just short of five years after his People’s National Movement (PNM) party came to power in September 2015 following a 23-18 seat victory over the People’s Partnership (PP) coalition led by then prime minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar (2010-2015) of the United National Congress (UNC)...
The confirmation on 13 July of Chandrikapersad Santokhi of the Vooruitstrevende Hervormingspartij (VHP) as Suriname’s new president, and with it the departure of Desi Bouterse and his defeated Nationale Democratische Partij (NDP) was accompanied by an almost audible sigh of relief from the international community, but it is relief tempered by concerns about the influence in the new government of Vice President Ronnie Brunswijk and his Algemene Bevrijdings-en Ontwikkelingspartij (Abop)...

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