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Weekly Report - 19 November 2020 (WR-20-46)

LEADER
After lurching from one crisis to another, Peru may have found a head of state capable of nursing the country through to presidential and congressional elections in April next year...
ANDEAN COUNTRIES
Speaking at the swearing-in of the new leadership of Bolivia’s state security forces, President Luis Arce struck a harsh tone, insisting that “we can never again have police officers who take actions that go against a democratic and legally constituted government”, and emphasising the “great challenge” faced by the military of winning back “the trust of the Bolivian people”...
Javier Tarazona, the director of Venezuelan human rights NGO Fundaredes, shared a video on 16 November showing members of the national police’s special action force (Faes) threatening a farm owner in the western state of Zulia, allegedly preparing to kill him, until local police officers intervened...
Gustavo Gallardo, the defence lawyer for Seuxis Pausias Hernández (‘Jesús Santrich’) – a former Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (Farc) guerrilla leader, who returned to combat in 2019 [WR-19-35] – has condemned the latest attempt to implicate his client in a long-running drug trafficking case as a “crude set-up”...
COLOMBIA | Economy reeling...
BRAZIL & SOUTHERN CONE
Chile’s President Sebastián Piñera this week became the first Latin American leader to hold a phone conversation with Joe Biden since his victory in the US presidential elections...
The timing was deliberate and could prove damaging for the government led by President Alberto Fernández...
Brazil held the first round of its municipal elections on 15 November...
MEXICO & USMCA
The austere 2021 draft budget tabled by the government led by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has sailed through Mexico’s federal congress...
CENTRAL AMERICA & CARIBBEAN
President Juan Orlando Hernández last week swore in communications minister María Andrea Matamoros as head of the newly created transparency ministry...
Much of the response by the executive led by President Nayib Bukele to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic has been overshadowed by its power struggles with the judiciary and opposition-controlled legislature - in part over the lack of transparency surrounding the disbursement of state funds [WR-20-28]...
SURINAME | Seeking debt relief...
POSTSCRIPT
Johnny Briceño was sworn-in as prime minister of Belize for the People’s United Party (PUP) on 12 November...
“It seems like nobody wants to assume the presidency over there...

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