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Security & Strategic Review - January 2021

LEADER
Another year, another soaring homicide figure for Mexico...
ANDEAN COUNTRIES
The 33 people killed in a shipwreck off the coast of Venezuela in December were by no means the first to lose their lives while fleeing the country in recent years...
In December, Bolivia’s interior minister Eduardo del Castillo unveiled the new administration’s five-year plan to tackle the illicit trafficking and production of drugs...
Jorge Hernando Pedraza, the secretary general of the Andean Community (CAN) trade bloc, lauded the Andean Environmental Charter – signed on 1 December by foreign ministers from Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru – as a pivotal step towards achieving “sustainable, inclusive development that is respectful of the environment, in order to maintain and improve the well-being of 111m Andean citizens”...
BRAZIL & SOUTHERN CONE
In early November 2020, Brazil’s supreme court of justice (STJ) – the second-highest court in the country – was the target of a ransomware attack which forced the shutdown of its operations for several days...
Within seconds of the New Year starting, violence in Rio de Janeiro claimed its first victim: five-year-old Alice Pamplona da Silva de Souza was hit by a stray bullet while her parents were watching fireworks on 1 January in the Morro do Turano, a favela in the central region of the city of Rio...
On the penultimate day of 2020, Argentina became the largest Latin American country to legalise abortion...
MEXICO & USMCA
The decision by the government led by President Andrés Manuel López Obrador to put the Mexican navy (Semar) in charge of administering and managing all of Mexico’s maritime ports has met with controversy...
An official report recently leaked to the Mexican press has warned that the three satellites that comprise the Mexican Satellite System (Mexsat), Mexico’s main telecommunications satellite network, are at risk of collapsing due to a lack of maintenance...
CENTRAL AMERICA
Central America’s vulnerability to climate change made headlines recently in the wake of damage wreaked by hurricanes Iota and Eta [SSR-20-12], which made landfall late last year...
Apparent efforts by El Salvador’s national police (PNC) to obstruct investigations into the response by the government led by President Nayib Bukele to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic are proving just the latest cause for concern regarding its independence as an institution...
On 3 December Honduras’s electoral commission (CNE) received registration details for parties taking part in pre-presidential primaries scheduled for 14 March, ahead of the November 2021 general election...
On 7 December the acting administrator of the US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Timothy Shea, arrived in Panama on an official visit, marking the first time a DEA administrator had visited the country...
CARIBBEAN
With only just over a year before the next general election is due, The Bahamas’ Free National Movement (FNM) government, led by Prime Minister Hubert Minnis, is being assailed on all sides by misfortune (some self-imposed)...

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