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BBC: Venezuela’s Prison Orchestras

BBC: Venezuela’s Prison Orchestras

Famous orchestra scheme rolled out in prisons gives hope to inmates. The strains of classical music drift on the breeze across the vast concrete yard at Coro prison in western Venezuela. Surrounded on four sides by high walls or fences, looked over by a watch tower and countless closed-circuit cameras, the inner patio at this […]

BBC: Cocoa and the State

BBC: Cocoa and the State

Venezuelan cocoa sector fears state intervention. Andres Herreras slashes through thick undergrowth in jungle just outside the town of Panaquire in eastern Venezuela, looking for ripe cocoa pods. He’s been harvesting these six hectares of land for over forty years using just his machete and his hands. Thousands of farmers like Andres tend small cocoa […]

CBC/BBC: Surviving Expropriations

CBC/BBC: Surviving Expropriations

Young crocodiles cry plaintively for their mother as they are hooked in a trap and pulled, splashing frantically, from the water. But their mother is nowhere to be seen. These one-year-old Orinoco Crocodiles are part of a captive breeding programme designed to put the brakes on their slide towards extinction. The Orinoco Crocodile (Crocodylus intermedius […]

Reuters: Garifuna’s Endangered Culture

Reuters: Garifuna’s Endangered Culture

Descendants of African slaves who fled to Guatemala two centuries ago honored their ancestors in a wild celebration of a culture threatened by mass migration to the United States. Hundreds of people from the Black Carib Garifuna culture re-enacted their forefathers’ arrival in Guatemala by dugout canoe, then swayed through the streets to the sound […]

Reuters: Booze Ban doesn’t stop Guatemalan Horse Race

Reuters: Booze Ban doesn’t stop Guatemalan Horse Race

Despite a drinking ban mayhem erupted at a traditional Mayan horse race with riders falling off their horses and drunken spectators stumbling through the mountain village. Hundreds of tourists and locals gathered for the annual spectacle in Todo Santos Cuchumatan on Sunday to cheer the dozens of riders charging back and forth along a 330-foot […]

Reuters: Bloody Battle in Mayan Mirador

Reuters: Bloody Battle in Mayan Mirador

One of Guatemala’s greatest ancient Mayan cities may have died out in a bloody battle atop a huge pyramid between a royal family and invaders from hundreds of miles away, archaeologists say. Researchers are carrying out DNA tests on blood samples from hundreds of spear tips and arrowheads dug up with bone fragments and smashed […]

Reuters: Tough Return for Deported Guatemalans

Reuters: Tough Return for Deported Guatemalans

Luis Hernandez earned $22.50 an hour and shared a modern apartment as a construction worker in Salt Lake City, Utah, before being deported back to a tin-roof shack in a Guatemala City slum where tattooed members of violent street gangs lurk at every corner. Broke and facing the reality of life back here after being […]

Reuters: Support for Guatemalan Narcotraffickers

Reuters: Support for Guatemalan Narcotraffickers

Local community defends family accused of drug trafficking Residents of a poor Guatemalan town have rallied around a family sought by the United States for drug trafficking but respected at home for handing out food, jobs and medicine to people in need. Guatemala has become a major transit route for drugs smuggled north to Mexico […]

BBC: Uganda’s Troubled Karamoja Region

BBC: Uganda’s Troubled Karamoja Region

  Karamoja, in the far east of Uganda, is the country’s least developed area and lacks many basic services. The United Nations Humanitarian Office estimates that at its current rates of progress, it will not achieve the Millennium Development Goals by 2015.           The Karamojong are pastoralists who greatly value their […]

BBC: Sexual Violence used as Weapon in DRC

BBC: Sexual Violence used as Weapon in DRC

  It’s claimed rape has being used as a weapon of war, on a shocking scale in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The country held its first free and fair elections last year. But despite this, there’s still no peace in the far east of the vast country. Several armed groups operate there and, according […]

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