Posts Tagged ‘Antioquia Bilingue’

American actress helps take down sex traffickers in Colombia

Lunes, octubre 20th, 2014

American actress Laurie Holden, best known for playing Andrea on tThe Walking Dead, was part of the undercover operation that brought down a sex trafficking ring in Cartagena, Medellín and Armenia. Twelve arrests were made, three in Armenia, five in Cartagena and four in Medellín.

The 44-year-old actress was part of Operation Underground Railroad, which infiltrated the prostitution world in Cartagena, soliciting young prostitutes for an alleged bachelor party. The operation was carried out with the assistance of the Colombian Attorney General and the National Police as well as Homeland Security of the United States and the NGO Breaking Chains.

The sting captured video footage of the suspects bringing young girls to the supposed gathering; this was later used as evidence of criminal activity. 55 young girls being sold as sex slaves were rescued in the operation. The recordings will also be used for a documentary film called ‘The Abolitionists”.

The U.S. is talking to Colombia about mediation in Venezuela

Viernes, febrero 28th, 2014

The United States Secretary of State, John Kerry, said his country is working closely with Colombia and other countries to arrange for some type of mediation in Venezuela; he also said it’s not inappropriate for the U.S. to consider possible sanctions against Venezuela.

“We are working very closely with Colombia and other countries to see how we could produce some type of mediation, because it’s been demonstrated that it will be difficult for the parts to agree to something on their own,” Mr. Kerry said after meeting with Colombia’s Foreign Relations Minister, Maria Angela Holguín.

Mr. Kerry explained that the U.S. has repeatedly shown interest in developing a more constructive relationship with Venezuela but the country has decided, “time and time again, to go in a different direction and often tries to blame the United States for its own lack of governance and inattention to both its economy and establishing dialogue with its own citizens.”

Venezuela, the Secretary of State said, has “created a fictional scenario in which it’s easy to blame us, despite the fact that we have done nothing intrusive, nor have we made any effort or attempted to do anything but try to have a normal relationship.”

The permanent council of the OAS (Organization of American States) is planning to meet soon to determine whether a meeting between Foreign Relations ministers of the continent should be summoned, as was suggested by the Panamanian Government.  Maduro’s government, however, has rejected the idea and said it feels Unasur is a more appropriate forum and would prefer mediation by Uruguayan President, Jose Mujica, who also offered assistance.

Protests against the Government in Venezuela have already caused eight deaths, not to mention hundreds of injured and detained.

Camilo Gómez is Ramirez’ running mate

Jueves, febrero 20th, 2014

Marta Lucía Ramirez officially registered her candidacy to the Presidency of Colombia for the Conservative Party and revealed that her running mate is former Peace Commissioner, Camilo Gomez, a man with close ties to former Colombian President Andrés Pastrana who played an important role in the Government’s attempt at peace talks with Farc in el Caguán.

This move assures voters that Ramirez’ campaign will make peace a priority. Elections are scheduled for May of this year.

‘Pacheco’ dies at 81

Martes, febrero 11th, 2014

Colombia’s most beloved television host, Fernando González Pacheco, died this evening in a Bogotá hospital.  The 81-year-old had been in the hospital for the past few days for respiratory complications.

Hospital director Jorge Ospina, who announced the sad news to the country with an official statement, said that González, who was fondly known by Colombians as ‘Pacheco’ , had been battling cardiac and respiratory disease for the past three years and was hospitalized a number of times over the course of that time.

‘Pacheco’ began his career in television in 1957.

One of his good friends, Daniel Samper Pizano, with whom Pacheco shared a love for the Santa Fe soccer team of Bogotá, referred to him as the “Colombian television’s greatest entertainer”. Considering his career began back when TV shows were broadcast live, Pacheco’s wit and ability to improvise were even more impressive. His innate talent for hosting game shows, musical events, and even reading news reports turned him into a pioneer for television in Colombia. He was also a well respected bullfighting commentator, boxer, and even parachutist.

Pacheco’s legacy spans over generations who will remember him for shows like Animalandia and Sabariedades, and game shows like Compre la Orquesta and El Programa del Millón. For several years he also hosted his own talk show “Charlas con Pacheco” (Chats with Pacheco).

Incredibly versatile, Pacheco also played unforgettable characters on television series like Yo y Tú (Me and You) and Música Maestro. He starred in La Caponera as himself and, most recently, as Leonidas Vargas in Isabel me la veló.

Juanes responds to ex-manager’s slander

Lunes, febrero 10th, 2014

It’s no secret that the relationship between Grammy Award-winning singer/songwriter Juanes  and his former manager, Fernán Martínez, did not end on good terms. While Juanes has preferred to remain silent about the whole thing, Fernán Martínez has done the exact opposite and reignites the controversy every time he talks about Juanes.

Most recently, Martínez surprised people by referring to the musician as a “coward, a rip-off and an ingrate”, and also spoke negatively of his family. As usual, Juanes kept comments to himself. Until this weekend, that is.

During an interview with Telemundo, a reporter asked Juanes pointblank about his former manager’s remarks. The artist responded with a brief respectful, and direct statement: “On that issue I prefer to hold on to the good memories that we have of the years we worked together and my family as well as myself send him, wherever he may be, blessings and our warmest regards.”

He refused to say anything further.

President Santos isn’t planning to meet with Farc

Jueves, enero 23rd, 2014

From Davos (Switzerland) where he is attending the World Economic Forum, Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos said he has no plans to meet with the Farc guerrilla in Cuba. The statement came after the President of Uruguay, José Alberto Mujica, said he was planning to meet with Farc and President Santos in Havana.

Mr. Santos said that if he meets with Mr. Mujica it will be during the Celac (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States) Summit, which is held in Cuba, but insisted that this is the only reason he will be traveling to the island, and not to meet with Farc representatives at the negotiation table.

“Never before, since the confrontation began 50 years ago, has a peace agreement been so close,” Mr. Mujica said, referring to the endeavor as a superior goal that deserves all possible support. In July of Last year, Mujica met with Farc negotiators in Havana; later in September, he met with President Santos at the UN Assembly in New York.

Hugo Chávez dies in Caracas

Martes, marzo 5th, 2013

The President of Venezuela, Hugo Chávez, died this afternoon in Caracas of respiratory complications caused by the cancer treatment he had been receiving for the past year and a half. He underwent surgery in Cuba on December 11th and never fully recovered from complications that resulted.

Chávez did not live long enough to be sworn in for his third term as President, which would have expanded his socialist regime over two decades.

Venezuela’s Vice-President, Nicolás Maduro, addressed the country accompanied by Information and Communications Minister, Ernesto Villegas. “He has passed…after a difficult fight against disease for almost two years,” Maduro said with a cracking voice and a tear-streaked face.

Up until now, Venezuelans had only received vague and incomplete reports on the disease that eventually took the President’s life and his supposed recovery; over the course of the past year and a half, Chávez underwent four surgeries in Cuba, the specific type of cancer he was suffering from has never been revealed.

Shock and outrage over murder of two children

Martes, febrero 19th, 2013

An entire community was shaken by the unfathomable murder of two innocent children whose only crime was to sneak onto a vehicle to hitch a ride.

Two boys, just 11 years old, knew it was dangerous to walk along certain streets in Comuna 13, their hard-working single mothers had certainly warned them enough. Sometimes, however, it’s easier to just forget and go play with friends.

Recently one of the boys’ mothers had even “bought him a cell phone and got cable TV so he’d stay home more and she could check on him more often,” a relative of one of the boys said.

On Saturday afternoon the boys, usually inseparable, ran off to play and no one heard from them until around 6:00 p.m. when a third child showed up with a horrendous tale. The boys had allegedly been taken by men wearing boots who started beating them and told the third boy to “get lost”.

The boy said they had all climbed into a delivery car without the driver’s knowledge and hitched a ride to a sparsely populated area, they got out and the car drove off, the boys stayed behind to play. Several men showed up and started to beat the older boys, the younger one was let go and came back with the story.

The boys’ relatives contacted authorities immediately; police went to the area to check but found only signs that the boys had been there. The boys’ bodies were found the next day in the afternoon, both were found in an abandoned ranch in Aguas Frías, the boys had been stripped down to their undergarments and were stuffed in sacs, they had multiple wounds to the head and torso.

“They were just children. All they did was play soccer and run errands, they never had any trouble with anyone,” one of the children’s relatives said.

Yesterday, both children’s mothers had to head to work despite the terrible loss they just suffered. The women know that losing a day’s pay just isn’t an option and that the products they sell from carts on the street are perishable, and to miss a day is to let them go to waste.   The families are trying to gather donations to pay for their sons’ funeral services.

Central Bank lowers interest rates

Lunes, enero 28th, 2013

With an interest rate reduction from 4,25 to 4,0 percent, Colombia’s Central Bank will both boost the economy, which experts say isn’t growing to its full potential, and encourage Colombians to accumulate more debt.

“Each person and bank must take on the task of assessing if they are able to take on more debt and how to use available credit options”, said bank chief, Jose Dario Uribe.

Uribe also said that the decision was made considering that, on average,  the economies of Colombia’s commercial partners have grown as much as expected. The Board of Directors also decided to extend daily dollar purchases thru May and expects to accumulate 3,000 million dollars, with daily purchases of no less then 30 million dollars.

Farc are willing to arrive in Norway with an open mind

Sábado, septiembre 8th, 2012

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, Farc, are willing to arrive in Norway to negotiate peace with the National Government with an open mind, disregarding obstacles like the President’s refusal to cease military operations during talks and the presence of alias ‘Simón Trinidad’ at the negotiating table.

“Looking at things with optimism, we feel there is no problem we cannot solve,” said guerrilla leader Marco León Calarcá during an exclusive interview with The Associated Press.

The Government and Farc will begin formal peace talks in October after having meeting in Cuba for at least six months to reach preliminary agreements.

Two issues brought up by Farc, however, looked to many like the first hangups in what will be at least the third attempt at negotiation between the government and the insurgency. The first was a ceasefire, which the Government immediately rejected. The second was a request for alias ‘Simón Trinidad’, who is currently serving a 60-year sentence in the United States for the kidnapping of three Americans, to be at the table.

“We’re not saying that if there isn’t a ceasefire we won’t start (…) but we are calling for good judgement, we’re saying that if we’re going to talk let’s not harm each other anymore, if we are willing to find peace, let’s not harm each other anymore.”

Calarcá was part of the ‘exploratory’ talks with government delegates in Cuba along with alias ‘Andres Paris’, ‘Hermes Aguilar’ and ‘Sandra Ramirez’, among others. He said the agreement is also an invitation for other organizations to build peace in the country. When asked if this meant an invitation to the National Liberation Army (Eln), he said,“all we are saying to the comrades of the Eln is that they should think about that purpose, because we know it’s part of their strategic goals, as it is of our own.”

In reference to the United States Calarcá said: “Allow me to dream and say that the best thing the US can do would be to leave us alone, (…) let us resolve our own problems and create our own problems, because many of the problems we have in Colombia were created by imperialistic policies.”

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