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Member since: Thu May 18, 2017, 11:36 AM
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President-elect Biden phones Argentine President Alberto Fernandez: "I want a strong relationship"

President-elect Joe Biden shared a phone conversation this morning with Argentine President Alberto Fernández - who since his election last year has struggled with the Covid-19 pandemic, its economic effects, and a debt crisis inherited from right-wing predecessor Mauricio Macri.

The call was the first between Biden and Fernández, who again congratulated the President-elect - adding that “your victory means a great opportunity to create a better bond, and for the United States to renew its relationship with Latin America.”

Biden, in turn, told Fernández that “the continent has great potential, with a solid democracy, and we have a broad agenda to work on from Canada to Argentina.”

“I want to have a strong relationship with the continent,” said Biden.

An alternative

“These have been difficult years for Latin America,” Fernández noted. “We wanted things to change and we see in you an alternative.”

Biden's defeat of President Donald Trump was hailed around the world as a hope for a more pragmatic U.S. foreign policy.

Argentine Foreign Minister Felipe Solá noted that the call “was scheduled to last 10 minutes and lasted 35 minutes, so obviously (Biden) was comfortable.”

Solá said that Fernández asked Biden “for the cooperation and goodwill of the director representing the U.S. at the IMF, because we are not currently having much luck with the current director (Trump appointee Mark Rosen).”

Argentina's currently renegotiating a $45 billion IMF debt - taken on by Macri ahead of his failed 2019 re-election effort in what Fernández has described as “the world's largest campaign contribution ever.”

Biden, Solá added, “said he would endeavor to settle the financial problems of Latin America, and recognized Argentina as a very important country” with great human and natural resources.

At: https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=auto&tl=en&u=https://www.pagina12.com.ar/309058-alberto-fernandez-y-joe-biden-mantuvieron-una-comunicacion-t

Argentine President Alberto Fernández smiles during today's phone call with President-elect Joe Biden.

Biden, who shares the Catholic faith with Fernández as well as a friendship with the Argentine-born Pope Francis, stressed that the continent must be helped in its economic recovery.

“We have a lot ahead to do in the region,” Fernández concurred. “This is the most unequal continent in the world, it must be developed economically and socially balanced.”

Pennsylvania judge orders halt to further vote certification, Gov. Tom Wolf to appeal

Source: Morning Call

A Pennsylvania appeals court judge ordered state officials on Wednesday to halt any further steps toward certifying election results, a day after Gov. Tom Wolf said he had certified Democrat Joe Biden as the winner of the presidential election in Pennsylvania.

It wasn't immediately clear if the order from Commonwealth Court Judge Patricia McCullough, a Republican, could hold up the certification of state and local contests on the ballot or interrupt the scheduled Dec. 14 meeting of the state's 20 electors. McCullough scheduled a hearing for Friday.

Wolf's administration quickly asked the state Supreme Court to block the ruling from taking effect, saying there was no "conceivable justification" for it.

"Since the birth of our nation nearly 250 years ago, no court has ever issued an order purporting to interfere with a state's ascertainment of its presidential electors - until today," the administration said in its motion.

Read more: https://www.mcall.com/news/elections/mc-pa-judge-vote-certification-20201125-story.html

Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Judge Patricia McCullough (GOP)

"Since the birth of our nation nearly 250 years ago," Gov. Tom Wolf noted, "no court has ever issued an order purporting to interfere with a state's ascertainment of its presidential electors - until today."

Diego Maradona, one of the greatest footballers of all time, dies aged 60

Diego Maradona, regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time, has died aged 60.

The Argentine, who had brain surgery this month, died of a heart attack in his home in the Buenos Aires suburb of Tigre, his lawyer said. Maradona inspired his country to World Cup glory in 1986 when as captain he displayed a level of skill, creativity, strength and desire arguably not seen before or since.

In the 2-1 quarter-final victory over England he also scored perhaps the greatest goal of all time, a match in which the forward also showed his darker, mischievous side with the infamous ‘Hand of God’.

Maradona also achieved success at club level, most notably with Napoli, whom he led to their first Serie A title in 1987. A second followed in 1990, alongside an Italian Cup in 1987 and a Uefa Cup in 1991, and such was the player’s impact at a club which previously had lived in the shadow of Italy’s northern powerhouses, particularly Juventus, Milan and Internazionale, that Napoli announced in 2000 that they were retiring his No. 10 shirt.

It was during his seven years in Naples, however, that Maradona’s addiction to cocaine took grip.

From there Maradona’s personal life spiralled out control and in 2000 and 2004 he was hospitalised for heart problems, the second time requiring the use of a respirator to breathe properly. The following year he underwent gastric-bypass surgery to help stem his obesity.

None of that, however, could overshadow his talents on the pitch which, at their peak, were almost supernatural.

At: https://www.theguardian.com/football/2020/nov/25/diego-maradona-dies-one-of-greatest-footballers-of-all-time-argentina-world-cup-1986

Renowned Argentine football midfielder and striker Diego Maradona raises the World Cup in Mexico City in 1986.

Known for his talent and personal struggles, as well as activism on behalf of progressive causes, the flamboyant Maradona was considered - along with Barcelona forward Lionel Messi - the greatest Argentine footballer.

California enacts nighttime curfew as COVID-19 cases spike

A majority of Californians are under a nighttime curfew beginning Saturday as surging coronavirus cases threaten to swamp health care systems, and the state's largest county warned that an even more drastic lockdown could be imminent.

The newest restrictions require people to stay home from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. unless they are responding to an emergency, shopping for groceries, picking up takeout or walking their dogs.

The monthlong curfew could be extended if rapidly worsening trends don’t improve.

At: https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/california-enacts-nighttime-curfew-covid-19-cases-spike-74331748

A street vendor this Thursday, on 3rd Street Promenade in Santa Monica, CA.

Violence erupts in Brazil after Black man beaten to death at Carrefour store

More than 1,000 demonstrators attacked a Carrefour Brasil supermarket in the southern Brazilian city of Porto Alegre on Friday after security guards beat to death a Black man at the store.

The killing, which has sparked protests across Brazil, occurred late on Thursday when a store employee called security after the man threatened to attack her, cable news channel GloboNews said, citing the Rio Grande do Sul state military police.

In a statement on Friday, the local unit of France’s Carrefour SA said it deeply regretted what it called a brutal death and said it immediately took steps to ensure those responsible were legally punished.

It said it would terminate the contract with the security firm, fire the employee in charge of the store at the time of the incident, and close the store as a mark of respect.

At: https://www.reuters.com/article/brazil-supermarket-death-idINKBN2810BU

"Justice for João Alberto": Protesters attack a Carrefour supermarket in São Paulo, Brazil.

The protest was called by the city's black movement in response to the murder of João Alberto Silveira Freitas, a 40-year-old black man, in a Carrefour store in Porto Alegre.

Silveira Freitas' death comes on the eve of Black Consciousness Day in Brazil - home of the world's second-largest Black/Afro-descendant population after Nigeria.

Chile police chief resigns after officers shoot adolescents

Chile's police chief resigned Thursday after officers shot two minors in an incident that sparked outrage across a country already alarmed at heavy handed security force tactics during months of social protests.

President Sebastián Piñera said in a statement he had accepted the resignation of Mario Rozas, saying he shared "the reasons and arguments" he had given for resigning.

Chile's leftist opposition had for months called on Rozas, who was head of the Carabineros military police, to resign following criticism from the UN human rights office and other organizations over police repression of the social protests.

Police officers on Wednesday shot and wounded two minors, aged 17 and 14, at a residence for troubled children and adolescents in the southern city of Talcahuano.

Children's Ombudsman Patricia Muñoz denounced the police for using firearms "in an absolutely unjustified and excessive manner."

At: https://www.ibtimes.com/chile-police-chief-resigns-after-officers-shoot-adolescents-3085548

Chilean President Sebastián Piñera and his now former Carabineros (military police) Chief Mario Rozas.

The Carabineros' November 18th shooting of two teens was the final straw in Rozas' controversial tenure, noted for a policy of deliberately aiming for protesters' eyes - blinding over 400 amid constitutional reform demonstrations in late 2019.

Opponents are demanding Piñera disband the Carabineros, which had already gained notoriety for human rights abuses during the Pinochet dictatorship and its violent crackdown on protests afterward.

Birthday time: Biden turns 78, will be oldest U.S. president

President-elect Joe Biden turned 78 on Friday. In two months, he’ll take the reins of a politically fractured nation facing the worst public health crisis in a century, high unemployment and a reckoning on racial injustice.

As he wrestles with those issues, Biden will be attempting to accomplish another feat: demonstrate to Americans that age is but a number and he’s up to the job.

Biden will be sworn in as the oldest president in the nation’s history, displacing Ronald Reagan, who left the White House in 1989 when he was 77 years and 349 days old.

The age and health of both Biden and President Donald Trump — less than four years Biden’s junior — loomed throughout a race that was decided by a younger and more diverse electorate and at a moment when the nation is facing no shortage of issues of consequence.

At: https://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/nation/birthday-time-biden-turns-78-will-be-oldest-u-s-president/

President-elect Joe Biden: 78 years young.

Candido Camero, 'father of modern conga drumming,' dies at 99

Cándido Camero, a Cuban musician who helped find new expressive directions for conga drumming, providing dynamic rhythmic accents to jazz and other forms of music, died Nov. 7 at his home in New York City. He was 99.

Mr. Camero, who often performed and recorded as simply “Candido,” began his career in Cuba at 14 and was still active past the age of 95.

He was considered a towering figure on the congas, which are tapered drums played with the fingers and hands.

His greatest innovation was to play more than one conga drum at a time, eventually settling on a setup of three congas, each tuned to a different pitch.

He sometimes added bongos and other percussion instruments, creating a whirlwind of complex rhythms and sounds.

At: https://www.msn.com/en-us/music/news/candido-camero-father-of-modern-conga-drumming-dies-at-99/ar-BB1aVCkp

Cándido Camero, 1921-2020.

Peru's Congress selects centrist lawmaker Francisco Sagasti to be new leader, third in a week

Peru’s Congress chose a new leader Monday expected to become the nation’s third president in the span of a week, a hopeful sign that the political crisis is on the verge of resolution.

Lawmakers voted overwhelmingly in favor of Francisco Sagasti, an engineer from the centrist Purple Party, as the legislature’s new president. By law, the head of Congress should become the country’s new interim president.

It will now fall on Sagasti to heal a nation bruised by a week of upheaval.

The 76-year-old hails from a political party that voted against the ouster of President Martín Vizcarra - an anti-corruption crusader highly popular among Peruvians, which is likely to quell protests.

The Latin American nation’s political turmoil took a chaotic turn Sunday when interim leader Manuel Merino quit after a mere five days in office and Congress couldn’t decide on his replacement.

At: https://www.chicagotribune.com/nation-world/ct-nw-peru-president-20201116-potnfa2yrjafxk7dqv55vfj4ji-story.html

Peru's new President Francisco Sagasti, who was chosen by the nation's Congress after interim President Manuel Merino resigned after 5 days in office.

The centrist Sagasti is the fourth Peruvian president since 2018, and legislators hope his appointment will end a week of massive protests against what many see as a legislative coup against popular former President Martín Vizcarra.

The country's 33 million people await a ruling from the Constitutional Tribunal to determine the validity of Vizcarra's November 10th impeachment.

Peru's interim President Manuel Merino resigns after protest deaths

Peru’s interim president, Manuel Merino, resigned on Sunday, less than a week into his new administration, after protests calling for his removal left two dead and dozens injured, plunging the country into yet another political crisis.

Merino assumed the presidency on Tuesday after the opposition-dominated Congress voted to remove his predecessor Martin Vizcarra, over bribery allegations, which he denies.

At: https://www.reuters.com/article/BigStory12/idUSKBN27V0L9

Peruvian President Manuel Merino announcing his resignation today after just 5 days in office.

Merino, the third Peruvian president to step down ahead of time since 2018, presided over a week of massive protests against what many see as the partisan removal of popular former President Martín Vizcarra.

Ipsos polls found that 72% of Peruvians in urban areas disapproved of Merino, while 79% believed Vizcarra should finish his term.
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