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As Latin America’s Prison Population Explodes, Gangs Seize Control
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As Latin America’s Prison Population Explodes, Gangs Seize Control

Ecuador’s military was sent in to seize control of the country’s prisons last month after two major gang leaders escaped and criminal groups quickly set off a nationwide revolt that paralyzed the country.In Brazil last week, two inmates with connections to a major gang became the first to escape from one of the nation’s five maximum-security federal prisons, officials said.Officials in Colombia have declared an emergency in its prisons after two guards were killed and several more targeted in what the government said was retaliation for its crackdown on major criminal groups.Inside prisons across Latin America, criminal groups exercise unchallenged authority over prisoners, extracting money from them to buy protection or basic necessities, like food.The prisons also act as a safe haven of ...
Crew Abandons Cargo Ship After Houthi Missile Attack: Middle East Crisis Live Updates
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Crew Abandons Cargo Ship After Houthi Missile Attack: Middle East Crisis Live Updates

The crew of a cargo ship in the Red Sea was forced to abandon ship after it came under attack on Monday from the Houthi militia in Yemen, who have been firing missiles at ships in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden in what the group says is a campaign to pressure Israel to end its war in the Gaza Strip.The attack on the ship, the Rubymar, appeared to be one of the Houthis’ most damaging so far. Most of the armed group’s missile and drone assaults on ships have failed to inflict serious damage.But the strike on Monday night, involving two anti-ship ballistic missiles launched from Yemen between 9:30 and 10:45 p.m., according to the U.S. military, was enough to drive the crew off the vessel. The military’s Central Command said that one of the missiles struck the Rubymar, “causing damage” and promp...
Residents Oppose Expanding Drug Use Sites to Suburban Vancouver
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Residents Oppose Expanding Drug Use Sites to Suburban Vancouver

British Columbia’s rampant drug deaths have more than once thrust public health officials into uncharted territory. It became the first province to decriminalize small quantities of hard drugs for personal use in 2022, about two decades after Vancouver opened the first supervised injection site in North America. But as overdoses increase in some British Columbia towns, there is disagreement in one city about how to address it.In Richmond, one of British Columbia’s largest cities, with 230,000 people, municipal council chambers turned raucous this week as a full public gallery of residents opposed a plan for staff to study whether a safe consumption site for drug users would be viable in the community. The plan was adopted on Tuesday, but the effort is off to a rocky start, with few officia...
Egypt Builds Wall Across From Gaza Border: Israel-Hamas Live Updates
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Egypt Builds Wall Across From Gaza Border: Israel-Hamas Live Updates

A wall is going up in the desert of Egypt near the border of the war-torn Gaza Strip, but no one is talking much about it.Satellite imagery, photographs and video analyzed by The New York Times show a large patch of land being bulldozed and the wall being built in the buffer zone between Egypt and Rafah, the southern Gaza city overflowing with over a million displaced Palestinians that Israeli forces are poised to invade.Construction of a wall along the Egyptian border with Rafah is seen in this satellite imagery.Credit...Maxar TechnologiesThe satellite imagery clearly shows newly graded land south of the Rafah border crossing. An analysis of the satellite images indicated that the work began around Feb. 5.But the Egyptian government, which has looked on with concern as Gazans displaced by...
Mysterious Pattern in a Cave Is Oldest Rock Art Found in Patagonia
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Mysterious Pattern in a Cave Is Oldest Rock Art Found in Patagonia

In the stark inland desert of Patagonia in Argentina, there is a remote cave decorated with nearly 900 paintings of human figures, animals and abstract designs. Until recently, archaeologists had assumed that the rock art at this site, known as Cueva Huenul 1, was created within the past few thousand years.But in a paper published Wednesday in the journal Science Advances, archaeologists say that one of the cave’s most mysterious motifs, a comblike pattern, first appeared some 8,200 years ago, making it by far the earliest known example of rock art in one of the last places on Earth to be settled by our species. Cave artists continued to draw the same comb design in black pigment for thousands of years, an era when other human activity was virtually absent at the site. The cave art provide...
Israel-Hamas War in Gaza News: Live Updates
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Israel-Hamas War in Gaza News: Live Updates

Israeli special operations forces raided a building in the southern Gazan city of Rafah early Monday to free two hostages held by Hamas, the military said, as Israel launched a wave of attacks overnight that killed dozens of Palestinians in Rafah, according to the Gazan health ministry.The operations were met with elation in Israel, and grief and foreboding in the Gaza Strip, where more than a million Palestinians have crowded into Rafah, fleeing their homes and seeking refuge from Israeli military actions farther north. Palestinians feared the raid — and the accompanying death toll — portended a more prolonged Israeli operation to capture Rafah.The nighttime rescue operation marked only the second time Israeli forces said they had rescued captives in Gaza since the war began in October. T...
Ricardo Martinelli Vows to Run for President of Panama From Nicaraguan Embassy
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Ricardo Martinelli Vows to Run for President of Panama From Nicaraguan Embassy

As Panama jumps into its boisterous Carnival period, the celebrations this weekend come amid a bizarre political drama playing out in the capital.A former president, who is also a top contender in this year’s presidential election in May, has holed himself up in the Nicaraguan Embassy in Panama City, accompanied by his furniture, including a sofa and a desk, as well as his dog, Bruno.Ricardo Martinelli, a 71-year-old conservative businessman who led Panama from 2009 to 2014, was granted asylum by Nicaragua this week after Panama’s Supreme Court denied his appeal of a money-laundering conviction that carried with it a 10-year prison sentence.Mr. Martinelli, who has faced other criminal investigations, contends not only that the case is politically motivated, but also that Panama’s president...
Israel Raids Southern Gaza Hospital, Aid Group Says: Live Updates
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Israel Raids Southern Gaza Hospital, Aid Group Says: Live Updates

President Biden sharply escalated his criticism of Israel’s approach to the war against Hamas on Thursday, calling military operations in Gaza “over the top” and saying that the suffering of innocent people has “got to stop.”Mr. Biden, who has strongly supported Israel’s right to retaliate for the Oct. 7 terrorist attack by Hamas that killed an estimated 1,200 people, exhibited growing impatience with the scale and duration of Israel’s response during a nighttime meeting with reporters at the White House.“I’m of the view, as you know, that the conduct of the response in Gaza, in the Gaza Strip, has been over the top,” Mr. Biden said in response to questions at the end of the rowdy session, meant to address a special counsel report on his handling of classified documents. “I’ve been pushing...
For First Time in Two Decades, U.S. Buys More From Mexico Than China
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For First Time in Two Decades, U.S. Buys More From Mexico Than China

In the depths of the pandemic, as global supply chains buckled and the cost of shipping a container to China soared nearly twentyfold, Marco Villarreal spied an opportunity.In 2021, Mr. Villarreal resigned as Caterpillar’s director general in Mexico and began nurturing ties with companies looking to shift manufacturing from China to Mexico. He found a client in Hisun, a Chinese producer of all-terrain vehicles, which hired Mr. Villarreal to establish a $152 million manufacturing site in Saltillo, an industrial hub in northern Mexico.Mr. Villarreal said foreign companies, particularly those seeking to sell within North America, saw Mexico as a viable alternative to China for several reasons, including the simmering trade tensions between the United States and China.“The stars are aligning f...
Middle East Crisis: Blinken Arrives in Mideast to Rally Support for Cease-Fire Plan
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Middle East Crisis: Blinken Arrives in Mideast to Rally Support for Cease-Fire Plan

American warplanes destroyed or severely damaged most of the Iranian and militia targets they struck in Syria and Iraq on Friday, according to the Pentagon, the first major salvos in what President Biden and his aides have said will be a sustained campaign.Maj. Gen. Patrick S. Ryder, the Pentagon press secretary, said on Monday that “more than 80” of some 85 targets in Syria and Iraq were destroyed or rendered inoperable. The targets, he said, included command hubs; intelligence centers; depots for rockets, missiles and attack drones; as well as logistics and ammunition bunkers.It was the first military assessment of the strikes carried out in response to a drone attack in Jordan by an Iran-backed militia in Iraq on Jan. 28 that killed three American soldiers and injured at least 40 more s...