miércoles, 12 de marzo de 2014

Michelle Bachelet becomes Chile's President again

The socialist Michelle Bachelet Jeria formally became Chile's President on 11 March, after winning her second term in the second round of presidential elections held in Chile in December 2013. She was as media observed the first woman to be elected Chilean President twice. Spain's El Mundo observed that her second mandate was expected to usher in changes and policies to reduce the social inequalities that have accompanied Chile's economic growth in recent years. She was immediately introducing an emergency program of 50-56 measures to be implemented within the first 100 days of her administration and intended to provide financial help to some Chilean households, Europa Press reported. Government spokesman Álvaro Elizalde Soto said on 12 March that these first measures were a "clear signal" of its intention to fulfill election promises and the President's promise after her inauguration that she would work to improve the lives of Chileans, El Mercurio reported on its website. The President had already signed a "March bonus" bill to be presented to parliament, intended to help lower-income families, and the Government would also restore a "winter bonus" to some families, Mr Elizalde said. Ms Bachelet was President in 2006-10 and beat the conservative Evelyn Matthei Fornet in December to win her second presidential term. She revealed her cabinet members in January 2014.

FARC kill four Colombian soldiers, guerrillas "desert"

The Colombian Minister of Defence denounced on 11 March as barbaric and a violation of international laws an ambush by the communist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) that killed four soldiers and injured four civilians. The guerrillas, reportedly dressed as road ministry employees, shot the soldiers on 10 March as they guarded a bridge on the river San Pedro in the district of Montañita. Minister Juan Carlos Pinzón described the attack as unacceptable and a violation of international human rights laws, El Espectador reported. The Army separately reported several guerrilla desertions on 11 March. Three FARC fighters surrendered to troops at an unspecified time in the departments of Guaviare and Meta in south-central Colombia, the Army reported on 11 March, while a fighter of the National Liberation Army was also reported to have surrendered in the north-western district of Quibdó. Another FARC guerrilla fled his company in the northern department of César, after saying he needed to go to the toilet, the Army reported on 11 March. The guerrilla later told troops he had been forcibly recruited into the FARC 33 months previously, when he was aged 18. In the northern district of San Pablo, troops captured a female suspect identified as a 28-year FARC veteran and field captain dubbed Johana or La ÑoñoRadio Santa Fe reported on 11 March.