International News/Politics

Are you really dying for a Coca Cola?

 

Have a look at this unconventional report on what Coca Cola is doing for the world; it’s not just about cheesey ads with nostalgic tunes like First Time by Robin Beck; bare-chested men filling the emotional hole of single women on their 11.30 diet coke break; or Coca Cola claiming it might as well have invited Christmas – it’s the real thing alright!

Coca-Cola – The Alternative Report

Belize Cayes to Antigua to Lago de Atitlán to Volcán Pacaya

 
Zapotilla Cayes, Belize

Zapotilla Cayes, Belize

To round off our time in the Caribbean we took a day trip snorkelling around the Cayes of Belize. If you ever got the chance to do this I thoroughly recommend it. Crystal turquoise waters, white sand, beautiful fish and what’s more, whale sharks. Unfortunately, the island we stopped on also had some vicious sand flies so I returned to Antigua with a golden tan but covered in red welts.

Malnutrition, illegal air strips and Mr Guatemala

 
EU donates millions to combat malnutrition in Guatemala

EU donates millions

Guatemala’s farming poor are suffering from the knock-on effects of global warming. For the third year running the country’s rivers and agricultural potential have shrunk resulting in a food shortage crisis across five of the driest states. So far, the deaths of at least 25 children have been directly attributed to chronic malnutrition and now the EU has stepped in pledging $18,750,000 (about €13,000,000). If we all just turned off our TVs, our A/C units, drove our cars less or did some recycling it’d be a lot cheaper.

El Presidente

 
Oh Rafa, you're making me blush!

Oh Rafa, you're making me blush!

We were watching a news report last week about allegations that President Rafael Correa’s administration has not been as open and squeaky as it should have. After trying to distance him self from his corrupt brother, video evidence of a FARC leader claiming to have donated money to Correa’s 2006 election fund has been shown on Colombian TV.

Symbolic step into Honduras

 

Manuel Zelaya may be getting closer to returning to his country, where he was ousted as leader of the Honduran Government last month.  Things are not going too well, with clashes between the military and Zelaya’s supporters and talks to try and resolve the crisis having collapsed two weeks ago. We wait to see if his ‘moral obligation’ to return can defy the threats of arrest, made by Honduran officials, if he crosses the border from Nicaragua.

This is no urban myth

 
This is no urban myth!

Picture paints the truth!

We came across this mural yesterday. It was painted on the wall of a disused building site, in a non-descript area of town, on a main road, right  where you wouldn’t imagine anybody would both to stop and look. It reminded me of an article I read back in May.

Political crisis in Honduras

 

It seems our plans to go to the Bay Islands, off Honduras, might not come to pass (although things might have calmed down by October). Manuel Zelaya, the President of Honduras, was sent packing after the Supreme Court declared illegal his plans to hold a referendum on the constitution, which his opponents say his would use prolong his seat in power past his four-year term, which ends in January. Second terms are prohibited and peaceful gatherings have been held in protest at Zelaya’s actions. The military marched into to his house on June 28th and put him on a plane to Costa Rica, where he is now in exile. Leftists government in Cuba, Nicaragua, Ecuador, Bolivia claim the events are obviously a coup by the elitist right. Venezuela’s Chavez has said he will stand by his ally and friend as necessary. Immediately on Sunday, the Honduran Congress followed process and named a new president. Interestingly, despite calls by the US for Zelaya to be re-instated, the Obama administration seemed reluctant to cut of aid to the country.  Honduras had been more or less politically peaceful since its return to civilian rule in 1981, after a string of military governments beginning in 1963. Fingers crossed for the Honduran people and our travel plans.

¡Viva la República!

 

 

View of the Basílica and Pichincha from Parque Ichimbía

Basílica and Pichincha from Parque Ichimbía

Saturday we got last minute tickets to see the opera Manuela y Bolivar, at the beautifully renovated Teatro Sucre in the old town.