LATAM POLITICS TODAY-Colombia, ELN rebels begin peace talks after decades of war
The latest in Latin American politics today:
Colombia's Petro launches peace talks with ELN rebels CARACAS - Negotiators from the Colombian government and leftist guerrilla group the National Liberation Army (ELN) began peace talks, the first major step in President Gustavo Petro's efforts to end nearly 60 years of war.
The talks - which began in Venezuelan capital Caracas - will rotate between Venezuela, Cuba and Norway, according to the Colombian government. Petro, a former member of the M-19 insurgency who took office in August, has promised to bring "total peace" to Colombia by negotiating with rebels and crime gangs involved in drug trafficking and illegal mining.
Over the weekend, at least 18 people died in fighting between FARC dissident factions in Colombia's southern jungle, according to Defense Minister Ivan Velasquez. OAS diplomats travel to Peru aiming to ease political crisis
LIMA - A high-level mission of the Organization of American States (OAS) met with Peruvian President Pedro Castillo to analyze his complaints about the opposition and try to cool the country's tense political situation. Castillo invited the OAS to visit Peru with aims to reduce rising political tension following graft accusations leveled against him by prosecutors and opposition lawmakers.
The leftist president wrote on Twitter that the group, which also met the attorney general and leaders of Congress and the Supreme Court would learn that some figures want to "endanger the country's democracy and stability with lies." The OAS mission, headed by former Paraguayan Foreign Minister Eladio Loizaga, will meet on Tuesday with party leaders, civil and religious groups.
Pro-Bolsonaro protesters slow corn transport in Brazil SAO PAULO - Truckers and other demonstrators protesting the electoral defeat of far-right President Jair Bolsonaro are hampering the transport of corn in Mato Grasso state, the heart of Brazil's agricultural land, farmers said.
Mato Grosso highway police reported 11 demonstrations on Monday morning, with roads blocked or partially blocked on four highways near farmers and grain processing facilities. Demonstrations by truckers and other Bolsonaro supporters started after leftist President-elect Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva won the Oct. 30 election. He takes office on Jan. 1.
Mexico's president says Latin America summit in doubt MEXICO CITY - Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said it was likely that a Latin American summit would be canceled after Peru's Congress refused to allow Castillo to travel to Mexico.
The leaders of Mexico, Peru, Chile and Colombia were scheduled to gather later this week at the Pacific Alliance summit in Mexico City. Peru's Congress, which is controlled by a coalition of right-wing parties, denied last week a request from Castillo, a leftist, to travel to the summit.
Argentine President Alberto Fernandez was also scheduled to attend, but La Nacion newspaper reported he too would skip the meeting, due in part to irritation over a dispute with Lopez Obrador's over the leadership of the Inter-American Development Bank. Brazil's Lula discharged from hospital after treatment
SAO PAULO - Brazilian President-elect Lula left hospital after a procedure to remove potentially pre-cancerous patches from his vocal cords, doctors said, adding they had found no abnormal tissue mass. Doctors at Sao Paulo's Sirio Libanes Hospital, where the 77-year-old Lula was treated for throat cancer 11 years ago, said the procedure had removed small white patches called "leukoplakia" from his vocal cords.
Lula over the weekend returned from a two-week international tour, confronting a complicated domestic situation with tensions growing over a slow pace of decisions regarding the government transition. (Compiled by Steven Grattan and Brendan O'Boyle; Editing by Chris Reese and Rashmi Aich)
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)