Lisa Brodyaga, Crusading Lawyer for Immigrants’ Rights, Dies at 81

She became a folk hero representing asylum seekers fleeing violence in Central America, setting up shop in the Rio Grande Valley and building a refuge camp.

#brodyaga-lisa-1940-2021, #central-america, #civil-rights-and-liberties, #deaths-obituaries, #immigration-and-emigration, #legal-profession, #rio-grande-valley-tex

How Hispanics Became Swing Voters

Republicans see an opportunity. Democrats have a lot of work to do.  

#border-barriers, #bush-george-w, #central-america, #democratic-party, #hispanic-americans, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexican-americans, #obama-barack, #race-and-ethnicity, #republican-party, #tea-party-movement, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

49 Dead in Crash of Truck Carrying Migrants in Mexico

Dozens more were reported injured in the crash in southern Chiapas state, where many migrants regularly cross into Mexico from Central America.

#asylum-right-of, #central-america, #chiapas-mexico, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexico, #roads-and-traffic, #traffic-accidents-and-safety

Xiomara Castro Vows New Era for Hondurus but Is Tied to Past

Xiomara Castro, headed toward becoming her country’s next president, promises to expunge its legacy of corruption, but change may be tempered by her establishment ties and conservative opposition.

#central-america, #corruption-institutional, #elections, #hernandez-juan-orlando, #honduras, #politics-and-government, #zelaya-rosales-jose-manuel

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Hondurans head to the polls on Sunday, but widespread political violence during the campaign and questionable results from 2017 are looming large.

#asfura-nasry, #castro-xiomara, #central-america, #corruption-institutional, #elections, #hernandez-juan-orlando, #honduras, #latin-america, #politics-and-government, #united-states-international-relations, #zelaya-rosales-jose-manuel

Is Hurricane Season Still Going? You Bet.

There hasn’t been a named storm in the Atlantic Ocean since early October, but about a month remains in the hurricane season. “Don’t raid your hurricane supplies yet,” said one meteorologist.

#atlantic-ocean, #central-america, #east-coast-us, #gulf-coast-us, #gulf-of-mexico, #hurricane-ida-2021, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #national-hurricane-center, #weather

The U.S. Needs a Hemispheric Migration Strategy

The U.S. should move from a border policy approach to a truly regional and collaborative plan of action.

#brazil, #central-america, #chile, #colombia, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #costa-rica, #cuba, #darien-gap, #haiti, #immigration-and-emigration

At Mexico-U.S. Security Talks, Migration Question Is Largely Avoided

As diplomats from both countries began negotiating a new security agreement on Friday, the focus was on stopping criminal activity while the border crisis was conspicuously sidestepped.

#blinken-antony-j, #central-america, #drug-abuse-and-traffic, #drug-enforcement-administration, #ebrard-marcelo, #gun-control, #human-trafficking, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexico

After Pastor in Mexico Evicts Nearly 200 Migrants, His Brother Welcomes Them All

An evangelical minister in a Mexico border town had let dozens of migrant families live in his church. When he ousted most of them, his brother across the way invited the outcasts into his home.

#central-america, #churches-buildings, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #immigration-and-emigration, #matamoros-mexico, #mexico, #refugees-and-displaced-persons

A Sanctuary Takes Shape, Framed Around Migrants

Near Tijuana’s border with San Diego, innovative housing is being constructed for refugees.

#architecture, #central-america, #design, #homeless-persons, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexico, #prouve-jean-1901-84, #san-diego-calif, #squatters, #tijuana-mexico, #university-of-california-san-diego

Biden’s Border Dilemma

Increased crossings from Central America are forcing the administration to choose between two major goals — stopping migrants or stopping the root causes.

#audio-neutral-informative, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #corruption-institutional, #immigration-and-emigration

El dilema de EE. UU. en Guatemala: ¿detener la corrupción o la migración?

El presidente Joe Biden prometió abordar la corrupción en Centroamérica, un propósito que ha tenido que pasar a segundo plano para lograr un clima de cooperación que reduzca el flujo migratorio.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #corruption-institutional, #el-salvador, #giammattei-alejandro, #immigration-and-emigration, #refugees-and-displaced-persons, #united-states-international-relations

Biden Faces a Trade-Off: Stop Corruption, or Migration?

President Biden promised to attack corruption in Central America head on, but that goal has taken a back seat to cooperating on stopping migrants from the region.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #corruption-institutional, #el-salvador, #giammattei-alejandro, #immigration-and-emigration, #refugees-and-displaced-persons, #united-states-international-relations

How Peppers Proliferated Around the Planet

In the world’s plant gene banks, scientists studied how so many varieties of the humble capsicum worked their way onto our plates.

#central-america, #genetics-and-heredity, #international-trade-and-world-market, #peppers, #portugal, #proceedings-of-the-national-academy-of-sciences, #research, #south-america, #your-feed-science

House Hunting in El Salvador: A Compound on the Coast for $249,000

Home prices are gradually recovering in the Central American nation, but are still low enough to lure droves of buyers to the beaches.

#central-america, #el-salvador, #real-estate-and-housing-residential

Enrique Bolaños, Former President of Nicaragua, Dies at 93

A conservative leader who fought corruption and pushed for economic progress, Mr. Bolaños believed that his country was in a time of crisis.

#central-america, #deaths-obituaries, #latin-america, #nicaragua, #ortega-daniel, #politics-and-government

Nicaragua Denies Entry to New York Times Journalist Amid Escalating Crisis

The refusal to admit the reporter comes amid a nationwide crackdown on journalists, opposition politicians and civil society groups.

#anatoly-kurmanaev, #central-america, #false-arrests-convictions-and-imprisonments, #freedom-of-the-press, #latin-america, #media, #nicaragua, #ortega-daniel

In Guatemala, Harris Tells Undocumented to Stay Away From U.S. Border

In her first foreign trip as vice president, Kamala Harris promoted economic development and anti-corruption efforts, trying to stem the northward flow of migrants.

#asylum-right-of, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #corruption-institutional, #giammattei-alejandro, #guatemala, #harris-kamala-d, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #remittances, #united-states-politics-and-government

U.S. Aid to Central America Hasn’t Slowed Migration. Can Kamala Harris?

A stark reality faces the vice president as she visits the region: Expanding aid programs have failed to stem migration.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #foreign-aid, #guatemala, #harris-kamala-d, #immigration-and-emigration, #wages-and-salaries

President Biden, the Clock Is Ticking to Rescind a Trump Immigration Policy

Border crossings between the U.S. and Mexico should return to normal status, with normal rules for asylum seekers.

#asylum-right-of, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #deferred-action-for-childhood-arrivals, #deportation, #illegal-immigration, #mexico, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

Kushki, an Ecuador-based fintech, raises $86M to build financial infrastructure in Latam

Just about every week there’s a blockbuster round coming out of South America, but in next door Central America, which mostly is less affluent, things have been more hush hush. However, Kushki, a Quito, Ecuador-based fintech, is bringing attention to the region with today’s announcement of a $86 million Series B and a $600 million valuation.

“We never thought that we would return home [from the U.S.] and build a company that was more valuable in Ecuador than we had built in the U.S.,” said Aron Schwarzkopf, CEO and co-founder of Kushki.

Schwarzkopf and his business partner, Sebastián Castro, had previously built and sold a fintech called Leaf in the U.S. in 2014. The two are originally from Ecuador but moved to Boston for college, where they met watching soccer.

Unlike many other fintechs in Latam that are out to help the unbanked, Kushki works behind the scenes building the tech infrastructure that companies like Nubank use to transfer money. Some of the functionalities they build enable both local and cross-border payment players in credit and debit cards, bank transfers, digital cash, mobile wallets, and other alternative payment methods.

“We realized there was a gigantic opportunity to democratize and create infrastructure to move money,” Schwarzkopf told TechCrunch.

The company, which was founded in 2017, already has operations in Mexico, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Chile. The Series B will be used to accelerate growth and expand to Brazil and nine other markets in Central America.

Generally, expanding to Brazil is an expensive proposition, and therefore not a path that all companies can take, even though it can be an extremely profitable move if done right. Some of the challenges include the need to translate everything into Portuguese followed by the varying financial regulations.

That’s why Kushki’s approach has to be somewhat custom in each country.

“We focus on going into the markets and we basically rebuild an entire infrastructure, so we put everything into one API,” said Schwarzkopf.

Products similar to Kushki have been successful in other regions around the world, such as in India with Pine Labs, Africa with Flutterwave, and Checkout.com that now has 15 international offices.

To build all this infrastructure, Kushki, which means “cash” in a native Andes dialect, has raised a total of $100 million from SoftBank, an undisclosed global growth equity firm, as well as previous investors including DILA Capital, Kaszek Ventures, Clocktower Ventures, and Magma Partners.

“From now until 2060, people will need servers and ways to move money, and we knew that the existing payment infrastructure couldn’t support that,” said Schwarzkopf.

#africa, #bank-transfers, #brazil, #central-america, #chile, #clocktower-ventures, #colombia, #dila-capital, #ecuador, #finance, #funding, #fundings-exits, #kaszek-ventures, #magma-partners, #mexico, #mobile, #payments, #peru, #softbank, #south-america, #startups, #united-states

Detentions at Southwest Border Reach 20-Year High

The number of immigrants detained at the southwestern border has risen for 12 straight months, according to Customs and Border Protection data.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #customs-and-border-protection-us, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexico

U.S. Shows Progress in Moving Migrant Children From Border Jails

New government statistics show a backlog of migrant children being held at Border Patrol facilities contrary to law has greatly diminished.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #border-patrol-us, #central-america, #child-custody-and-support, #health-and-human-services-department, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #immigration-detention, #united-states-politics-and-government

Latin America’s Former Presidents Have Way Too Much Power

It’s time to take them down from their pedestals.

#central-america, #correa-rafael, #democracy-theory-and-philosophy, #ecuador, #elections, #lasso-guillermo, #latin-america, #mexico, #peru, #south-america

We Need a High Wall With a Big Gate on the Southern Border

Immigration is America’s lifeblood, so we can’t risk losing it.

#asylum-right-of, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #border-barriers, #central-america, #democratic-party, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #international-trade-and-world-market, #republican-party, #trump-donald-j, #united-states, #united-states-politics-and-government

Young Migrants Crowd Shelters, Posing Test for Biden

The administration is under intensifying pressure to expand its capacity to care for as many as 35,000 unaccompanied minors, part of a wave of people crossing the border.

#administration-for-children-and-families, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #border-patrol-us, #central-america, #citizenship-and-immigration-services-us, #domestic-policy-council-us, #health-and-human-services-department, #homeland-security-department, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-customs-enforcement-us, #immigration-and-emigration, #national-aeronautics-and-space-administration, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

White House Border Coordinator to Step Down

Roberta S. Jacobson’s departure comes amid the administration’s efforts to reduce the flow of immigration from Central America.

#appointments-and-executive-changes, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #harris-kamala-d, #immigration-and-emigration, #jacobson-roberta-s, #national-security-council, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government

Biden Should Finish the Wall

… Or the next Trump will.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #california, #central-america, #democratic-party, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexico, #trump-donald-j, #united-states, #united-states-politics-and-government

What’s Driving the Surge at the Southern Border?

Blaming the increase in arrivals on current immigration policy only papers over harder truths, experts say.

#asylum-right-of, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #immigration-and-emigration, #refugees-and-displaced-persons, #united-states-politics-and-government

The Perpetual Crisis at the Border — and What We Can Do About It

The U.S. immigration system doesn’t reflect its own needs or those of its southern neighbors.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #illegal-immigration, #trump-donald-j

The Real Reason for the Border Crisis

No one is holding American employers to account for their willingness to hire millions of unauthorized immigrants.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #foreign-workers, #homeland-security-department, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #labor-and-jobs, #mexico, #migrant-labor-non-agriculture, #trump-donald-j, #united-states

Biden Names Harris to Work With Central America on Migration

The president gave the vice president a prominent role in the politically charged issue at a time when thousands of children are being detained in facilities along the border.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #border-patrol-us, #central-america, #cuellar-henry, #customs-and-border-protection-us, #federal-emergency-management-agency, #foreign-aid, #health-and-human-services-department, #homeland-security-department, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government

Solving the Migrant Crisis Means Going Beyond Our Border

Until we address what motivates vulnerable people to leave their home countries, they will continue to come.

#asylum-right-of, #biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #congressional-hispanic-caucus, #deferred-action-for-childhood-arrivals, #el-paso-tex, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexico, #migrant-labor-agriculture, #trump-donald-j, #united-states

A Violent End to a Desperate Dream Leaves a Guatemalan Town Grieving

The trek from Central America to U.S. soil has always been perilous, but a massacre with many victims from one corner of Guatemala has shaken that country.

#central-america, #coffins, #funerals-and-memorials, #guatemala, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration

Migrant Families at U.S.-Mexico Border Deported by Surprise

When 149 migrants were escorted onto a bridge by U.S. Border Patrol agents, they had no idea where they were being taken. Many collapsed, crying, when they learned they were back in Mexico.

#border-patrol-us, #central-america, #ciudad-juarez-mexico, #deportation, #el-paso-tex, #immigration-and-emigration, #mexico

US to Send Millions of Covid-19 Vaccine Doses to Mexico and Canada

The announcement came at a time when the Biden administration has been quietly pressing Mexico to ramp up its efforts to limit the flow of migrants.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #border-patrol-us, #central-america, #chihuahua-mexico, #ciudad-juarez-mexico, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #guatemala, #honduras, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #latin-america, #lopez-obrador-andres-manuel, #mexico, #north-america, #united-states, #vaccination-and-immunization

Biden Urges Mexico to Do More to Stop Migration

The Biden administration has been quietly pressing Mexico to ramp up its efforts to limit the flow of migrants, clinging to a Trump policy of relying on southern neighbors to enforce America’s immigration agenda.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #border-patrol-us, #central-america, #chihuahua-mexico, #ciudad-juarez-mexico, #guatemala, #honduras, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #latin-america, #lopez-obrador-andres-manuel, #mexico, #north-america, #united-states

Facing Pressure, Biden Administration Scrambles to Shelter Migrant Children

The White House also revived an Obama-era policy that allows Central American children to apply for admission to the U.S. from their home country.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #children-and-childhood, #customs-and-border-protection-us, #foreign-aid, #health-and-human-services-department, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #immigration-detention, #jacobson-roberta-s, #trump-donald-j, #united-states-politics-and-government

Kindred Spirits: 2 Collections of Native Mythology for Children and Their Adults

In “Ancestor Approved” and “The Sea-Ringed World,” sacred stories provide comfort by bringing people together.

#ancestor-approved-intertribal-stories-for-kids-book, #books-and-literature, #bowles-david-1970, #central-america, #children-and-childhood, #esperon-maria-garcia-1964, #indigenous-people, #mesoamerica, #mijangos-amanda, #myths-and-mythical-creatures, #native-americans, #north-america, #smith-cynthia-leitich-1967, #south-america, #the-sea-ringed-world-sacred-stories-of-the-americas-book

President Biden Should Not Underestimate Challenges in Latin America

The new administration will have trouble finding partners to defend democracy in the region.

#biden-joseph-r-jr, #central-america, #latin-america, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government

2 Hurricanes Devastated Central America. Will the Ruin Spur a Migration Wave?

The storms displaced hundreds of thousands of people, creating a new class of refugees with more reason than ever to migrate north and setting up an early test for the incoming Biden administration.

#central-america, #foreign-aid, #giammattei-alejandro, #guatemala, #honduras, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #illegal-immigration, #immigration-and-emigration, #landslides-and-mudslides, #politics-and-government

China Poised to Be First to Distribute Virus Vaccine in Latin America, U.S. Official Says

China, which has been expanding its presence in the region, is likely to beat the United States in its own backyard with vaccine diplomacy as Washington looks “at taking care of the U.S. first.”

#central-america, #china, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #defense-department, #drugs-pharmaceuticals, #latin-america, #united-states-defense-and-military-forces, #united-states-international-relations, #united-states-politics-and-government, #vaccination-and-immunization

Hurricane Iota Live Updates: Still ‘Extremely Dangerous’ at Category 2

The storm is barreling across parts of Central America that are still reeling from Hurricane Eta’s impact less than two weeks ago.

#central-america, #colombia, #honduras, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #nicaragua

The 2020 Hurricane Season in Rewind

There have been 30 named storms and 13 hurricanes this year, the most active Atlantic season on record.

#atlantic-ocean, #central-america, #florida, #global-warming, #gulf-coast-us, #hurricane-laura-2020, #hurricane-zeta-2020, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #louisiana, #national-hurricane-center, #national-oceanic-and-atmospheric-administration, #weather

Hurricane Iota Path: Live Updates of Category 5 Storm

#central-america, #floods, #honduras, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #landslides-and-mudslides, #national-hurricane-center, #nicaragua, #weather

Hurricane Iota Becomes a Category 5 Storm

The storm will be the second hurricane to strike the region in two weeks.

#central-america, #floods, #honduras, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #landslides-and-mudslides, #national-hurricane-center, #nicaragua, #weather

Hurricane Iota Barrels Toward Central America

The storm is expected to make landfall along the coast of Nicaragua and Honduras as a Category 4 hurricane by Monday night.

#central-america, #guatemala, #honduras, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #landslides-and-mudslides, #national-hurricane-center, #nicaragua, #weather

Iota, Now a Hurricane, Is Season’s 30th Named Storm

A Category One storm, Iota was expected to strengthen into a major hurricane by Monday as it approached the coast of Central America, according to the National Hurricane Center.

#central-america, #global-warming, #honduras, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #national-hurricane-center, #nicaragua

Iota Becomes 30th Named Storm in a Record-Breaking Season

Tropical Storm Iota is expected to strengthen into a major hurricane this weekend as it approaches the coast of Central America, according to the National Hurricane Center.

#central-america, #global-warming, #honduras, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #national-hurricane-center, #nicaragua

Guatemala Mudslides Kill More Than 50

Another 23 people across Central America have died or are missing as a result of a vast storm system dumping heavy rainfall across the region.

#central-america, #floods, #guatemala, #hurricanes-and-tropical-storms, #landslides-and-mudslides, #national-hurricane-center, #weather