When the world gets closer.

We help you see farther.

Sign up to our expressly international daily newsletter.

Venezuela

Another Venezuelan Opposition Leader Jailed

CARACAS — Venezuelan security agents have detained Manuel Rosales, an opposition politician returning to the country after six years in exile, at the airport in Maracaibo, in the western state of Zulia. Opposition dailyEl Universal reports that the 63-year-old former presidential candidate and ex governor of Zulia, was arrested "literally as he got off the plane" late Thursday.

The onetime election opponent of late President Hugo Chavez faces charges of embezzling public funds levelled against him in 2008. El Universal cited state prosecutors as saying that the former politician was taken immediately to Caracas to hear the charges against him.

Rosales is just the latest opposition politician in Venezuela in custody, as popular leader Leopoldo Lopez faces a 14-year prison sentence.

Rosales' lawyer Jesús Ollarves denounced the manner of his detention, and insisted his client was not arrested but "handed himself over voluntarily, being put into a van in an unnecessary and exaggerated manner."

[rebelmouse-image 27089533 alt="""" original_size="396x596" expand=1]

Rosales before fleeing the country in 2009 — Photo: Guillermo Ramos Flamerich

Rosales is a leader and founding member of the opposition party Un Nuevo Tiempo, and the party's Twitter account seemed to indicate Rosales was returning to take part in campaigning for the Dec. 6 parliamentary polls. Opposition forces hope then to win majority control of the legislature and curb the power of the socialist President Nicolás Maduro, the hand-picked successor to Chavez.

The pro-government broadcaster TeleSur instead called Rosales a "fugitive from justice" who fled in 2009 to avoid prosecution for alleged financial malfeasance. It observed that his immediate goal on landing had been to attend an opposition meeting in one of the main streets in Maracaibo.

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

Geopolitics

Minerals And Violence: A Papal Condemnation Of African Exploitation, Circa 2023

Before heading to South Sudan to continue his highly anticipated trip to Africa, the pontiff was in the Democratic Republic of Congo where he delivered a powerful speech, in a country where 40 million Catholics live.

Minerals And Violence: A Papal Condemnation Of African Exploitation, Circa 2023
Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — You may know the famous Joseph Stalin quote: “The Pope? How many divisions has he got?” Pope Francis still has no military divisions to his name, but he uses his voice, and he does so wisely — sometimes speaking up when no one else would dare.

In the Democratic Republic of Congo (the former Belgian Congo, a region plundered and martyred, before and after its independence in 1960), Francis has chosen to speak loudly. Congo is a country with 110 million inhabitants, immensely rich in minerals, but populated by poor people and victims of brutal wars.

That land is essential to the planetary ecosystem, and yet for too long, the world has not seen it for its true value.

The words of this 86-year-old pope, who now moves around in a wheelchair, deserve our attention. He undoubtedly said what a billion Africans are thinking: "Hands off the Democratic Republic of the Congo! Hands off Africa! Stop choking Africa: It is not a mine to be stripped or a terrain to be plundered!"

Keep reading...Show less

You've reached your limit of free articles.

To read the full story, start your free trial today.

Get unlimited access. Cancel anytime.

Exclusive coverage from the world's top sources, in English for the first time.

Insights from the widest range of perspectives, languages and countries.

The latest