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EL ESPECTADOR

New Geolocation System To Track Paroled Prisoners In Real Time

Extra-surveillance, inside a Colombian prison
Extra-surveillance, inside a Colombian prison
Mary Luz Avendaño

MEDELLIN Crimes being committed by some of Colombia's 38,000 convicts on prison leave have become an almost "daily headache," with some returning to a life of lawlessness despite wearing electronic tags or bracelets.

The need to keep closer tabs on prisoners who have been granted leave has led two prison authority (INPEC) employees and a policeman to create software allowing inmates to be located anywhere, in real time. It is apparently the first such application in Latin America, and it is intended to complement the existing tagging system, allowing police and prison authorities to view the same information at the same time.

"On the map, you can see all of INPEC's geo-referenced locations," says one of the inventors, INPEC employee Alba López Torres. "With a click, you can view the basic information on the inmate, his or her exact location, the ID number, date of arrest, and his or her photo."

She says police can download the application on any of their systems to see who is in which parts of town, complete with their full criminal IDs. The application is set to be tested in Medellín, where there have been 61 recividist incidents in 2014.

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Geopolitics

How A Drone Strike Inside Iran Exposes The Regime's Vulnerability — On All Fronts

It is still not clear what was the exact target of an attack by three armed drones Saturday night on an arms factory in central Iran. But it comes as Tehran authorities appear increasingly vulnerable to both its foreign and domestic enemies, with more attacks increasingly likely.

Screenshot of one of the Saturday drone attacks arms factory in Isfahan, central Iran

One of the Saturday drone attacks arms factory in Isfahan, central Iran

Screenshot
Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — It's the kind of incident that momentarily reveals the shadow wars that are part of the Middle East. No one has claimed responsibility for the attack by three armed drones Saturday night on an arms factory complex north of Isfahan in central Iran.

But the explosion was so strong that it set off a small earthquake. Iranian authorities have played down the damage, as we might expect, and claim to have shot down the drones.

Nevertheless, three armed drones reaching the center of Iran, buzzing right up to weapons factories, is anything but ordinary in light of recent events. Iran is at the crossroads of several crises: from the war in Ukraine where it's been supplying drones to Russia to its nuclear development arriving at the moment of truth; from regional wars of influence to the anti-government uprising of Iranian youth.

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That leaves us spoiled for choice when it comes to possible interpretations of this act of war against Iran, which likely is a precursor to plenty of others to follow.

Iranian authorities, in their comments, blame the United States and Israel for the aggression. These are the two usual suspects for Tehran, and it is not surprising that they are at the top of the list.

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