Mauricio Claver-Carone, the Trump administration’s nominee for president of the Inter-American Development Bank, speaks to the press in La Paz, Bolivia, Jan. 15, 2020 (AP photo by Juan Karita).
President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, traveled to Bogota this week, ostensibly to announce up to $5 billion in financing under the White House’s new United States-Colombia Growth Initiative. The money had been pledged months ago by the U.S. Development Finance Corporation, and it is contingent on investment-worthy projects, in any case. But the timing of the visit was hardly a coincidence. One of the officials traveling with O’Brien was Mauricio Claver-Carone, the White House’s point man on Latin America, who is making an audacious bid to lead the Inter-American Development Bank, or IDB. In remarks following his [...]
Demonstrators hold a Brazilian flag to support Operation Car Wash and former judge Sergio Moro, in front of Supreme Court headquarters in Brasilia, Brazil, Sept. 25, 2019 (AP photo by Eraldo Peres).
Until recently, it was one of the brightest, most promising trends in Latin America, and one of the strongest arguments for optimism about its future. But tragically, the fight against corruption, which had made determined strides in its drive to uproot graft, influence peddling and venal misuse of resources, has not only stalled—it has shifted into reverse. The backsliding is now converging with the scourge of the coronavirus, adding to the many challenges that Latin Americans face, and raising the barriers to recovery after the pandemic ends. Latin America is not alone in hitting a wall in its attempts to [...]
People protest against a decision by then-President Jimmy Morales to shut down the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala, or CICIG, in Guatemala City, Sept. 1, 2018 (AP photo by Moises Castillo).
During its 12 years of existence, the United Nations-backed International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala, or CICIG, pursued corruption investigations into high-level political players and business figures. The commission’s efforts resulted in hundreds of arrests and indictments, including of a former president, Otto Perez Molina, and his vice president, in 2015. CICIG’s work also helped build anti-corruption-related capacity and expertise among Guatemala’s legal community. But CICIG was forced to shut down last year after then-President Jimmy Morales refused to renew its mandate. Since then, many judges and prosecutors have faced a campaign of harassment, verbal attacks and death threats, forcing [...]
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