Brazil’s Senate Votes to Impeach President Dilma Rousseff

President Dilma Rousseff before testifying at the Senate on Monday during her impeachment trial in Brasília. Igo Estrela / Getty Images

BRASÍLIA — The Senate on Wednesday impeached Dilma Rousseff, Brazil’s first female president, and removed her from office for the rest of her term, the capstone of a power struggle that has consumed the nation for months and toppled one of the hemisphere’s most powerful political parties. Read more

Statement by the President on the Colombia Peace Agreement

This is a historic day for the people of Colombia.  With the finalizing of a peace agreement between Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, the longest-running war in the Western Hemisphere is coming to an end.  We have witnessed, once again, that a sustained commitment to diplomacy and reconciliation can overcome even the most entrenched conflicts.

This accord is a tribute to the hard work and cooperation of countless Colombian leaders and citizens—across parties and administrations—who painstakingly laid the groundwork for this milestone.  I especially want to commend President Juan Manuel Santos for his courageous leadership during four years of difficult negotiations.  I likewise thank the government of Cuba for hosting these talks, its co-guarantor Norway, and the United States’ Special Envoy, Bernie Aronson, for his contributions to the peace process. Read more

Peace, at last, in Colombia

IT HAS been a long time coming. After 52 years of fighting, almost four years of peace negotiations and three months after a final deadline, the Colombian state and the Marxist guerrillas of the so-called Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) have agreed to a bilateral and “definitive” ceasefire. That is cause for celebration, for Colombia and for the region. But the peace deal is controversial. Putting it into practice will be tricky and it may be made harder by the unpopularity of the government of Juan Manuel Santos, Colombia’s president.

On June 23rd Mr Santos was due to fly to Havana, the site of the talks, for a ceremony with the FARC’s leader, Rodrigo Londoño (aka “Timochenko”), in the presence of Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary-general, and five Latin American presidents. In practice, the two sides all but stopped firing a year ago, when the FARC declared a unilateral ceasefire and the government halted offensive actions. But the government’s formal declaration of a ceasefire is historic. Read more

The Observer view on the peace agreement in Colombia Observer editorial

People paint a mural alluding to peace on the road leading to Planadas, Tolima department, Colombia. Photograph: Guillermo Legaria/AFP/Getty Images

In a world where good news is often a rarity, the peace accord struck last week between Colombia’s government and the leaders of the country’s main Marxist rebel group, the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (Farc), stands out. The deal, four years in the making, brings to an end an era of often violent confrontation whose origins may be traced back to the peasant revolts of the 1960s. The Farc insurgency was rooted in a quest for social justice and land reform, issues that had dogged the country – sparking multiple uprisings between peasants and a landed elite – since its independence from Spain in 1891. Read more

Excerpts From the August 24 Announcement of a Final Peace Accord Between the Colombian Government and the FARC

The end of the conflict will mean the opening of a new chapter of our history. It means beginning a transition phase that may contribute to a greater integration of our territories, a greater social inclusion—especially of those who have lived at the margins of our development and have suffered the conflict—and strengthening our democracy so that it may be deployed in all of the national territory, and that it may assure that social conflicts are mediated through institutions, with full security guarantees for those who participate in politics. Read more

Brazil’s Dilma Rousseff makes impassioned speech in an effort to remain as president

Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff presents her final arguments Monday in the impeachment trial she is facing at the Senate in Brasilia. (Cadu Gomes/European Pressphoto Agency)

August 29
A defiant Dilma Rousseff on Monday delivered what may be her last speech as president of Brazil, appealing to senators not to vote for her ouster in a controversial impeachment trial that was postponed until the Rio Olympics concluded.Rousseff began her Senate testimony with an emotional address, in which she spoke of the torture she suffered as a left-wing guerrilla imprisoned by a military dictatorship in the 1970s. She insisted that the attempt to remove her from office amounted to a coup that would only worsen Brazil’s political and economic crisis. Read more

 

Statement by the President on the Colombia Peace Agreement

This is a historic day for the people of Colombia.  With the finalizing of a peace agreement between Colombia and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, the longest-running war in the Western Hemisphere is coming to an end.  We have witnessed, once again, that a sustained commitment to diplomacy and reconciliation can overcome even the most entrenched conflicts. Read more

PLAS Senior Thesis Prize Nominees

Stanley J. Stein Senior Thesis Prize

The Stanley J. Stein prize is awarded by PLAS each year to the student who writes the best senior thesis on a Latin American-related topic.

Helena Michelle Hengelbrok, Anthropology
Water Belongs to Those Who are Thirsty: An Ethnography of Water, Health, and Political Belonging in Urubamba, Peru

Seth Merkin Morokoff, Economics
The Impact of Brazil’s Bolsa Familia on Child Labor Supply Effects by Age and Employment Sector

Oliver A. Quintero, Woodrow Wilson School
An Analysis of Interest Group Influence on U.S.-Cuba Trade Policy

Andrea Rodriguez Gallego, Woodrow Wilson School
Returns of Hugo Chavez’s Bolivarian Missions in Venezuela

Abdiel Santiago, Politics
In the Shadow of the Stars and Stripes an Experimental Analysis on the Manufacturing of Support for Puerto Rican Statehood

Jamie Lee Shenk, History
Where Were You When They Killed Lara Bonilla? Politics of Drugs and Peace in Colombia (1982-1984)

Zachary Willhelm Wall, History
Islands of Insanity U.S. Intervention in Brazil and the Dominican Republic, 1964-1966

Melody Zhang Qui, Woodrow Wilson School
To Push or to Cut? Decision-Making in Childbirth Amid the Brazilian Cesarean Epidemic

Kenneth Maxwell Senior Thesis Prize in Brazilian and Portuguese Studies

The Kenneth Maxwell prize is awarded by PLAS on behalf of Firestone Library to the student who writes the best senior thesis related to Brazil.

Mary Ann Ferguson McNulty, Woodrow Wilson School
When Environmental and Social Crisis Collide: Problems in the Periphery are Center State in the São Paulo Water Crisis

Seth Merkin Morokoff, Economics
The Impact of Brazil’s Bolsa Familia on Child Labor Supply Effects by Age and Employment Sector

Paul H. von Autenried, Jr., Politics
Cross-national Analysis of Positive Action Programs and their Social, Political and Economic Origins: Identity and Ethnic Preferences for Three Marginalized Peoples across Twenty-one States

Zachary Willhelm Wall, History
Islands of Insanity U.S. Intervention in Brazil and the Dominican Republic, 1964-1 6

Melody Zhang Qiu, Woodrow Wilson School
To Push or to Cut? Decision-Making in Childbirth Amid the Brazilian Cesarean Epidemic