The week at a glance ... Americas


Bourdon, Haiti

Refugee camps threatened: Hundreds of thousands of people still living in tent camps on private property nine months after a huge earthquake flattened much of Haiti are facing eviction. Threats of ejection by landowners, whose hospitality has been exhausted, have risen dramatically in recent weeks, international aid groups say. Yet the homeless have nowhere to go. With almost all of $1 billion in promised U.S. aid held up in Congress, the Haitian government has been unable to demolish and rebuild quake-damaged homes. “Can’t they provide tools or some kind of assistance?” refugee camp leader Edner Villard said in an interview with The New York Times. “What are we supposed to do? Move into the debris with our raggedy tents?”

Quito, Ecuador

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Coup attempt? Armed police angry over the elimination of bonuses attacked Ecuadorean President Rafael Correa last week in what he called an attempted coup. Hundreds of police officers and several rogue military units stormed the airport and National Assembly building, firing tear gas. Four people were killed. Correa, who was not hurt, said the uprising was provoked by his rival, former President Lucio Gutiérrez. He promised “a deep cleansing of the national police” and fired the police chief. A few days later, though, Correa’s government announced a pay raise for police and military officers. It said the raise had been planned before the uprising.

La Paz, Bolivia

President retaliates: What was billed as a friendly soccer match to inaugurate a new stadium turned vicious in the first five minutes this week when President Evo Morales kneed an unsuspecting opponent in the groin, causing him to crumple in agony. Morales and his team of governing party officials were playing a team led by La Paz Mayor Luis Revilla, a political foe. When Morales was fouled, he received a cut on his leg, and he marched up to the offending player, Daniel Gustavo Cartagena, and deliberately kneed him. The attack has been replayed repeatedly on national television. Morales was not ejected; the game ended in a 4–4 tie.

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