A general strike in Spain took place on September 29th, 2010. Photo Zuriñe Fdez. de Retana

MADRID: SUCCESSFUL GENERAL STRIKE IN SPAIN The 24 hour stoppage that fell on the same day of protest in all of Europe was called by a majority of left leaning unions to demonstrate against labor reform, the decline of pensions and the austerity measures aimed at reducing a ballooning public deficit approved by the socialist government. The strike took place without any major incidents, except in Barcelona and Madrid, where close to 40 were arrested in all of the country. The majority were accused of misdemeanors and were released almost immediately. The organizations in charge, the General Union of Workers (UGT) and the Workers Commissions (CCOO), reported the strike as a “complete success,” with a 70 percent worker turn-out from both the night and day shifts. More than 10 million did not report to work, according to the first registered figures. “The general strike of Sept. 29 was a success,” said the leader of UGT at a press conference. The workers refuse to give up and understand that Spain needs a different set of political ideas and a change of course in dealing with labor reform and the freezing of pensions.” (

ECUADOR: SPECTACULAR RESCUE On Sept. 30, after an Armed Forces operation, Ecuadorian President Rafael Correa was liberated from a hospital after being held for almost 11 hours. The rescue, in the midst of gunfire, lasted around 45 minutes. Correa had been detained since the morning by a group of police who protested the approval of the Public Service Law which proposed benefit cuts that in their opinion would not be in their interest. After being liberated, the President accused the opposition and the ex-president Lucio Gutierrez (2003-2005) of having been responsible for the political uprising and of attempting to instigate a state of siege. “Those who do not win in the voting ballot boxes conspire,” condemned Correa. (; (

CHILE: MAPUCHES END THEIR HUNGER STRIKE OF 82 DAYS AFTER ACCEPTING AGREEMENT WITH GOVERNMENT On Oct. 1, the spokespersons for the Mapuche indigenous peoples arrived at an agreement with the Chilean government, which permitted the official announcement of the end of the hunger strike by the majority of demonstrators. A total of 23 Mapuches from the prisons of Concepcion, Lebu and Temuco decided to end their starvation that has lasted for 82 days. According to the archbishop of Concepcion, Ricardo Ezzati, who has acted as mediator in this strike, the negotiations will continue. He read from a document that indicated that the government has agreed to withdraw all lawsuits under the Antiterrorist Law and that are now in the Chilean courts. The indigenous peoples in the jails of Angol have still not agreed to stop their hunger strike and these negotiations with the Chilean government will resume. (; (

GUATEMALA: GUATEMALA ACCEPTS APOLOGY FROM THE U.S. FOR EXPERIMENTS BUT ASKS FOR INVESTIGATION On Oct. 1, the government of Guatemala accepted the apology from the White House for its “horrifying” medical experiments done on hundreds of Guatemalan people that were infected with syphilis and gonorrhea 60 years ago, but asked for an investigation. The president of Guatemala, Alvaro Colom, indicated that these experiments (which took place between the years 1945 and 1951) affected 1,500 people, the majority prisoners and patients of mental institutions, as well as soldiers and prostitutes without their consent or their knowledge. The infection of these persons was done with the intention of studying the development of sexually transmitted diseases in prolonged periods of time, without offering treatment. The discovery of these experiments was disclosed through a researcher at the University of Wellesly, Susan Reverby, who discovered the files of these experiments that had been led by a U.S. government physician, John Cutler, while he prepared to initiate a study on sexually transmitted diseases. (

—Compiled and translated by Veda Arias

One reply on “Latin American Briefs”

  1. HOLA soy del ecuador del canton BUCAY y estoy feliz de ser de halla. Estoy en los E.E.U.U CHAO EL 9 DE ABRIL YA LLEGO A MI QUERIDO BUCAY CHAOOOOO BESOS

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