Top Stories

  • Guatemala emergency measures after deadly clash

    Updated: 53 min ago

    GUATEMALA CITY (AP) — Guatemalan authorities have suspended some constitutional rights in a central municipality where 11 villagers died in a battle with guns and machetes. The "state of prevention" allows temporary restriction of freedom of movement and the right to gather and protest. Media outlets are ordered to avoid publishing content that could incite actions against public order. The measure lasts for 15 days and can be extended. Interior Minister Mauricio Lopez Bonilla said Monday that national and military police will be deployed to keep the peace in the municipality of San Juan Sacatepequez.

  • Many still lack power in Los Cabos; storm toll 5

    Updated: 1 hr ago

    LOS CABOS, Mexico (AP) — Authorities in northwestern Mexico were struggling to get power back on in the resort zone of Los Cabos a week after Hurricane Odile barreled through, saying Monday that electricity had been restored to 19 percent of customers in the area. The news was better from other communities along the Baja California Peninsula where Odile hit with less force: The lights were back on for 95 percent in the northern part of Baja California Sur state, and 90 percent in the state capital of La Paz, according to the Federal Commission of Electricity, or FCE. Meanwhile the Tourism Department said in a statement that nearly 27,000 people had been airlifted out on more than 200 special flights.

  • Argentine doctors tried in 'dirty war' baby thefts

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Two Argentine doctors are being tried on suspicion of stealing babies from political prisoners during the country's 1976-1983 dictatorship. Raul Eugenio Martin and Norberto Bianco are accused of taking nine babies from a clandestine maternity ward located inside military barracks. The trial, which began on Sept. 17, marks the first time that dictatorship-era physicians face a judge for this crime. "They performed the C-section on our mothers and later, they would be (forcibly) disappeared," said Francisco Madariago Quintela, who as an adult learned that he was among the estimated 500 babies who were stolen. "We're hoping for a sentence because we're the proof of what is on trial.

  • Computer bungle leads to Mexico child porn arrest

    Updated: 3 hr ago

    MEXICO CITY (AP) — Prosecutors in western Mexico said Monday they have arrested a man who was promoting children's camping trips in front of a group of parents, but accidentally called up images of child pornography on his computer. Federal prosecutors in Jalisco state said the man was using his computer to pitch his company's guided children's camping trips to a group of parents at a private school in the upscale suburb of Zapopan, on the outskirts of Guadalajara. But instead of the presentation, videos of naked children popped up, apparently because the man opened the wrong file. Teachers and parents immediately stopped the Sept. 8 presentation and reported him to police, who arrested the man outside the school.

  • Mexico: Alert over mine spill into river to Ariz.

    Updated: 4 hr ago

    CANANEA, Mexico (AP) — Authorities in a northern Mexican state issued a binational alert Monday after contaminants from a copper mine spilled into a river that flows into the U.S. state of Arizona. Carlos Jesus Arias, director of the Sonora state civil protection agency, said the contamination from the Buenavista del Cobre mine in Cananea had reached the San Pedro River. Officials have not said how much leaked, or what exactly was in the spill. Arias said the contents had not yet been analyzed, but the material is "probably toxic." The office of the Federal Attorney General for Environmental Protection said the spill contained rainwater overflow containing ferrous elements below the threshold of what would pose a huma

  • AP Photos: Dynamite doesn't stop Peru narcos

    Updated: 11 hr ago

    PICHARI, Peru (AP) — The dynamiting of clandestine airstrips by Peruvian security forces in the world's No. 1 coca-growing valley cuts into profits but hardly discourages cocaine traffickers who net tens of thousands of dollars with each Bolivia-bound flight. As authorities wound up a 54-airstrip "cratering" mission, Peru's counternarcotics police chief Gen. Vicente Romero told reporters that traffickers pay local villagers up to $100 each to fill the holes blasted into the landing strips that dot the flood plain of the vast and verdant Apurimac and Ene river valley. Two of the landing strips targeted in the latest operation have each been repaired four times this year, Romero said on Friday. Sometimes, the 500-meter airstr

  • Western Mexico state reports new mine spill


    CANANEA, Mexico (AP) — Authorities in northern Mexico have issued a new alert of a toxic spill in the Sonora River basin from a copper mine operated by Grupo Mexico, the state director of civil protection said Sunday. The agency is urging some 25,000 residents of the area to avoid using the water after local municipalities complained of a toxic plume, said Carlos Arias, civil protection director for the border state of Sonora, where the spill occurred. Arias said the tributaries affected drain into the Bacanuchi River. A flyover of the area shows an abnormal orange stain, he added. He said his department is taking measures to ensure people or livestock don't come in contact with the water until it can be tested.

  • Guatemala clash over development plans kills 8

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    PAJOQUES, Guatemala (AP) — An argument among villagers over plans to build a cement factory and a highway erupted into a battle with guns and machetes, killing at least eight people and wounding dozens, authorities said Saturday. At least six vehicles and a house were burned in Pajoques, a town about 25 miles (40 kilometers) west of the capital, Guatemala City. Officials initially reported six dead, but announced Saturday night that eight people had been killed. The violence broke out late Friday when residents supporting the development projects argued with opponents, who say the construction would damage their lands, Interior Minister Mauricio Lopez Bonilla told The Associated Press.

  • Jailed Venezuelan police chief freed

    Updated: Sat, Sep 20, 2014

    CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A former Caracas police chief whose decade-long imprisonment had rallied Venezuela's opposition has been released from jail on humanitarian grounds to continue serving a 30-year sentence at home. Ivan Simonovis had been jailed since 2004 in connection with the death of pro-government protesters who had rushed to the defense of then-President Hugo Chavez during a failed coup attempt two years earlier. In 2009, he was convicted of aggravated murder. The 54-year-old former police chief appeared briefly before journalists who had rushed to his home in the leafy La Florida neighborhood early Saturday as word of his release spread on social media.

  • Mexico agency hears witness of army-gang faceoff

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    ARCELIA, Mexico (AP) — Mexico's Civil Rights Commission said Friday it has talked to a witness in the case of a June 30 slaying of 22 people at a warehouse in southern Mexico. The Associated Press interviewed the witness, who claimed soldiers killed 20 men and one woman after they surrendered following a confrontation. The U.S. State Department urged Mexico to investigate the case, saying it is "imperative that there is a credible review of the circumstances." Mexican Interior Secretary Miguel Angel Osorio Chong said federal prosecutors would investigate the shootings and make the results public if it finds any contradictions in the army's version of events.

  • 6 dead in cartel-style killings in western Mexico

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    MORELIA, Mexico (AP) — The bound bodies of six men were found dumped on a street Friday in the western Mexico state of Michoacan, where authorities have claimed to be making headway against drug gang violence. The dead men were found next to a hand-lettered sign in which a drug cartel claimed responsibility for the killings. The Michoacan state prosecutors' office said in a statement that the bodies found in the city of Uruapan had bullet wounds. Photos showed the men's heads were wrapped in what appeared to be packing tape and their hands were tied behind their backs. A sign left next to the bodies made an apparent reference to the New Generation drug cartel: "We are here now, and we are here to save you, Respectfull

  • Ex-Salvador leader sent to prison to await trial

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) — A special police unit in El Salvador has moved a former president to prison to await trial on charges of embezzlement and illicit enrichment. Police assistant director Howard Cotto said Friday that a judge revoked former President Francisco Flores' house arrest and ordered him to be held in prison. Flores was taken to a prison in the capital of San Salvador on Thursday. Flores is accused of embezzling $5.3 million while president. He is also charged with mismanaging $10 million that was donated to El Salvador by Taiwan's government during his presidency in 1999-2004. He has said he received the money personally from Taiwan and handed it over to the intended state projects, but he

  • Pre-Hispanic codex returns to Mexico from London

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    MEXICO CITY (AP) — Three volumes of hand-written, indigenous accounts that vividly describe the history of pre-Hispanic Mexico are on public display in the country's capital after returning to the country from London. The Chimalpahin codex was long part of the archives of the British and Foreign Bible Society. But Christie's auction house says it facilitated the purchase of the 17th century manuscript by Mexico's National Anthropology and History Institute earlier this year. The auction house says the National Anthropology Museum in Mexico City began publicly displaying the manuscripts Thursday. Christie's says the manuscripts are written in Nahuatl and Spanish and contain largely unpublished accounts about native lif

  • Paraguay: 3 guerrillas die in clash with troops

    Updated: Fri, Sep 19, 2014

    ASUNCION, Paraguay (AP) — Paraguay's government says three members of a recently formed guerrilla group have died in a clash with security forces in the South American country. Col. Victor Urdapilleta says the Agrupacion Campesina Armada fighters battled a joint police, military and anti-drug unit Friday. The confrontation took place 270 miles north of the capital, Asuncion. The emergence of the new rebel group was announced by the government just two months ago. Officials said intelligence reports indicated it is a splinter group of another rebel movement, the Paraguayan People's Army. The latter group has sown fear with kidnappings for ransom in the name of political change to help the rural poor.

  • Maduro says foreign media behind fears of epidemic

    Updated: Thu, Sep 18, 2014

    CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — President Nicolas Maduro accused CNN and other international media on Thursday of conspiring against his government by publishing what he called false reports of a mysterious illness. The head of the college of physicians in the city of Maracay sounded an alarm last week after reporting that eight people had died of unknown causes hours after checking into a hospital with common symptoms including high fevers and blotches on their skin. Authorities immediately accused the doctor of lying and said all causes of deaths had been determined.

  • Witness: 21 killed by Mexico army had surrendered

    Updated: Thu, Sep 18, 2014

    ARCELIA, Mexico (AP) — A woman says she saw Mexican soldiers shoot and kill her 15-year-old daughter after a confrontation with a suspected drug gang even though the teenager was lying wounded on the ground. Twenty others also were shot and killed in rural southern Mexico after they surrendered and were disarmed, the mother told The Associated Press. The Mexican government has maintained that all died during a fierce shootout when soldiers were fired on in the early morning of June 30. That version came into question because government troops suffered only one wounded, and physical evidence at the scene pointed toward more selective killings. The witness said the army fired first at the armed group holed up at the warehouse

  • Argentina approves law for controlling prices

    Updated: Thu, Sep 18, 2014

    BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina's congress on Thursday approved a law that lets the government intervene in setting prices and profits in an attempt to tackle one of the hemisphere's worst inflation rates. Economy Minister Axel Kicillof said the measure, approved earlier by the Senate, would defend consumers against "the innumerable abuses we suffer every day on the part of concentrated groups with monopoly power." But local business leaders said the law is likely to aggravate shortages and inflation by discouraging people from selling price-controlled goods or making investments. The law gives the state power to set maximum and minimum prices as well as control profit margins. Companies that set prices consi

  • Arrests in Chile bomb attack focus on anarchists

    Updated: Thu, Sep 18, 2014

    SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Chilean officials said Thursday they have arrested three members of an anarchist cell suspected in the country's worst bomb attack in more than two decades, focusing new attention on a loose-knit movement that has attracted thousands while alarming authorities. One of the suspects is believed to have carried out the attack while two others were accomplices, said Interior and Security Minister Rodrigo Penailillo, who did not release their names. Local media quoted defense lawyer Eduardo Camus as saying the three suspects deny any wrongdoing. The lunchtime explosion on Sept.

  • Popular Venezuelan cartoonist fired over drawing

    Updated: Thu, Sep 18, 2014

    CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A popular cartoonist said she lost her job over her representation of the late Hugo Chavez's iconic signature as a flat-lined heartbeat to dramatize Venezuela's health care crisis. Award-winning Rayma Suprani said that she was fired by El Universal, one of the country's largest and most-prestigious dailies, after the sketch was published Wednesday. The ouster of the veteran journalist has alarmed press freedom advocates who say once-independent media are seeing criticism of the socialist government snuffed out. Several columnists resigned from El Universal to protest its sale in July to a Spanish company whose shareholders are unknown and who they fear may represent the government's interests.

  • AP PHOTOS: Survivor of Peru massacre guides team

    Updated: Wed, Sep 17, 2014

    PACCHA, Peru (AP) — This remote hamlet on fertile Andean slopes beside the Apurimac river has been a ghost town for three decades, inhabited only by the buried bodies of villagers slain by security forces who considered them rebel sympathizers. Earlier this month, forensic investigators began unearthing the remains of the nearly two dozen victims of the July 14, 1984, massacre in this region where government forces regularly hunted alleged collaborators of the Shining Path guerrillas. Dolores Guzman, the sole survivor, set aside the street stand where she sells hard-boiled eggs in the capital of Lima and journeyed last week to Paccha to help forensic experts find the common graves. Arriving was not easy.