Two dead as police clash with protesters in Peru’s capital LIMA (Reuters) - Two people died and 21 others were injured in Peru’s capital yesterday as protesters clashed with police trying to shut down a sprawling wholesale market, raising the death toll to four since street battles erupted at the site on Thursday. The unrest in Lima’s downtown has stunned residents and could hurt
Mayor Susana Villaran’s chances of winning a recall election in the chaotic city of 8 million. The date of the vote has not been set, but must occur within 40 days. The skirmishes have also prompted criticism of President Ollanta Humala’s interior minister, who is in charge of the police force that was caught off guard when protests broke out on
Thursday. Two people were killed and dozens injured in those clashes. Humala campaigned on promises to use mediation to defuse widespread social conflicts, but 23 people have died in confrontations with police since he took office in July 2011 - mostly in remote provinces. Villaran, a reformer, wants to move the wholesale market - known as an easy place to buy contraband and stolen merchandise - to a modern facility she has built just a few blocks away. She accused merchants opposed to the move of hiring criminals to brawl with police, paying them just 30 soles ($11.50) a day to throw rocks and clubs at riot police, who responded with tear gas, batons and pistols. “Today, all the real merchants who don’t rely on criminals have said they want to move to the new market,” Villaran said on RPP radio. “We are regaining order and security in an area that has only been one of disorder, chaos, insecurity and filth.”
Sunday October 28, 2012
DLP rallies its troops to “answer the call”
BLP supporters gathered in large numbers at the Queen’s Park Steel Shed yesterday. (Rawle Culbard)
Barbados Nation - The Barbados Labour Party (BLP) yesterday rallied its troops to “answer the call” by Barbadians for leadership, good governance and
programmes to put people back to work. Gathering in large numbers at the Queen’s Park Steel Shed on the second day of their 74th annual
conference which climaxes tomorrow, party faithful were told by an upbeat chairman Dr Jerome Walcott that they were on the path to victory and change in Barbados. Noting that the attendance at nominations had seemed more like public meetings and had been “attracting the sort of crowds and interest never before seen outside of an election”, Walcott urged his comrades to answer the people’s call. “Let us answer the call of history, to once again provide leadership, good governance and programmes to put Barbadians back to work, to put money back in their pockets, to put back our country in its rightful place far removed from junk status. And let us again make it possible for Barbadians to dream, aspire and achieve beyond the circumstances in which they were born. We are ready, united and strong!” he said to rousing applause from members who created a sea of red in their t-shirts.
Cubans start cleanup of Hurricane Sandy destruction SANTIAGO DE CUBA, Cuba (Reuters) - A day after Hurricane Sandy shattered Santiago de Cuba, retiree Rosa Maria remembered the sound of the storm as it battered her home in the city centre. “The noise of the winds was like the roar of lions,” she said on Friday. “It was terrifying.” After the storm passed, Maria, 71, realised she was luckier than many. The 498-year-old city that has played a major role in Cuban history was littered with fallen trees, broken buildings and downed power poles, but her colonial-era home suffered only minor damage. Elsewhere, there was no electricity or water in the city of 500,000. The government said it would ship in soap and candles. As Maria and others recovered from the shock of Sandy, they set about on Friday cleaning up the devastation left by the storm, which struck early on Thursday with 110-mile-perhour winds and much higher gusts. They joined soldiers and work brigades shipped in by the Cuban government to clear the streets, distribute water and maintain order in a concerted effort to regain a semblance of normality as quickly as possible. Bulldozers and other heavy equipment worked around the city to move fallen bricks, knocked down signs
and ripped off roof tiles. “The city looks like a big ant’s nest, but organized,” said Eduardo Gonzalez as he walked through the city to see the damage. The burst of activity was the beginning of what will likely be a long road to recovery in southeastern Cuba after Sandy cut a swath of death and destruction through the region on its way north. Its powerful winds and rains were blamed for 41 deaths in several Caribbean countries, including 11 in Cuba. Most were killed by falling trees and in building collapses. The storm is on course to hit large parts of Eastern United States next week. The Cuban fatalities were unusual for the communistruled country that has long prided itself on protecting its people from storms by ordering mass evacuations. The government was still assessing the situation, but the Communist Party newspaper Granma reported that “the damages to homes, the electrical system and communications are substantial.” Cuban television reports showed swollen rivers, damaged homes and flattened banana plantations. “We have 2,000 hectares (4,942 acres) of bananas in this municipality. Today, more than 90 percent of the bananas are on the ground,” said a local official in hard-hit Holguin
province. Officials said other crops, including sugar cane and Cuban staples such as beans and yucca, were damaged by the storm. Fast-growing crops will be planted to provide food if needed, they said. Heavy rains forced the closure in two places of the central highway that spans the island, a Cuban news service said. The province of Sancti Spiritus received 9 inches (230 mm) of rain in 12 hours, according to Cuban television. In Santiago de Cuba, people lined up at stores to get bread and other foods. Convoys of trucks bringing cable and other supplies for the electrical system rolled into city, which is 470 miles southeast of Havana. They were accompanied by utility workers from other parts of the country. At the Hotel Melia Santiago de Cuba, hundreds of tourists waited in the lobby for buses to take them away. Transportation worker Alexis Martinez said Sandy had blown off the roof of his house, but that his family felt it was more important to help the city than worry about their own problems. “My wife is mobilized for public health and me for the rubble brigade. Our son is with his grandmother, and the roof we’ll see about later. Right now there are things more urgent to do,” he said.