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Central America

Scott Wallace

Journalist and author Scott Wallace has dedicated years to documenting the so-called "unconquered" tribes of South America. This hour, we sit down with Wallace who, in addition to traveling and writing, is a professor of journalism at the University of Connecticut.

We walk along the path that guided Wallace into the thick of the Amazon, and learn about the issues threatening the forest's most isolated people today. 

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

People in Nicaragua took to the streets today to mark one year since deadly protests there. Events in solidarity are planned in cities around the U.S. later this week. 

Scott Wallace

Journalist and author Scott Wallace has dedicated years to documenting the so-called "unconquered" tribes of South America. This hour, we sit down with Wallace who, in addition to traveling and writing, is a professor of journalism at the University of Connecticut.

We walk along the path that guided Wallace into the thick of the Amazon, and learn about the issues threatening the forest's most isolated people today. 

The U.S.-Mexico border fence near El Paso, Texas.
Office of Representative Phil Gingrey / Wikimedia

Thousands of migrants from Central America are making their way to the U.S. border. The publicity over the caravan has prompted President Donald Trump to stir up fears over immigration. But one refugee resettlement organization is encouraging people to look beyond the headlines. 

Updated at 5:45 a.m. ET Monday

A growing crowd of Central American migrants in southern Mexico resumed its advance toward the U.S. border on Sunday. The numbers have overwhelmed Mexican officials' attempts to stop them at the border.

The Associated Press reports that the number of migrants has swelled to about 5,000, but an official in Mexico has put the number as high as 7,000.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Two Central American migrant children sent to Connecticut after being separated from their parents at the border have been reunited with their parents and the families released into the community.

U.S. immigration officials view Harold James Tatum as a Honduran but Tatum views himself as a New Yorker. Tatum was deported to Honduras 18 years ago but he says he's never really gotten used to it.

"I don't even know the national anthem of this country," says Tatum, sitting behind a table selling jewelry near the beach in Tela on Honduras' Caribbean coast.

Updated 9:57 p.m. ET

Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

We know now Russia has interfered with our 2016 presidential election, but did you know that the U.S. has meddled in over 80 elections since World War II according to one Carnegie Mellon study

This hour, we look at how our country has interfered with democratic processes around the world. How do we reconcile our country's actions with the threat facing us today?

John Harris / FiGa Films

The annual Latino and Iberian Film Festival is underway at Yale University in New Haven this week. There will be dozens of screenings. Filmmakers from across Latin America are in the city.

Military commander, drug trafficker, CIA informant, dictator, convicted murderer: The strongman Gen. Manuel Noriega wore many labels during his tortuous path to — and fall from — the heights of power in Panama. Announcing Noriega's death at age 83 Tuesday, Panama's president said it "closes a chapter in our history."

Panama's President Juan Carlos Varela announced Noriega's death via Twitter. And while the cause of death wasn't immediately reported, Noriega had recently been dealing with complications from brain surgery; in March, it was reported that he was in a coma.

id Reneke / Flickr

If Anthony Bourdain and Wes Anderson were to ever collaborate, chances are they'd end up creating something like Atlas Obscura. The founders of the website -- dedicated to strange, forgotten and hidden wonders around the world -- are now out with a new book featuring 700 of their most spectacular examples.

Updated 9:45 p.m. ET with reports of deaths

The National Hurricane Center is warning that Hurricane Matthew will "bring life-threatening rain, wind and storm surge" to parts of Haiti beginning Monday evening. People on multiple Caribbean islands are preparing for the Category 4 storm.

Reuters quotes a Haitian official as attributing two deaths to the hurricane:

Patti / Flickr

It's easy to think of borders as fixed, almost sacrosanct lines, so rooted in the natural order of things that it often doesn't occur to us to question them. But borders were not always thought of this way. In fact, the notion of well understood, and agreed upon boundaries between nations is somewhat new.

Updated at 8:10 p.m. ET

One law firm, 11.5 million files.

The massive trove of emails, contracts and other papers from Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonseca is being called the largest document leak in history.

In 2014, Sergei Roldugin told the New York Times, "I don't have millions."

Associates of President Vladimir Putin of Russia have channeled as much as $2 billion through offshore accounts, banks and shadow companies, according to a massive leak of documents from a Panamanian law firm.

More than 11 million documents, dubbed the Panama Papers, show how dozens of rich and powerful people around the world have used offshore and secret accounts to dodge taxes and sanctions and launder money.

In one of the largest waves of Cuban migration in decades, more than 70,000 have fled the island this year, rushing to the U.S. out of fear that its preferential policy toward those escaping the Castro regime might change.

It's the handshake some have waited more than 50 years for. And the handshake some hoped would never happen.

President Obama greeted Cuban President Raul Castro at a summit meeting in Panama Friday night. Their handshake helped crystalize the diplomatic thaw that began in December, when Obama declared an end to decades of official hostility.

The State Department launched a program this month that creates a safe passage to the United States from Central America. It would give some U.S.-based Latino parents the chance to bring over children they left in their home countries.

More than 57,000 child migrants made the trip across the U.S.-Mexican border this year. Many report being physically and sexually abused along the harrowing journey.

The number of Central Americans reaching the U.S. border has dropped dramatically. According to the U.S. Border Patrol, 60 percent fewer unaccompanied minors were apprehended in August than at the height of the migration crisis earlier this summer.

One factor leading to the drastic decline is an unprecedented crackdown in Mexico. Under pressure from the United States, Mexico has begun arresting and deporting tens of thousands of Central Americans long before they reach the U.S. border.

Stepped-Up Deportations

The number of Central American children and families being apprehended at the U.S.-Mexican border has dropped dramatically in recent months, according to the U.S. Border Patrol. There has been a 60 percent decline in apprehensions of minors since the record numbers making the illegal trek earlier this summer.

A lot of factors may be contributing to the dramatic drop, including heavy rains along the migrant route and media campaigns in home countries dispelling rumors that kids can stay in the U.S.

Migrant Children May Be Sheltered in Massachusetts

Jul 21, 2014
M. Hoffmann/UNHCR / The Migration Policy Institute

According to the independent think tank The Migration Policy Institute, 85 percent of the Central American migrant children who have arrived in the U.S. over the past few months are reunited with relatives here. Most go to places with established communities of Central American families, including cities in Connecticut like New Haven and Hartford. Others go to Massachusetts.

What Honduran Children Are Fleeing

Jul 16, 2014

One participant in the debate over what to do with unaccompanied minors crossing into the U.S. from Central America is Sonia Nazario.

Nazario is author of the acclaimed 2006 book “Enrique’s Journey: The Story of a Boy’s Dangerous Odyssey to Reunite with his Mother,” which she updated in 2013.

Josh Nilaya / WNPR

For tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors crossing the U.S. border, primarily from Central America, U.S. schools are one of the few government institutions where they are guaranteed services.

While their cases are processed, most are released to family members or sponsors who are told the children must be enrolled in school. 

Migrants from Central America who enter the U.S. illegally in Texas will no longer be flown to San Diego for processing, the U.S. Border Patrol says. The practice came under fire last week, when opponents led protests against it in Murrieta, Calif.

In announcing the change, the agency didn't mention the fierce local opposition. Instead, it said it had eliminated the congestion in its system that spurred the plan to transport detained migrants.

Diane Orson / WNPR

A group of Central American migrant children who made the perilous journey through Mexico into the U.S.… are staying now in the New Haven area.  They'’re among the estimated 50,000 unaccompanied youngsters who have inundated the U.S. border since last October.