South America

Bolivian Senate President Tests Positive For COVID-19

LA PAZ, July 12 (NNN-PRENSA LATINA) – President of the Bolivian Senate, Monica Eva Copa, said that, she was infected with COVID-19.

“I am informing Bolivia that my COVID-19 tests turned out to be positive. I am following the epidemiological protocols and will remain in isolation for the necessary time. My condition is stable, and I will not refrain from performing my duties in the Pluri-national Legislative Assembly (parliament), (and I) will continue to work remotely,” Copa tweeted.

Brazil: Pres Bolsonaro names evangelical pastor as education minister

BRASÍLIA, July 11 (NNN-AGENCIES) — Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Friday named an evangelical pastor as his fourth education minister in 18 months.

Milton Ribeiro, 62, replaces Carlos Alberto Decotelli, who resigned on July 1 after admitting to having lied on his CV.

Bolsonaro announced the new appointment on his Facebook account, along with a list of Ribeiro’s achievements, which include a masters in law and being a member of a presidential ethics commission.

Chile Senate approves resolution to adopt law boycotting Israeli settlement goods

10 July 2020; MEMO: The Chilean Senate last week approved a resolution calling on President Sebastian Pinera Echenique to adopt a law boycotting settlement goods and banning commercial activity with companies that operate in the occupied Palestinian territories.

The motion passed on 30 June with 29 votes in favour and six abstentions, no votes were cast against the move.

Bolivian president has COVID-19 as virus hits region’s elite

LA PAZ, Bolivia (AP) — Bolivia’s interim president and Venezuela’s No. 2 leader announced Thursday that they have been infected with the new coronavirus, just days after Brazil’s leader tested positive as the pandemic hits hard at some of Latin America’s political elite.

Three Cabinet ministers in the administration of Bolivian leader Jeanine Áñez have also tested positive for the virus, including Health Minister Eidy Roca and Presidency Minister Yerko Nuñez, who is hospitalized.

Venezuela: Pres Maduro shuffles military high command

CARACAS, July 9 (NNN-AGENCIES) — Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro has shuffled his military high command but Defense Minister Vladimir Padrino Lopez, a general, kept his post.

Maduro’s political dominance in Venezuela is widely attributed to support from the military high command, which has allowed the socialist leader to resist sanctions pressure from the United States and a challenge to his authority from opposition leader Juan Guaido, who is backed by Washington.

Brazil: Bolsonaro now the 'poster boy' for dubious COVID treatment

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — After months of touting an unproven anti-malaria drug as a treatment for the new coronavirus, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is turning himself into a test case live before millions of people as he swallows hydroxychloroquine pills on social media and encourages others to do the same.

Bolsonaro said this week that he tested positive for the virus but already felt better thanks to hydroxychloroquine. Hours later he shared a video of himself gulping down what he said was his third dose.

“I trust hydroxychloroquine,” he said, smiling. “And you?”

Brazil's president says hydroxychloroquine to cure his virus

Rio de Janeiro, Jul 8 (AP/PTI) Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro says he is confident that he will swiftly recover from the new coronavirus thanks to treatment with hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malaria drug that has not been proven effective against COVID-19.

Bolsonaro said he tested positive for the new coronavirus on Tuesday after months of downplaying its severity while deaths mounted rapidly inside the country.

Brazil’s Bolsonaro tested for COVID-19, feels well

SAO PAULO (AP) — Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro was tested for COVID-19 after having an X-ray of his lungs on Monday. He didn’t say whether he was showing symptoms of the new coronavirus.

Brazil’s presidency said in a statement the result of the test will be known on Tuesday. Earlier Bolsonaro, who has repeatedly downplayed the risks of the disease, told supporters outside the presidential residence in capital Brasilia that he is feeling well.

Brazil health regulator Anvisa allows Chinese COVID-19 vaccine trial

SAO PAULO (Reuters) - Brazilian health regulator Anvisa on Friday approved clinical trials of a potential coronavirus vaccine developed by China’s Sinovac, according to an official gazette publication.

The study - first announced on June 11 - is led by Instituto Butantan, a research center funded by the state of Sao Paulo. The agreement with Sinovac includes not only trials but also the transference of technology to produce the potential vaccine locally.

Venezuela, EU agree to promote diplomatic contact at highest level

CARACAS, July 2 (Xinhua) -- Venezuela and the European Union (EU) have agreed to promote their diplomatic contact "at the highest level," Venezuelan Foreign Affairs Minister Jorge Arreaza said in Caracas on Thursday.

The two parties issued a joint communique after Arreaza spoke by phone with the EU's High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell.

In an interview with Caracas-based news network Telesur, Arreaza said he held a "very frank, very sincere and at the same time very cordial" conversation with Borrell on Wednesday.

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