Articles written by Joshua Goodman

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Songbirds silenced as Colombia fights wildlife trafficking

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — The metal doors of a shoebox-sized cage open up and a bird tagged #811 launches into a giant aviary. The palm-sized finch performs a midair pirouette, lands on a willow branch and curiously twitches its saffron-colored head...

 

Venezuela talks in the balance as US ups pressure on Maduro

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — For weeks, representatives of Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro and his would-be successor, opposition leader Juan Guaidó, have been shuttling back and forth to Barbados trying to agree on a common path out of the...

 

AP Exclusive: Imprisoned supercop's escape from Venezuela

WASHINGTON (AP) — As the last rays of sunlight faded into the Caribbean Sea, political fugitive Iván Simonovis was speeding toward an island rendezvous with freedom. Three weeks earlier he had fled house arrest in the Venezuelan capital, rappellin...

 

Venezuela's Guaidó promises to persevere despite crackdown

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó is looking to jumpstart his movement to oust Nicolas Maduro in the wake of last week's failed military uprising, promising to persevere in the face of a deepening crackdown. In an...

 

AP Exclusive: US missed chance to woo Venezuela generals

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Around May 2017, an unusual request from a prominent Venezuelan general made its way to the White House: Gen. Ivan Hernández, head of both the presidential guard and military counterintelligence, wanted to send his...

 

After 7 long years, Assange's capture happened quickly

Huddled at a home in Ecuador's capital, President Lenin Moreno's aides anxiously awaited word in the middle of the night on an operation that would soon make headlines around the world: the arrest of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange inside the...

 

Red Cross regains entry to Venezuela jails, military prisons

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The International Committee of the Red Cross has regained access to prisons in Venezuela, including highly guarded military facilities where dozens of inmates considered political prisoners are being held, as President Nic...

 

Aid wars: US-Russia vie to ease Venezuelan crisis

MOSCOW (AP) — Call it the aid wars. The Trump administration is accusing President Nicolas Maduro of starving Venezuelans by blocking tons of American-supplied humanitarian aid stored next door in Colombia. In Russia, the Kremlin sees the...

 

AP Interview: Maduro reveals secret meetings with US envoy

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A month into Venezuela's high-stakes political crisis, President Nicolas Maduro revealed in an AP interview that his government was in secret talks with the Trump administration and predicted he would survive an...

 

Trump pressed aides on Venezuela invasion, US official says

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — As a meeting last August in the Oval Office to discuss sanctions on Venezuela was concluding, President Donald Trump turned to his top aides and asked an unsettling question: With a fast unraveling Venezuela threatening...

 

Backchannel with 'Dracula' helped free Utah man in Venezuela

WASHINGTON (AP) — A secret backchannel led by a veteran Republican Senate staffer and a flamboyant Venezuelan official nicknamed "Dracula" broke through hostile relations between the two governments to secure the release of American prisoner...

 

American jailed in Venezuela for 2 years arrives in US

WASHINGTON (AP) — Joshua Holt, who traveled to Venezuela from Utah in 2016 to marry a Spanish-speaking Mormon woman but soon found himself jailed and later branded the CIA's top spy in Latin America, was set free by the anti-American Maduro...

 

Texas Republican made secret peacemaking trip to Venezuela

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Texas Republican congressman Pete Sessions quietly visited Venezuela this week and met with President Nicolas Maduro at the invitation of the socialist government in a peacebuilding mission that has raised some eyebrows in...

 

Peru's president offers resignation amid political turmoil

LIMA, Peru (AP) — Embattled President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski offered his resignation Wednesday ahead of an impeachment vote, seeking to put an end to a fast-moving political drama playing out just three weeks before the Andean nation is set to host...

 

Venezuela-linked trust sues foreign oil traders for bribes

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A trust linked to Venezuela's state oil company PDVSA has filed a lawsuit against major international energy trading firms for their alleged role funneling bribes to corrupt company officials in exchange for rigged oil...

 

US lawsuit: Venezuela cheated of billions by rigged oil bids

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A trust linked to Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA has filed a lawsuit against Glencore, Lukoil and other energy trading firms for their alleged role funneling bribes to corrupt company officials in exchange for rigged...

 

Houston firm sues ex Venezuelan oil czar Ramirez over bribes

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — Venezuela's former oil czar Rafael Ramirez was sued Friday by a Houston company that alleges he was behind demands for at least $10 million in bribes to sign off on deals to sell its energy assets in the South American count...

 

Official: US says ex-Venezuela oil czar took bribes

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — U.S. prosecutors say Venezuela's former oil czar received bribes as part of a major graft scheme that allegedly took place in the OPEC nation's oil industry, an American official familiar with the probe said. Rafael Ramirez,...

 

Peace in Colombia fragile year after historic deal with FARC

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — When rebel commander Rodrigo Londono signed a peace deal committing his troops to laying down their weapons, it was heralded as the best chance in decades to end Latin America's oldest and bloodiest armed conflict. But as...

 

Spain arrests former aide to Venezuela's UN ambassador

BARCELONA, Spain (AP) — Spanish police arrested a former aide to Venezuela's ambassador to the United Nations on a U.S. warrant in connection with a $1 billion bribery scheme at Venezuela's state-run oil company, officials said Friday. Spain's...

 

US sanctions to pile misery on moribund Venezuelan economy

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A small army of red-shirted workers mop the linoleum floors as their supervisors, sitting under a giant portrait of Hugo Chavez, look on. By the meltdown standards of Venezuela's economy, the shelves around the workers at...

 

Venezuela's Maduro vows to punish opponents for US sanctions

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro vowed Friday to prosecute for treason opponents he accused of being behind sweeping U.S. financial sanctions that will strain relations between the countries and make it harder for the...

 

US sanctions to pile misery on moribund Venezuelan economy

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — A small army of red-shirted workers mop the linoleum floors as their supervisors, sitting under a giant portrait of Hugo Chavez, look on. By the meltdown standards of Venezuela's economy, the shelves around the workers at...

 

Trump administration imposes sweeping sanctions on Venezuela

CARACAS, Venezuela (AP) — The Trump administration slapped sweeping financial sanctions on Venezuela on Friday, dramatically ratcheting up tensions between the two countries and making it harder for embattled President Nicolas Maduro to raise...

 

Trump says he's open to military intervention in Venezuela

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump has said he wouldn't rule out military action against Venezuela in response to the country's descent into political chaos following President Nicolas Maduro's power grab. Venezuela's government responded by...

 

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