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Colombia’s first leftist president has been sworn into office, promising to fight inequality and bring peace to a country long haunted by bloody feuds between the government, drug traffickers and rebel groups. Gustavo Petro, a former member of Colombia’s M-19 guerrilla group, won the presidential election in June by beating conservative parties that offered moderate changes to the market-friendly economy, but failed to connect with voters frustrated by rising poverty and violence. On Sunday, Petro said Colombia was getting a “second chance” to tackle violence and poverty, and called on Washington to change its drug policies.
The Kremlin says it’s open to talking about a possible prisoner exchange involving American basketball star Brittney Griner but strongly warned Washington against publicizing the issue. A judge convicted the 31-year-old Griner Thursday of drug possession and smuggling, and sentenced her to nine years in prison. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken spoke last week to Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov about a trade to free Griner, and the two of them were both in Cambodia for an Asian summit on Friday. Lavrov said Moscow was “ready to discuss” a prisoner swap but that U.S. President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir only could talk about a deal via confidential channels.
A judge in Russia convicted American basketball star Brittney Griner of drug possession and smuggling. She was sentenced to nine years in prison in a politically charged case that could lead to a high-stakes prisoner exchange between Washington and Moscow. Griner showed little emotion to the sentence but her lawyers said later she was “very upset, very stressed.” U.S. President Joe Biden denounced as “unacceptable” the verdict and sentence, which came amid soaring tensions between the U.S. and Russia over Ukraine. Griner had told the court she had no intention to break the law by bringing vape cartridges with cannabis oil when she flew to Moscow to play basketball in the city of Yekaterinburg.
WNBA All-Star Brittney Griner was convicted and received a 9-year sentence from a Russian judge for drug possession and smuggling. Here are the reactions from across the basketball and political worlds.
A judge in Russia says drug possession and smuggling charges against WNBA star Brittney Griner were proven at trial.
Guatemalan authorities have arrested more than a dozen alleged members of a migrant smuggling network near the shared border with Mexico, including four sought by the United States in connection with the death of a migrant in Texas in 2021. The arrests early Tuesday came a month after 53 migrants, including 21 Guatemalans, died in a failed smuggling attempt when they were abandoned inside a sweltering trailer in San Antonio, Texas. There was no indication those arrested Tuesday were involved in the San Antonio tragedy. The extradition of alleged migrant smugglers known as “coyotes” has been rare.
Nearly two months after a deadly shooting a Texas elementary school, a Texas House of Representatives committee report found that nearly 400 officers from local, state and federal agencies responded to the 77-minute rampage in which 19 kids and two teachers died. According to the report, frequent lockdowns contributed to a "diminished sense of vigilance about responding to security alerts.” Nearly 50 security alerts and lockdowns were called in Uvalde since February, many of which are attributed to “bailouts”--- a local term for people fleeing from law enforcement after crossing into the U.S., according to the report.
The Texas House report into the May 24 Robb Elementary School shooting charts a massive but uncoordinated and chaotic response from law enforcement. It also notes a lax approach to campus security related to locking doors, and regular lockdowns that may have led to diminished urgency in the response to the shooting. And the report notes a trail of signals from the shooter of the violence that was to come.