Tuesday, August 03, 2004

War of the Pacific, cont.: BNAmericas reports that the President Toledo and Bolivia's President Carlos Mesa "plan to sign on August 4 a letter of intent to create a 'special economic zone' to facilitate the export of Bolivian gas to Mexico through a Peruvian port," according to Bolivia's official news agency ABI. NOTE: "The presidents are scheduled to meet on August 3 in the Peruvian port of Ilo to sign a general economic and social integration agreement, before moving to Lima on August 4 to sign a letter of intent for a possible gas export agreement." ALSO: "Exporting gas through Chile is financially more viable, but historical Bolivian resentment against Chile makes the choice of a Chilean port politically risky." Separately, MercoPress reports that in an official communique, the Chilean Army announced this Monday it will eliminate 6,526 anti personnel and anti tank mines in five fields close to the Peruvian border. Said the press release, "this is yet another signal of mutual unilateral confidence building of Chile towards its neighbors”. ALSO: "The mine sweeping is to begin this week with a cost ranging between 300 and 1,000 US dollars per explosive and is expected to demand eight months." NOTE: "The mining dates back to the seventies when Chile as well as neighboring Peru and Bolivia were ruled by military regimes and the Chilean high command feared a repeat of the 1879 Pacific war with Peru and Bolivia."

Strike Over? Dow Jones reports that Shougang Hierro Peru "has restarted its operations in southern Peru," according to a union official. NOTE: "The company had shut down operations on July 25 due to ongoing protests by contract workers that had caused its production and exports to grind to a halt." CITED: Deputy Labor Minister Alfredo Villavicencio who said "there were some outstanding issues." ALSO: "Contract workers had been blocking a road between the city of San Juan de Marcona and the southern Panamericana highway since June 30."

Badminton and Football: USA Badminton announced the results of the results of the 2004 Junior Pan American Badminton Championships Individual Competitions held in Lima. Separately, Soccer 365 reports that the USA Under-16 Men’s National Team will travel to Peru "to participate in the Peru International Friendly Tournament from Aug. 10-14." Competition between the USA, Peru, Colombia and Ecuador will be played in Trujillo, Chiclayo and Piura. NOTE: Peru is also hosting the 2005 FIFA U-17 World Championship.

Mining News:
Reality in Peru? The Sydney Morning Herald reviews the 2003 National Geographic television program "Worlds Apart" about "the Lockett family of Detroit, Michigan, [who] sign up for nine days with a Peruvian family who live high up in the Andes." When they arrive, "they're all cheery and filled with the spirit of adventure. ... As you would expect, the cheeriness doesn't last once the mollycoddled, middle-class Westerners find themselves washing their hair in urine (oh, yes), eating guinea pigs ("I had enough gerbils yesterday," Walter says on their second day." The review says what saves the program is the "humanity in the subjects, not just the Locketts but the Peruvian family with whom they stay, which touches you in places Survivor never could." SEE ALSO: This CNN interview with one of the Locketts; and these reviews from the Detroit News. The program has continued in other locations.

Tragedy in Anchash: Japan Today reports on a tragic accident in Collapata, Ancash where a "bus plunged off a cliff on Sunday, killing at least 34 passengers and injuring 21," according to police.


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