With a vision of a greener, fairer, and more equal Chile, sparks of optimism are flying high not only in Chile but in the whole of Latin America who are hoping for a huge political shift, and looking to Boric to provide the positive example. As a leading figure in the Chilean student protests, and a key figure in the referendum to change the Constitution, he is the youngest President in Chile’s history, and the second youngest leader in the world. Hoping to bury Pinochet’s dictatorship once and for all, we eagerly await reforms on social justice, welfare, public spending, and inclusion.
Ecuador has been hit by rising inflation, unemployment and an unusual increase in violence. Protests led by indigenous groups began to demand action against rising petrol prices, but what began as a peaceful demonstration has escalated into violent clashes between protesters and police, leaving 83 people injured and 18 officers missing. President Lasso has responded by decreeing a state of emergency, but protesters say they will continue until their demands are met.
The first round of the election was surprisingly close, with former president Lula da Silva receiving 48.4% of the vote, versus 43.2% for incumbent Bolsonaro, prompting a run-off election on 30 October. Although the outcome of the presidential race was not what the Brazilian left had hoped for, victories were achieved, such as the election of transgender candidates to congress for the first time in the countries history.
Since 2010, Venezuelans have been suffering under hyperinflation, hunger, and unprecedented levels of crime and disease. The social and economic disaster has led to massive emigration from the country. Learn more here about the protests, U.S. interference, various coup attempts, and international solidarity for the seemingly never-ending humanitarian catastrophe.
In 2019, Chile erupted in mass protests following an increase in the price of the metro, the demonstrations, eventually turned into a fight against widespread inequality among the population, and to demand a new constitution to replace the one instituted during the Pinochet dictatorship. In October 2020, Chileans voted to rewrite this constitution in a referendum, and now in 2021 they elected the 155 new members who will rewrite it. With a surprising result, the majority of elected members are independent and from the opposition. Many Chileans are hopeful that this process will address the main problems plaguing Chilean society, and the eyes of Latin Americans are on this country in the hope that real change will begin here.
Undoubtedly, the 38th Brazilian president has been the centre of many contentious headlines. He has been described as far-right and populist, and uncertainty about his decisions is growing. His management of the COVID-19 pandemic, and his relaxation of several environmental protection policies is of particular concern to watching eyes around the globe.