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U.S. presses Brazil to take larger role in war on drugs

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LA PAZ — Brazil should play a more dynamic role in the war on drugs in Bolivia since 60 percent of the latter country’s cocaine winds up in the former, a US diplomat has said.

Under the principle of shared responsibility, Brazil should play a bigger part in discouraging Bolivia from producing cocaine since it is Brazil’s main supplier of the drug, US attache John Creamer told local media.

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Creamer acts as a de facto US ambassador to Bolivia because under leftist President Evo Morales the two countries have not exchanged official ambassadors since 2008.

Late that year, Morales accused the United States of supporting an alleged plot by his conservative political rivals, a claim that led Washington to withdraw its ambassador.

Brazil believes it receives 60 percent of Bolivia’s cocaine, with half of that haul being sold on the streets and the other half being shipped on to Europe.

This year, Brazil — South America’s economic powerhouse — started a cooperation program aimed at helping to discourage cocaine production in Bolivia. It includes coca leaf crop monitoring with US assistance. Coca leaves are the raw material from which cocaine can be made.

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Bolivia is the world’s number three cocaine producer after Peru and Colombia, according to UN data.

Photo AFP/File, Aizar Raldes


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There’s evidence that climate activism could be swaying public opinion in the US

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Climate activists walked out of classrooms and workplaces in more than 150 countries on Friday, Sept. 20 to demand stronger action on climate change. Mass mobilizations like this have become increasingly common in recent years.

I’m a scholar of environmental communication who examines how people become engaged with solving dilemmas such as climate change, and how activism motivates others to take action. A new study I worked on suggests that large rallies, such as this youth-led Climate Strike, could be influencing public opinion.

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‘I’ve seen smarter cabinets at IKEA’: See the most memorable signs from the global climate strike

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"Why should we go to class if you won't listen to the educated?" one homemade sign asked.

With millions marching to demand bold climate action in more than 150 countries around the world on Friday, a number of sentiments expressed on homemade signs and through other demonstrations captured the world's attention.

An estimated 400,000 people attended strikes across Australia to start off the day of action. The Australian Conservation Foundation shared a video of some of the young people, including one marcher who proclaimed, "You'll die of old age, we'll die of climate change," addressing the world leaders who climate scientists say are not working nearly fast enough to end fossil fuel extraction and the resulting carbon emissions which are causing global warming, rising sea levels, droughts, and other extreme weather events.

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Trump felt free to ask for Ukraine election interference after Mueller let him off the hook: Wired reporter Garrett Graff

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On CNN's "New Day Weekend," author and commentator Garrett Graff noted that President Donald Trump's attempt to push Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden came right after former special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation of Russian interference in 2016 ended — and suggested the two were related.

"You know, Garrett, there may be some people thinking 'Gosh, we just got out of the whole scenario with the Mueller report. Now we have this again,'" said anchor Christi Paul. "Do you get a sense that there are people looking at this saying 'I think I have confidence in the 2020 election?'"

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