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Colombia elects first woman, who is openly gay, mayor of Bogota

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Claudia Lopez, a symbol of the fight against corruption in Colombia, on Sunday became the first woman to be elected mayor of the capital Bogota.

The 49-year-old center-left candidate, who is openly gay, won the local election with 35.2 percent of the vote ahead of liberal Carlos Fernando Galan (32.5 percent) with almost all votes counted.

“Not only did we win but we’re changing history,” ex-senator Lopez said on Twitter.

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President Ivan Duque said the local elections around the country had attracted the “largest number of candidates in history.”

Lopez’s victory in the capital city of 7.2 million people is a significant step forward in a country used to being led by male liberal elites.

“Being a woman is not a fault, being a headstrong woman, firm… is not a fault. Being gay is not a fault, being a girl from a modest family is not a fault,” Lopez told AFP last week.

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More than 36 million voters were called to vote for mayors, governors and local assemblies, with more than 116,000 candidates to choose from, 37 percent of whom were women.

The elections were beset by violence in more than a quarter of municipalities, the electoral mission observatory said.

Former left-wing guerrillas FARC, who became a political party in the historic 2016 peace accord that ended a half century of armed rebellion, took part in elections for the second time.

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After a dismal showing in last year’s legislative elections, the ex-insurgents won a majority in only one municipal government in Colombia’s southwest.

In the country’s north, former guerrilla Guillermo Torres — known as the “FARC singer” for his performances of traditional Colombian “vallenato” folk music — won the mayoralty of Bolivar department for a left-wing coalition.

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(AFP)


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‘A stain on this country’: Rick Wilson uncorks epic rant about Trump’s selfishness during pandemic

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Anti-Trump conservative Rick Wilson on Tuesday night uncorked a furious rant on Twitter about President Donald Trump's handling of the COVID-19 crisis in which he excoriated the president for his supreme selfishness during a national crisis.

He started out by shredding Trump for holding daily news briefings to keep the spotlight focused on himself as a way to distract from the rapidly mounting body count happening under his watch.

"Part of his chaotic method is to exhaust people with rage and despair and fury," Wilson wrote. "He wants them to just give up and accept his sh*t. The message is, 'I have no shame, no bottom, no limits. F*ck you.' I *wish* we were still shocked by how bad he is as a President and as a man. It's a stain on this country."

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Internet overseers seek crackdown on coronavirus website scams

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The agency that oversees online addresses on Tuesday called for those issuing website address to vigilantly thwart cyber scams exploiting coronavirus fears.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers took the unusual step of firing off a letter to "registrars" entrusted with the business of issuing website names around the world.

"As you're also aware, ICANN cannot, under our bylaw and practically speaking, involve itself in issues related to website content,"

ICANN chief executive Goran Marby said the global agency does not have authority to manage website content but added: "That does not mean we are unconcerned or unaware of how certain domain names are being misused in fraudulent activities during this global pandemic."

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Virus may spark global condom shortage

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A global condom shortage is looming as the coronavirus pandemic shutters factories and disrupts supply chains, the world's top maker of the contraceptives said, with the United Nations warning of "devastating" consequences.

Over half of humanity has been confined to their homes as the highly contagious virus marches round the planet, while governments worldwide have ordered the closure of businesses deemed non-essential.

Malaysia -- one of the world's top rubber producers and a major source of condoms -- imposed a nationwide lockdown last month as infections surged to the highest level in Southeast Asia.

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