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Bolivia unveils anti-terror unit to fight ‘threatening’ foreign groups

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Bolivia’s interim government on Tuesday unveiled a new anti-terrorism police force it said was aimed at dismantling foreign groups “threatening” the troubled South American country.

“This anti-terrorist group has a mission of dismantling absolutely all the terrorist cells that are threatening our homeland,” Interior Minister Arturo Murillo said during an official ceremony to present the 60-strong force.

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Murillo reviewed the ranks of masked, black-clad troops that make up the new force, called the GAT, at the ceremony in La Paz.

The minister said the state had to act to “free Bolivia from these narcoterrorists who have settled in the country in the last 14 years” — a pointed reference to ex-president Evo Morales’ term in office.

Morales resigned on November 10 amid swelling protests over what political opponents said was his rigging of October 20 elections.

He fled to Mexico the following day after losing the support of the military and police, claiming to be the victim of a coup.

Morales wrote on Twitter that “the coup plotters who attacked power in Bolivia are now inventing incredible stories to blame others for the terror that they themselves are imposing from the state.”

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“The only terrorist plan they are carrying out is theirs, with blood and fire against all Bolivians.”

The new interim government of right-wing president Jeanine Anez has denounced foreign influence in the country since taking power, naming Colombians, Peruvians, Cubans and Venezuelans at different times.

Her government has blamed foreigners for provoking violent clashes during more than a month of post-election violence in Bolivia that has left dozens of people dead.

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Police say an Argentine national arrested and held in the eastern city of Santa Cruz is a former Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrilla who they say stoked violence there.

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WATCH: New Zealand prime minister unfazed as quake hits during an interview

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A moderate 5.6-magnitude earthquake rattled New Zealand's North Island early Monday but failed to crack Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern's trademark composure as she conducted a live television interview.

The quake struck just off the coast before 8:00 am local time (2000 Sunday GMT) at a depth of about 52 kilometres (32 miles) near Levin, about 90 kilometres north of Wellington, the US Geological Survey said.

St John Ambulance and New Zealand Police both said there were no initial reports of injuries or damage. There was no tsunami warning.

But there was sustained shaking in Wellington, where Ardern was being interviewed on breakfast television from parliament's Beehive building, which is designed to absorb seismic forces by swaying slightly on its foundations.

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US farmers are starting to worry as crop prices dip during COVID-19 crisis: ‘It’s kind of glum’

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Dave Burrier steered his tractor through a field, following a GPS map as he tried to plant as much corn as possible amid the yellow and green rye covering the ground.

Striving to get a massive yield out of his crops in rural Maryland is how Burrier hopes to make it through yet another uncertain year, beset by market disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and renewed trade tensions between the United States and China.

"We've had so much price erosion that we're basically at below the cost of production. We've got to figure out how to manage and turn a profit," Burrier told AFP.

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‘It’s the first time I’ve played golf in almost 3 months’: Trump makes excuses for golfing during coronavirus pandemic

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President Donald Trump was blasted on Sunday for playing golf during the coronavirus pandemic, a dramatic economic recession and after proclaiming churches "essential."

Instead of joining his voters sitting in the pews, Trump went for the links, which drew criticisms for the hypocrisy.

"Sleepy Joe’s representatives have just put out an ad saying that I went to play golf (exercise) today. They think I should stay in the White House at all times. What they didn’t say is that it’s the first time I’ve played golf in almost 3 months, that Biden was constantly vacationing, relaxing & making shady deals with other countries, & that Barack was always playing golf, doing much of his traveling in a fume spewing 747 to play golf in Hawaii - Once even teeing off immediately after announcing the gruesome death of a great young man by ISIS!" tweeted Trump.

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