Marines capture drug lord's son in western Mexico


One of the sons of drug lord Joaquin "El Chapo" (Shorty) Guzman, Mexico's most-wanted man, was arrested by marines in the western state of Jalisco, the Navy Secretariat said.

Jesus Alfredo Guzman Salazar was captured Thursday morning, thanks to "intelligence work," the secretariat said in a brief statement.

Guzman Salazar was arrested in the city of Zapopan along with another unidentified person, media reports said.

The son of the top boss of the powerful Sinaloa drug cartel was expected to be paraded before reporters later Thursday in Mexico City.




Argentine truckers end strike


Powerful Argentine union chief Hugo Moyano announced the end of a fuel-transport strike after reaching agreement with employers on a 25.5 percent salary hike.

Despite the accord, Moyano said the truckers' union still is calling on Cristina Fernandez's government to raise the threshold for income tax and is planning a strike throughout the trucking industry for next Wednesday if that demand is not met.

"The strike has been lifted and fuel distribution is back to normal," said the teamsters boss, who also heads the General Confederation of Workers, Argentina's largest labor federation.

The truckers strike threatened to paralyze industry and leave several regions of Argentina without gas, electricity and transportation service in the middle of the Southern Hemisphere winter, Planning Minister Julio de Vido said earlier Thursday.




Gunmen bust drug suspects out of jail in Mexico


A police officer was killed when gunmen attacked a lockup in the western Mexican state of Michoacan and freed two suspected drug traffickers, officials said.

The suspects were being held at a regional delegation of the Mexican Attorney General's Office in Apatzingan.

Armed men burst into the unit shortly after 7:00 a.m. Thursday and subdued the only police officer on duty, Javier Hernandez Ramirez, forcing him to open the cells holding suspects Julio Acevedo Cardenas and Joel Contreras Cardenas. The intruders then killed Hernandez with a shot to the head.




Spain sells more bonds than expected, borrowing costs rise


Spain's Treasury on Thursday sold 2.2 billion euros ($2.77 billion) worth of debt maturing between 2014 and 2017, or more than initially planned, although the interest rates it was forced to pay were sharply higher and climbed above 6 percent in the case of the five-year bond.

After the auction, Spain's risk premium, the extra return investors demand on the country's 10-year bond compared to equivalent safe-haven German debt, fell below 500 basis points - down to 498 - for the first time since June 12.

Thursday's auction, in which the amount sold surpassed the initial target of between 1 billion euros and 2 billion euros, was the second held by Spain's Treasury this week.

This week's auctions came less than two weeks after euro zone finance ministers agreed to extend a 100 billion euro ($125.6 billion) loan to Spain to help it shore up its ailing financial sector.




Army kills 4 FARC rebels, 3 criminals in Colombia


Four FARC guerrillas and three members of criminal organizations died in clashes with the army in seven provinces, while 23 other people were captured, Colombian armed forces commander Gen. Alejandro Navas said.

The army launched a series of operations targeting the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, and National Liberation Army, or ELN, guerrilla groups, as well as criminal organizations, operating in Antioquia, Tolima, Huila, Norte de Santander, Cauca, Putumayo and Guainia provinces, Navas said.

No casualties were reported among the army troops participating in the operations, Navas said.




Uruguay legalizes marijuana to fight crime


Uruguay's government has opted for the "regulated and controled legalization" of marijuana in the South American country as a crime-fighting measure and pledged to lobby against the current global drug-war strategy in international forums.

The prohibition of "certain drugs" in Uruguay is creating "more problems than the drugs themselves," Defense Minister Eleuterio Fernandez Huidobro said Wednesday, noting that other similar situations in neighboring countries have had "disastrous" consequences.

The minister referred to the "dramatic situation" triggered by drug trafficking in "other Latin American countries such as Mexico, Honduras, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Colombia, Brazil, and now it's starting in Ecuador."

"We don't want the same thing to happen to us in Uruguay," the defense minister said.