Report: New election laws could deter 10 mn Latino voters


Representing more than a tenth of the U.S. electorate, the Hispanic community will play a key role in November, but legal barriers in 23 states could deter 10 million Latinos from going to the polls, according to a report released by the Advancement Project.

The report analyzes for the first time the impact of those barriers, including more stringent requirements regarding the use of identity documents and verification of citizenship, on the coveted Hispanic vote.

The group is asking the U.S. Justice Department to investigate any violation of the right to vote for minorities and for state authorities to revoke prevailing measures that impede the right to suffrage.

In many states, the report found, the number of Latino registered voters who could find themselves disadvantaged by election regulations even exceeds the margin of victory for the last presidential election in 2008.




King outlines "real" situation of Spain's economy to NY Times


Spain's King Juan Carlos outlined to The New York Times editorial board the "real" situation of his country's economy and assured journalists and executives that the Iberian nation "will forge ahead" and leave the crisis behind.

The Spanish monarch met for 90 minutes with the board headed by Chairman and Publisher Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr. and Times editor Jill Abramson, a spokesperson for the royal household told Efe.

Accompanied by Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo and top aide Rafael Spottorno, Juan Carlos detailed to the board "the truth about Spain and about the economic, political and social situation of the country."




Mexico arrests 35 cops for alleged drug links


Mexico's navy announced the arrest of 35 police officers in the Gulf coast state of Veracruz on allegations they were working for the Los Zetas drug cartel.

Marines detained 16 of the suspects at the airport in San Luis Potosi, capital of the likenamed neighboring state, while the rest were picked up in Xalapa, Veracruz's capital.

All of those arrested are members of the Veracruz state police, the navy said in a statement.

The 35 officers were taken to Mexico City and turned over to the organized-crime unit of the Attorney General's Office.




Cuba's Ladies in White say celebration blocked


The dissident Ladies in White group denounced repressive action by the Cuban government to keep its members from taking part in activities they organized to celebrate the feast of Our Lady of Mercy, patroness of prisoners.

"The purpose of the repression is to keep us from taking part in the four days of activities honoring former political prisoners" that began Friday with a Mass in remembrance of deceased Cuban dissidents like Laura Pollan, Oswaldo Paya and Harold Cepero," Ladies in White spokeswoman Berta Soler told Efe.

More than 40 Ladies in White from different provinces, according to the dissident, were stopped from traveling to Havana and were sent back home.

"We don't know where some of them are," Soler said Sunday.

The homes of some 12 members who live in Havana "were under siege by state security forces, and when they came outside they were arrested, while others were detained (Sunday) before reaching Santa Rita Church, Soler said.




Venezuelan elections to be patrolled by 139,000 troops


Venezuela's Oct. 7 general elections will be patrolled by 139,000 troops, the head of the military strategic command, Gen. Wilmer Barrientos, said.

The deployment seeks to provide security and help organize the elections efficiently "so that no inconveniences arise," he told state television.

He said that a system has been coordinated with the Attorney General's Office to respond to possible electoral crimes on Oct. 7, so that those involved in such incidents can be escorted to a specific facility where charges will be brought against them for this type of infraction.

"We can't let the line of voters be held up," Barrientos said.




Chilean judge mulls exhumation of Pablo Neruda


The judge investigating the death of poet Pablo Neruda directed experts to prepare new reports to help him determine whether to allow the Nobel laureate, who died 39 years ago, to be exhumed.

Specialists from the University of Chile will have to determine if the exhumation is necessary, Judge Mario Carroza told reporters.

This, despite an Aug. 30 report from the medical examiner's office that pointed to prostate cancer as the proximate cause of Neruda's Sept. 23, 1973, death.

Neruda had suffered from cancer for several years before he died and for a long time the official version said that the disease was what caused his death 12 days after the coup led by Gen. Augusto Pinochet.

However, doubt was cast on that account in 2011 when Neruda's former driver, Manuel Araya, said that an injection the poet received a few hours before he died had killed him, suggesting that the Pinochet regime might have murdered him.