In Haiti, gangs take control as democracy withers (AP)

At a time when democracy has withered in Haiti and gang violence has spiraled out of control, it’s armed men like Jimmy Cherizier, known better by his nickname Barbecue, that are filling the power vacuum left by a crumbling government. In December, the U.N. estimated that gangs controlled 60% of Haiti’s capital, but nowadays most on the streets of Port-au-Prince say that number is closer to 100%. " (AP Photo: Odelyn Joseph)

Rebel ‘baby boom’ was a sign of hope. Now, it represents uncertainty. (National Geographic)

After Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) guerrillas signed a peace pact with the Colombian government, there was a baby boom among former rebel fighters who saw their kids – "niños de la paz," or "children of peace" – as a step into a future without war. But 5 years later, that peace process is crumbling and their children have grown to represent a deepening uncertainty. (Photo: Juan Arredondo/NatGeo)

Two hours of terror, now years of devastation for Acapulco’s poor in Hurricane Otis aftermath (AP)

 The Category 5 hurricane damaged nearly all of Acapulco’s homes, left bodies bobbing along the coastline and much of the city foraging for food. While authorities were hard at work restoring order in Acapulco’s tourist center, the city’s poorest said they felt abandoned. One woman and hundreds of thousands others lived two hours of terror last week. Now face years of work to repair their already precarious lives. (AP Photo: Felix Marquez)

Colombian guerrillas are using coronavirus curfews to expand their control. Violators have been killed. (The Washington Post)

Guerrillas, paramilitaries and armed groups across Colombia have imposed strict coronavirus quarantines to consolidate power, sewing fear in populations who have already lived through decades of conflict. The consequences for violating these controls is death. (Photo: Oscar Coral/The Washington Post)

2 Cuban sisters 4,200-mile journey to the U.S. (AP)

An odyssey of more than 4,200 miles would lead two Cuban medical students to question their past lives, race unknowingly against a ticking legal clock and leave them teetering on the edge of death as they tumbled down a cliff. It’s a voyage that hundreds of thousands of Cubans have made over the last two years in an historic wave of migration. (AP Photo: Ramon Espinosa)

To save lives, midwives mix Mayan heritage with Western medicine (National Geographic)

In the remnants of the Mayan empire – Central America and southern Mexico – tens of thousands of indigenous midwives are the ones standing between life & death for women out of reach of their countries' health systems. Despite an age-old rift between "comadronas" and medical systems, such women have only grown more important in the pandemic. (Photo: Janet Jarman)

As Colombia’s Peace Crumbles, Female Guerrillas Wonder What’s Left for Them (Foreign Policy)

Five years after the FARC signed a historic peace deal with the Colombian government, women ex-rebels have crash-landed into a harsh reality. The traditional gender roles they once took up arms to escape have snapped back, and former FARC fighters face a moment of reckoning as the narratives of gender equality they once pushed fall apart. As those peace accords begin to crumble, female guerrillas wonder what is left for them.

Former Bolivian President Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison (The New York Times)

Jeanine Añez, the former president of Bolivia, was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Friday following accusations that she illegally took over the presidency after the resignation of her predecessor, Evo Morales. The trial has led to concerns about politicians’ use of the justice system to target opponents. (Photo: Federico Rios/The New York Times)

War on gangs forges new El Salvador. But the price is steep. (AP)

El Salvador has undergone a radical transformation since President Nayib Bukele – the self-described “world’s coolest dictator” – ordered a state of emergency in response to an alarming surge in gang violence. Bukele has imprisoned over 65,000 of the nation’s 6.3 million people. Bloodshed has faded as the presence of the most fearsome gangs dwindles. Yet the transformation comes at a steep price. (AP Photo: Salvador Melendez)

Lima’s ‘Wall of Shame’ and the Art of Building Barriers (The Atlantic)

Lima, Peru’s “Wall of Shame” was constructed by the city’s hyper-rich in the 1980s to keep out poor migrants displaced by bloodshed in Peru’s countryside. Like many world walls – whether it be the U.S.-Mexico border’s to Israel-Palestine’s – the 6-mile-long barrier stands as a testament to the culture’s deeper societal divisions.

'It's only a matter of time' Brazil once wiped away preventable diseases. Why are they coming back? (Al Jazeera & IWMF)

A global backslide in childhood vaccinations during the COVID-19 pandemic has spurred on a resurgence of previously eliminated preventable diseases like measles, polio, diphtheria and more. In Brazil, a country once renowned for its immunization program, vaccination rates have dipped while health authorities struggle to control measles outbreaks. They worry it could take decades to reverse.

War for control of Haiti’s capital targets women’s bodies (AP)

As Haiti’s toxic slate of gangs continue to plunder the crisis-stricken Caribbean nation, kidnapping, displacing and extorting civilians with nothing left to give, they are increasingly weaponizing women’s bodies in their war for control. “They’re running out of tools to control people. They extort, but there’s only so much money that can be extorted from people that are really poor. This is the one thing they have they can inflict on the population.” (AP Photo: Odelyn Joseph)

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