Russia is the leading promoter of disinformation, according to a report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI) that analyzed public Twitter datasets. Iran, China, and Venezuela also ranked high in the March 30 report, Understanding Global Disinformation and Information Operations.
On April 21, Bolivia and Brazil created the Integrated Office Against Organized Crime, which will meet once a month and consolidate efforts to combat transnational crime. The Bolivian government and the Secretariat of Justice and Public Security (SEJUSP) of the Brazilian state of Acre led the initiative.
In late April, representatives from the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM) met with officials from the Royal Bahamas Defence Force (RBDF) at Coral Harbour Naval Base in Nassau. The officials participated in an executive session as part of the Bilateral Security Cooperation Framework (BSCF) between both nations to enhance security and defense cooperation.
The Paraguayan National Anti-Drug Secretariat (SENAD) and international European institutions have made headway with Operation North Atlantic, which seeks to dismantle a criminal group that sent cocaine via containers to the Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, and Spain. According to Paraguayan newspaper ABC Color, Diego Benítez Cañete, the former sports manager of the Olimpia Club in the city of Asunción, who is currently on the run, is the alleged leader of the criminal network.
Improving human capital, maintaining and increasing operational readiness, and strategic planning are the challenges General Javier Eduardo Iturriaga del Campo, commander of the Chilean Army, outlined as he assumed command on March 9, 2022.
On April 2, the Ecuadorian National Police seized two drug shipments bound for Spain and India from one of Guayaquil’s seaports. In both cases, the alert of a sniffing dog belonging to Ecuador’s Regional Canine Training Center was key for the drug seizures.
U.S. Army South soldiers arrived at Soto Cano Air Base in Honduras May 11 for a nine-day deployment exercise with more than 60 soldiers to set up a contingency command post (CCP) in preparation for future forward operations in the U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) area of responsibility.
In 2021, the Colombian Navy broke its all-time record for drug seizures with 403 tons of illicit substances confiscated. Colombia accounts for two thirds of the global area under coca bush cultivation and cocaine production, according to the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime’s World Drug Report 2021. The great majority of coca cultivation takes place in the departments of Putumayo, Caquetá, Meta, Guaviare, Nariño, Antioquia, and Vichada, in border areas with Venezuela — where armed groups and drug traffickers operate — which are seeing a recent spike. The Maduro regime “demonstrates a complete unwillingness to make the more than necessary policy changes to enforce existing laws. This creates an extreme level of impunity exacerbated by a lack of transparency and high levels of corruption,” the PanAm Post reported. This works as an incentive to coca producers, who see Venezuela as a safe haven, and the once wealthiest country in Latin America mostly because of oil, is now becoming a central hub for not just selling narcotics in the Western world, but also for cocaine production.
The Counter-narcotics Brigade of Chile’s Investigative Police (PDI), together with the Office of the Prosecutor of Arica and Parinacota, seized 1.5 tons of drugs during Operation Northern Scorpion. In an April 23 statement, the PDI said the drugs came from Bolivia and Peru and were to be sold in central Chile.
On April 21, International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Karim Khan rejected Venezuela’s request to delay an ICC investigation into alleged human rights violations. Khan also signaled his intention to resume the investigation as soon as possible.
Colombia remains on alert to the possibility of foreign interference in the May 29 presidential elections. The U.S. and Colombian governments are cooperating to prevent this, Colombia’s Radio Cadena Nacional (RCN) said on April 26.
The Brazilian Army (EB) hosted the XXXV Conference of American Armies (CAA), in Brasília, capital of Brazil, April 18-20. General Marco Antônio Freire Gomes, EB commander, presided over the event, which had the participation of 22 delegations, with EB Lieutenant General Alcides Valeriano de Faria Júnior as secretary-general. A different member army hosts the CAA every two years. Brazil previously hosted the event in 1968, 1994, and 2006.