The Week (US)
Tortilla prices soar: Mexicans are paying much more for one of their staple foods, the corn tortilla, and the country’s leftist ruling party is blaming greedy food producers. A kilo of tortillas, which normally sells for 85 cents, now costs more than $1.40 in some parts of Mexico. Sen. José Narro Céspedes of the Morena party accused corn flour companies of hoarding supplies to artificially drive up profits. He has asked Mexico’s food security agency to start regulating tortilla prices. But economists say the real problem is a spike in the international price of corn, partly because of weather problems in Brazil and partly because of high demand from China for cattle feed. Inflation is pushing up all food prices in Mexico—tomatoes cost 87 percent more today than a year ago, while chiles are up 72 percent.
Chalchuapa, El Salvador
Murder ring: At least 12 bodies have been unearthed at the home of a former Salvadoran police officer who was part of an alleged murder ring targeting women and girls. Hugo Ernesto Osorio Chávez, who was fired from the police force 15 years ago for raping a minor, was arrested in the town of Chalchuapa earlier this month for the murder of a 57-year-old woman and her 26-year-old daughter. When authorities searched his yard, they found a pit containing human remains dating back to 2019. Most belonged to women and girls, some as young as 2. Investigators expect to find more remains at the site. Police have charged nine other suspected members of the murder ring. El Salvador has one of Latin America’s highest rates of femicide; at least 70 women and girls were murdered in the country last year because of their sex.
San Miguel del Ene, Peru
Shining Path massacre: A splinter faction of the Maoist rebel group
Shining Path is being blamed for the slaughter of 14 men, women, and children in a remote jungle village this week, just weeks ahead of a presidential election. The group waged a terrorist campaign in Peru in the 1980s and ’90s until authoritarian President Alberto Fujimori gave the military broad power to round up masses of suspects and try them in secret military courts. Now his daughter, Keiko Fujimori, is running for president against Socialist candidate Pedro Castillo, and the attack could shake up the campaign. Officials said they found Shining Path leaflets left near the bodies, warning locals that anyone who voted for Fujimori on June 6 would be considered a traitor. Castillo, who has been leading in the race, has strongly denounced the killings, but Fujimori’s allies are accusing him of being a Shining Path sympathizer.