Costa Rica’s top electoral court confirmed the results of an Oct. 7 referendum on a free trade agreement with the United States, saying a recount showed the ’yes’ votes only slightly lower than preliminary results had indicated.
Masked gunmen dumped a Guatemalan banana picker’s bullet-ridden corpse yards from fields of fruit bound for the United States, a grim reminder of the risks of organizing labor in the Central American country.
Neoliberal policies and the free trade agreement with the US have made Guatemala rely on others to feed its population, a study published here denounces.
While free trade proponents cheered, opponents called foul in Costa Rica’s 51.5 percent vote Oct. 7 in favor of ratifying the Dominican Republic-Central American Free Trade Agreement (DR-CAFTA).
The vote was barely 24 hours away when President Bush’s aides held an emergency conference call at 10:45 p.m. last Friday. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid had sent a letter that could sink a US-led free trade agreement up for referendum in Costa Rica. The Bush team decided to put out its own statement to save it. The trade pact went on to pass narrowly Sunday, but the last-minute drama capped a furious few weeks in which the White House and Congress fought a proxy war in the tiny Central American nation.
Take action from October 15-20 to demand that the Costa Rica referendum results NOT be certified by the OAS
US intervention, corruption, and an internationally financed fear campaign provoke questions about referendum process
Costa Ricans narrowly approved — 52% said yes, 48% said no — a free trade deal with the United States in a referendum on Sunday that has split the Central American nation like no other issue in decades.
Despite the overwhelming evidence of workers’ rights being routinely abused, DR-CAFTA offers no solution.
Nearly 2.7 million people will vote today to decide whether CAFTA is to be ratified or not, an unprecedented happening in the political history of Costa Rica.
Renowned Latin American figures have expressed their solidarity with the Costa Rican people, who are expected to go to the polls Sunday to decide in a referendum whether their country signs a free trade agreement with the US.
Costa Ricans are poised to reject the U.S.-Central American free trade agreement in a referendum Sunday, according to a poll published Thursday.
The remarkable coalition of public employees, farmers, small business owners, intellectuals, and assorted citizens has already changed Costa Rican politics regardless of the outcome of the referendum vote.
Four days before a referendum in Costa Rica on CAFTA, a poll carried out by the company Demoscopia for the newspaper Al Dia shows that 50.8 percent of voters oppose the FTA.
More than 100,000 Costa Ricans — a huge protest in a country of 4 million — protested a US trade pact on Sunday they say will flood their country with cheap farm goods and cause job losses.
Representatives of several Costa Rican sectors will take part in a mass demonstration in this capital on Sunday in rejection to the free trade agreement with the US, which will be put to the vote on October 17.
The Stop CAFTA Coalition announces the release of "DR-CAFTA Year Two: Trends and impacts", its second report on the effects of the US-Dominican Republic-Central American Free Trade Agreement on the majority of people in the region.
Even if Costa Ricans vote not to adopt CAFTA on Oct 7, they may still suffer economically from it.
For the first time in the history of world, a voting population will have the opportunity to vote on a free trade agreement in a referendum.
CAFTA is a legal instrument that favors multinational expansion without limits, leaving the most underprivileged sectors of Costa Rica totally unprotected, among them women and the poor. The strong movement against ratification of CAFTA will not end with the approval or rejection of the agreement on 7 October 2007, but could well be the seed of broader social transformation.