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This is what world’s famous druglord has to say about 4 decade old drug war

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Sebastian-Marroquin-p-549x366Juan Pablo Escobar Henao, son of Colombian druglord Pablo Escobar Gaviria, has said he is in favour of ending the global fight against drugs.

He told Spanish news agency Efe in an interview on Tuesday in Rio de Janeiro that after 40 years of “clear and compelling” failures in this war, it was time to start speaking of peace.

“The war has meant that people like my father have had the luxury of submitting, through violence and corruption, an entire country,” Henao said on the occasion of the publication of his book, “My father, Pablo Escobar”, by Planeta editorial.

The first-time writer was doubtful if the current global policy against drugs can put an end to what is considered a “public health problem”.

As he says, there would always be people like his father to “challenge and subjugate all democracies that may be necessary”.

According to Henao — who for years lived in exile under the name of Juan Sebastian Marroquin Santos — one disproportionate example of that war would be the 3,000 deaths that occurred in Colombia over “a single man” — his father.

After more than 20 years since the death of ‘El Patron’ (The Boss), his eldest son feels no anger or resentment towards the Colombian state. However, he said: “It is unacceptable that we are being prosecuted for my father’s crimes, I understand the Colombian law says crimes are not inherited.”

The author, who will present his book on Wednesday at the Cervantes Institute in San Paulo, was also disappointed with his paternal family, who were sitting “on the side” of the bosses of the Cali cartel, the primary rival of Escobar’s Medellin cartel, “begging them” to kill the three closest people to the druglord: his wife (Henao’s mother) and their two children (his sister and himself).

Henao is certain they were the ones who betrayed his father and although he has forgiven them, he will never forget what they did.

“When you forgive you get rid of the pain caused to the perpetrator, but when you forget there is a risk of history repeating,” he said confirming he has no family ties with them. This betrayal resulted in a chase that led the “Cocaine King” to live life in hiding for nearly a year.

This, ironically, was the “best” time the author spent with his father, till his death in an ambush by the Colombian army on December 2, 1993. “My father had no other way and chose to be found that day by the authorities,” said Henao. He broke his “golden rule” and used a phone, which alerted the Colombian authorities to his location.

According to Henao, 14 bullets in his father’s gun would always be reserved for his enemies and the last one for himself. Henao also accused the forensic doctors, who performed his father’s autopsy, of lying because “they had been threatened with death to change the report”.

The Cocaine King’s son, who lived a life of fantasy and fairytale, says he has now laid bare the naked truth behind all that happened years ago, so that no one can tell tales to his son, the grandson of the man who terrorised an entire country for years.

-(IANS)

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Millions go hungry as Zimbabwe faces the worst drought in decades

The impact of low rain and low crop yields following two years of drought is painfully visible in Matabeleland and other dry lands.

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A photo taken on February 7, 2016 shows the fast drying catchment area of the Matabeleland, Zimbabwe. Image source : time.com

GENEVA—  Zimbabwe is currently facing a huge drought and the President of Zimbabwe has declared this as “state of disaster”. It has faced many regional drought before but this year in 2016, it got worsened by the El nino weather phenomenon. This weather phenomenon has also affected countries like South Africa, Malawi and Zambia causing death of thousands cattle, depletion of reservoirs and spoiling.

U.N. has confirmed that more 3 million people are going hungry due to this drought. The impact of low rain and low crop yields following two years of drought is painfully visible in Matabeleland and other dry lands said Bishow Parajuli U.N. Resident Coordinator of Zimbabwe.

“I recently visited that area with a number of donors and ambassadors; we could really see the desperation and severity of the situation.” said Parajuli.

A man touches dried land which used to be a water source. Image source : voa.com
A man touches dried land which used to be a water source. Image source : voa.com

It is being considered as the worst regional drought in whole decade and some say it is likely to get even.

The United Nations have appealed for $360 million so that assistance can be provided to more than 3 million people. The assistance will include all the important needs like food, water, health, nutrition, sanitation and protection.

$70 million has already been received and only $290 million is left says Parajuli. He urges donors to respond to this appeal and be generous.

“Given Zimbabwe is a landlocked country and also the whole southern Africa region is affected by El Nino, and lack of surplus of maize, it is very critical to plan in advance in terms of importation and supply chain delivery ,” said Parajuli. ” So, earlier response will really help save lives and suffering among the population.”

Parajuli says he is particularly worried about the so-called lean season between September and March.  This is the period between harvests when farmers’ food stocks are at their lowest.

He says people will be severely affected by the lack of food, and many will not be able to count on their cattle as a lifeline as tens of thousands have died from lack of water and grazing land. (VOA)

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