Articles on Central America

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Stucco frieze from Placeres, Campeche, Mexico, Early Classic period, c. 250-600 AD. Wolfgang Sauber/Wikimedia

Misreading the story of climate change and the Maya

Many people think climate change caused Classic Maya civilization to collapse abruptly around 900 A.D. An archaeologist says that view is too simplistic and misses the bigger point.
Riot police at an anti-government march in Managua, Nicaragua, Oct. 14, 2018. Reuters/Oswaldo Rivas

One year after Nicaraguan uprising, Ortega is back in control

A massive protest movement exploded across Nicaragua in April 2018, threatening to topple the country's authoritarian regime. What happened to Central America's 'tropical spring?'
A man hugs his family before leaving for the U.S. border with a migrant caravan from San Salvador, El Salvador, Jan. 16, 2019. AP/Salvador Melendez

Migrants’ stories: Why they flee

Thousands of Central American migrants are trying to cross the U.S. southern border. One scholar followed their paths to find out why they make the dangerous, sometimes deadly, journey.
The Mossy Red-eyed Frog is among hundreds of species threatened with extinction at the hands of chytrid fungus. Jonathan Kolby/Honduras Amphibian Rescue and Conservation Center

Deadly frog fungus has wiped out 90 species and threatens hundreds more

Chytrid fungus has caused declines in 501 amphibian species, according to a new analysis. Most of the damage happened in the 1980s, before the fungus itself was even discovered.
Migrants on a ship intercepted offshore near the Libyan town of Gohneima, east of the capital Tripoli, in July 2018. Libyan Coast Guard via AP, File

Europe’s refugee crisis explains why border walls don’t stop migration

After 1.3 million migrants from the Middle East and Africa came to Europe in 2015, many countries built fences or closed their ports. That has pushed migrants to take riskier routes into the EU.
Salvadoran immigrants were pivotal in the Justice for Janitors campaign in Los Angeles in 1990. It earned wage increases for custodial staff nationwide and inspired today’s $15 minimum wage campaign. AP Photo/Chris Pizzello

How Central American migrants helped revive the US labor movement

Central Americans who came to the US in the 1980s fleeing civil war drew on their background fighting for social justice back home to help unionize farmworkers, janitors and poultry packers in the US.
Guatemalans overwhelmingly support the United Nations-backed corruption investigation known as CICIG. President Jimmy Morales is trying to ban prosecutors from the country. AP Photo/Moises Castillo

Guatemala in crisis after president bans corruption investigation into his government

Guatemalan President Jimmy Morales is defying a constitutional court order to release a UN-backed prosecutor his government arrested and allow his corruption investigation to continue.
Migrants from Honduras, part of the Central American caravan, trying to reach the United States in Tijuana, Mexico, in December 2018. Reuters/Mohammed Salem

Is there a crisis at the US-Mexico border? 6 essential reads

Immigration experts explain who's really trying to cross the US-Mexico border, what they want — and why immigration, even undocumented immigration, actually benefits the country.
One of 2018’s unforgettable images: Maria Meza and her twin daughters sprint from tear gas lobbed at the border wall between the U.S and Mexico in Tijuana, Nov. 25, 2018. Reuters/Kim Kyung Hoon

Remembering the caravan: 5 essential reads that show the desperation of Central American migrants

The migrant caravan was one of the biggest international stories of 2018, a roving human drama that laid bare Central America's pain for all the world to see.
A family from the Central American migrant caravan at the U.S.-Mexico border in Tijuana. Reuters/Lucy Nicholson

Who is responsible for migrants?

Donald Trump portrays migrants as a foreign problem 'dumped' on America's doorstep. That view ignores the global forces that bind nations together, including trade, climate change and colonization.
Migrants begin their day inside a former concert venue serving as a shelter, in Tijuana, Mexico, Dec. 2, 2018. (AP Photo/Rebecca Blackwell)

The challenge of parenting in a migrant caravan

The psychological health of migrant children will be deeply impacted by their flight from gang violence, and the experience of crowded unhygienic conditions and tear gas at the U.S. border.
The remains of an Ixil man emerge from the ground, one of the countless victims of the civil war in Guatemala. Tristan Brand/FAFG Fundacion de Antropologia Forense de Guatemala

‘It is the job of the living to save the dead from drowning’

The Ixil people of Guatemala dream of the places where their dead, massacred during the country's armed conflict might be located.
A new group of Central American migrants walk past Mexican Federal Police after wading across the Suchiate River, that connects Guatemala and Mexico, in Tecun Uman, Guatemala, Oct. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Santiago Billy)

Why does the migrant ‘caravan’ exist? And how did it come to be?

A migrant caravan of almost 7,000 people who left Guatemala and Honduras is heading north towards the United States. The reasons they are leaving are complex but involve a U.S.-backed violent history.
Central American migrants face extortion, robbery, assault, kidnapping, rape and murder on their weeks-long journey through Mexico. Some find safety in numbers. AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd

Migrants travel in groups for a simple reason: safety

More than two-thirds of Central American migrants will experience violence on their journey through Mexico, from robbery and extortion to rape. Caravans create safety in numbers.

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