Lagos, Nigeria - Though he grew up in one of Africa's largest English-speaking cities, Alexander De Souza remembers a childhood when Portuguese was spoken in the streets, Brazilian dishes were served in the kitchen and friends and family lived in houses styled in the architecture of Sao Paulo. De Souza spent the early years of his childhood in the "Brazilian quarter" of Nigeria's largest city, Lagos, a part of town so named because former slaves from Brazil settled there to restart their lives in the 19th century. Decades of British colonisation that ended in 1960 made Nigeria a firmly Anglophone country, with English the lingua franca and thousands of Nigerians living in countries such as Britain and the United States. But in the Brazilian quarter of Lagos, the festivals, meals and architecture all have a distinctive South American touch, thanks to the legacy of the "agudas", a distortion of the Portuguese word for the cotton that became a moniker for the returned slaves. Yet, many in the quarter worry that these traditions and cultural relics may not last much longer.
In this Nov. 24, 2016 photo, a police officer walks past residents watching a protest against police violence in the City of God slum, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. In this Nov. 24, 2016 photo, a police officer walks past residents watching a protest against police violence in the City of God slum, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The newly widowed 32-year-old says police wanted revenge after a military police helicopter recently crashed while helping with an anti-drug operation near the City of God slum, killing the four officers on board. In this Nov. 23, 2016 photo, a woman, carrying a baby, walks past police officers during an anti-drug operation in the City of God slum, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
SAO PAULO/RIO DE JANEIRO – Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro is facing growing criticism over rampant destruction of the Amazon, where ever more land is being cleared and the number of forest fires have surged. Nearly 73,000 fires were recorded between January and August, compared with 39,759 in the first eight months of 2018, according to the embattled National Institute for Space Research. That is the highest number for any year since 2013 and follows two years of declines. "What we are seeing is a consequence of the increase in deforestation," said Ricardo Mello of the WWF conservation group's Amazon Program. Forest fires tend to intensify during the dry season as land is burned to clear space for crops or grazing.
Cesare Battisti, a former Italian communist activist sought by Rome for four murders in the 1970s, has been arrested after an international police squad tracked him to Bolivia where he faces extradition to Brazil and then likely to Italy. Italy has repeatedly sought the extradition of Battisti, who lived in Brazil for years under the protection of former leftist president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva (2003-2010), who is now in prison for corruption. "Italian terrorist Cesare Battisti was detained in Bolivia (Saturday night) and will be soon brought to Brazil, from where he will probably be sent to Italy to serve a life sentence," tweeted Filipe G. Martins, a senior aide on international affairs to Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro. During Brazil's recent presidential campaign the far-right Bolsonaro -who took office on January 1 - vowed that if elected he would "immediately" extradite Battisti to Italy. In mid-December Brazil's outgoing president, Michel Temer, signed an extradition order for Battisti after a judge ordered his arrest.