Stories written by Mario de Queiroz

GUINEA-BISSAU: Live By the Sword…

Violence was a trademark of João Bernardo Vieira’s life: he survived a coup, four attempts on his life and 13 years fighting the Portuguese colonial army in Guinea-Bissau. But the legend died at the hands of the corruption and violence he himself fed.

PORTUGAL: Mega Solar Power Plant Begins to Operate

The most ambitious and innovative solar power project in the world kicked off Monday in this white-walled village in the southern Portuguese municipality of Moura, one of the most impoverished areas in the European Union.

ANGOLA: Deadly Countdown for Small Parties

Angola’s vast, confusing party landscape is about to undergo a major transformation: as of January, 22 parties and coalitions will simply vanish from the political map.

Q&A: "We Should Go Beyond Development Aid" Vis-a-vis Africa

"Portugal does not own the European Union’s strategy for Africa, but we do feel a special affection for that continent and recognise that our relationship with them is unlike that with any other region in the world."

RIGHTS-EUROPE: Scandal over CIA “Renditions” Flights Revived

Portuguese European Parliament member Ana Gomes will ask the EU legislative body to restart the debate on stopovers in EU territory by secret CIA flights carrying prisoners captured in Afghanistan.

MIGRATION-PORTUGAL: The Promised South

The south-central region of Alentejo, one of Portugal’s most impoverished areas, could turn into a haven for some 30,000 immigrants and unemployed nationals.

PORTUGAL: "Angolagate" Bribes in Local Banks

Portuguese banks that received transfers of money to Angolan politicians implicated in illegal arms sales have kept mum after the Lisbon paper Público reported their involvement.

ENERGY-EU: Zero Carbon Communities

This small municipality in the south of Portugal is becoming increasingly well-known for its alternative energy initiatives. The latest is the Sunflower project, which also involves communities in seven other European Union countries.

 Credit: Mario Soares Foundation

Q&A: “EU Should Place Greater Importance on Latin America”

Mario Soares, two times president and three times prime minister of Portugal, says he is sorry that the European Union has not yet understood the importance of strengthening relations with Latin America.

FRANCE: No Angolans at “Angolagate” Trial

After a decade's delay, the defendants on trial for arms trafficking to Angola include figures of the French élite and an Israeli billionaire, but not a single leader from the vast African country has been summonsed by the Paris court judge.

PORTUGAL: Waves of Energy Come Ashore

The mighty waves rolling in from the Atlantic ocean towards the northern coast of Portugal have been harnessed to produce electricity that will supply the homes of some 6,000 people.

ECONOMY-PORTUGAL: Angola Rising

Nearly seven years after rebel leader Jonas Savimbi was killed in combat, Angolans are doing such brisk business with Portugal that the southern European country’s largest former colony in Africa has a double-digit economic growth rate.

EUROPE: Transgenic Crops’ Days May Be Numbered

Pressure from the president of the European Commission has not succeeded in advancing the cause of transgenic crops. In spite of the power wielded by the executive organ of the European Union, the bloc’s member countries are gradually discontinuing the use of genetically modified seeds.

PORTUGAL: Easing Food Safety Standards for Traditional Products

As the only alternative for preventing the disappearance of small-scale farming, farmers’ markets, rural slaughterhouses, taverns and traditional food products, Portugal has decided to interpret the strict European Union regulations on food safety with a domestic slant.

EQUATORIAL GUINEA: Human Rights Drowning in Oil

The oil interests of Angola, Brazil and Portugal could pave the way for former Spanish colony Equatorial Guinea to become the ninth member of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP) two years from now, despite the country’s poor human rights record.

HEALTH-PORTUGAL: Latin American Doctors Fill the Breach

Portugal is trying to fill the vacuum left by the departure of many of the 2,000 Spanish doctors who have been contributing to the normal functioning of hospitals and clinics in the interior of the country, with Argentine, Cuban and Uruguayan doctors.

ECONOMY-ANGOLA: Slowdown Will Hurt Trade Partners

Slower economic growth in Angola will have a negative effect on exports from the southwest African nation’s main trading partners, especially Portugal and Brazil.

CAPE VERDE-EU: Oiling the Wheels of Temporary Migration

Under the watchful eye of "Fortress Europe", the EU has entered into a pilot partnership with Cape Verde based on the "circular migration" model, under which legal migrants are able to move back and forth without major restrictions.

PORTUGAL: Cuban Cataract Ops Prick Medical Conscience

Cuba’s offer to provide cataract operations for people who have been on waiting lists for years at Portugal’s public hospitals triggered a reaction by the government and doctors, who may finally begin to provide a solution to this problem that affects thousands of elderly people.

ANGOLA: Irish Rock Star Geldof Riles Tempers

Irish rocker and activist Bob Geldof’s statement that Angola is a country "run by criminals" unleashed a political storm that could have an impact on Portugal’s large investment interests in the largest of its former African colonies.

PORTUGAL: Women Executives Still a Rarity

It is not common to see a woman’s name on the board of directors of one of Portugal’s biggest companies, and even comes as a surprise to some.

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