Simeon Tegel

Simeon Tegel is a writer based in Lima, Peru.

Ecuador is becoming a narco-state

Few political assassinations will have been as predictable as Fernando Villavicencio’s, the Ecuadorian presidential candidate and anti-corruption firebrand gunned down in Quito this week.  The brutal murder took place in a country that in recent decades has been largely free of serious political violence, notwithstanding the ferocious inter-party struggles that have seen both coups and

Peru’s staggeringly incompetent far-left coup

Lima, Peru For the last 17 months, Peruvians have been wondering what it would take to see the back of Pedro Castillo, their staggeringly incompetent and deeply unpopular far left president. On Wednesday, they got their answer — when Castillo made a botched attempt to metamorphise from an elected head-of-state into an even more inept

The madness of El Salvador’s Bitcoin city

A golden city on the coast of the tropical Pacific. A metal walkway suspended above a verdant volcano. And a glossy marina that looks like it belongs in Monte Carlo rather than a near failed-state besieged by some of the world’s most violent criminals. The detailed gilded model released this week of ‘Bitcoin city’ –

How long can Peru’s new socialist leader last?

The symbolism could hardly have been clearer when Pedro Castillo was sworn in yesterday as Peru’s new President on the country’s 200th anniversary of independence. For arguably the first time in its history, Peru has a head-of-state who personifies the national majority — a campesino hailing from a particularly impoverished region of the northern Andes — rather than a member, real