Celia Mendoza is a six-time Emmy-nominated journalist with more than 15 years of experience in commercial and government broadcasting. She is the recipient of VOA’s Gold Medal for her coverage of historical world events such as the election of Pope Francis in Rome, the Canonization of Mother Teresa in Rome, President Obama’s visit to Cuba, the Summit of the Americas in Panama, border issues in Mexico, the COP 21 Climate Change Summit in Paris, the 9/11 anniversaries and numerous political, economic and cultural events. Prior to joining VOA, Celia worked with Univision, Telemundo and News 12 New Jersey.
After months of preparation, the first round of virtual courts started hearing cases on Monday in the border city of Laredo, Texas. The migrants cross the border from Mexico for a brief video appearance before a judge. The asylum seekers then return to Mexico while their cases make their way through the legal system in the U.S. The virtual courts are part of the Homeland Security Department's new rules under the so-called Migrant Protection Protocol. VOA's Celia Mendoza reports.
In Colombia, the recent decision by some FARC guerrilla leaders to again take up arms - and the continuing violence directed at former fighters, political candidates, and human rights activists - have raised fears about the future of peace in that South American nation. As VOA's Celia Mendoza reports from Bogota, there are questions whether the government of President Iván Duque has the political will to fully implement the 2016 peace agreement with the FARC that ended five decades of conflict.