Lucas Mendes, host of Globo News Manhattan Connection, in New York

Costa Rica was described as “corrupt and democratic banana republic” by the host and guest analylist of the Manahattan Connection television program by Brazil’s Globo News. Produced in New York for broadcast on Brazil’s pay channel Globosat, the signal reaches a global audience.

The program last Sunday opened with an introduction by host Lucas Mendes and a video portraying Costa Rica as a banana republic, followed by a panel discussion with analysts in the Globo News studios in Brazil on the presidential elections in Costa Rica and El Salvador the week before.

Click here to see the video.

In response to the question put by Mendes of what is happening in Costa Rica, “formerly considered model country in Latin America”, international affairs analyst, Ciao Blinder, responded by saying that “in Costa Rica the rise of Luis Guillermo Solis (PAC candidate) is due to government corruption (by Laura Chinchilla).”

Blinder added that our country – unlike Nicaragua, where recent constitutional reforms extended presidential terms – has solid institutions, but is a “normal country: corrupt and democratic.”


Costa Rica’s communication minister, Carlos Roverssi, says the Brazilian program shows ignorance and lack of professionalism and research in branding the country (Costa Rica) as a “banana republic”.

The minister added describing the relationship between democracy and corruption “as normal” makes you think that the program is one of leftist groups, whose intention is powered by local groups in Costa Rica who oppose the Chinchilla administration who constantly publish critical reviews.

Roverssi says it is a result of a campaign over the last several years of sectors who want to destabilize democracy in Costa Rica.

The minister emphasized that the government will be seeking from the producers of the Manhattan Connection a right of reply.

On Feb. 2, 2014, the Spanish daily El Mundo published a tough criticism of Chinchilla, describing her as “the woman who failed governing Costa Rica”.

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