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The lights are on in Anguilla just in time for Christmas

first_img Travelweek Group The lights are on in Anguilla, just in time for Christmas Friday, December 22, 2017 Share THE VALLEY, Anguilla — Anguilla’s recovery from Hurricane Irma entered a new phase this week with the restoration of electrical power across the island, just in time for the holidays.The island’s power company ANGLEC delivered on its campaign slogan, ‘Lights before Christmas!’ as the island welcomes visitors this winter, according to the latest update from the Anguilla Tourist Board.Almost 600 rooms are available on island heading into the holiday season, including villas, small hotels and holiday apartment rentals.Among the properties open for the winter are: CeBlue Resort in Crocus Hill; Carimar Beach Club, Frangipani Beach Resort and Meads Bay Villas on Meads Bay; Shoal Bay Villas, Serenity Cottages and Fountain Residences on Shoal Bay; and Paradise Cove Beach Resort in The Cove.A brand new addition to Anguilla’s resort product, Quintessence Boutique Hotel in Long Bay, is scheduled to open Jan. 1, 2018.Anguilla also has villas available this winter including: Spyglass Hill in North Hill; Kishti Villas on Meads Bay; Cerulean in the West End; Champagne Shores in Lockrum, Arushi Villa on Rendezvous Bay, Zenaida in Sandy Hill and Villa Paradise in Cul de Sac.More news:  ‘Turn around year’ for TPI brings double-digit growthSelf-catering apartments include: La Vue Holiday Rentals and Royal Palm Holiday Apartments in South Hill; Elodias Beach Resort on Shoal Bay East and West End Bay Holiday Suites in the West End.An additional 540 rooms are slated to come on stream by April 2018, as some of the islands’ traditional five-star resorts plan to reopen in the first quarter of 2018.Most of the island’s popular restaurants and beach bars are also already open for the season.A complete listing of properties and restaurants with their current status and proposed reopening dates is available at Irma.IvisitAnguilla.com.Access to Anguilla is also improving, reports the ATB. Seaborne flies five days a week from San Juan to Anguilla, Thursday through Monday, providing connections to American Airlines, Delta, JetBlue, United and Southwest’s service into San Juan. Seaborne has codeshare agreements with American, Delta and JetBlue.Anguilla’s beaches are better than ever, and her pristine turquoise waters have always been her greatest draw, notes the ATB, adding that Junior’s glass-bottom boat excursions were among the first attractions to reopen, along with Calypso Boat Charters, which offers tours to the cays and day trips to St. Barths. Additional attractions include Shoal Bay Scuba, which resumed its diving and watersports operations in November, and Magic City, a family fun children’s facility, which also re-opened in November.More news:  Sunwing offers ultimate package deal ahead of YXU flights to SNU, PUJAnguilla Watersports, which offers a wide array of activities including paddle boarding, glass bottom boat rides and kite surfing, resumes operations in December. The 18-hole championship golf course at the CuisinArt Golf Resort & Spa reopened Dec. 10, and its Venus Spa reopens in January. The miniature golf course over in Island Harbour is also open to guests, and the Anguilla Tennis Academy offers lessons and play for kids and adults on six newly renovated courts.For real time, post-Irma Anguilla updates visit Irma.IvisitAnguilla.com. For general information on the island visit IvisitAnguilla.com.center_img Posted by Tags: Anguilla << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

TPI bids farewell to Tim Morgan

first_img Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >> TPI bids farewell to Tim Morgan Share Travelweek Group center_img WINNIPEG — After almost 13 years with TPI, Tim Morgan has elected to move on to start his own new venture allowing him to work independently of TPI. His last day with TPI was Feb 28, 2018.“This was a difficult decision but ultimately I believe the time is right for TPI and for me. I’m grateful for all of you, our advisors, our head office team, our partners, and Morris, for being so passionate and committed to the vision of TPI. When I started at TPI in 2005, I was only supposed to be here on a 1-year contract but fast-forwarding to 2018, it is impossible to look back and feel that I was meant to be anywhere else. I love TPI. These 13 years at TPI have been more than worthwhile because of all of you and I’m excited for what the future holds for TPI. Thank you,” said Morgan.Tim held various positions at TPI over the past 13 years, ranging from interim Marketing Manager to his most recent position as Vice President Sales & Marketing.More news:  Sunwing offers ultimate package deal ahead of YXU flights to SNU, PUJ“I wish to thank Tim for his contribution to the company over the last 13 years,” stated Morris Chia, Founder and President, TPI. “I want to take this opportunity to wish him the very best in the next phase of his professional career.” Friday, March 2, 2018 Tags: People, TPIlast_img read more

United brings in 60 first bag fee with new almost basic economy

first_imgUnited brings in $60 first bag fee with new ‘almost’ basic economy fares to Europe << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by Monday, June 11, 2018 Travelweek Group center_img Tags: Air Canada, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Lufthansa Group, Swiss Airlines, United Airlines TORONTO — United Airlines says its new lowest-priced fares are the first step towards a Basic Economy product on trans-Atlantic United flights. United introduced the new fares in select trans-Atlantic markets on June 5, in line with its Atlantic joint venture partners Air Canada and Lufthansa Group.For passengers travelling between the Canada or the U.S. and select European countries in specific lower Economy booking classes, the new fare option will not include a complimentary first checked baggage allowance, upgrades or the ability to make changes following purchase.Passengers purchasing this fare for travel ticketed and operated on United will be eligible for advance seat assignments, one standard carry-on bag and one personal item, and the same United Economy cabin experience and services, including dining options, WiFi for purchase and inflight entertainment. The first bag fee does not apply to tickets purchased before June 4, 2018.For all Atlantic joint venture carriers, the last 3 characters of the fare basis code will be -LGT, and the fare type code is ERU/EOU. “Agencies are encouraged to speak with their GDS provider for instructions on inhibiting the display of the -LGT fares. Depending on the GDS, the fare type code ERU/EOU may be used to put an inhibit in place,” says United.For point of origin U.S. the fare is planned for booking classes K, L and T. For point of origin E.U. and Canada the fare is planned for booking classes K, L, T, S and W. The fee amount will be US$60 / Can$60 or the equivalent in applicable local currency, per direction. The new fare will be offered across United’s trans-Atlantic joint venture partner airlines: Air Canada (AC), Austrian (OS), Brussels Airlines (SN), Lufthansa (LH) and SWISS (LX). United notes that although each carrier will offer a similar fare, it will be identified as Economy Light for the Lufthansa Group and Basic Economy for Air Canada. Air Canada introduced its Economy Basic fare in February 2018. Sharelast_img read more

Lufthansa Group carried record number of passengers in 2018

first_imgLufthansa Group carried record number of passengers in 2018 Monday, January 14, 2019 Tags: Lufthansa, Lufthansa Group, Statistics FRANKFURT — The Lufthansa Group set a new passenger record in 2018, carrying a total of 142 million passengers on over 1.2 million flights.Its 2018 seat load factor sat at a healthy 81.4%, while its aircraft load factor was higher than ever before, said the Group.The growth drivers for the network airlines were the Zurich hub and the Munich and Vienna hubs, with passenger growth of 9.5%, 9.3% and 8.5%, respectively. The number of passengers at the Frankfurt hub grew by 4.7% in 2018, while Eurowings also contributed to the Lufthansa Group’s new passenger record last year with growth of 18%.In December 2018 alone, the airlines of the Lufthansa Group, which Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian Airlines, Eurowings, Brussels Airlines and SunExpress, welcomed around 10 million passengers onboard their aircraft. This corresponds to an increase of 6.9% over the same month in 2017.Its network airlines – Lufthansa, SWISS and Austrian Airlines – carried a total of some 7.3 million passengers in December, up 5.8% than in the same month in 2017. The number of seat-kilometres offered in December was 9.2% up on the same month in 2017, while the seat load factor fell by 0.1 percentage points to 78.7%.More news:  GLP Worldwide introduces first-ever Wellness programsIn total, the network airlines carried approximately 104 million passengers last year, 7.4% more than in the same period the year before. The seat load factor for network airlines rose by 0.4 percentage points to 81.5% during this period. Travelweek Group center_img Share Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Salvadoran prosecutors seek arrest of expresident Flores

first_imgRelated posts:Court revokes house arrest for former president of El Salvador, orders him to prison pending trial El Salvador ex-President Francisco Flores to stand trial for embezzlement El Salvador graft trial set for ex-President Francisco Flores El Salvador court freezes ex-president’s bank accounts SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador – Prosecutors in El Salvador on Wednesday sought the arrest of former President Francisco Flores for the alleged misappropriation of $5.3 million donated by Taiwan.Attorney General Luis Martínez told broadcaster TCS that Flores, whose whereabouts are unknown, is wanted for embezzlement, illicit enrichment and disobedience.“There was illicit enrichment of about $5.3 million,” Martínez said without specifying when Flores allegedly handled the funds.Documents seeking his arrest have been filed with a court in the capital San Salvador.Martínez said a probe had traced Flores to banks in the U.S. city of Miami, as well as in Costa Rica and the Bahamas.“It was a very difficult case to investigate,” Martínez added, saying the probe was still ongoing.In power between 1999 and 2004, Flores was investigated both by Congress and the Attorney General’s Office in the wake of allegations by President Mauricio Funes that Flores received $10 million in donations from Taiwan without accounting for them.Funes claimed Taipei donated the money to El Salvador in the waning months of Flores’ presidency, between 2003 and 2004.Flores has said he accepted the money but did nothing inappropriate, passing it on through the proper channels. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Tico designer founds furniture company to aid Filipino typhoon victims

first_imgOne family’s debris from a massive tropical storm can become another family’s luxury furniture.It all began with a natural disaster: Bernardo Urbina was standing in a Philippine airport when the earthquake hit. At first he thought the vibration was a plane taking off, but then the walls swooned, and the ceiling began to fall apart. Travelers screamed and scrambled for the exits. When the earthquake quieted, chaos ensued: Passengers had to pass through security checkpoints a second time, and flights were delayed interminably.“It was a tiny airport,” Urbina recalls. “Maybe the size of [Daniel Odubar Airport in] Liberia.”Urbina is an industrial designer who grew up in Costa Rica, and after long stints in the United States and Italy, he has spent about a year in the Philippines. Since arriving there, Urbina has weathered both a severe earthquake and Typhoon Haiyan, the most catastrophic storm in the nation’s history. He spent the night with six friends in an apartment, listening to torrents of rain batter the roof. “There was a lot of wind and rain, but I didn’t experience the hardest part of the storm,” he says. “I compare it to one of the big rains in Costa Rica. But when I went up north, I saw that everything was destroyed.”The problem with hurricane damage is twofold: First, the storm razes buildings, and residents lose their shelter, belongings and capital. Second, mountains of debris have to be cleared in order to rebuild. Haiyan was particularly extreme: The storm killed more than 6,000 people, entire cities were leveled, and the BBC declared certain regions a “war zone.”But the devastation also reminded Urbain of an idea he once had. For years, when Urbina would briefly return to Costa Rica, he would see rubbish in the streets, much of it raw material that could be reused. “I always wanted to make furniture out of the scrap wood that’s just lying there,” he says. After Haiyan, Urbina visited Tacloban, a Philippine city that had been largely leveled in the storm. He saw an opportunity – not only to recycle the rubble, but to help earn money for the typhoon’s victims.“I saw this debris again, just lying there, near all these families that were trying to rebuild their shops,” Urbina says. “I put one and one together. But I don’t want to buy wood that they would use, just wood that they would consider trash.”The result is Tacloban Prevails, Urbina’s new furniture company. Instead of mass-producing tables and chairs, Tacloban Prevails manufactures one-of-a-kind pieces out of debris, and a percentage of the profits go back to the family that supplied the scrap.Urbina studied industrial design in the United States and then worked for several years in Milan, Italy. His aesthetic sensibility is clearly modernist: Urbina prefers the square angles and streamlined design that have made iMacs and Ikea furniture so popular around the world.Yet Urbina’s life still seems informed by Tico values. When Filipino friends living in Italy said they had to return to their home country, they invited Urbina to join them, and he decided to make the move. He wanted to escape the manic pace of enormous “design cities” Milan and New York City. Although it was never Urbina’s plan to get stuck in a hurricane or typhoon, Tacloban Prevails has given him the chance to help a desperate community, open his own business and experiment with new designs. Each piece combines natural-looking woods with glass or metal, an interaction between organic and industrial materials that has become popular among high-end furniture collectors.Originally Urbina hoped to build the actual furniture close to the hurricane damage, thereby employing storm victims, but logistics made that plan too difficult. “[The area] is still really affected by the typhoon,” he says. “There’s no electricity, and the machines aren’t there yet.” Instead, he must outsource labor to a company globally recognized for building furniture. Through the company’s website, the furniture will soon be available for purchase almost anywhere in the world.For now, the Philippines have given Urbina a strong sense of belonging and purpose.“It’s a little bit like Costa Rica, in the sense that there is Spanish cultural influence,” he says. “The layout of the cities, the cars and everything, are really similar. People are really foreigner-friendly here. Life is really simple. I like it. For me right now, it’s better.” Facebook Comments Related posts:Canadian entrepreneur gives water bottles new life as roof tiles In Bolivia, silver mountain at risk of collapse Save the beer: Climate change adds urgency to clean-water advocate’s rallying cry Scandal-hit VW to cut investments by €1 billion, says CEOlast_img read more

The manatee will become Costa Ricas national marine symbol following final vote

first_imgSee the full story of the manatee bill’s journey hereIn a unanimous vote Tuesday, Costa Rica’s Legislative Assembly passed a bill naming the manatee as the country’s national marine symbol. The sea cow — as the creature is also known — will be Costa Rica’s first-ever marine symbol and also the first national symbol for the province of Limón.The bill was introduced in 2011 by two children from the Barrio Limoncito School in Limón, Aldeir Cortés and Fabiola Salas, now 12- and 13-years-old. The students and their teacher, Yvette Ibarra, fought for the bill for years before it finally made it through a first vote in the Legislative Assembly last week.“I feel really proud,” Cortés told The Tico Times. “It has been a lot of time and a lot of work.” Salas added, “Now the children of Costa Rica can see that their dreams can become realities.” Facebook Comments Related posts:The plight of the Costa Rican manatee Lawmakers give nod to Costa Rica’s manatee with proposal to name it a national marine mammal Actor Leonardo DiCaprio talks about illegal fishing in Costa Rica’s Cocos Island 7 alleged poachers to stand trial Monday for Costa Rica conservationist’s murderlast_img read more

Brazil may have fewer Zikarelated microcephaly cases than previously reported

first_imgBrazil is enduring an extraordinary outbreak of microcephaly, a rare birth defect that results in infants being born with abnormally small heads and brains. Since last fall, more than 4,000 suspected cases have been reported, and authorities have blamed an unusual virus, Zika, carried by mosquitos.But now it appears that a number of those cases may not in fact be microcephaly, or not linked to Zika.On Wednesday, Brazil’s Ministry of Health said 4,180 cases of Zika-related microcephaly had been reported since October. The country is trying to find out which cases it could actually confirm from notifications provided by doctors – a slow and complicated process as the information is compiled and checked by health secretariats in 26 states and one federal district spread across South America’s biggest country.After experts scrutinized 732 of the cases they found that more than half either weren’t microcephaly, or weren’t related to Zika.Just 270 were confirmed as microcephaly that appears to be linked to Zika or other infectious diseases, according to the latest ministry bulletin.It’s not yet clear whether the same pattern will emerge from the rest of the 3,448 cases that Brazil has to examine. And health experts say the huge number of cases is still very worrisome — as is the rapid spread of Zika through the Americas. (Brazil reported just 147 cases of microcephaly in 2014).Microcephaly causes babies to be born with abnormally small heads, and can cause motor and learning difficulties, among other problems. The condition can also be caused by genetic factors or drug or alcohol abuse during pregnancy.Some scientists said the new data suggest that Brazil will have fewer cases of Zika-related microcephaly than originally feared. The country may have over-counted microcephaly cases because it initially asked doctors to report all births of babies with a head circumference of 33 centimeters or less — but some of those were simply children with normally small heads.“It is possible that the number of cases of microcephaly with suspected relationship to Zika will be much less,” said Esper Kallas, an infectious diseases specialist and professor of medicine at the University of São Paulo. “I think it will be less than a third” of the possible cases that have been reported, he said.Kallas also said the outbreak had made Brazil realize that microcephaly unrelated to Zika was more common than authorities realized in the past.Other specialists, though, were wary of the new data, questioning the methodology that was being used. They noted that authorities in one of the badly affected areas, the northeastern state of Bahia, have used relatively cheaper transcranial ultrasound imaging — rather than CT brain imaging scans — to try to confirm and discard cases of microcephaly.The more inexpensive test might not spot milder cases of the condition, said Ganeshwaran Mochida, a pediatric neurologist and researcher at Boston Children’s Hospital. “There could be some cases mistakenly discarded due to not enough sensitivity,” he said.Zika was first confirmed in Brazil in May last year, and has spread rapidly in the hemisphere, reaching 23 countries and territories. Its explosive growth has alarmed health professionals who worry about the suspected linkage to microcephaly and a rare nervous system syndrome known as Guillain-Barré that can lead to paralysis.The World Health Organization has convened an emergency meeting to explore ways of stopping the transmission of Zika for Monday.“The level of alarm is extremely high, as is the level of uncertainty,” Margaret Chan, the director-general of the World Health Organization, told a briefing of member countries on Thursday in Geneva.In October, when the Brazilian government began requiring doctors to report suspected cases, they were instructed to notify the Health Ministry if the circumference of a newborn baby’s head was 33 centimeters (about 13 inches) or less.In December, the ministry reduced the figure to 32 centimeters (12.6 inches) or less, roughly in line with World Health Organization guidelines. The ministry said some babies with the larger measurement were later found to be healthy, although a ministry spokeswoman said she did not have exact figures on how many.Something else?Some officials at the state level say they also believe that many of the cases of possible Zika-linked microcephaly will also be found to be something else.In northeastern Pernambuco state, one of the areas hardest-hit by the health crisis, authorities estimate that less than half of the 1,373 reported suspect cases are likely to be microcephaly linked to Zika. Some children just have small heads, others could have microcephaly caused by genetic factors, or alcohol or drug abuse by the mother during pregnancy — cases which do not show the same type of brain malformation.So far, the state has investigated 248 cases, using CT brain imaging scans. A total of 138 cases were confirmed as probable Zika-related microcephaly, and 110 were discarded, local authorities said.“There are many normal children who were included [in the original count]. This generates a lot of anguish for the families, for the general population,” said Vanessa van der Linden, a pediatric neurologist in Recife. Van der Linden was the first doctor to identify the microcephaly outbreak in Brazil.Mochida from Boston Children’s Hospital said that using standard U.S. growth charts, the 33-centimeter guide would put 10 percent of U.S. newborns in the category of suspected microcephaly – clearly way too high a percentage.Authorities in Bahia state have so far confirmed 35 of the reported cases of Zika-related microcephaly, and discarded 27. The state still has 533 other suspected cases of zika-related microcephaly that it will investigate, officials said.While some of the suspected cases of Zika-related microcephaly have been discounted, scientists and health officials are hardly breathing easy.There is some preliminary evidence that even babies born in Brazil with normal-sized heads may have developmental defects, according to Albert Ko, an infectious disease doctor and chair of the Department of Epidemiology of Microbial Diseases at the Yale School of Public Health. Ko has been working with colleagues at maternity hospitals in Salvador, Brazil’s third largest city and one of the places where the epidemic is most pronounced, to study what is causing the birth defects in newborns.Ko cautioned that the evidence so far is “extremely anecdotal.” But it is worrisome, he said, because clinicians are finding neurological lesions and smaller brains even in babies who look normal.Clinicians started identifying larger than expected numbers of fetuses with birth defects during ultrasound screenings in July, August and September, he said. Some of the babies were born with intracranial lesions that may be due to infection with Zika virus.Researchers in Brazil are working with the Brazilian health ministry to pin down answers, he said.© 2016, The Washington Post Facebook Comments Related posts:Zika research to be published rapidly and free World Bank: Zika will cost Latin America $3.5 billion in 2016 Obama seeks $1.9 billion to combat spread of Zika virus Commenting on Zika virus, Pope Francis calls abortion ‘a human evil’last_img read more

San José cracks down on street vendors

first_imgRelated posts:Private sector confidence remains lukewarm Administrative Court bans dry law during holidays Airbnb agrees to collect sales tax from hosts in Costa Rica Consumer optimism remains low in Costa Rica Costa Rica’s capital San José launched a special operation this week aimed at removing street vendors from pedestrian walkways.Municipal Police Chief Marcelo Solano said that on Monday 100 officers began patrolling a six-square-kilometer area in the capital’s downtown. Backed by city laws that penalize the obstruction of public spaces, cops have been confiscating goods sold on sidewalks, streets and boulevards, Solano said.The police chief said he is following orders from the new city council, whose members took office on Sunday. The city’s new leadership has pledged to make public security and order in downtown San José a priority.In recent years, downtown streets have become increasingly clogged by street vendors, who seem to grow steadily in number.Sidewalks, plazas and other public spaces are often lined — and in some cases blocked — by displays of fruits and vegetables, plants, clothes, toys, mobile phone accessories, trinkets and, perhaps most commonly, pirated DVDs and CDs.Despite the plethora of stuff for sale on the street, only vendors at city-sanctioned kiosks are legally allowed to sell their products in public spaces.Solano said the clean-up effort was full-on. “We’re not issuing warnings or asking vendors to clear out. We’re confiscating all merchandise obstructing passage for pedestrians and motorists,” Solano said.Eliécer Morales, who has worked as a salesman at a store near Banco Central for 27 years, said business owners are very pleased with the police operations and that the results are evident.“The sidewalks and streets look much cleaner,” he said. “They [street vendors] usually block entrances to our stores and block the view of our display windows.“Plus, they’re very loud and some are rude,” he said. A stretch of the Central Avenue boulevard on May 4 appears empty of street vendors. L. Arias/The Tico TimesWhat happens to the merchandise?The municipality’s environmental services department is responsible for handling all confiscated merchandise. Some of the goods are destroyed while others are kept under court custody, depending on the circumstances.Perishable products, such as snacks, beverages, fruits and plants, are destroyed for sanitary reasons.Clothing, shoes, handbags, jewelry, umbrellas, toys and similar items are kept in custody and vendors can recover them after paying a fine ranging from ₡5,000-₡50,000 (some $9-$92).Illegal items, such as pirated DVDs or CDs, and counterfeit clothing, shoes and bags, are kept in custody for a limited time as evidence in case copyright owners make a legal claim. If they don’t, those products are also destroyed.Solano said legal claims on pirated goods are rare. “On various occasions we have contacted local representatives of recording studios and film distributors to see if they were interested in filing a legal complaint for copyright violation, but they usually prefer not to invest in the expense and time required to go through a legal process,” Solano said.Vendors: ‘We’re not going anywhere’Street vendors maintain an informal alarm system, shouting out to others when Municipal Police are near so that they can quickly pack up their goods and flee.Vendors who display their wares on sheets or tarps, known as “manteros,” are especially adept at evading the police. But many eventually get caught.Between 6 a.m. and 9 p.m. on Monday, Municipal Police officers seized merchandise from 141 vendors, Chief Solano said. Most of the confiscations occurred along the Central Avenue pedestrian boulevard and on surrounding streets.A woman, who would only identify herself as Lorena, said she has made a living by selling kitchen towels and socks in public places for the past seven years. She said she spent a full year sending job applications to numerous companies and didn’t get a single response.Lorena doesn’t have a permanent spot; She walks along Central Avenue carrying her products in a duffel bag. She said she would not leave the street, and that she’ll just keep dodging officers.“I know we’re doing something wrong, but this is my only source of income, my only way to survive,” she said.Marlon Guerrero has been a mantero selling wallets and purses in front of the Central Bank for eight years. He said he wasn’t worried about recent police operations.“I’m used to this,” he said. “It happens from time to time. There’s nothing I can do but keep offering my stuff here because I have to bring food home every day,” he said.Guerrero said other vendors, mostly recent arrivals, have confronted the police violently. He said there has been talk of staging a public protest in the near future.If there is one, Guerrero said he wouldn’t participate. “I can’t afford to waste my time,” he said. “I need to sell my products to earn my daily bread.” A few manteros and other street vendors are still selling their goods in front of the Central Bank. L. Arias/The Tico TimesNo truceOn Tuesday morning, the Central Avenue boulevard looked mostly clear of vendors. But they could be seen walking along the street, carrying merchandise, alert to signals from their peers.A few manteros were displaying their products near the Plaza de la Cultura and around the Mercado Central.Police Chief Solano said Tuesday that officers had only had a few incidents with street vendors who refused to give up their products. “But our officials managed to resolve all incidents promptly and according to the law,” he said.Municipal Police will continue patrolling and confiscating merchandise for as long as necessary, he said. “Our goal is to keep all public spaces free for pedestrians and for vehicles on some of our narrow streets,” he said.The police chief stressed that the city would not issue any new permits or offer any grace period for illegal vendors. “There will not be any negotiations on this issue,” he said.The municipality has built five markets in recent years and helped street vendors move into them, Solano said. However, most of the vendors have returned to the streets.Solano said the city council had authorized the hiring of 30 new police officers, who will soon join the effort to rid the capital of informal street vendors. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Waiting for the perfect wave

first_imgAs we’ve observed, Costa Rican government leadersare busy today, but many others are taking advantage of the holiday to get out and about. If you’re lucky enough to be in the latter group, you can’t get much better than a scene like this one at Carrillo Beach on Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula. Beautiful sunset. Beautiful waves. Beautiful nature.Now that’s pura vida.Would you like to submit a photo to our #TTPicOfTheDay series – the view from your home or favorite Costa Rican spot, or any other image you care to share? Please send horizontal photos at least 1100 pixels wide to elang@ticotimes.net. We’d love to see the sights with you. Facebook Comments Related posts:When you shop in Costa Rica, take a friend Recreating the last moments of a Costa Rican president All together, boys A helping hand in La Cruz, Guanacastelast_img read more

El Salvador wont extradite 1989 slaying suspects

first_img New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Five of the priests slain were Spanish and the sixth was Salvadoran.Supreme Court magistrate Ulises de Dios Guzman did not cite the reasons for the ruling late Tuesday.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family Top Stories Comments   Share   center_img Top holiday drink recipes Sponsored Stories SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (AP) – El Salvador’s government says it will not grant Spain’s request to extradite 13 former military officers indicted in the 1989 slayings of six Jesuit priests and two other people.The country’s Supreme Court says nine of its 15 magistrates have ruled against the Spanish request to try a total of 15 former officers for the killings during the Central American country’s 1980-1992 civil war. While most of the 15 defendants are still in El Salvador, two now live in the United States. 4 sleep positions for men and what they mean Four benefits of having a wireless security systemlast_img read more

14 dead 5 missing from heavy rains in China

first_img More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Top Stories Comments   Share   BEIJING (AP) – Heavy rains that ravaged China over the weekend left at least 14 people dead and five missing, while hundreds of others were trapped by mudslides and floods, state media said Monday.The official Xinhua News Agency said five were killed and one was missing in central China’s Hubei province, where rainstorms and mudslides destroyed 512 houses and forced more than 180,000 residents from their homes. The rain was triggered by Typhoon Saola. 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debatescenter_img In northeast China’s Liaoning province, Typhoon Damrey killed nine people and left four missing, Xinhua said.Flooding from heavy rain also trapped about 400 workers in a railway tunnel in the province, the state-run China Daily newspaper reported.In southwest China, rescue workers searched Monday for more than 100 people trapped by a mudslide.Xinhua said the mudslide engulfed a village in Yunnan province on Monday morning, initially trapping at least 200 people. It said firefighters rescued more than 80 people by noon.Mudslides and flooding are common in China’s mountainous areas, killing hundreds of people every year. Deforestation has caused soil erosion and made some parts of China prone to mudslides after strong rains.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Sponsored Stories How men can have a healthy 2019 5 ways to recognize low testosteronelast_img read more

Jamaica lawmaker steps aside from shadow post

first_img Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Sponsored Stories He says he had no “ill intent” when he went to a police station and spoke to commanders about dropping a case against Bruce Bicknell. An officer believed Bicknell had tried to bribe him to get out of a ticket.Vaz denies any wrongdoing and will continue to serve as a Parliament member.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project 0 Comments   Share   center_img How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generation Top Stories KINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) – A Jamaican opposition lawmaker charged with perverting the course of justice is stepping aside from a party post.Jamaica Labor Party legislator Daryl Vaz announced Wednesday that he is taking a leave of absence as the opposition’s chief spokesman on information and communications technology issues. He says he wants to minimize any impact on the party.Vaz is accused of breaching an anti-corruption law while intervening in a traffic violation involving a businessman friend. Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to helplast_img read more

Swiss canyoneering accident leaves 2 dead

first_img Top Stories Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day The difference between men and women when it comes to pain GENEVA (AP) – Swiss police say two people are dead after a canyoneering group was caught out by a sudden flood in an Alpine stream.Police in the northeastern canton (state) of St. Gallen say rescue services were able to evacuate five members of the group after the water level in the Fallenbach stream rose suddenly and unexpectedly on Sunday afternoon. Three were taken to a hospital with light injuries.But they said Monday that the bodies of the group’s 24-year-old Belgian guide and a 23-year-old German woman were found several hours later. 0 Comments   Share   Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Canyoneering involves jumping, sliding and rappelling into rivers and swimming downstream without a raft.In 1999, 18 tourists and three guides drowned when they were swept away by a muddy wall of water in a brook in central Switzerland.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)center_img Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Early signs of cataracts in your parents and how to help Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milklast_img read more

Israel shoots down drone Hezbollah suspected

first_img New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t like 4 sleep positions for men and what they mean Sponsored Stories JERUSALEM (AP) – Israel shot down a drone Thursday as it approached its northern coast from neighboring Lebanon, raising suspicions that the Hezbollah militant group was behind the infiltration attempt.Hezbollah denied involvement, but the incident was likely to heighten Israeli concerns that the Shiite militant group is trying to take advantage of the unrest in neighboring Syria to strengthen its capabilities. Comments   Share   Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Top Stories Israel’s military has also stepped up its air surveillance over Lebanon. On Thursday morning, Israeli warplanes flew over the Christian town of Jezzine and the highlands of the Iqlim al-Tuffah province, a Hezbollah stronghold in southern Lebanon, the country’s state-run National News Agency reported.The Lebanese army also reported Israeli jets violated Lebanese airspace on Tuesday and Wednesday.Some analysts said Hezbollah might be trying to divert attention from its involvement in the increasingly sectarian Syrian civil war. The Shiite militants have openly sided with the regime of Bashar Assad in its battle against mostly Sunni rebels.Jonathan Spyer, senior research fellow at the Herzliya Interdisciplinary Center near Tel Aviv, said Hezbollah was facing discontent among its Shiite base in Lebanon, and more broadly among other Arabs for its participation in the Syrian conflict.He said the group was likely trying to show that its real enemy was the Jewish state, in an effort to shore up support.Spyer said sending a drone appeared to be a “fairly calibrated provocation,” intended to be low key enough not to provoke an Israeli military response in Lebanon. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was in a helicopter in northern Israel at the time of the incident, said he viewed it with “utmost gravity.”Israeli military spokesman Lt. Col. Peter Lerner said the unmanned aircraft was detected as it was flying over Lebanon and tracked as it approached Israeli airspace.He said the military waited for the aircraft to enter Israeli airspace, confirmed it was “enemy,” and then an F-16 warplane shot it down, smashing its wreckage into the sea about five miles (eight kilometers) off the northern port of Haifa. Lerner said Israeli naval forces were searching for the remains of the aircraft.He said it still was not clear who sent the drone, noting it flew over Lebanese airspace, but that it could have originated from somewhere else.Other military officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not permitted to talk to the media, said they believed it was an Iranian-manufactured aircraft sent by Hezbollah. The Lebanese group sent a drone into Israeli airspace last October that Israel also shot down.Officials said Netanyahu was informed of the unfolding incident as he was flying north for a cultural event with members of the country’s Druse minority. They said his helicopter briefly landed while the drone was intercepted then continued on its way. Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix “I wouldn’t be surprised if we see more of these kinds of incidents in the weeks and months ahead,” he said.___Associated Press writers Zeina Karam in Beirut and Josef Federman in Jerusalem contributed to this report.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) “On my way here in the helicopter, I was told that there is an infiltration attempt of a drone inside the skies of Israel,” Netanyahu said in the northern Arab-Israeli town of Daliyat al-Karmel. “We will continue to do everything necessary to safeguard the security of Israel’s citizens.”Despite the denial, the incident was likely to raise already heightened tensions between Israel and Hezbollah, a bitter enemy that battled Israel to a stalemate during a monthlong war in 2006.A senior Lebanese security official, who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with regulations, said Lebanon had no information on Thursday’s incident.When Israeli military shot down a Hezbollah drone on Oct. 6, it took days for Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah to confirm it. He warned in a speech that it wouldn’t be the last operation by the group. He said the sophisticated aircraft was made in Iran and assembled by Hezbollah.Netanyahu repeatedly has warned that Hezbollah might try to take advantage of the instability in neighboring Syria, a key Hezbollah ally, to obtain what he calls game-changing weapons.Israel has all but confirmed that it carried out an airstrike in Syria earlier this year that destroyed a shipment of sophisticated anti-aircraft missiles bound for Hezbollah. Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion projectlast_img read more

Kenyan court acquits UK terror suspect of robbery

first_imgNAIROBI, Kenya (AP) – A Kenyan court has acquitted a British man of robbery charges stemming from a 2008 attack on a police post that allowed him to escape from police custody.Magistrate Kiarie Waweru Kiarie said Friday the prosecution had failed to prove Jermaine Grant _who also faces terror charges_ had been involved in an assault on a police post near the eastern town of Garissa.Grant managed to flee during that attack, after being arrested by police who said he was on his way to Somalia to join the rebel group al-Shabab. He was re-arrested in 2011 in the coastal town of Mombasa and is now serving a three-year jail term for immigration offenses and lying to a government official. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober 4 must play golf courses in Arizona Police say he is part of a cell that planned to attack Kenya in late 2011.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Comments   Share   Top Stories Four benefits of having a wireless security systemcenter_img How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generation Sponsored Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementlast_img read more

China Birth limits still needed despite easing

first_img 5 things to look for when selecting an ophthalmologist BEIJING (AP) – China has no intention of abandoning family planning controls soon despite announcing it would ease the one-child policy, a government spokesman said Tuesday, adding that the policy could be loosened further in the future.Keeping China’s birth rates low remains a long-term priority for the country’s development, National Health and Family Planning Commission Spokesman Mao Qunan told foreign reporters during a briefing in Beijing. Asked if or when China would do away with family planning controls altogether, Mao said the policy would continue to be “adjusted and improved” but “as to when every family might be able to totally return to a natural state, I cannot predict this.”Mao says he expected the central government to continue to tinker with family planning controls according to population changes and public demands.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Top Stories New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t like Comments   Share   Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Sponsored Stories “Family planning work, not just in the past, but even now with the adjustment of the policy, family planning is a national policy for China,” Mao said. “The control of population and keeping a low fertility rate is a long term mission.”The Communist Party announced Friday that it would allow couples to have two children if one of the parents is a single child. Previously, both parents had to be an only child to qualify for this exemption. Rural couples also are allowed two children if their first-born child is a girl.The spokesman said each province will roll out the new exception in its own timeframe depending on its own conditions. Experts estimate around 1 million extra births per year would occur in the first few years, on top of the 16 million babies born annually in China.The government credits the one-child policy with preventing hundreds of millions of births and helping lift countless families out of poverty by easing the strain on the country’s limited resources.But the abrupt fall in the birth rate is pushing up average age of the population of 1.3 billion people and demographers foresee a looming crisis because the policy reduced the young labor pool that must support the large baby boom generation as it retires. ErrorOKFree Rate QuoteCall now 623-875-9940 ErrorOK Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Daylast_img read more

Japans ruling coalition agrees on bills to boost military

first_img TOKYO (AP) — Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is moving ahead this week with legislation that would boost the military’s international role, in a significant shift of the country’s pacifist policies.His ruling coalition reached formal agreement Monday on a package of bills that would loosen restrictions imposed on the military by the U.S. occupation after World War II. They would allow Japan to contribute more to the U.S.-Japan alliance, as the countries agreed to in revised security guidelines signed last month. Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of The proposals are expected to be approved by the Cabinet later this week for submission to parliament. The legislation is considered likely to pass this summer, given the comfortable majority held by Abe’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party and its junior coalition partner, Komeito.“Finally, we’ve come this far,” Masahiko Komura, head of the national security legislation panel, said after representatives from the ruling coalition parties unanimously endorsed the legislation package. “We plan to fully discuss (the bills) at parliament in order to deepen understanding by the public.”The changes would remove geographic restrictions on where the military can operate, and under certain conditions allow it to defend allies for the first time since World War II. They would also make it easier for Japan to provide logistical support for other militaries and to participate in international peacekeeping operations.“This marks a turning point in which Japan moves away from traditional isolationism where Japan doesn’t contribute too much to international security to a more cooperative, proactive internationalism,” said security analyst Narushige Michishita of the National Graduate Institute for Policy Studies in Tokyo. Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Comments   Share   Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona Sponsored Stories center_img Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement FILE – In this March 22, 2014 file photo, students of the National Defense Academy march in a military parade to celebrate their senior students’ graduation in Yokosuka, near Tokyo. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is moving ahead this week with legislation that would boost the military’s international role in a significant shift of its pacifist policies. His ruling coalition is set to reach formal agreement Monday, May 11, 2015 on a package of bills that would loosen restrictions imposed on the military by the U.S. occupation after World War II. (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara, File) Top Stories He said the legislation would open the way for Japan to work more closely with not only the United States, but also others in Asia such as Australia, India and Southeast Asian partners, as they cope with China’s military rise.The package of legislation includes a new permanent bill designed to allow Japan’s Self-Defense Forces to provide logistical support for foreign militaries in international peacekeeping activity.Japan’s pacifist constitution limits the military, officially called the Self-Defense Forces, to defense of the country. Abe’s Cabinet approved a contentious reinterpretation of the constitution last July that expands what is allowed under self-defense.The legislation places conditions on when the military can do more internationally, but an opposition lawmaker called the conditions too vague. Yukihisa Fujita, director-general of the international department of the Democratic Party of Japan, also said that U.S.-Japan cooperation should be limited to the Far East.“The bills go beyond the constitution and the U.S.-Japan security pact,” he said.___Associated Press writer Ken Moritsugu contributed to this report.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Centerlast_img read more

Israeli minister summons former diplomat over Obama critique

first_img Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Top Stories Sponsored Stories Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Kahlon said Oren’s comments reflected his personal views only, and praised Obama for supporting Israel.Oren said Obama abandoned longstanding principles of U.S.-Israel relations by openly disagreeing with Israel and not coordinating with it over changes to Mideast policies.U.S. State Department spokesman John Kirby called Oren’s account “absolutely inaccurate.”Traditionally strong U.S.-Israeli ties have been strained under Obama and Netanyahu, who are divided over nuclear talks with Iran and peace efforts with the Palestinians.“Michael Oren is not a member of the government. His recent article in the Wall Street journal reflects his own views,” a senior official in the Israeli prime minister’s office said anonymously according to protocol.“Netanyahu has consistently expressed his appreciation…for all that President Obama has done for Israel’s security.”Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. 4 ways to protect your company from cyber breaches JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel’s finance minister distanced himself on Thursday from claims by the country’s former ambassador to the U.S., a member of his party, that President Barack Obama is purposely damaging bilateral relations.Moshe Kahlon said in a letter to America’s ambassador to Israel that he “summoned” Michael Oren, now a lawmaker in his Kulanu party, to his office after learning that Oren had expressed his views in an op-ed this week in the Wall Street Journal. The Associated Press on Thursday received a copy of the letter. Comments   Share   last_img read more

Red letter night for TSAX award winners

first_imgRising Star of the Year Award winner Emma Jones from Travelscene Mount Martha Travelscene American Express (TSAX) members painted Cairns red last night at their National Consultants Conference (NCC) Star Awards Dinner, honouring Emma Jones as Rising Star of the Year, and Amy Donald, Consultant of the Year.Amid cheers from an enthusiastic and supportive crowd who were dressed to the nines in the ‘touch of red’ theme, Emma Jones from Travelscene Mount Martha and Amy Donald from Lifestyle Travel Ballarat took the stage at the Cairns Convention Centre to accept their coveted awards. Travelscene American Express General Manager Jacqui Timmins said the Awards were an important opportunity for the network to credit its success to its members and their frontline consultants.“By celebrating the success of consultants’ contribution to our members’ businesses and our network overall, we are recognising the critical role that passionate and committed professionals play in converting inquiries into repeat business,” Ms Timmins said. “It’s the work of individuals like Emma and Amy that keep clients coming back to our Members time and time again.”The State Quantum Consultant Award winners were also announced in recognition of their support of the preferred partner reward program:Travelscene at South West Travel, NSWPulse Travel, QLD/Nthn NSWTravelcentre Bendigo, Vic/TasPhil Hoffmann Travel – Glenelg, SAThe Travel Emporium, WA Consultant of the Year Award winner Amy Donald from Lifestyle Travel Ballarat Jacqui Timmins with this year’s winnerscenter_img Check out pictures from the night here. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: G.Alast_img read more