August, 2019

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WestJet put a London phone booth in the middle of Calgary and

first_imgTags: London, WestJet, Winners << Previous PostNext Post >> Tuesday, May 7, 2019 WestJet put a London phone booth in the middle of Calgary and here’s what happened next Sharecenter_img CALGARY — A word of advice from WestJet: when London calls, you always answer.Wise words coming from the airline, which just launched a new video to highlight its 787-9 Dreamliner service between Calgary and London. And in true WestJet fashion this latest video – titled #LondonCalling – includes all the feels, from heartwarming tears to ear-to-ear grins.Here’s the set up: a phone booth painted in WestJet teal was positioned to ring throughout the day in downtown Calgary in hopes of enticing curious passersby to answer the call. Of the thousands who walked by, only 10 actually picked up the phone and answered.Their curiosity paid off – in a big way. On the other end of the line was an unidentified voice that told them that they had just won two roundtrip tickets from Calgary to London with WestJet!“London is an incredible destination for our guests and with our new non-stop Dreamliner service between Calgary and London, Gatwick there’s never been a more comfortable way to get there,” said Richard Bartrem, WestJet Vice-President Marketing Communications. “We thought there was no better approach to entice guests to visit Britain than by testing out Calgarians’ curiosity for adventure through the unusual ringing of an iconic London phone booth in our own downtown core.”More news:  Beep, beep! Transat hits the streets with Cubamania truckThe phone booth in question is authentic and was shipped from the United Kingdom prior to being painted teal. It weighs over 1,500 pounds and was transferred throughout the day on April 23 to locations on Stephen Avenue and Eau Claire in downtown Calgary.WestJet currently offers daily flights between Calgary and London, Gatwick. Its new Dreamliner carries 320 guests in a three-class cabin configuration, including the airline’s newly revealed Business cabin featuring 16 private pods with lie-flat seats, an upscale Premium cabin and an updated Economy cabin.By June 2019, WestJet will offer flights to 68 nonstop destinations with over 1,000 flights per week from YYC. Posted by Travelweek Group last_img read more

Chavez wins another sixyear term in Venezuela

first_imgCARACAS – Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez shrugged off cancer and a unified opposition on Sunday to triumph yet again at the ballot box and win another six-year mandate to pursue his oil-funded socialist revolution.His rival, 40-year-old Miranda state governor Henrique Capriles, was gracious in defeat, saying, “I accept and respect the decision of the people,” but it was a bitter pill for the opposition and many in the divided country to swallow.Fireworks erupted across Caracas as “Chavistas” celebrated in front of the presidential palace after near-complete official results showed Chavez winning 54.42 percent of votes compared to 44.97 percent for Capriles.“Thank you my dear people!!! Viva Venezuela!!!” Chavez, in power for almost 14 years, wrote on Twitter after the National Electoral Council announced the score. “Thank you God! Thank you to all of you!”The result after a massive 80.94 percent turnout showed a far tougher contest than Chavez has endured so far to his 14-year tenure. He won the 2006 election with 62 percent of the vote and by a margin of 25 points.With 90 percent of ballots counted, Chavez won 7,444,082 votes, compared to 6,151,554 for Capriles — highlighting the deep divisions in the oil-rich South American nation.Chavez had held a 10-point lead in the latest opinion poll before Sunday’s vote, but other surveys had indicated a statistical dead heat.Hundreds of Chavez supporters assembled before the announcement in front of the Miraflores presidential palace, setting off firecrackers, honking horns and holding signs as his campaign song blared.Election experts said the electronic voting system was reliable, but suspicions ran high that whoever lost would not concede defeat.“To know how to win, you have to know how to lose,” Capriles said at this campaign headquarters, putting those fears to rest. “For me, what the people say is sacred.”“I am a democrat, through and through,” the 40-year-old former state governor said, wearing a jacket in Venezuela’s colors.The fate of Chavez, a fierce US critic and the leading voice of Latin America’s left, was closely watched by communist ally Cuba, which heavily depends on Venezuela’s oil, and other regional partners.“Viva Venezuela, viva the great fatherland, viva the Bolivarian Revolution!” leftist Ecuadoran President Rafael Correa tweeted. Congratulations came from Argentine President Cristina Kirchner too.In Costa Rica, at least 1,000 Venezuelans voted in the presidential race, according to the daily La Nación. Lines to vote at polling stations began to form at 5 a.m.In addition Costa Rican Chávez supporters clashed with police outside the Venezuela embassy in San José. Some 20 Chavistas were confronted by police after using loudspeakers and putting up banners without receiving permissions from the municipality. Police confiscated the equipment after receiving noise complaints from neighbors.But in Washington, the head of the House Foreign Relations Committee, Republican lawmaker Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, accused Chavez of manipulating the result.“Chavez has denied access to international election monitors, employed last minute ballot changes, controlled the judicial system, harassed independent journalists, and consolidated his power to manipulate the vote in his favor,” she alleged.“Chavez must not be allowed to continue to export his hate and despotism abroad like his fellow dictators in Iran and Cuba through the oppression of the press and violation of human rights,” said Ros-Lehtinen.With the polarized nation bracing for the results amid an atmosphere of widespread distrust, Chavez and his rival had both appealed for calm as some booths remained open well after the scheduled closing hour.Capriles had surged in opinion polls during the campaign as he attracted huge rallies with promises to curb runaway crime and unite the polarized South American country.Weakened by a bout with cancer, the 58-year-old Chavez stepped up campaigning in the last week of the race, warning that Capriles would undo his popular social “missions” for the poor.Sitting on the world’s biggest proven crude oil deposits, Chavez has used petro-dollars to build a network of regional allies and secure the loyalty of poor Venezuelans dependent on the generosity of his social programs.Voters began standing in line early after Chavez supporters played military-style bugles before dawn to roust loyalists of the president.As he arrived to vote in the 23 de Enero slum, one of his Caracas bastions, Chavez was greeted by an adoring crowd with chants of “ooh, ahh, Chavez won’t go!”The opposition had accused Chavez of misusing public funds for his campaign and dominating the airwaves while forcing government workers to attend rallies through intimidation.Capriles has hammered Chavez over the country’s regular power outages, food shortages and runaway murder rate, which has risen to 50 homicides per 100,000 inhabitants. Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

Tamarindo New notable and nottobemissed

first_imgIf you’re heading to Tamarindo this Semana Santa or waiting till the crowds have left, here’s a brief look at some of the best new, interesting and ongoing hotels and restaurants to check out.Hotel PasatiempoAfter many years lying dormant, Hotel Pasatiempo is back in business. The logo with the laid-back guy swinging in a hammock says it all. This is a relaxed, comfortable 21-room hotel, right in Tamarindo, but set in a green oasis with a pretty pool and a great new restaurant (see Ttiki below). Stylish, bright cabins – a mix of doubles and deluxe rooms and suites for families – have screens, fans and a/c, hot water showers and orthopedic mattresses. The Pasatiempo tradition of open mike night, on Wednesdays, has happily been revived. Rates include continental breakfast with eggs, starting at $89, double, including tax. Just past the turnoff for the road to Playa Langosta. 2653-0096.15 Love Contemporary B&BIf you’re a tennis buff, you can volley till you drop – into a comfortable, king-size bed at this chic B&B with three stylish rooms and one suite overlooking the two tennis courts of the Tamarindo Tennis Club. Guests have free access to the courts and member prices for private lessons with the club pro. After tennis, you can cool off in a small pool and sip a fresh-squeezed juice from the Juice Bar. Rooms, mostly occupied by non-tennis players who appreciate the contemporary design here, have a/c, ceiling fans, cable TV, Wi-Fi and a hairdryer. A full breakfast is included in the rate, around $95 in high season (plus tax). It’s one block behind Main Street, 200 meters before the Jardín del Eden Hotel., 2653-0898.TtikiFrench without being stuffy, this new, moderately priced poolside restaurant under a thatch roof in the Hotel Pasatiempo is not to be missed. Chef Vincent from Biarritz is very serious about the food, and ceremoniously visits tables, wearing a proper, white chef’s toque. The lunchtime atmosphere here is casual but at dinner, tablecloths, candles and a cool, world-music soundtrack rev up the romance and sophistication. Try the signature whole snapper grilled in a salt coating: crunchy on the outside and moistly flavorful inside ($15.50). Carnivores can savor the steak tartare ($16) and bikini-conscious beauties can stay slim but satisfied with the super healthy, Supermodel vegetarian salad ($9.50). Mains are accompanied by a delicate potato gratin, a plump, herby roasted tomato and exotic salad.  There’s wine by the glass and the bottle. Be sure to save room for dessert – profiteroles made with homemade, perfect choux pastry, filled with vanilla ice cream and smothered in a dark, rich chocolate sauce ($5.50). Chef Vincent has a special German oven that allows him to bake divine macarons – an exalted French version of Oreos, with light, crunchy merengue cookies sandwiching tropical-fruit-flavored cream fillings ($5.50). Ttiki is open for lunch – salads, wraps, fish, grilled mussels and elegant burgers – and dinner, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; closed Wednesdays. 2653-4778. Pangas Beach ClubThe hottest – make that the coolest – new beachfront spot is right on the Tamarindo estuary, where ocean meets river. The location is gorgeous and so is the hip, contemporary design, with well-spaced driftwood tables and chairs set on the sand, blending in perfectly with the unobstructed sea and sand view. As for the food, suffice it to say that innovative Executive Chef Jean-Luc Taulere, of Mar y Sol fame in Playa Flamingo, is in charge here. The artistic fish-market display as you enter provides a tantalizing visual menu. Fish tacos, coconut shrimp, seared tuna, grilled mahi-mahi come with healthful and tasty sides: yuca, quinoa and exotic salads ($8-$25). Craft beer is on tap and sunset cocktail specials change daily. Come for breakfast, brunch or lunch in your swimsuit; there’s even a place to store surfboards.  In the evening, this is the place to see and be seen in your chic-est resort wear. Open 7 a.m.-10 p.m. North end of beach, about 150 meters north of Tamarindo Vista Villas. 2653-0024. Sharky’s Sports BarIf you like sports events on really big screens, loud music and a dance floor and way-better-than-average bar food, this is the place, especially if you’re hungry late at night. Load up on such high-calorie standards as chili and hot dogs, BBQ wings, fish and chips, cheesy fries, jalapeña poppers, onion rings and nachos, as you watch any of nine screens showing three games at a time. Or opt for a healthier grilled chicken salad ($7). A signature cocktail is the Obama Bomb – rum, Redbull and a splash of piña ($5). It’s open 5 p.m.- 2:30 a.m. on weekdays; from 11 a.m. on weekends. Located 50 meters off Main Street, on the road to Playa Langosta. Falafel BarAmidst myriad exotic eateries in town, this small oasis offers fast food with Middle East flavor. Homemade pitas are stuffed with the namesake falafels and hummus. There’s also Israeli-style fried chicken breast, chicken shawarma, and lamb kebabs ($6-$12). Vegetarians will appreciate the Moroccan carrot salad, tabouleh and babaganoush ($1.20-$1.60). For dessert, there’s Malabi, a milk pudding with chopped nuts, coconut and a sweet swirl of rosewater syrup ($3). It’s across from Sharky’s and it’s open 11 a.m.-midnight. 8426-8646.Seasons by ShlomyBest for last – this intimate, dinner-only, poolside restaurant in the hip Arco Iris Hotel is still the very best dinner deal in town. Chef Shlomy Koren continues to create the most exciting Mediterranean-fusion food in town at incredibly reasonable prices. The bread basket is the harbinger of great things to come – freshly baked rolls topped with cumin and black sesame seeds, eggy challah-style bread sweetened with raisins, and sea-salt-studded focaccia. A master of textures, Shlomy’s starter of calamari served on garbanzo beans and hummus is smooth and crunchy with al dente nuts ($8). Mains change with the seasons. If you’re in luck, there will be snapper cooked in a rice-paper wrapper, savory and moist, almost fluffy, flavored with a sundried tomato and basil tapenade, and bathed in a lemon-chili sauce ($17). Chocolate lovers will dream forever about the Toblerone – dense chocolate with almond nougat combines with a dark chocolate ganache. The best deal is the set $25 three-course dinner of your choice, off the menu. (Cash only). Arco Iris Hotel, uphill from the turnoff to Playa Langosta road. Closed Sunday. 8368-6983.Too Tired to Dine Out?Then dine in, courtesy of TicoToGo Express Delivery, which will bring the dishes of more than 25 Tamarindo restaurants to the doorstep of your hotel room, condominium or beach house. Check out the menu offerings on their web site – www. – order and pay on-line or call 800-Tico-ToGo (800-8426-8646) and pay on delivery. Your order will be sped to you via motorcycle. The delivery charge is a modest $2, from 9 a.m.-2 p.m.; $5 from 2 p.m.-3 a.m.Dinner with TheaterCatch this weekend’s performances of Neil Simon’s “The Odd Couple,” presented by Tamarindo’s Mixed Nuts theater group at Fisch’s Restaurant (see the adjacent columns page and the events calendar. Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

Uruguay star Luis Suárez will not start against Costa Rica Can Ticos

first_imgFORTALEZA, Brazil — Uruguay coach Óscar Tabárez said he won’t rush Luis Suárez back from a knee injury for his side’s World Cup opener against Costa Rica in Fortaleza on Saturday. Tabárez revealed his starting line-up Friday afternoon. While Suárez is absent, Tabárez said he hasn’t ruled the star striker out as a sub for late in the match.Suárez had an operation to repair damage to the meniscus in his left knee just three weeks ago and Tabárez is wary of throwing him straight back into the side with seemingly tougher tests against England and Italy to come in Group D.“Yesterday afternoon Suárez did the most important thing in training, which is play football,” he said. “We don’t want to pressure him in any way, though, we have prepared for this game without Luis. We are very happy with his recovery, but we need to be cautious. There is still a day to go until the game and that for me is a long time because many things can happen, but if nothing changes then I have decided on the team.”Tabárez confirmed that in the absence of Suárez, Diego Forlán will partner Edison Cavani in attack. Cristian Stuani will start ahead of Gastón Ramírez on the right.Uruguay were the surprise squad of the World Cup four years ago when they reached the semifinals before narrowly losing out to the Netherlands. Tabárez believes that experience and winning the Copa America in 2011 should make them an even more formidable side this time round.“In 2010 many of these players were 22 or 23, now they have matured,” he said.On paper Costa Rica appear to be the potential whipping boys of the group up against three former World Cup winners.And Uruguayan goalkeeper Fernando Muslera admitted they need to get off to a good start to ease the pressure.“We have the ability to go far, but we don’t want to assume the role of favorites because it has never suited us well,” the goalie said. “The first game is always difficult. A good result takes a weight off your shoulders and allows you to look forward.” Facebook Comments Related posts:Uruguay star Luis Suarez could miss Costa Rica match after knee operation Injured Uruguay star Suárez in camp; England crushes Peru; key Italian player breaks leg Luis Suárez bites again as Uruguay eliminates Italy Costa Rica not planning to play injured Uruguayan superstar Luis Suárezlast_img read more

Arcadios World

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Venezuelan Cuban youth ready to lash out at their governments during youth

first_imgWhile Latin American leaders meet in Panama City to discuss cooperation in the region, young critics of the Venezuelan and Cuban governments will be across town raging against those countries’ human rights record.The youth wing of the Vente Venezuela opposition party and the Cuban anti-Castro Mesa de Diálogo de la Juventud Cubana will take part this week in the IV Young Americas Forum, a parallel summit to the official VII Summit of the Americas.Vente Venezuela youth coordinator José Javier Martínez and Mesa de Diálogo coordinator Kirenia Núñez see the forum as a unique opportunity to publicly expose what they describe as grave human rights violations perpetrated by their governments. Martínez and Nuñez spoke to The Tico Times during a recent visit to Costa Rica.The forum, which takes place April 8 and 9, is officially focused on entrepreneurship and economic opportunities for Latin America’s youth. But Martínez and Núñez have a separate agenda.Martínez hopes the forum will provide the opportunity to “try and make the world wake up to our cause, first of all, by making visible the issue of torture (which) for us is fundamental,” he said.Martínez and his group allege that opposition leaders jailed by the Nicolás Maduro government have been tortured.Amnesty International issued a report last year saying it had received dozens of reports of torture suffered by jailed protestors.Martínez’s group also wants a repeal of a Venezuelan law known by opponents as the “killer resolution.” The law, issued earlier this year, allows Venezuelan security forces to use deadly force against demonstrators.Martínez  hopes to make his country’s human rights situation a key focal point of the youth summit, along with the new chapter in Cuba-U.S relations.The Cuban Mesa de Diálogo group is pushing its demands for a Youth Ministry in Cuba, independent of the communist party, group coordinator Nuñez said. She said her group also wants assured access to higher education regardless of political convictions. Now, she said “if you break the revolution’s precepts, they begin to harass you, they begin to try and kick you out of the university.”The youth group also wants unrestricted access to the Internet, a common gripe in Cuba, among other liberties.Opposition leaders have already made an impact on the Summit of the Americas, at least in the news cycle. Cuban dissident Rosa María Payá — daughter of deceased Cuban dissident Oswaldo Payá — was detained for several hours at Panama City’s “Tocumen” International Airport when she arrived in the country on April 5. She said she was warned by Panamanian authorities that she would be deported if she caused “trouble.”Panamanian officials said the incident was a bureaucratic mistake.The IV Young Americas Forum is organized by the Young Americas Business Trust, a non-profit organization founded in 1999 that works in cooperation with the OAS to create job opportunities and foment entrepreneurship among young people.The forum will produce a document to be presented to the country leaders taking part in the Summit of the Americas.The official youth agenda includes debates on topics such as “Learning from experience: The Importance of reinventing yourself,” and “The Role of Technology and Innovation enabling Entrepreneurship.” The issues are linked to the Summit’s main topic: “Prosperity with Equity: the Challenge of Cooperation in the Americas.” Facebook Comments Related posts:Cuban dissident held briefly in Panama ahead of summit Castro, Obama hold historic meeting, agree to foster ‘a new relationship’ Cuba’s Christmas surprise for Caracas US-Venezuela clash threatens to overshadow upcoming Summit of the Americaslast_img read more

Costa Ricas Catholic Church to take more activist role on environment following

first_imgRelated posts:5 things Pope Francis gets totally right about climate change Pope: Sinners against environment will answer to God Pope Francis arrives for historic first US visit Pope Francis tells bishops that clergy abuse must not be repeated Roughly a month after Pope Francis made hisappeal for the global community to “urgently” take action to address climate change and other environmental damage, Costa Rica’s Catholic Church is looking to take a stronger stance nationally on the environment.The Episcopal Conference, the governing body of the Catholic Church in Costa Rica, hosted an event Thursday morning to discuss the pope’s guiding document — called an encyclical — for the faithful on climate change and ecological health. The event’s timing came just days before large protests are expected in Nicoya, Guanacaste, over the government’s management of drought there as well as intense flooding in the Caribbean in late June.Monsignor Óscar Fernández, president of the Episcopal Conference and bishop of Puntarenas, told The Tico Times that he foresaw a more activist role for the church on environmental policy.“It’s necessary to talk with politicians and political parties about their social responsibility to be informed about a subject that is so important for the human species.”Fernández said that a meeting was scheduled in August to discuss specifics for how the encyclical would be integrated into Catholic teachings here.Political analyst Constantino Urcuyo, who spoke at Thursday’s event, agreed that there is an important role for the Catholic Church to play in current environmental debates.“I think he [the pope] has great moral authority to speak about this and other subjects,” Urcuyo said after the event, noting that the encyclical brought a new voice to the debate that could attract more support for environmental causes.Costa Rica enjoys a favorable international image as a “green” country but Dr. Rodrigo Gámez of the National Biodiversity Institute (INBio) said there is room for improvement. Despite Costa Rica’s famous protected areas, which cover more than 26 percent of its territory, Gámez said the country doesn’t manage its natural resources well, especially in regards to fresh water and its consumption of fossil fuels, particularly for transportation.President Luis Guillermo Solís has been in the province of Guanacaste this week where many of his visits have focused on resolving water shortages, as tourist developments, cattle ranching, agriculture and locals contend for scarce water resources in the parched province. Saturday morning, a protest march has been called to draw attention to the perceived mismanagement of the crisis.Panelists brought up a passage from the encyclical in which Pope Francis calls water a “universal human right.”Even as the quality of available water is constantly diminishing, in some places there is a growing tendency, despite its scarcity, to privatize this resource, turning it into a commodity subject to the laws of the market. Yet access to safe drinkable water is a basic and universal human right, since it is essential to human survival and, as such, is a condition for the exercise of other human rights.”The pope’s encyclical criticized Western “throwaway” culture, including the commodification of water. Francis wrote that the Catholic Church defends the “legitimate right” to private property but that “Christian tradition has never recognized the right to private property as absolute or inviolable, and has stressed the social purpose of all forms of private property.”Conservative critics have accused Francis of being a communist because of the encyclical’s critiques of unbridled capitalism and its focus on the poor. The pope drew ire from some politicians, including Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush, a Catholic, by laying responsibility for climate change and environmental degradation on developed economies and global elites.“I don’t go to mass for economic policy or for things in politics,” Bush told reporters in June when the encyclical was first released.Urcuyo, the political analyst, said he thought the critiques were exaggerated and called the church’s social doctrine “centrist.” Urcuyo said that the pope’s recommendations focused on specific practices rather than on any ideological system of government.Panelists agreed that despite any divisive politics interpreted in the pope’s call to protect the environment, the encyclical could have a wide-ranging impact.“What’s interesting is that the letter is addressed to the faithful and nonbelievers alike,” said Rev. Rodolfo Murillo. “The subject of the environment, the Earth, is a common denominator that affects us all, whether we’re believers or not.”AFP contributed to this report.  Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Swedish police briefly hold US rapper Snoop Dogg

first_imgSTOCKHOLM, Sweden – U.S. rapper Snoop Dogg was briefly arrested by Swedish police on suspicion of using illegal drugs, police sources said Sunday.“Police carrying out roadside controls noticed that Snoop Dogg [whose car was pulled over] seemed to be under the influence of narcotics. He was arrested and taken to the police station to take a urine test,” said Daniel Nilsson, a police spokesman for the central Uppsala region.“The incident lasted several minutes. Once the test was carried out he left,” Nilsson added of the brief arrest which took place after the celebrity rapper gave a concert in the area on Saturday night.Snoop Dogg reacted by vowing that he would not return to Sweden.“2 all my Sweden fans U can blame YA police dept for never seeing me again in your beautiful country,” the rapper wrote in a tweet.The test results were not immediately available.It is far from the 43-year-old music star’s first brush with the law.Snoop Dogg’s song lyrics often display his fondness for marijuana and he has previously had run-ins with police elsewhere over the drug.It’s hard being Snoop D.O.G.G. Facebook Comments Related posts:Selena died 20 years ago – why we’re still talking about her Mathematics tracks the hip-hop ‘revolution’ New York hip-hop legend AZ gets ‘back to himself’ in new video filmed in Costa Rica Pink Floyd to release 1st new album since 1994last_img read more

Is El Chapo in Costa Rica Probably not but he wouldnt be

first_imgRelated posts:Undermining Mexico: How ‘El Chapo’ built a criminal empire, and escaped prison, by digging deep Alleged Mexican drug lord pleads not guilty in US court Mexico drug lord ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán back in jail, betrayed by biopic bid Univision to air TV series on ‘El Chapo’ famed Mexican drug lord and masterful prison escapee Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán hiding out in Costa Rica? His son would apparently like people to think so — unless he’s really that stupid.The Internet erupted late last week and over the weekend with fresh speculation over the whereabouts of the world’s most wanted narco after Guzmán’s son Alfredo Guzmán posted a photo to Twitter that was geotagged “Costa Rica.” The tweet showed the scion of the Sinaloa Cartel sitting next to a mustachioed man — presumably his father — with the upper half of the face obscured by a huge, digital Groucho Marx mask. (A pouting smiley face completely obscures the face of the man sitting to the left of Alfredo.International media speculated that the young man forgot to disable the location setting on his Twitter account.If this is true, and El Chapo is here, the Costa Rican authorities don’t seem too worked up about it. Judicial Investigation Police spokesman Marco Monge told The Tico Times that police didn’t have any information indicating that Guzmán or his son are, or were, in Costa Rica.Reviewing Alfredo Guzmán’s past tweets shows that the son of the fugitive kingpin is a fan of emojis and often calls his followers “plebes,” which means “inferiors” or “underlings” in both Spanish and English slang. He either doesn’t bother to hide the geocodes of his tweets or fakes them. Locations like Badiraguato, Sinaloa — El Chapo’s hometown — and Zapopán, Jalisco, are just some of the locations tagged to his past tweets.So was the Costa Rica tag a slip or an intentional raspberry to police?Faking one’s location on the Internet and social media is pretty easy. Investigative journalists, privacy freaks and criminals do it all the time. Anyone who watches U.S. Netflix in Costa Rica knows that using a VPN to hide the IP of the user’s Internet connection is a piece of cake. Apps like NetShade and websites like will help you do it.But besides the tech aspect, the table that Guzmán senior and junior are supposedly sitting at just doesn’t look like Costa Rica. When was the last time a Costa Rican waitress put a dish of salsa and a basket full of tortilla chips on your table? (The baskets are empty in Alfredo’s Twitter pic.)But if “Shorty” is, in fact, in Costa Rica, he wouldn’t be the first Mexican narco to seek safe haven here. Notorious drug kingpin Rafael Caro Quintero fled to Costa Rica in March 1985 following the death in Mexico of DEA agent Enrique Camarena. Quintero and his entourage passed through customs unchecked and lived the high life at a mansion in Alajuela before being caught a month later. The Costa Rican mansion where drug kingpin Rafael Caro Quintero was arrested in 1985. The Tico TimesIn an early morning raid that April, Costa Rican police, accompanied by DEA agents, burst into the Finca California in the Ojo de Agua sector of Alajuela near Juan Santamaría International Airport, north of the capital, surprising Quintero and a number of his confederates. Quintero was captured, along with his lover Sara Cossío and other members of his band, including Mexicans José Albino Bazán, Juan Carlos Campos, Luis Beltrán, Miguel Lugo and Violeta Estrada. They all were extradited to Mexico the next day.According to press reports at the time, Quintero complained to the arresting officers that he had paid handsomely for refuge in Costa Rica.Fast forward to 2013, when Quintero was released from a Mexican prison by court order and promptly disappeared. Despite a reversal of the court’s decision, he has not been recaptured.Costa Rican authorities have been on high alert since El Chapo escaped from prison. In June, three weeks before Guzmán’s escape, five Mexican citizens suspected of having ties to the Sinaloa cartel entered Costa Rica. The men were tracked by authorities until they left the country two days later.Costa Rica’s judicial police and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration also believe a suspected leader of the Sinaloa cartel with ties to Guzmán has been living here since his recent release from prison.Anyone with serious leads on El Chapo’s whereabouts could make a fortune. The Mexican government has offered a $3.8 million reward for information leading to his capture. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Sea Shepherds Paul Watson files human rights lawsuit against Costa Rica

first_imgRelated posts:Sea Shepherd’s Paul Watson launches Facebook campaign asking Costa Rica’s Solís to drop extradition request Actor Leonardo DiCaprio talks about illegal fishing in Costa Rica’s Cocos Island VIDEO: Killer whales hunt tiger shark near Costa Rica’s Cocos Island Sea Shepherd’s Paul Watson turns to human rights commission to block Costa Rica’s legal chase Related: Sea Shepherd’s Paul Watson turns to human rights commission to block Costa Rica’s legal chaseCelebrity conservationist Paul Watson turned the tables Tuesday in his long legal battle with Costa Rica by filing a lawsuit against the country before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR).“We want to have this whole situation investigated,” Watson said in a phone interview with The Tico Times. “We think that it is a human rights violation and it has nothing to do with seeking justice at all. The whole thing is very suspicious.”The charges against Watson date back to 2002, when he and a Sea Shepherd crew confronted a Costa Rican fishing vessel that was allegedly finning sharks off the Guatemalan coast. Watson and fellow conservationists sprayed the fishermen with firehoses.After docking in Costa Rican fishing hub Puntarenas, on the Pacific coast, Watson was charged with eight counts of attempted murder. The incident was filmed as part of the documentary “Sharkwater,” and the footage, combined with witness accounts, led the court to drop the charges against Watson.But the case didn’t go away. Watson was arrested in Germany in 2012 on a Costa Rican warrant for attempted shipwrecking, which carries a sentence of up to 15 years in prison. Watson has avoided extradition and now lives openly in Paris, despite being listed on Interpol’s Red List of International Fugitives.In an attempt to finally put the charges to bed, Watson’s lawyers are arguing that Costa Rica’s dogged pursuit of the conservationist is without merit and violates his human rights. Costa Rica’s foreign ministry told The Tico Times that they have not yet received notification of the petition from the IACHR and cannot comment on the allegations. The petition for a lawsuit, which has yet to be accepted by the human rights commission, alleges that the Costa Rican government filed charges against Watson without jurisdiction — the incident took place in international waters near Guatemala — and without proof. The lawyers concluded that the only explanation for the charges is that they were politically motivated.“The legal actions that Costa Rica has taken against Paul Watson is a political maneuver to take down one of the world’s most recognized conservationists so that Costa Rica can continue freely trafficking shark fins,” Watson’s petition reads.The practice of shark finning, where fishermen slice off a shark’s valuable fins and throw its body overboard, has been banned in Costa Rica since 2012, but Watson claims that the government still supports the practice behind closed doors.“I know Costa Rica has this reputation as a green country but I haven’t seen it,” he said. “What I’ve seen is a lot of protection of poaching operations.”See also: Shark fin scandal in Costa Rica has Solís administration on the defensiveWatson says he will not return to Costa Rica for trial because he’s concerned about the fairness of the country’s justice system. Even if Watson was found innocent, his lawyer has expressed concerns that Costa Rica would immediately extradite the conservationist to Japan, where he faces charges for Sea Shepherd’s war on the Japanese whaling fleet.If Watson’s case before the regional human rights commission is accepted, the IACHR would investigate Costa Rica’s case against Watson and could order the country to drop the charges. If freed of legal troubles, Watson said he would be interested in returning to Costa Rica to do conservation work.“Right now we have two boats that we could deploy to Cocos Island to protect it,” Watson said. “The government admits that they do not have the resources to protect Cocos Island, and we could provide that.” Facebook Commentslast_img read more

Free entry to all national parks tomorrow for National Parks Day

first_imgEntry to all Costa Rican national parks is free for National Parks Day tomorrow.The holiday, celebrated every Aug. 24 since 1986, commemorates the creation of the national parks system. Aside from free entry to national parks, schools across the country also commemorate national parks with activities.When the holiday started, there were 14 national parks across the country. Now there are nearly 30 national parks and about a quarter of the country’s landmass is protected land.So go take a trip and visit one tomorrow, it’s free. If you can’t, here are some of our best shots of Costa Rica’s beautiful national parks. Palo Verde National Park, a vast wetlands area near where the Tempisque River empties into the Gulf of Nicoya. Nearly 280 species of birds have been observed here. Erin Skoczylas/The Tico Times Sunlight streams through the trees in Corcovado National Park, on the Osa Peninsula in southern Costa Rica. Lindsay Fendt/The Tico Times A humpback whale flashes a fin from beneath the water at the Ballenas National Marine Park in Uvita. Lindsay Fendt/The Tico Times Visitors to Poás Volcano National Park can safely view its crater from a distance of almost 1 kilometer. Informal guides are taking groups much closer. The Tico Times Manuel Antonio National Park Andrés Madrigal/The TicoTimes Chirripó National Park protects endangered species and also aquifers, rivers and the largest number of glacial lakes in Costa Rica. (Via SINAC) Uvita’s Whale Tail at the Marino Ballena National Park. Andrés Madrigal / The Tico Times A sea turtle prepares to lay her eggs at Tortuguero National Park. Courtesy of Bookmundi Facebook Comments Related posts:Costa Rica sets higher park entrance fees in bid for more revenue for protected areas Costa Rica’s famed Manuel Antonio National Park will close on Mondays starting this month Health Ministry extends deadline to perform improvements at Manuel Antonio Manuel Antonio National Park administration moving to comply with Health Ministry orderslast_img read more

Theres still time to get to Costa Ricas book fair – heres

first_imgThe Book Fair is on, and there’s still time to attend!For the 19th year in a row, the Antigua Aduana building on Calle 23, Avenidas 7-9, has been turned into one big library with more than 60 publishers from all over Latin America showing off the latest books. Prices run from great bargains by local publishers to upper end for fancy art books. There is no charge to enter. Books for everyone’s taste. Mitzi Stark / The Tico TimesThe major bookstores – Lehmann, Universal, Internacional and Max  – are there, and so are the smaller, local publishers with books for every age and taste. There are technical works and novels, big art books, resource books, electronic books, little books and big books, children’s books, religious books and current books in English. Mitzi Stark / The Tico TimesThe university publishers offer history and biographies. The Bible Society has bibles and bible stories; there are dictionaries and encyclopedias, computer programs and educational games for kids, parents and teachers. Several areas of the fair have seating for browsing, because it can be exhausting looking over thousands of books. There is space to relax after browsing through thousands of books. Mitzi Stark / The Tico Times Mitzi Stark / The Tico TimesSeveral museums are present at the fair, offering books in their specialties: nature, science or history. One very popular section is EUNED, the publishing house for the National Distance University for independent study. The books are all by Costa Rican writers. Some are scholarly and some are for fun, and most are reasonable priced. The EUNED presents books by Costa Rican writers. Mitzi Stark / The Tico TimesUsed book dealers have stands in the annex behind the main building, and there is also a food court in the annex for taking a break.Whether you read electronic books, paperbacks, hard covers, used books, or children’s books, this is the place to be. There are books in English and easy-to-read Spanish, including Costa Rican cookbooks, myths and tales and stories. Local authors proudly show their books and sign them. Most sellers offer a 20 percent discount, and there are special sales for some books. (Photo courtesy of Mitzi Stark)“Books are still popular,” said a representative for the National Book Chamber, a sponsor of the fair. “Our visitors come to see printed books because they are more comfortable to read.” Book sales remain strong and last year 73,000 people visited the fair. Costa Rica’s annual book fair copies the huge fairs in Argentina and Brazil and some of the European countries that are designed to promote reading.The Feria Internacional del Libro continues through Sunday, Sept. 2 at the Antigua Aduana in eastern San José. Entrance is free. For more information, visit the event’s Facebook page. Facebook Comments Related posts:Book exchange to ‘liberate’ paperbacks in Cariari 20th International Book Fair takes over Barrio Escalante in San José Ballet Festival 2019 part of Costa Rica’s flourishing dance scene PHOTOS: The annual Oxcart Parade in Atenas, Alajuelalast_img read more

Puerto Rico expolice officer charged with murder

first_imgSAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) – A former police officer in Puerto Rico has been charged with killing his ex-girlfriend nearly a year ago.A judge found enough evidence to charge Roberto Quinones Rivera on Tuesday with first-degree murder and destruction of evidence in the killing of Yexeira (jex-AY-ra) Torres Pacheco. She disappeared in October 2011 and her body has not been found.Quinones is already in prison. He received a 42-month sentence earlier this month for having a fake driver’s license and a bulletproof vest that authorities say he illegally obtained from the police department. Top holiday drink recipes Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix 0 Comments   Share   (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 Sponsored Stories center_img Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day Top Stories Patients with chronic pain give advice Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Daylast_img read more

Critics say Kenyas proposed terror law flawed

first_img Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Kenya’s Muslim community and lawyers have also raised objections over the Prevention of Terrorism bill, saying it infringes on constitutional rights of individuals. The government says the current legislation is insufficient to effectively punish perpetrators of terrorism activities. The bill looks set to pass Thursday or Friday.“Terrorism knows no tribe, terrorism knows no religion and it respects no boundaries. We cannot fight it bare handed. We need tools and legal instruments with which to fight it,” Justice Minister Eugene Wamalwa said this week.The U.S. State Department’s annual report on terrorism in Kenya, released in July, said the lack of counterterrorism legislation has hindered Kenya’s ability to detain terrorist suspects and prosecute them effectively. Terrorist suspects are often prosecuted under other offenses, such as murder and weapons possession.Kenya needs a law to tackle security challenges caused by terrorism, but without changes the Prevention of Terrorism bill can be abused or be ineffective if it became law, said Lawrence Mute, a commissioner in charge of Policy and Compliance at the government-funded Kenya National Commission on Human Rights. Some of its provisions contradict Kenya’s constitution, he said. 0 Comments   Share   Al-Shabab, Somalia’s al-Qaida-linked militant group has repeatedly promised to attack Kenya in retaliation for Kenyan forces moving into southern Somalia in October to fight the militants. The group’s spokesman has threatened to bring Nairobi’s skyscrapers down, and though an attack of that magnitude appears unlikely, intelligence officials fear some large attack is imminent.Earlier this month police recovered six explosive devices, including four suicide vests, 12 grenades and a cache of guns and ammunition in a house in a residential area where they arrested two suspects of Somali origin. One of the suspects was sentenced to 59 years in jail last week after pleading guilty.Kenya has suffered a string of grenade and improvised explosive devise attacks which have killed at least 50 civilians since sending its troops into Somalia. The attacks have been blamed on al-Shabab sympathizers.Mute said another concern is that if the bill becomes law without police reforms it can become subject to abuse. The police have been accused of extra-judicial killings of suspects they have been unable to prosecute successfully. Activists accuse the police of killing or “disappearing” five terrorism suspects this year. Last month radical Islamic preacher Aboud Rogo Mohammed was shot to death by unknown gunmen as he drove his family in van in the coastal city of Mombasa. His killing sparked off riots that left five people dead. (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Associated PressNAIROBI, Kenya (AP) – Faced with an increased threat of terrorism from al-Qaida-linked militants in Somalia, the Kenya government looks set to pass the country’s first anti-terror law to help police prosecute terrorism cases. But the legislation is opposed by a government human rights group that says the law would give the state sweeping powers that can be abused to intimidate political opponents. Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix How do cataracts affect your vision? 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project The law would give discretionary power to the police commissioner and minister in charge of security to publicly declare a group a terrorist entity without proving it in a court of law, he said. The law can also be used to hold suspects for long periods of interrogation without being charged in court, and some of the provisions can be used to compel doctors and journalists to give evidence against their clients and confidential sources, he said.The state can also abuse the law to fight political opponents, he said.“It depends just how imaginative who is controlling the security apparatus is … too much discretion is dangerous,” he said.Hassan Omar Hassan, a human rights activist vying to become a senator, said the Muslim community fears provisions of the bill that seem to legitimize arbitrary seizure of property, entry into a suspect’s property and listening to private phone conversations without warrants. Hassan said the government had given assurances that it will make amendments to the bill before the final vote.Al-Qaida has twice struck Kenya. In 1998 a truck bomb was set off outside the U.S. embassy in Nairobi killing more than 200 Kenyans and 12 Americans. A 2002 attack on an Israeli owned hotel killed about a dozen Kenyans. Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of Top Stories Sponsored Stories last_img read more

Ukraine fuel depot fire kills 1 several injured near Kiev

first_img Sponsored Stories In this late Monday, June 8, 2015 handout photo made available by the Ukrainian Emergency Situations Ministry press service on Tuesday, June 9, 2015, Ukrainian firemen distinguish fire at a fuel depot near Hlevaha, Kiev region, Ukraine. At least one killed and a number of firemen were injured on Tuesday as they fought to control a blazing fuel depot outside Ukraine’s capital Kiev. (AP Photo/Ukrainian Emergency Situations Ministry Press Service handout photo via AP) 5 ways to recognize low testosterone New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober The cause of the blaze was under investigation, with sabotage a possibility.The Emergency Situations Ministry said the fire was halted only 50 meters (yards) from the military base and prevented from reaching the other fuel depot, so the risk of further explosions was minimal.Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said on Facebook the fire should be extinguished by early Wednesday.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day Comments   Share   The vital role family plays in society KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukrainian firefighters on Tuesday managed to contain a major blaze that had engulfed a fuel depot near Kiev, preventing it from spreading to another fuel depot and a nearby military base.But one worker at the depot died at a hospital from severe burns, several others were injured and three firefighters were missing, the Interior Ministry said.The fire, which erupted late Monday at the depot near the village of Hlevaha just southwest of Kiev, filled the skies with plumes of black smoke and prompted the evacuation of residents in surrounding areas. Top Stories Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facilitylast_img read more

British Airways promises to keep the flag flying during

first_imgBritish Airways has had the ‘keep the flag flying’ slogan painted along its fuselages to underline the message that the airline will continue to fly throughout the 15 days of strikes planned by the Unite union.The message was painted on 10 Boeing 777 aircraft at Heathrow and two at Gatwick that took off as members of the Unite union gathered at picket lines.Bassa, the cabin crew branch of Unite, said they felt a different atmosphere among strikers compared with the last series of walkouts in March.”The atmosphere is not as frenetic and intense as last time. People seem to be more determined and they have a quiet resolve,” said one official.”Despite the strikes, the airline has said that the numbers of cabin crew reporting at Heathrow were still at the levels it needed to operate a revised schedule of more than 60% of long-haul flights and more than 60% of short-haul flights.Unite has announced two further five-day strikes after this week’s walkout ends, including one during the school half-term, starting on Bank Holiday Monday. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: C.Flast_img read more

Cs the key for JTG National Conference commences

first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: D.M The Jetset Travelworld national conference kicks off today with 450 plus delegates converging in Hong Kong Disneyland representing 650 retail travel agencies including a small percentage of non-affiliate agents, as well as a strong variety of preferred suppliers and key JTG management and staff.This year’s event, marking the first Conference since the merger, has been themed aptly for members focusing on the three C’s: Connect, Communicate, Collaborate.Keeping with the concept, JTG are expecting better connection with their suppliers and retail agents, consumers and suppliers and increased communication from the group, agents and suppliers, resulting in collaboration of all aspects to drive business between their respective goals.According to memorandum released prior to commencement, JTG are hoping the Conference will seal better relations between agents and suppliers on future trends, developments and techniques in a positive push toward the way agents sell and support preferred product.Click here to view photoslast_img read more

Disney plans Cruises into NYC Seattle Texas

first_imgDisney Cruise Line has added three new ports to its 2012 itinerary, setting sail into New York, Seattle and Galveston in Texas for the first time ever.The additions are part of the family cruise line’s commitment to making its voyages more accessible around the world, Disney Cruise Line president Karl Holz said in a PR-USA.Net online statement. “Guests can now enjoy a magical, one-of-a-kind Disney cruise experience with the convenience of departures from their own backyard.”From 25 May next year, Disney Magic will navigate into New York for 20 cruises ranging from eight-nights to the Bahamas, five nights to New England and weekend cruises for a sampling a the Disney experience.While Disney Magic will also include 12 seven night cruises from Galveston to the Western Caribbean with port of calls including Grand Cayman as well as Mexico’s Costa Maya and Cozumel. Passengers leaving from Seattle will be treated to the Disney Wonder, hosting 14 seven night cruises to Tracy Arm, Skagway, Juneau, Ketchikan, Alaska as well as British Columbia. In addition to the new port, the Disney Wonder will also offer for the first, 15 night voages to Hawaii from Los Angeles with port of calls including Kahului, Maui, Honolulu, Oahu, Nawiliwili, Kauai and Ensenada in Mexico.  The Disney Wonder will also continue to sail its seven night LA departed Mexican Riviera cruises while the Disney Fantasy and Disney Dream will carry on with Caribbean and Bahamian itineraries from Port Canaveral. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.Jlast_img read more

QF seeks LAN codeshare to Santiago

first_imgQantas announced yesterday that it is seeking regulatory approval to codeshare on flights between Sydney and Santiago carrier, LAN Chile.Although still awaiting authorization, the Australian flag carrier said ticket sales for the flight commencing 26 March next year are now on sale.“As a major commerce and aviation centre, Santiago offers the ideal entry point to the region for Australians,” Qantas airlines commercial group executive Rob Gurney said. “By  codesharing  with  LAN  on  our  new  direct  flights,  we  will  extend  our  existing  codeshare  relationship  on LAN’s daily Sydney-Auckland-Santiago service.  “We look forward to continuing to work with LAN and to exploring opportunities to develop a closer relationship.”   The return three times weekly services will fly out on Monday, Wednesday and Saturday using a Boeing 747 aircraft fitting with A380-standard cabins. “Santiago will be a strong addition to the Qantas network,” Mr Gurney added.  “There  is  considerable  potential  for  closer  trade,  business  and  tourism  links  between  Australia  and  Latin America – a continent with a population of more than 500 million and a combined GDP of nearly A$4 trillion.” Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.Jlast_img read more

iPads for QF pilots

first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: K.W Designed to improve communication and eliminate paperwork in the cockpit, Qantas has made a move to equip pilots with iPads.Awaiting regulatory approval, Qantas said it will distribute 2200 64GB iPads to pilots who will use them instead of the printed flight manuals and referencing papers, The Australian reported.Not only will it cut back on paperwork in the cockpit but will save approximately $1.5 million in printing and distribution annually, according to the company.Surprisingly the use of iPads will also save the airline about 20kg in weight per aircraft.Qantas technical pilot, captain Alex Passerini said the revolutionary capabilities of iPad technology and powerful customised apps, give pilots the ability to replace the hard copies.”This initiative is a response to strong demand from our pilots for a simpler, more efficient system, and follows extensive testing and development work, including close consultation with the Civil Aviation Safety Authority [CASA].”While the iPads are being rolled out across the next month, pilots will still take the usual paperwork on-board with them.last_img read more