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Published Wednesday Edition
June 7, 2017, Vol. 17, No. 112
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Fieldwork finds a frog originally believed extinct
By Rommel Téllez
of the A.M. Costa Rica staff


After 30 years hidden from human eyes and 13 years after it was officially declared as extinct by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, the red-belly frog has reappeared thanks to the field inspections carried out by School of Biology at Universidad de Costa Rica.

The frog's comeback was officially announced last Tuesday morning during the celebration of the Environment Week at the university’s main campus in San Pedro de Montes de Oca, San José.

However, it was first found on Sept 19, 2016 in the Parque Nacional Juan Castro Blanco, located in the city of Ciudad Quesada, in the province of Alajuela.

That day, researchers Gilberth Alvarado and Randall Jiménez were performing a routine amphibians sampling when they came across a specimen.

The frog is an adult female, brown and about six centimeters long.

Right away, scientists noticed the red mark on the belly and knew they stumbled upon a huge discovery.

The finding occurred at an altitude of 1,820 meters. Biologists concluded there must be a population around the area. Little is known about the species, as it has been hardly studied.

"It was a completely clear night, without rain, stars and a full moon, all the required conditions for not seeing frogs," Alvarado said.



The scientists decided to keep the specimen alive, and start an Amphibian Conservation Program at the Universidad de Costa Rica.

Tomate
                            frog
Universidad de Costa Rica photo
Pictured is Tomate, the pet name of UCR scientists for the discovered frog.

For that purpose, a special site has been designed in order to keep the frog in captivity and encourage their reproduction with the right temperature, humidity and asepsy.

This space is under construction and will be located at the Experimental Station Alfredo Volio Mata in Ochomogo, province of Cartago.

"Each animal is a product of evolution and is a design that has taken millions of years to reach the genetic material that forms that species,” said Alvarado.  “When you lose one, not only an empty niche remains  but it also loses the function it  fulfills as well as its biological design."

In 2004, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature declared three species of amphibians that existed only in Costa Rica as extinct.

However two of them have reappeared, according to the School of Biology. One is the the red-bellied frog and the other the deaf toad or toad of Holdridge, which inhabited Cerro Chompipe in Heredia.



The third one, the golden toad or Monteverde toad, which became a symbol of amphibian decline has not yet resurfaced and it is considered the first victim of global warming.






Firework
                            pile
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
Some of the 229,000 firework boxes and wrappers piled up for disposal.
Fireworks destroyed so far surpasses other years
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Boom, crack and pop went the first of over 229,000 pieces of fireworks captured by the security ministry for 2017 on Tuesday.

Specialists attached to the Dirección General de Armamento who handle explosives gathered up the seized goods in one big pile at Los Sitios de Moravia in the province of San José, according to the Ministerio de Seguridad Pública.

William Hidalgo, the head of the armament section, was the one who pressed the button that blew up the firework pile.

The ministry was quick to note, however, that this was carried out under the strictest supervision of the public security ministry, the Bomberos de Costa Rica and the Cruz Roja.

This represents the first incineration of fireworks by the government this year, officials said.

According to data provided by the armament section, more almost three million pieces of fireworks have been destroyed since 2007.

This includes the stash destroyed Tuesday.


The seized articles are both legal and illegal fireworks seized by police officers attached to the Fuerza Pública and Fronteras.
Fireworks
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
Armaments officer observes the scene.

A substantial amount of fireworks, at almost half of the total destroyed, were done between 2015 and 2016.

They included interesting names such as espanta suegras, Spanish for frighten mother-in-law, and curatos de dinamita, or dynamite rooms.

It was not reported if officials had fun blowing up the captured gods.



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A.M.
Costa Rica

Second News Page

Published || Wednesday Edition, June 7, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 112
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Professional Directory
A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.
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American/Costa Rican staff
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Demarcation work
Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes photo          
Workers on stretch of Ruta 32 laying down paint.

Ruta 32 closing again starting Thursday

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Ruta 32 will be closing again this week Thursday and Friday as the public works ministry continues with its line painting.

The road, which connects the capital to Limón, will repeat the same requirements as conducted last week with a total closure of a certain sector of the road. According to a statement from the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes, Ruta 32 will be closed between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. for both days

The closure will occur between the crossing at Río Frío and the toll station in the area of Heredia, officials said. The demarcation work apparently requires the full closure of the road as the route is notorious for poor visibility due to weather conditions and the nature of the landscape.

This painting will also allow work to continue filling the deep potholes in the area with an investment of around 700 million colons, or around $1.2 million, according to Mauricio Sojo, a representative with the Consejo Nacional de Vialidad.

If weather conditions are poor then the work will stop and passage be opened immediately to drivers, Sojo said. Public works advises drivers to use alternate routes such as Vara Blanca or Ruta 10 to Turrialba.


Alerta Verde issued for entire country

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Heavy downpours will continue for the rest of week in the north, central and south Pacific areas of the country, according to the forecast issued by Instituto Meteorológico Nacional.

However, a slight reduction in rain will be perceived Wednesday and Thursday where isolated downpours will take place specially in the afternoon. Wednesday morning will be a sunny one in the Central Valley.

As of Friday, heavy rains are expected to come back and remain the whole weekend, as a tropical wave is passing through the country, the Instituto explains in its forecast.

Due to the strong rain expected, the Comisión Nacional de Emergencias has declared a green alert for the whole country, meaning emergency bodies in municipalities, rescue organizations and citizens should be alert for any possible floods or landslides.


Costa Rica jumps in convention index

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Rica jumped more than ten places in its ranking as a conventions and meetings destination, according to the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo.

The ranking is developed by the International Congress and Convention Association and according to it, the country has moved forward ten positions in the scale since last year, going from place 63 to 53.

This is the result of a two year aggressive strategy aimed at promoting the country as a destination and as a powerhouse in the tourist industry. The association organizes 120,000 congresses which, in turn, moves 120 million business tourists all around the world each year. The conventions and meetings industry generates $11.5 billion in revenue worldwide each year, according to Mauricio Ventura, the minister of Tourism.

"The convention and meetings industry attracts a type of visitor who spends more money during his stay,” said Ventura. “It allows us to generate fresh incomes all year long and it help us break apart the low and high season cycle," said Ventura.

To improve Costa Rica’s presence in the international conventions arena, the institute will be part of the International Fair for Travel and Meetings Markets In Latin America and the Caribbean, which is taking place in Chile this week.

"This fair is an opportunity for countries that want to show their potential in this market. It has a high quality of buyers, who look for new destinations for their events," said Tatiana Orozco, head of the Conventions and Meetings Division at the tourism institute.

The institute also confirmed that Ventura has been granted an award by the Foro Latinoamericano, a private organizations who encourages the contributions of political authorities, ministers and other influencer in this specific market.

"It is truly an honor to be the first representative of Costa Rica to receive this important recognition, which is extensive to the great team at the Instituto,” said Ventura.

According to a statement released by Casa Presidencial, since 2015, the institute has started an aggressive strategy to compete in the world of conventions and meetings industry.

The strategy includes the participation in specialized tourist fairs, strategic alliances, development of a specialized marketing plan and the hiring of world class advisors, says the document. 



In addition, the institute has created the Convention and Meetings Tourism Division, which includes  specialized professionals to address this specific niche. It has also launched the Ambassadors Program, which trains professionals from different areas on how to sell Costa Rica as a destination when they attend their own trainings, conferences or seminars.


Our reader's opinion
Some clarification on tinted windows

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

In regards to the recent article and reader letter about tinted car windows: yesterday on June 5, I visited the local Transito office here in San Ramon and an officer inspected the after market tint another owner had put on my windows. He stated that as long as there was not a tint so dark as to prevent the viewing of the interior, there is no problem.

Windshield and rear window tinting are excluded from this exemption, but one would assume that factory rear window tint would be so minimal as to have a negligible effect on visibility. Perhaps publishing the statutory language of the law in question, along with a translation, might help.

Harv Brinson
San Ramon de Alajuela


News from the Spanish-language press
Translated into English






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A.M.
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Third News Page
U.S. Tax
Published || Wednesday Edition, June 7, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 112
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Justice ministry heads chosen as marshals for 2017 Diversity Parade
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

For their open support in favor the LGBTIQ community, Cecilia Sánchez and Marco Feoli have been designated marshals of the upcoming Diversity Parade, to be held in San José next June 25.

Ms. Sánchez and Feoli are the current minister and vice-minister of the Ministerio de Justicia y Paz and have been chosen by the organization of the parade for using their political influence to dignify and make visible the needs of vulnerable people.

According to Javier Umaña, one of the organizers, both officials have shown hard work in the defense, promotion and recognition in human rights of historically-discriminated populations, such as inmates and sexually diverse people.

Some of the initiatives Ms. Sánchez and Muñoz have supported in the past are the declaration of the justice and peace ministry facilities as a space free of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.

They have also pushed for a reform in the internal regulations of the ministry, in order to extend the benefits of public officers to their same-sex partners.

That way sexually diverse workers are granted days off for marriage, mourning of a significant other  or the use of medical services.

Ms. Sánchez and Feoli also entitled prisoners to enjoy a weekly visitation from their same-sex partners and granted the inmates the right to dress according to the gender they feel identified with.

Diversity Parade 2016
A.M. Costa Rica photo/Kenndrik Channer
Kenndrik Channer, foreground, and hula-hoopers participated in the 2016 diversity parade.

"I am honored that the efforts we have made in the penitentiary system are acknowledged,” said Ms. Sánchez. “As a country, we move forward when we renounce stigma and prejudice."
 
"Let us be clear that our main responsibility is to build a more just society, in which there are no citizens of different categories." said Feoli.
 
The Diversity Parade has taken place for the last eight years. It starts at the Leon Cortés statue in La Sabana and crosses all Paseo Colón and part of the Avenida Segunda. During the parade, shows, concerts, food sales, disguise contests and dancing take place.


Mission Blue joins with Costa Rica marine groups off Isla del Coco
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A scientific expedition led by renowned oceanographer, Dr. Sylvia Earle, just returned from Parque Nacional Isla del Coco where they spent over 10 days placing trackers on hammerhead sharks, sea turtles and other marine wildlife.

According to a recent statement by the Asociación CREMA, a non-profit group engaged in marine conservation advocacy, seven acoustic transmitters were placed on sharks and sea turtles to track their movements.

The group also removed abandoned fishing gear near one of their dive sites that had tangled in the coral off the shoreline of the island.

Dr. Earle’s Mission Blue team includes the national park as one of its Mission Blue spots. 

Her organization often travels to different marine protected areas and networks with similarly-minded advocacy groups and organizations to create a global effort at raising awareness and establishing marine conservation policy, according to the group’s website.

A documentary called “Mission Blue” was recently released back in 2014 showcasing Dr. Earle’s lifetime of work as a marine biologist and oceanographer.

For its part, Mission Blue has partnered with CREMA-Costa Rica and Fins Attached Marine Research and Conservation groups on this recent expedition.

Hammerhead shark
Asociación CREMA photo
Hammerhead sharks were among those tracked.

Alex Antoniou, the president of Fins Attached, cautioned that park rangers at Isla del Coco must be appropriately equipped to deter illegal fishing operations in the area.

Antoniou seeks for the governments of Costa Rica and Ecuador to create the Cocos Galapagos Swimway, a transboundary marine protected area.

“Information is urgently needed to justify the creation of protected swimways for highly migratory species to other islands of the Eastern Tropical Pacific such as the Galapagos Islands of Ecuador and Malpelo Island, Colombia,” said Randall Arauz of Fins Attached.


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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page

Published || Wednesday Edition, June 7, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 112
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Bones found close to Costa Rican border dusted off for new study
By the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
press staff

A new report by Smithsonian archaeologists and colleagues in the International Journal of Paleopathology identifies a bone tumor in the upper right arm of an adolescent who was buried around 1300 CE in a trash heap at a site in western Panamá called Cerro Brujo or Witch Hill. The reason for what appears to be a ritual burial in this abandoned pre-Colombian settlement is unknown.

“Based on the analysis of a tooth from the individual, we think he or she was buried about 150 years after the settlement was abandoned,” said Nicole Smith-Guzmán, post-doctoral fellow in staff scientist Richard Cooke’s lab at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panamá.

“And based on the fact that the body was tightly wrapped in the fetal position and buried face down with two clay pots and a shell trumpet like those still used by indigenous Ngäbe people in this area today, we consider this a ritual burial.”

The institute’s archaeologist Olga Linares (1936–2014) and Anthony Ranere, a professor emeritus at Temple University, discovered the burial in 1970, during a study funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation.

Ms. Linares proposed that the first inhabitants of Cerro Brujo were farmers who had fled to the site, about 3 kilometers from the Caribbean coast, from the nearby Chiriquí highlands when Volcán Barú erupted around 600 CE.

Ms. Linares and Ranere found evidence that the site was inhabited twice, once from about 600 CE and a second time between 780 and 1252 CE.

Cerro Brujo is a part of Bocas del Toro province, a popular tourist destination just across the border with Costa Rica near Sixaola.

The province of Chiriquí is just across the Costa Rican border with Panamá. Expats who have traveled by car or bus down to the southern border know that a road from the border crossing at Paso Canoas leads to David and Chiriquí.

Volcán Barú is nearby to Boquete, an area that includes a substantial expat community and property relatively placed in the middle of the isthmus in western Panamá just kilometers away from the Costa Rican border.

The burial in question, in the largest of five ancient trash pits at the site, may have been placed there because it was the site where the individual’s ancestors lived.

A large town site nearby, Sitio Drago near Boca del Drago on Isla Colón, excavated by University of California-Los Angeles archaeologist Tom Wake was occupied from roughly 600 CE until 1410 CE.

Boca del Drago is also located in Bocas del Toro province very close to the border with Costa Rica.

Ms. Smith-Guzmán is a bio-archaeologist who analyzes ancient bones to look for signs of health problems. In looking at the remains from the site 46 years later, she was surprised to find evidence of cancer in the upper right arm of an individual who was probably 14 to 16 years old.

All
views of bone
Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute photo   
Right humerus shows lesion and sign of bone tumor.

“As far as we know, this is the first case of cancer in ancient human remains reported from Central America,” Ms. Smith-Guzmán said.

“Both osteosarcoma and Ewing sarcoma, the two most likely cancers in this case, are most common in children and adolescents. Most of the published cases of these cancers in the past were from adults, probably due to the poor preservation of non-adult skeletal remains making this find especially rare.”


Most of the other examples of bone cancers are from places in the world with much more extensive collections of archaeological material. This form of cancer typically leaves a very characteristic sunburst pattern in the bone.

The bones also show evidence of anemia that may have been a result of the cancer or of another inflammatory or metabolic disease.

Three dimensional models of the humerus, one from a CT scan and the other from photogrammetry, are available in a program called Sketch Fab and in the supplementary material included in the article for use by other archaeologists and health professionals.

Shell trumpets like the one at the site made from an Atlantic triton shell, or Charonia variegata, are used in the balsería ritual practiced by Ngäbe peoples in this region of Panamá.

The Ngäbe believe that a disruption of the balance between the natural and supernatural worlds can lead to sickness when a malevolent spirit enters the body during a dream to steal the soul.


Traditionally, when a person was sick, a Ngäbe shaman, called a Sukia, would attempt to heal a patient using herbal remedies such as Hoffmannia longipetiolata, a plant still used in Ngäbe communities as an analgesic.

Ms. Smith-Guzmán will use DNA analysis, in collaboration with geneticists at the University of Göttingen, to learn more about the ancestry of the individual and the type of cancer s/he suffered from.


Vacation, travel and hospitality


Live in Costa Rica tours

  • Costa Rica’s #1 source for relocation since 1980
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See www.liveincostarica.com for details and itineraries
9168-3/17/17


Hidden Garden
Visit the Largest Gallery in Costa Rica
Featuring artistic expressions of Costa Rican culture, heritage and traditions, the Hidden Garden Art Gallery has been your source for fine art since 2010.  Here you will find 15 large rooms of art in a beautiful, tranquil setting, with more than 60 artists showcasing traditional and contemporary paintings, sculpture, photography and giclee prints.  Located just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport (LIR) towards the beaches. Stop in for a visit to enjoy the view!

Visit our Web site at:  www.HiddenGardenArt.com
Contact us by email: info@HiddenGardenArt.com
Find us on Trip Advisor, Facebook, Twitter,
Moon Travel Guides & Frommer's

Gallery hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Tel.  8386-6872 / 2667-0592; U.S. telephone 702-953-7073
International shipping available.
9214-8/2/17


George Lundquist header

The Relocation/Retirement tour with the
 *HIGHEST SUCCESS RATE
OF RELOCATION*

 (as reported by the moving companies)
Visit many rental options to actually experience the price/amenity options available in more of the areas chosen by Expats for security, comfort, and quality of life.

Meet many Expats who are willing to share their experiences and how the tour has value long after the “lust” wears off.
See how to choose a Retirement tour video by past guest!
HERE!

Ask the others what you get for your money, and then compare the quality of accommodations, quality, quantity and variety of food and drink to measure the best value for your money. 

Learn how others “talk the talk” and learn who really can “walk the walk”

Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.

George Lundquist, Retirement, Relocation, and Lifestyle Guide. Email : lundquistgeorge@gmail.com
9113-7/4/17

experience Costa Rica
Costa Rica Travel In Paradise Group Tours

Looking for easy booking process for a smooth Costa Rica trip?   We customize wonderful trips to Costa Rica.  We offer you our wealth of knowledge for a great experience . . . a trip of a lifetime!!!

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8995-4/17/17

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Household Furnishings

Fine
Furniture of Sarchi

Fine Furniture of Sarchi - Sarchi, Costa Rica
All our handcrafted products are made in Sarchi with pride and quality by artisans who are dedicated to designing, crafting, and delivering our furniture to you. Please visit our website and send us a picture and specifications of what YOU like, or just send us pictures from anywhere you wish. We will quote you right back with a more than competitive price and an on-time delivery date. Delivery and set up available throughout Costa Rica. We have different Costa Rican woods from which you may choose. 
www.FineFurnitureOfSarchi.com
Contact information:
Adolfo's Cell 506-8831-4306
 Tom in the USA 803-261-6000
Email: Info@FineFurnitureOfSarchi.com
9218-8/25/17

U.S. Income Tax

U.S. Income Tax Services
Marlene B. Summers
T
ax Accountant Licensed by the I.R.S.
 
Ms. Summers
Marlene B. Summers
U.S. citizens, plan now for your tax year.  Let me help you pay only the tax  you must!

  If tax payment is a holding you back, the IRS have options that can solve payment problems.  If your filing is not up-to-date, the Streamlined Filing Procedure can be used to mitigate penalties. Including  disclosure of foreign corporations to avoid future problems.  
Take advantage of the foreign earned income exclusion. File current or past due FBARs with no penalties to meet IRS requirements. File your current or amended returns.

Over 10 years in Costa Rica.
Competitive rates.

Phone (506) 2289-6590 or (506) 8750-2316
Email: marlene.summers@gmail.com
9186-6/30/17

A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Business
wanted
Real estate wanted

Real estate rentals (paid category)

San Jose Penthouse

Beautiful Penthouse Fully Furnished for Rent
Central San José downtown 

Including electricity, rate ₡355.000 (colones) or $650 per month.  2-bedroom / Laundry in bldg /  apartment. with king-sized bed in the master bedroom and large closets and desk.  It has 2 bathrooms, large kitchen and separate large living room. The apartment is on the top floor of the building with a commanding view of San José.  American-style apartment with elevator in a very secure building in Barrio Amón. Total eastern wall is windows for commanding view of area. The fully equipped kitchen has all the amenities included. All linen, towels, bedding are included. Three televisions, cable television, high-speed internet, WiFi. It includes plenty of hot water and all your electricity is also included in the rent. Shared free laundries on four floors of the building. Convenient to Parque Morazán, 100 mts. north of downtown Holiday Inn, Del Rey and other downtown hotels, restaurants, casinos, city government, National Registry.  1/2 mo. security deposit. No lease required.

For personal inspection and more information call Hilda or Frank at (506) -7279-0252, 7148-1518, 7256-8378. Not calling for deals not related.
9217-5/11/17


Tropical Homes logo
Tropical Homes of Costa Rica is offering the best selection of vacation homes, condos and long-term rental homes in Playa Flamingo, Playa Potrero and Playa Brasilito on  the Pacific Gold Coast of Guanacaste. A wide selection of private residencies is providing an excellent choice for  your stay in this beautiful part of Costa Rica.We are offering homes for every budget and every need. Please visit our Web page at www.tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or contact us at rentals@tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or call at (506) 2654-5442
9055-2/23/17


Spectacular rentals are available for low weekly prices on SellMyTimeshareNow.com at resorts such as Bahia Turquesa Residences and Villas Sol Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. We have 
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centers, but are surrounded in lush, tropical forest. Villas are also available for sale in our inventory, so you can enjoy yearly vacations to this mesmerizing rainforest paradise. Please visit our rental inventory HERE!  or call us toll free at 877-815-4227, International: 603-516-0200.  Email: info@sellmytimesharenow.com
9049-7/31/17


Real estate-related services (paid category)

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9118-6/26/17







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A.M. Costa Rica's
  
Fifth news page
Salsa Lizano
Published || Wednesday Edition, June 7, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 112
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real Estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us
 
Notorious arms dealer
in Contra affair dies at 81


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Saudi arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi has died at the age of 81. He had Parkinson's disease, according to his family.

Khashoggi was rumored to have been one of the world's richest men at the height of his career in the 1970s, when he was believed to have been worth some $4 billion.

He made his fortune by brokering international arms deals, and was implicated in the Iran-Contra affair, a notorious arms-for-hostages deal that saw several U.S. officials selling arms to Iran despite an arms embargo, and using the money to fund the rebel movement in Nicaragua.

Notorious for his opulent lifestyle and lavish parties, Khashoggi also was notable for his proximity to celebrity. He rubbed shoulders with the rich and famous of international society, including Imelda Marcos, widow of exiled Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos. Both Khashoggi and Marcos faced U.S. charges of racketeering and fraud in 1990, and both were acquitted.

Khashoggi's nephew, Dodi Fayed, was involved with Britain's Princess Diana before the car accident that killed them both in 1997.

His possessions themselves were famous. Khashoggi once owned one of the world's largest yachts, the 86-meter Nabila, which appeared in the James Bond film Never Say Never Again.

The yacht also was the subject of Khashoggi's Ship, a 1989 single by the rock group Queen.

Khashoggi's family told media that Khashoggi died peacefully after spending his last days surrounded by his family. He is survived by his wife Lamia.


Haley gives tough talk
on Human Rights Council


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Nikki Haley, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, has warned that the Trump Administration might pull out of the Human Rights Council if the U.N. body does not undertake necessary reforms.

In a tough “take no prisoners” speech at the opening of the council's three-week session, Haley put the group on notice that it should mend its ways.

Haley is the 29th U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and the first to address the U.N. Human Rights Council. Her tough, unequivocal message was not lost on the 47-member Council.

She criticized the human rights forum for what she perceived to be a double standard applied to Israel.

By way of example, she noted that the Council had never adopted a resolution condemning Venezuela for its serious human rights violations.

“And, yet it adopted five biased resolutions in March against a single country, Israel. It is essential that this council address its chronic anti-Israel bias if it is to have any credibility,” she said.

The United States and Israel are allies. Washington has long argued that the council unfairly focuses on Israel's alleged violations of human rights, including its treatment of Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip.

Even critics of Israel's policies on the Occupied Palestinian Territories have acknowledged that Israel was being unfairly singled out for special attention at the council.

They note that grave and systematic human rights abuses in all other countries, such as North Korea, Syria, Eritrea, Iran, Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi are examined under the same item 4 on the agenda. Israel, however, is dealt with under its own special item 7.

At the same time, critics blame the United States for this situation. Because President George W. Bush boycotted the council for three years, they argue that Washington had lost its seat at the table and therefore was not able to use its influence to prevent item 7 from becoming part of the council agenda.

The U.S. rejoined the Council in 2009 under Barack Obama's Administration.

The U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, Zeid Ra-ad al-Hussein did not engage in this debate. In his opening remarks to the council Tuesday, however, he called for the end of the occupation.

U.S. Ambassador Haley said membership of the council was an area open to reform, noting that Venezuela, a country with a poor human rights record, was a member of the council representing a situation she found untenable.

She said the council must address this issue. If Venezuela could not make improvements in its human rights record, she said “it should voluntarily step down from its seat on the Human Rights Council until it can get its own house in order.”

She said being a member of the Council is a privilege, and no country who is a human rights violator should be allowed a seat at the table.

John Fisher, Geneva director of Human Rights Watch, agreed that the council could benefit from reform.

Jamil Dakwar uttered another view of Ms. Haley’s remarks at the council, director of the American Civil Liberties Union, who said it was hard to take the ambassador's support for human rights seriously in light of Trump administration actions like the Muslim ban and immigration crackdowns.

He said the U.S. must get its own house in order and make human rights at home a priority, then it can begin to credibly demand the same of other countries abroad.

Ms. Haley reserved some of her harshest observations regarding the worsening human rights situation in Venezuela for a side event hosted by the U.S. Mission later in the day on human rights and democracy in Venezuela.

She lambasted the government of Nicolas Maduro for starving and repressing its citizens. She accused the government of conducting a campaign of violence and intimidation against unarmed demonstrators, businesses, civil society, and freely elected political opposition.

She noted that since April, more than 60 people demonstrating against the government have been killed, more than 1,000 have been injured and nearly 3,000 have been detained, including over 300 civilians charged with criminality in military courts.

She said that President Maduro had begun the process of withdrawing from the Organization of American States, turning his back on the principles of democracy and self-determination in the Inter-American Democratic Charter.

She called the deteriorating situation in Venezuela an economic, political and humanitarian crisis that demands the world's attention.

“Here, at the world's preeminent human rights organization, Venezuela is a member in good standing,” she said. “And it uses that membership to block any meaningful discussion of its human rights violations.”

Ms. Haley said the council has no excuses.

“It cannot consider itself the world's leading human rights organization and continue to ignore the violations and abuses that are occurring in Venezuela,” she said.

Ms. Haley’s comments alternately antagonized Maduro’s supporters and buoyed his rivals.

Rafael Ramírez, Venezuela’s ambassador to the U.N., said the United States shares responsibility for the suffering in our country because it encourages and stimulates the most violent groups and interferes in our internal affairs. Ramirez accused the United States of crafting a calculated and committed strategy against our country.

But opposition lawmakers welcomed Ms. Haley’s demand for Venezuela to restore protection of its people’s human rights or else lose its spot on the Security Council.


One in three patients start
HIV treatment too late


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A large team of international researchers has found 30 percent of HIV positive individuals in nearly a dozen countries delay starting life-saving drugs.

A study spearheaded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked at the prevalence of HIV in Haiti, Vietnam, Nigeria, Namibia, Swaziland, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania, Uganda and Zambia.

Investigators reviewed more than 694,000 treatment records from 2004 to 2015, from nearly 800 clinical facilities, focusing on patients age 15 and older.

HIV expert Andrew Auld, Malawi Country Director at the CDC, is lead author of the study. He said in eight of the countries, the percentage of people receiving early treatment increased, in Haiti, Mozambique and Namibia by 40 percent or more during the time period.

But Auld said treatment is still not reaching a significant portion of HIV positive people.

“So some of the key things that still need to be done in these countries to further reduce the prevalence of advanced disease and HIV treatment initiation are to scale up testing strategies and facilitate HIV diagnosis at earlier disease stages, and also treatment policies that mean that patients once they are diagnosed are eligible to start HIV treatment the same day,” he said.

HIV infects and destroys the immune system’s CD-4 T-cells, so the body gradually loses its ability to fight off infections, eventually with lethal consequences in untreated individuals.

UNAIDS has set a 90-90-90 target in dealing with the HIV epidemic.

By 2020, it’s hoped that 90 percent of all people with HIV will know their status, 90 percent will receive antiretroviral therapy and 90 percent of those receiving treatment will have viral suppression.

Not only does immediate antiretroviral treatment mean avoiding life-threatening complications, Auld said it reduces the risk of transmission.

Another study, published in the “New England Journal of Medicine” in 2016, found treatment reduces the risk of spreading HIV to a sexual partner by up to 96 percent.

The risk of vertical transmission, from pregnant women to their newborn babies, is also reduced if the mother is treated with antiretroviral drugs.

Despite advances in treatment and care of people infected with the AIDS virus, the NEJM article noted that there were more than two million HIV infections reported worldwide in 2014.

Auld said the main reason people wait until they are very sick to go for treatment is they are unaware that quick action increases their chances of survival.

Men with more advanced cases, according to Auld, point to work demands that keep them from seeking treatment earlier in the course of the disease.

 For women, childcare and family obligations are often cited. Among infected children, Auld said the problem is access to testing and treatment.

“HIV diagnosis is not a death sentence,” he stressed. “Excellent HIV treatment is available and people can live long, healthy, productive lives if they adhere to the HIV treatment. And it will increase demand for both testing and treatment services.”

The study by Auld and colleagues is published in the journal “Morbidity and Mortality Weekly.”


U.S. drug deaths reach
highest levels in 2016


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Drug deaths in the U.S. rose at the steepest rate ever to the highest level in recorded history in 2016, claiming more than 60,000 lives, and early data suggest deaths from opioids and other drugs will continue to increase in 2017.

Drug overdose is now the leading cause of death for Americans under the age of 50, Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said Tuesday.

"Drug abuse is crippling families and communities throughout our country," Rosenstein said at a joint news conference with Drug Enforcement Agency officials.

"We are not talking about a slight increase. There is a horrifying surge in drug overdoses."

More than two million Americans have some sort of physical dependence on opioids, or painkillers that are legally prescribed to many people, but can become addicting if they are taken in excess or for long periods of time.

A new and even more dangerous aspect of the opioid crisis is the increasing prevalence of extremely potent, illegally manufactured variants of existing drugs, such as fentanyl.

Even minute amounts of illicit versions of fentanyl or carfentanil, as little as two or three grains, can be lethal. A troubling side effect of the drug problem is the risk that such potent substances pose to police officers and paramedics trying to help drug overdose victims.

Although DEA does not yet have data quantifying the problem, officials say there is a clear increase in cases where first responders handling evidence or helping overdose victims have become ill, suffering breathing problems, dizziness and even loss of consciousness after accidental inhalation of such opioids.

The acting administrator of the federal antidrug agency, Chuck Rosenberg, has warned emergency responders to use caution in drug-overdose cases, and to wear protective gear such as masks and gloves to reduce the chance of accidental contamination.

Even dogs trained to detect illegal drugs are at risk. Their handlers have begun carrying antidotes for the animals as well as for themselves, but the new wave of synthetic drugs is so powerful that multiple doses of antidotes are sometimes necessary to save the rescuers.

Summarizing the DEA advice to emergency teams at an overdose scene, Rosenberg said: "If you don't know what it is, assume there's something in it that will kill you.''

The extremely rapid rise in opioid problems is not unique to the U.S. The European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction, in Lisbon, reported Tuesday that dangerous synthetic compounds mimicking the effects of heroin or morphine are a growing health threat in the European Union.

Overdose deaths in Europe rose six percent to 8,441 in 2015, rising for the third consecutive year. And the center warned that drug-related deaths in Europe could be much higher, due to systematic under-reporting in some countries and delayed reporting.

Legally prescribed opioids, which are estimated to be used by up to 100 million Americans, also are a growing issue in Europe.

Opioids are now represented in 38 percent of all requests for drug treatment in the European Union, the center's report said, adding: "In both Europe and North America, the recent emergence of highly potent new synthetic opioids, mostly fentanyl derivatives, is causing considerable concern."


Smart bus
Voice of America photo         
Here comes a hybrid bus without a driver.

Driverless smart bus runs
on virtual painted tracks

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A Chinese company has unveiled a driverless bus-train hybrid that uses white lines painted on the road to navigate.

The company, CRRC, called the electric vehicle a smart bus.

The Autonomous Rail Rapid Transit is made up of three cars, is 30 meters long and is capable of carrying about 500 passengers. It can reportedly reach speeds up to 70 kilometers per hour and can travel 25 kilometers on one 10-minute charge.

It uses sensors to stay on the white line.

The smart bus is much cheaper than building a rail track. This makes it ideal for cities that have growing demand for public transit, but not enough money to build subways.

According to state media, Xinhua, it costs $102 million to build a kilometer of subway and only $2 million for the ART.

The first line will be a 6.5 kilometer route expected to start running in 2018 in Zhuzhou.


Paris police shoot attacker
outside of Notre Dame


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said Tuesday the man who attacked a Paris police officer with a hammer Tuesday at the Notre Dame Cathedral shouted: "It's for Syria."

Collomb told reporters outside the cathedral that an identification card found on the attacker indicated he was an Algerian student.

The attacker walked up behind three police officers on patrol in the late afternoon, as the square in front of the cathedral was crowded with tourists.

The French prosecutor's office said its counterterrorism unit has launched an investigation into the attack, which occurred as officers patrolled the esplanade in front of the cathedral.

As the attack unfolded, security personnel hurried inside tourists waiting to enter the cathedral. The doors to the cathedral were locked while police reinforcements cleared the square, checking for any accomplices or explosive devices.

The Paris police department said an officer shot and injured the man after he attacked one of the officers with a hammer. Collomb said the policeman is in stable condition. He said both the policeman and his assailant were taken to the hospital.

Collomb said the assailant also possessed kitchen knives, an indication of a trend from very sophisticated acts of terrorism to whatever tools or instruments they can find. He said the attacker acted on his own.

Other European interior ministers will meet soon to better learn how to coordinate the sharing of intelligence in the fight against terrorism.

Paris remains under high security after several terrorist attacks in recent years, including on law enforcement and security personnel.

In April, an attacker shot at a police van on Paris' Champs Elysees. One officer was killed and two others were injured. The attacker was fatally shot by police.

On Saturday, a terror attack on London Bridge and a nearby restaurant killed seven people. The three attackers were shot dead by police.


More news of the Americas
From the Voice of America

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale
Real estate for sale (paid category)

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9124-4/19/17


Rich Coast Realty
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Real Estate and Construction in the Central Pacific
Three-bedroom furnished house in gated beach community, walk to the beach, $235k. Ocean View Property, can be subdivided into four view lots, 10 minutes from the beach. Only $40,000! Beachfront Lots from $35,000!Contact us with any questions you have about buying property in Costa Rica, Construction, Residency, etc.
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Have a Property For Sale? Contact Us!
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9189-9/2/17


San Ramon home
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed,  Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike: mmpeace@hotmail.com  (please link that email)
Check out slide show HERE!
9220-8/15/17


Santiago de Puriscal
A little piece of paradise near Santiago de Puriscal,
Costa Rica.
    

16 acres (approximately).  Price: $425,000 USD

We are selling our beautiful finca that has been in the family for 37 years. It is located 3 miles (5 km.) northwest of Santiago de Puriscal in the village of Desamparaditos. We are looking for a discriminating buyer who would appreciate the location, views, flora and fauna. Excellent for artists, writers and nature lovers. Fantastic birding. Very private but not isolated. Have surveyed plans for possible subdividing.

For more information:  In the U.S.A. call the owners: Pete & Debbie Todd: 970 -221-1457 or 970-581-4826 or email toddscolorado@gmail.com. In Costa Rica call Liz Guegan at 506-7187-8577.
CODE: 9216-8/11/17


Puriscal home
GORGEOUS MOUNTAIN & OCEAN VIEW HOME
REDUCED $40K - $355,000
HEALTH CONDITIONS REQUIRES QUICK SALE
This is a gorgeous, new, 3-bedroom luxury home on 2.2 flat acres in a secure, gated community, high in the hills of Puriscal, with stunning, 180-degree views of the ocean, city and mountains of the Central Valley in Costa Rica. Centrally located in the heart of Costa Rica, you are never more than an hour from the Pacific beaches while being much less than that to the culture, shopping, services and night life of the San José, Escazú, Santa Ana and the whole Central Valley. The Altos de Antigua gated community sits at an altitude of 2,800 feet with mild temperatures year round. Features wide paved roads and cement culverts throughout, a large community pool & spa with changing rooms & showers. The community association fees are $42 a month ($500 annually).
This property is currently being offered for $355,000.00 U.S.
Purchase adjoining 2.2 acre investment lot with the home sale for $35,000.00 U.S. or separately for $55,000.00 U.S.
 
    Summary of House Features:

       * Completed 2012 to North American standards
       * 3 large bedrooms, 2 full baths
       * Custom designed kitchen w/granite countertops
       * Frigidaire Professional appliance package
       * State-of-the-art solar hot water
       * Eco-friendly Toshiba LED lighting
       * LG Multi-Split air conditioning system
       * House & perimeter security alarm system
       * 2-car closed garage w/large paved driveway
 
Video Tour: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AUEAmahIU9A
Community Web Site: http://www.altigua.com
Photos: HERE!
Costa Rica # 506-8985-6705 or from the States call # 561-740-0651 or email gary_one@msn.com
9173-9/1/17

colinasdelsol
COLINAS DEL SOL Fenced Gated Lots for Sale

* Colinas del Sol is a fenced and gated project  in a quiet area.
* There are 88 clear titled lots.
* Mountain areas with great views.
* Gently sloping level areas ideal for hobby farms, gardening, fruit trees.
* Quiet place to get away from the busy city and beach crowds.
* All lots have gravel roads to them, water and electricity at each.
* Lots are 5,000 sq. meters or larger, starting at only $40,000 USD
* Located in Libertad, Guanacaste, northwest Pacific area of Costa Rica.
* 20 minutes to the Liberia International Airport
* 15 minutes to the Pacific Beaches
* 10 minutes to Medical Facilities
* 25 minutes to the Liberia Hospital
* 5 minutes to Vista Ridge Golf Club

Contact:
In Costa Rica, Jeffrey Sandi Murray:  jsandimurray@colinasdelsolcr.com
In the USA and Canada contact Jim Day: jimday50@aol.com or call 517-484-3675

For more information Click Here: www.colinasdelsolcr.com
9056-2/28/17

Etlinger Farm
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Beautiful farm in excellent location
At only an hour's drive from San José, minutes from Guápiles, and boardering Braulio Carrillo National Park, Etlingera Farms is one heck of an amazing farm. We purchased this 77-acre farm 10 years ago after many trips, and an exhaustive search. It has a little bit of everything we were looking for and a whole lot of beauty. Our average elevation of 600 meters helps to keep Bella Vista cool year round. This farm is nearly level with a semi-modern 2-bedroom house. A fairly rustic 2-bedroom caretaker's home. And, a comfortable, 1-bedroom cabin where we stay. We have 2 large barns, a chicken coop, and a 3-stall pig pen. There are two tilapia ponds and 2 hectarias, (approximately 5 acres) of different species of bananas. The property boarders Rio Blanco in the rear and has 300 meters of public road frontage. Water, electricity, and telephone are all serviced by public utility. Etlingera Farms was reforested with several thousand wood trees of different tropical varieties. We truly believe this farm is spectacular. Our neighbors are selling for as much as $20 per meter. We are negotiable, motivated and open to offers. Our location can be found by searching Etlingera Farms on Google Maps. Our webpage is www.etlingerafarms.com and photo album can be found at www.ticorico.com
9196-4/25/17

horse ranch
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Spectacular Horse Ranch and Spiritual/Yoga
Retreat Center For Sale

We invite you to a horseback tour of 187 acres of pristine farm land with breathtaking vistas, including the islands of the Gulf of Nicoya. There are multiple springs and streams, wooded areas, hard-wood and fruit trees, rolling hills with a geat variety of birds and wildlife. This property boasts the privilege of being bordered by thousands of acres of forest preserve down a steep canyon, offering its own spectacular views, which will never be developed. The many hills provide a builder an endless array of possibilities for nestling buildings in where they will have both views and privacy. The elevation of the property at 1,200 to1600 feet above sea level ensures fresh breezes and ideal year-round temperatures with a day-time average in the low 80's for open-air living. There is a ranch-style house with guest house with 8 total bedrooms, 5 modern baths, huge eat-in kitchen, landmark palm-thatched giant rancho, stable, and storage buildings. The home will come partially furnished, including beds, ample dishware for large groups, housewares, linens, washer/dryer, and fine hard-wood hand-built cabinetry. The remaining horses, 4 to 6 of them, will also convey if one wishes. We are also including a LARGE BEACH LOT in nearby Playa Bejuco. San Rafael de Nandayure is a tiny rural village nestled into the mountainside above Carmona with all the charms of the simple good life of a BLUE ZONE. Carmona is a thriving town with a clinic, restaurfants, shopping, and everything else one may need. The price of our listing Rancho Ricco is $799,000. More information
go to www.ranchforsalecostarica.com  Call Darin Ricco, phone +619-846-8249 or email:  darin_ricco@hotmail.com
9183-6/13/17

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Owner Financing in San Ramon
New Construction, and Ocean View 
Brand new home with 4-plus bedrooms and 3 baths all overlooking an incredible 180-degree view of the Pacific Ocean and mountains. Located only 45 minutes from the San Jose airport and about the same to the Pacific Ocean.  The lower level could be used as a separate apartment or mother-in-law setup. Home includes HUGE master  suite, CLOSETS, custom cabinets, granite counter tops, high wood ceilings, and all in an area that is 70-80 degrees year round. Priced at $199,000. Completion date is January.  See the Virtual Tour CLICK HERE or see our site here  www.whynotcostarica.com. If you would like to take a look at this amazing house, please give me a call at  Costa Rica # 506-8755-6743 or if from the States call # 509-570-1928 or email tim@whynotcostarica.com 
9143-2/3/17

Penthouse
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Costa Rica penthouse for sale
 5 -story penthouse for sale.  One of a kind penthouse on top of the Corobici Hotel in Sabana overlooking the Central Park and new Soccer Stadium in San José.  Excellent location provides you easy access to everywhere.  Other benefits include 24-hour security, 2 restaurants inside the hotel providing 1st class room service plus shared common areas in the hotel. Commercial license is in place. Seller will consider owner financing.  Asking $795K U.S.  Also available for monthly rent for $3,400 per month on an annual basis. Go to www.ThePenthouseCostaRica.com  Owners U.S. cell phone: 813 310-7402  Email crstratton@ymail.com
9132-6/1/17

Business for sale or lease (paid category)

Live the dream!
Several profitable businesses, including a regional radio station, are for sale in Costa Rica. Certain purchases can provide the new owner with residency as well as a great lifestyle. So live your dream while making a profit. Contact: manager@crbusiness.biz.

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

CENTURY 21 JACÓ BEACH
Century 21

A Name You Trust,
Professionalism You Deserve

Tom Ghormley and the dream team!
Owner/Broker
in CR since 1979

Buying? Selling? Renting?
We Can Do It!
Let us help you live your dreams!
Beachfront, Views, Mountains,
Beaches, Houses, Condos,
Hotels, Restaurants, Projects,
Commercial, Investments and more

 Century 21 Jacó Beach Realty
Playa Jacó, Puntarenas, Costa Rica
U. S. A. phone numbers:  (213) 283-5168 
or Toll Free: (877) 746-3868
Costa Rica phone number: (506) 2643-3356
Email: info@c21jaco.com
Web: www.c21jaco.com
9215-3/22/18


Remax
Tamarindo
www.remax-oceansurf-cr.com The experts in buying property in Costa Rica, with more than 20 years experience and the largest networked team of agents in the country.  We can help you learn if investing in Costa Rica is right for you with our low-key, educational approach to sales. Our professional agents can tell you more about Costa Rica properties, including condos, homes, lots and & commercial real estate. Twelve (12) agents to serve you, from Playa Marbella to Playa Dante in the Guanacaste, through our Tamarindo and Flamingo offices. For more information, please contact our local phones: 506-2653-0073 Tamarindo / 506-2201-9056 Flamingo ~ Toll Free: 1-866-976-8898 or email:  info@remax-oceansurf-cr.com  or click here www.remax-oceansurf-cr.com
9145-1/2918


ReMax
Playas del Coco
We are an award-winning Team of Professional Agents working with Costa Rica’s #1 Selling Real Estate Agency RE/MAX Prestige Ocean Properties. Get to KNOW, LIKE & TRUST us and let us help you find YOUR Pura Vida! We have over 30 years of experience to educate our buyers and sellers in all aspects of Real Estate.  For Information on condos, homes, lots, farms, ranches, commercial or development property
CONTACT US TODAY with NO OBLIGATION whatsoever.

Playas del Coco Click Here!

Playa Panama Click Here!

Playa Hermosa Click Here!
Peninsula Papagayo Click Here!

Playa Matapalo Click Here!
Toll Free 1-877-293-1456
Email: michael@costarica-realestate.com

9174-2/7/18

Real estate-related services (paid category)

A-1 graphic
A1 MASTER BUILDERS COSTA RICA
SMALL and LARGER jobs welcome !!!. We can build from any plan you bring us all work done by USA codes master electric and plumbing Better quality and lower prices than USA. We do it all Right  + Reasonable.
Call us: Toll Free 877-778-8515   
     Text from US: 804-313-6382 
     CR phone: 506-8307-0164
     Email: hotelescazu@aol.com
     For more info also see our sites:
    www.a1masterbuildercostarica.webs.com
    www.hotelsescazu.com
    www.hotel4salecostarica.com
    www.wind-solar.webs.com 
9142-7/27/17
Related

Browse timeshares for sale and rent by owner in Costa Rica at bargain prices. We connect existing timeshare owners with those looking to buy or rent a timeshare on the resale market. Timeshares on the resale market are up to 50% cheaper than those sold through the resort. Already own a timeshare and looking to sell? Stop saying “sell my timeshare” and let BuyaTimeshare.com help you find a buyer or renter.
9203-4/19/2018

COSTA RICA SOLAR
solar one

solar two
NOW with the New Power Company Regulations, we're installing photo voltaic systems for solar electricity.
PV systems: we use Enphase micro-inverters. More flexible. Add panels whenever you like. More reliable than any other system and fully guaranteed!

Solar device
NOW is the time to install our new super-efficient solar hot water! New model for condos
Solar collector
BUY NOW! Your solar hot water system, so in three months, we can calculate a lower install price for your PV system.  Perfect for homes and hotels. Save up to 40% of your electric bill.
More Watts per Panel, Smarter and more Capable Enphase Micro Inverters mean Less Cost and more Flexibility for You.

    We aren't Cheap...Neither are our Products. Call to Compare.
    More Flexible, Reliable-and Fully Guaranteed!

    Push this BIG RED BUTTON:  (O) and Learn ​details about your deal with ICE     
    SEE our new PACKAGE DEALS.
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CALL TODAY!
Office: 506-2446-0543
Andre 506-8314-8090
Paul 506-8898-9398
OUR EMAIL:
 andrefurlong@gmail.com
Paul.Furlong@CR-Solar.com
VISIT OUR WEB:
www.crsolar.net 
9177-6/19/16



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Published || Wednesday Edition, June 7, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 112
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Cruz Roja grows trees
Cruz Roja Costarricense photo      
Cruz Roja member representing Puriscal plants tree.

Cruz Roja decides to plant some trees

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

All the branches of the Cruz Roja Costarricense joined in on Monday’s celebration of World Environment Day by planting some trees of its own in the hopes of raising awareness of climate change.

Monday saw each auxiliary committee of the Cruz Roja planting at least one tree. The organization said this is why people may have noticed staff in the parks, squares and streets over the weekend. These humanitarian workers were also out handing informative proposals and reforesting the outdoor spaces, a statement from the group said.

The Cruz Roja took the opportunity to promote the creation and launching of even more auxiliary committees and note the organization’s commitment to become a carbon-neutral organization by 2020.

“Recognizing that Costa Rica is one of the countries most vulnerable to risk, we consider it necessary for the Cruz Roja to help facilitate preventive, reconstructive and follow-up processes on issues that include climate change and carbon neutrality,” according to one of the main resolutions implemented by the Congreso Nacional de Cruz Roja on climate change.

“The principle of solidarity must be united through actions reaching everyone and giving meaning to the principle of humanity with a vision of development.”


Almost 800 detained in Montes de Oca

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Almost 800 people have been arrested in the canton of Montes de Oca, according to recent data provided by the public security ministry. Most of these were for drug offenses.

The Ministerio de Seguridad Pública said that, of the 786 arrested so far this year, 595 were for violations of the anti-drug policy. The rest were rounded up for crimes of theft, destruction of property and disorderly conduct. January 2017 was the most recorded month of apprehensions in this canton, according to officials.

Aside from the usual confiscations of cocaine, crack and illegal firearms, marijuana remained the primary drug in relation to the detentions of these persons.



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From page 7:

New regulations are coming for gas industry

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía is currently working on new regulations for the commercial exploitation of propane and butane gas.


The new rules seek to improve the security standards during the packaging, storage, transportation and distribution of the product. They also require stronger traceability to properly track down gas cylinders in case of an emergency.

Right now, government is working on a first draft of the new regulations and, along with the Ministerio de Economía, Industria y Comercio will take it to a public consultation with consumers and producers of the gas.

The final version of the draft will be presented at the end of June before the Ministerio de Economía for its approval. 

“With the application of this new regulation users will benefit from greater security in the service, based on the new traceability schemes. In addition, consumers will have improved  mechanisms to request a better and availability of the product.

In Costa Rica, butane and propane gas is used mainly by the industrial sector and residential consumers It is also used in hotels, hospitals, and schools. A.M. Costa Rica reported that all aluminum gas tanks tested on safety compliance by the Autoridad Reguladora de Servicios Públicos did not pass the test, posing a higher risk of leakages and explosions to consumers. The gas industry has been on the spot in the last years because of explosions that have killed users and destroyed businesses.

Last year in March, a potato-themed restaurant located close to Universidad de Costa Rica was destroyed by a gas tank explosion. Another case happened in Jan. 2013, when a small restaurant in San José set on fire after a gas tank was ignited. The cause of that fire was leakage. The owner and cook died two days later in the intensive care unit at Hospital San Juan de Dios.