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Published Monday, Nov. 21, 2016, in Vol. 17, No. 230
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The impact and force of the heavy rain in the southern zone can be seen in this highway photo. This was one of a number of roadways that were heavily damaged by the relentless rain that dumped 20 inches or more in some places within a few days.

Our story is HERE!
highway
Photo by Alfonso Quesada



Corporate tax bill is headed to the full legislature
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A legislative committee has rejected 228 amendments to the proposed tax on corporations and sent the measure, No. 19818, to the full legislature.

The Comisión Permanente de Asuntos Hacendarios was working with an expedited process, and only 59 of the amendments received the five minutes of discussion that the procedure mandates.

This fast track treatment was approved by the full legislature. The measure also will receive speedy treatment on the floor of the legislature where debate also will be restricted.

Otto Guevara Guth, the Movimiento Libertario lawmaker, made most of the amendment motions, said a legislative summary. Among other issues, he said operators of inactive corporations should not be required to pay the tax. He said 54 percent of the corporations and similar entities on the books at the Registro Nacional were inactive.

An inactive corporation usually is one without economic activity. Many expats maintain inactive corporations to hold ownership of their homes or vehicles.
Lawmakers voted 42 to 10 to expedite the bill Nov. 1. The bill specifies that 90 percent of the money collected go to the Ministerio de Seguridad Pública.

Theoretically this money is only supposed to be used for infrastructure and not for trips and salaries.

However, the bill clearly would free up money from the regular budget for these purposes. Even the minister, Gustavo Mata, said he wanted to hire 1,000 new police officers.

The government expects to collect 45 billion colons from the tax, about $82 million. Some 5 percent would go to the Ministerio de Justicia y Paz and to the Judicial Investigating Organization.

The tax on corporations, sociedades anónimas and other similar entities, would range from 64,000 to 212,000 colons, about $117 to $388.

The new bill would replace a tax that was declared unconstitutional in January 2013 for technical reasons.

Lawmakers most likely will pass the tax bill before they adjourn for Christmas. The effective date probably will be Jan. 1.


Big parade of oxcarts is scheduled for next Sunday
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Expats and tourists should get their cameras ready for one of the better photogenic events of the year.

This is the pre-Christmas parade of the oxcarts, called this year the XX Entrada y Desfile de Boyeros por San José. The oxcarts and handlers parade from the foot of Paseo Colón to Plaza de la Democracia. Last year there were 339 vehicles pulled by the oxen.

The parade starts at 10 a.m., and expats and tourists should make sure they have hats and sun lotion.

The reviewing stand is expected to be at Parque Central on Avenida Segundad.
 
The lumbering oxen are called bueyes, and their handlers are boyeros. The event is sponsored by


 the Asociación Boyera Costarricense. The parade always is on the last Sunday of November and heralds the Christmas season.

Some of the carts carry life-size wooden statues of various saints.

The day before boyeros and their families set up camp starting at 4 p.m. in Parque la Sabana in the style of the 19th century. This is a big cookout with singing, dancing and storytelling to which the public is invited. This is the type of camp the oxcart drivers would have as they traveled the roads of Costa Rica.

The oxcart is a well-known symbol of the country, and the tradition has been designated an intangible heritage by the United Nations.

Most of the participants are not full-time oxcart handlers. The keeping of oxen and the various parades draw participants from all walks of life.
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San José, Costa Rica, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 230
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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.

Dentistry


Dental
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Psychotherapy

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Insurance professionals

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Residency experts

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RESIDENCY IN COSTA RICA
A full service immigration agency
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There are four primary ways to apply for legal residency in Costa Rica:
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Phone in Costa Rica: ( 506 ) 2226=0755  (En español )

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 Accountants

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In front of Subway at Plaza Herradura, Jacó
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coast                                      guard
National emergency commission photo
The Guardacostas pitches in to provide supplies in Golfito.

No letup expected from the heavy rains

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

That low-pressure system that caused havoc in the southern part of the country will continue to hang around today at least through the morning, said the Instituto Meteorológico Nacional. And it might grow stronger.

More rain was expected in the south Pacific, the Caribbean and the northern zone with intermittent showers in the Central Valley, the forecast said.

Sunday through 7 p.m. the weather institute reported rain measuring from 150 to 200 millimeters in the mountains and 50 to 90 millimeters on the Caribbean coast. The figure of 100 millimeters is about four inches.

In addition, rain in the northern zone was as much as 390 millimeters, especially in the section of Vara Blanca in the mountains northwest of Heredia Centro. That is more than 15 inches.

So far there have not been any reports of major damage, and those are expected today.

By contrast, reports from Drake Bay on the Osa peninsula said that there was sunshine during the afternoon. The peninsula had been hit hard for the last five days.

There was more bad news Sunday night, however. On the Caribbean coast, the Río Chirripó was running out of its banks, and the weather institute said that the low pressure system was strengthening over the Caribbean.

The U.S. Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida, predicted that the system has a 90 percent chance of becoming a tropical depression or tropical storm.

There also are winds predicted to continue, mainly in Guanacaste, with gusts of up to 75 kph, said the weather institute. That is about 45 mph.

The national emergency commission reported Sunday afternoon that there were 370 persons in five shelters in the south of the country.

They were in Ciudad Neily, La Palma, San Ramón de Guaycará and in  Pueblo Nuevo de Corredores.

The Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes said that it had opened up many of the routes that were blocked by slides and fallen trees. That includes the highway from the east to Puerto Jiménez on the Osa peninsula, although that route is restricted in some places. However, some roads suffered major damage that will require reconstruction.

The transport ministry said there were highways damaged between Parrita and Acosta, Monte Rey and Los Santos, to the Depósito Comercial de Golfito, the Contanera between Puerto Jiménez and Drake and the route between Ciudad Neily and San Vito. A new story Saturday said that the Interamerican Sur was damaged near Rey Curré and between Buenos Aires de Puntarenas and Palmar Sur.

The emergency commission also said that the Cruz Roja had evacuated tourists from the Hotel Lookkotin in Carate de Punta Burica in Golfito.


Country shocked by ex-soccer star’s death

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Ricans were shocked Sunday when the 32-year-old former captain of a first division soccer team dropped dead near the end of a recreational 10k.

The man was Gabriel Badilla Segura, who played for Saprissa until he retired due to heart problems. The cause of death is pending an autopsy. He was under the care of a physician.

Badilla was a well-known player who had become a first division standout when he was just 17.

After his death, the Cruz Roja issued a statement saying that its crews had arrived rapidly when summonsed. The Ministerio de Salud issues a statement listing a number of requirements for recreational sports events.

This one, the annual Lindora Run, did not have appropriate permits, the ministry said.


Bogus document mills smashed in L.A.

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Document mills are providing a shortcut to legal status in the United States.

The U.S. Coast Guard Investigative Service reported it had smashed five bogus identity operations and that two of the 13 defendants have pleaded guilty in Los Angeles.

The Coast Guard is involved because the document mills produced transportation worker identification credentials that permit access to restricted shipping areas. The counterfeiters also produced green cards, passports, military identification cards, driver’s licenses and Social Security cards, said the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles.

Some of those arrested since October were runners who found customers on the streets.


Veterans to learn about medical options

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

The American Legion Post CR10 is hosting a seminar in La Sabana after its regular 11 a.m. post meeting Dec. 7.  The speakers will be a dental surgeon, a plastic surgeon, and an ophthalmologist.  The subject will be medical tourism and the veteran community. All veterans in Costa Rica and their adult family members are invited, the post said.

A free barbecue catered by a post member and sponsored by the doctors will be served after the speakers.

The medical group will tell that it offers a discount on all services for any veteran or family member. 

Those interested can make a reservation and learn the location with Earle Lancaster, 8475-8661, Matthew Lopes, 8968-6935, or Ken Johnson, 25l9-1695, to reserve a space.   

Those attending are asked to bring one or two pairs of children’s rubber boots.  These will be given to the teachers in the schools in the Talamanca Reserve for distribution to the children as needed, the announcement said.


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San José, Costa Rica, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 230
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U.S.-funded foundation initiated sex tourism case against Cuba Dave
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Poder Judicial has confirmed that the Fundación Rahab was the organization that initiated a criminal case against David Strecker, a U.S. citizen, on a charge of writing about sex tourism in Costa Rica.

To some extent, Fundación Rahab is a product of the United States government because it has been the recipient of a number of federal grants for work with prostitutes in San José and Jacó.

Hillary Clinton, when she was secretary of State, honored Mariliana Morales, the foundation’s founder for her efforts against human trafficking.

The Poder Judicial said that Fundación Rahab filed a complaint June 23, 2014, that launched prosecutors on its first and only sexual tourism investigation.

So when Strecker, also known as Cuba Dave, entered the country Aug. 24, 2015, judicial agents were on his tail. The Poder Judicial said that he was here to document erotic and sexual activities with photos and publish them on Web sites.

By doing so, Strecker was violating a 2013 law that made promoting the country as a sex tourism destination a crime. Agents followed him for days and arrested him when he was leaving the country. In fact, they were trying to find other crimes with which to charge him. They were unable to do so.

Still, Strecker, 66, has been in prison since his arrest. After his conviction, confirmed Friday by the Poder Judicial, he has been remanded to preventative detention.

He was prosecuted by the Fiscalía Especializada contra la Violencia de Género y Delitos Sexuales.

The case has sown uneasiness in the Poder Judicial, because most there recognize that the so-called crime would not stand up to constitutional analysis. Basically Strecker was convicted of reporting facts on his Web site. Some fear he eventually will seek indemnification for his jailing

It is believed that prosecutors approached him for an admission of guilt so the case would go away.

Because of the sleazy nature of  Strecker reporting, he has not been supported by journalistic organizations or others who defend free speech.

His lawyer is expected to appeal the conviction, although it is not known if he will cite constitutional grounds. The case could go to the Sala IV constitutional court and perhaps to the Interamerican Court of Human Rights, although that would take time and money.

Costa Rica is a supporter of the 1994 Chapultepec Declaration which says: Without an independent media, assured of the guarantees to operate freely, to make decisions and to act on them fully, freedom of expression cannot be exercised. A free press is synonymous with free expression.

Dave
Dave Strecker of Florida in happier times.


Even Strecker may not realize the fact, but he is clearly a reporter and covered by the declaration, even if the content of his Web sites are not standard journalism.

As most expats know, prostitution is not prosecuted here. And many foreigners, both men and women, come to Costa Rica for sexual adventures.

Costa Rica changed its penal code Feb. 8, 2013, and criminalized talking and writing about prostitution here. The penalty is from four to eight years in prison.

Prostitution is deeply embedded in the Latin culture. And the profession is practiced widely in Costa Rica. There are at least a hundred prostitution locations, usually termed pensiones, including one around the corner from the main judicial offices. There also are dozens of Web sites promoting sex tourism, and some, unlike Strecker, do this for financial gain.

Judicial agents raided a pension last week and detained the Colombian operator, who is facing a criminal charge of pimping, an allegation distinct from prostitution. There were five women working in the low-budget establishment on Avenida 10.

In addition to physical locations, there are print newspaper classifieds and online lists that offer sexual services.

The original Rahab in the Bible was a prostitute in Jericho who hid Israeli spies and was rewarded when Israel took over the town and killed everyone but her and her family. She sometimes is called the Bad Girl of the Bible.

The foundation sets up workshops for prostitutes to change their occupation. Foundation volunteers sometimes go on raids with police and try to convert prostitutes.



Health ministry insists vaccination requires a physician's prescription
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The health ministry claimed Friday that all vaccinations in Costa Rica require medical prescription.  That should come as a surprise to the hundreds of thousands who routinely obtain vaccinations at pharmacies or hospitals.

Some pharmacy chains are advertising shots for yellow fever for travelers and routine flu immunizations the seasonable disease.

The ministry, the Ministerio de Salud, issued the statement because vaccinations against dengue are now available in some private pharmacies, hospitals and clinics.

The ministry said that the vaccine sometimes produces unwanted reactions in those vaccines and that anyone seeking the shot should be evaluated by a physician beforehand.

It also said that youngsters less than 9 years and persons older than 45 should not get immunization against dengue.

Pregnant and nursing mothers should not either, it said, adding that this also is true for individuals undergoing chemotherapy.

The ministry did not cite any law or regulation in the statement it released. There was no indication if the ministry would  seek action against those giving flu shots without a doctor's note.



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Ancient Americans are being traced by the lead content in their teeth
By University of Florida news staff

Where’s the best place to start when retracing the life of a person who lived 4,000 years ago? Turns out that the teeth tell the tale.

Using a method known for helping forensic scientists solve cold cases, University of Florida doctoral student Ashley Sharpe created a map for determining the birthplace of ancient people and animals in Central America. Archaeologists will use the map to match lead found in bedrock from specific locations to a curious source: millennia-old teeth.

Pinpointing birth and death locations will help Ms. Sharpe and colleagues track the movement of prehistoric Maya and potentially solve mysteries surrounding the civilization’s origins and eventual demise.

Ms. Sharpe sampled lead isotope values found in rocks, which act as local signatures, from the Chicxulub crater in the Yucatán Peninsula, the site of the asteroid impact credited with wiping out the dinosaurs, and places in Belize, Guatemala and Honduras. Details of the new study are described in the November 2016 issue of PLOS ONE.

“If I find an ancient Maya individual buried on the Yucatan in Mexico, I can do a chemical analysis of the lead in their teeth and discover a very different story,” said Ms. Sharpe, who graduates this fall. “Maybe they originally came from Guatemala. This can change our view of everything.”

When tooth enamel forms during childhood, it incorporates elements from the local environment, including the dust the individual breathes from rock layers beneath the feet. Bones, on the other hand, change every few years. And as bodies decompose, the bones soak up materials around the area of the burial.

Tracing the movement of individuals via their teeth can offer clues about marriage alliances and slavery practices. Building knowledge of individual lives helps archaeologists figure out which villages were enemies, which were allies, and how the Maya communicated and traveled between cities. This could lead to a better understanding of how communication networks developed between Maya states, Ms. Sharpe said.

University of Florida forensic anthropologists are using lead analysis to trace the birthplace of unidentified homicide

teeth
University of Florida photo
Ground teeth and chunk of rock from the Chicxulub crater

victims, which can help police investigators narrow their search for missing persons to a particular state, country or region. Other archaeologists have included lead analysis in research used to track ancient humans from the Indus Valley Civilization.

“The anthropology department here at UF is becoming a hub for lead-based research,” Ms. Sharpe said. "In other words, we're the place to go if you need to track the origins an ancient or modern skeleton."

Researchers extract lead by first grinding up teeth, then inserting the particles into an inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometer. Temperatures inside the machine can be hotter than the sun, separating the lead.

If someone unearthed the remains of a native Floridian 1,000 years from now, the lead in their teeth would probably be the same as someone from across the country because we all breathe similar pollution, which contaminates the lead, said study co-author John Krigbaum, a university biological anthropologist.

“Back in prehistoric times, people were a product of the lands that they grew up on, the foods that they ate and the air they breathed,” Krigbaum said. “That’s also the case today.”


Vacation, travel and hospitality


HIdden Garden graphic
Put Costa Rica on your walls
The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is the perfect place to find quality Costa Rican and international art for your home or office.  With over 60 artists and 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we have been your source for fine art since 2010.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever. Located just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport (towards the beaches).

Visit our Web site at:  www.HiddenGardenArt.com
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Find us on Trip Advisor, Facebook, Twitter,
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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.
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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.

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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 columnist, Guide & Developer/Builder. lundquistgeorge@gmail.com

George Lundquist

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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!!!

* FAMILY VACATIONS. Our travels take into account the different ages of your family enjoy the most from your Family vacations. Click HERE!

* GROUP TOURS. Whether for a church group, couple of friends, Scout troop or a family group. We provide excellent quality service in your Group Tours. Click HERE!

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Contact us: 
Dial toll FREE from USA or Canada:  1.800.901.0114
CR local phone:  +506-2274-3231
Cells:  +506-8380-5919  and +506-8302-5877
Email:  info@travelinparadisecr.com
Web:  www.travelinparadisecr.com
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Howard book
Want to live in Costa Rica?
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Howard
                        rollover
Will Costa Rica Retirement Work For You?
Find out for yourself on Live In Costa Rica's POPULAR Tours

When you visit Costa Rica, you'll want to discover what you need to know to  make the right choice about moving to this tropical paradise.  Our familiarization tours have won hard-earned credentials that prove general excellence and the right focus.  These are the only retirement tours that are licensed and approved by the Costa Rican government and tourism institute  (ICT). In 2006 we were featured on the NBC Today Show and World News.  In 2010, we won the  prestigious Latin America-Asia Travel Excellence Award for the Best and Most Unique Tour in Latin America.

   * Discover how to make the right choices about moving here
   * Find out how to live affordably
   * See how other expats live. Meet other expats who have made
          the move.
   * Access the country's affordable health care system
   * Informative two-day seminar given by local experts in their
          relevant fields.
   * Tours led by Christopher Howard, 36-year resident, citizen,
          and the author of "The New Golden Door to Retirement
          and  Living in Costa Rica – the Official Guide to Relocation”
   *    ATTRACTIVE DISCOUNTS ON TOURS
 
Click HERE  to learn all about our Association of Residents (ARCR)  approved tours at www.liveincostarica.com
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Here's reasonable medical care
Costa Rica's world class medical specialists are at your command. Get the top care for much less than U.S. prices. It is really a great way to spend a vacation. See our list of recommended professionals HERE!amcr-prom



Need a book about Costa Rica?


Check out our special selections available at Amazon logo

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A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
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Real estate-related services (paid category)
COSTA RICA SOLAR
Solr Costa Rica
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.
Solar logo
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 
9027-12/17/16

Real estate rentals (paid category)

Tropical Homes

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 
Timeshare
1- to 3-bedroom ocean and garden view timeshares available and most offer air conditioning, cable TV, fully equipped kitchens, and relaxing hammocks on private balconies. Enjoy the unique combination of seclusion and convenience as all resorts listed on our site are close to popular Costa Rican attractions and downtown 
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 for rent (paid category)

Edificio Morazan
Fully furnished, American style apartments for rent
2-bedroom, 2- bathroom, fully furnished American-style apartments with elevator in a secure building in Barrio Amón. Cable, internet, water included. Shared laundry. Convenient to Parque Morazán,  hotels, restaurants, casinos, city government, national registry.   Rate  $650 per month plus electricity. 1/2 month security deposit. No lease.  Larger bedrooms, living rooms and kitchens. It would be the best for the prospective tenants to visit the building to see the apartment.  For more information contact  edificiomorazan@gmail.com
Or call Hilda at 506-2221-7161.
9094-11/26/16




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A.M. Costa Rica's
  
Fifth news page
Salsa Lizano
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 230
Calendar
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Axiom new ad

Obama says he won’t pop off
to continually criticize Trump


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

President Barack Obama says he wants to be respectful of the office and give his successor the chance to present his platform without someone popping off all the time.

At his last scheduled international news conference following a summit in Lima, Perú, Sunday, a reporter asked Obama if he will speak out if he sees Donald Trump undoing many of the policies that defined the Obama White House.

Obama said his plans right now are to finish his term, take first lady Michelle on vacation, spend time with his daughters, write, and think.

Obama said the job of president will force Trump to adjust on how he approaches the issues, which means he will have to govern more by reality and less on the rhetoric that helped him win the election.

He also said the Democratic Party does not need an overhaul despite the drubbing it took on election night. Obama noted that most Americans still agree with Democratic positions on gun control, health care and raising the minimum wage.

Obama said the issue of alleged Russian interference in the election did not come up when he met on the sidelines of the Lima summit with President Vladimir Putin.

Obama said if the U.S. has elections that are not focused on the issues but are driven by fake news, false information, and distractions, he is more concerned about what Americans are doing to themselves from the inside than what is done from the outside.

He described his brief talk with Putin as candid and courteous, saying it focused on Syria and Ukraine.

Obama said he would like to see the Minsk peace deal for Ukraine come into full force before his term is up in exactly two months.

But the president said he is not optimistic about short-term prospects in Syria with Russia and Iran backing President Bashar al-Assad in Aleppo.

Obama said he spent the last five years wrestling over how the U.S. should get involved in Syria.

There may have been a moral justification, but the president said there was no legal basis for military intervention, saying it would have been a strategic mistake.

He said the U.S. has to make sure to avoid statements that would further radicalize Muslims around the world, especially those he calls law-abiding Muslims in the United States and Europe. The president called them "key allies."


Obama and Sessions
Voice of America photo  
Trump is pictured with Sen. Jeff Sessions.

Trump's choices mirror views
expressed on campaign trail

 By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Donald Trump’s White House chief of staff-to-be defended the president-elect’s most recent picks for top administration posts.

“They will do everything they can to protect and secure our country here and abroad every single day that they wake up in the morning,” Reince Priebus said on ABC’s “This Week” program.

Trump announced Friday he had chosen Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama for attorney general, retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn for national security adviser, and Rep. Mike Pompeo of Kansas for CIA director.

A onetime military intelligence specialist, Flynn became a top Trump surrogate on international security matters, often raising eyebrows in the process, tweeting that “fear of Muslims is rational.”

“Islam is a political ideology. It is a political ideology. It definitely hides behind this idea, this notion of it being a religion,” Flynn said in a speech during the campaign.

Trump has spoken approvingly of torture to gather intelligence, and his pick for CIA director, Rep. Mike Pompeo, criticized the Obama administration’s reining in of interrogation techniques on terror suspects.

Sessions was one of the first senators to endorse Trump. Like Trump, Jeff Sessions is wary of Muslim refugees.

“If you are not able to do a background check sufficiently, vet the applicants, if you are not able to do that, then you are going to be admitting a certain number of people who have terrorist tendencies,” Sessions told reporters at the Capitol earlier this year.

And, Sessions has long been a hardliner on illegal immigration.

“Who has more right to a job in this country? A lawful immigrant, a green-card holder or a citizen, or a person who entered the country unlawfully?” he asked at a committee hearing.

Like every president-elect, Trump is surrounding himself with people who share his viewpoint. Groups that oppose Trump are blasting his choices. The Southern Poverty Law Center accuses Sessions of aligning himself with xenophobic, racist groups.

“This is not someone who is prone to thoughtful consideration of issues,” said Rep. Adam Schiff of California. “This is someone who often flies off at the handle and makes snap judgments on things that he may not fully understand.”

Priebus rejected all criticism, saying Trump is assembling a team Americans can rally around.

“President-elect Trump said to all Americans, no matter who you are, your race, your gender, your background, ‘I want to lead all of you. I want to make all of you proud of the work that we are doing.’ And he wants to be a president for all people, so he is bringing America together,” said Priebus, who has served as chairman of the Republican National Committee.

Sessions and Flynn face Senate confirmation hearings, as will many others put forward by Trump.

“The only fair thing to do is ask a lot of questions, very thorough questions, and then make an opinion,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer of New York, who will lead Democrats in the chamber next year, also speaking on “This Week.”

But minority Democrats will be unable to block Trump nominees for administration posts by themselves, having curtailed a key procedural maneuver that Republicans once wielded against selections made by President Barack Obama.


Protesters stage demonstration
as Trump fans meet in D.C.


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Protesters assembled outside a downtown Washington office building Saturday where white nationalists, also known as the alt-right, were meeting to celebrate the victory of U.S. president-elect Donald Trump.

Media reports say there were no arrests, but at least one man was injured in a clash with protesters outside the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center, just blocks from the White House.

Demonstrations have been increasing across the country, protesting Trump’s election and his subsequent appointments, especially the appointment of Stephen Bannon as the White House strategist and chief counselor.

Bannon, who was the executive chairman of Breitbart News Network before orchestrating Trump’s triumphant campaign, told Mother Jones magazine that Breitbart is the platform for the alt-right, a loose group that is generally viewed as upholding white supremacy and opposing diversity, feminism and immigration.

Trump’s success seems to have energized the alt-right movement to be more vocal about various issues, including its concerns that whites are becoming a minority in the U.S.

The National Policy Institute, host of the meeting in downtown Washington, says on its Web site that it is an “independent organization dedicated to the heritage, identity and future of people of European descent in the United States, and around the world.” It says it is “dedicated to the revival and flourishing of our people.”

“They are white supremacists, they are new-Nazis, neo-Fascist,” one protester told local television station WJLA. “When you’re dealing with that element, you’re basically dealing with something that’s threatening the rights and freedoms of everyone in this society.”


World Health changes its tack
on handling the zika campaign

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The World Health Organization said Friday that the zika virus no longer posed a world public health emergency, but it stressed the need for a long-term response to the mosquito-borne disease.

"The zika virus remains a highly significant and long-term problem, but it is not anymore a public health emergency of international concern," the U.N. health agency's emergency committee said.

Brazil, which has seen the worst of the zika crisis, said Friday that it would maintain its emergency status.

While the zika virus causes only mild symptoms in most people, pregnant women who become infected are at risk of giving birth to babies with microcephaly, a condition characterized by an abnormally small head and possibly improper brain development.

More than 2,000 babies have been born with microcephaly since last year, most of them in Brazil. Two have been reported in Costa Rica.

World Health originally declared the zika epidemic a global health emergency in February 2016, and the outbreak sparked fears of infection among travelers to this summer's Olympic Games in Brazil.

World Health acknowledged Friday that "many aspects of this disease and its associated consequences still remain to be understood" but said "this can best be done through sustained research."

"We are not downgrading the importance of zika. In fact, by placing this as a longer program of work, we are sending the message that zika is here to stay and WHO's response is here to stay in a very robust manner," said Peter Salama, executive director of the agency’s Health Emergencies Program.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Friday that it "remains crucially important that pregnant women avoid traveling to areas with local transmission of zika, because of the devastating complications that can occur in fetuses that become infected during pregnancy."

The disease is mainly spread by mosquitoes, but can also be spread through sexual contact. It has spread to more than 60 countries and territories since the current outbreak began in Brazil last year.

In addition to microcephaly, the zika virus can also cause rare adult-onset neurological problems such as Guillain-Barre Syndrome.


Surgeon general rejects idea
addiction is a character flaw


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A top U.S. health official says addiction should no longer be seen as a character flaw.

U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy made the plea in a new report on substance abuse, called “Facing Addiction in America: The Surgeon General’s Report on Alcohol, Drugs and Health.”

He said the report "aims to shift the way our society thinks about substance misuse and substance-use disorders," which he said represent one of the most pressing public health crises of our time.

Murthy says addiction "is a chronic illness that we must approach with the same skill and compassion with which we approach heart disease, diabetes, and cancer."

The report claims 21 million Americans battle substance abuse, a number higher than the number of cancer patients.

Despite so many battling addiction, the report said only 10 percent are receiving treatment.

"For far too long, too many in our country have viewed addiction as a moral failing," said Murthy. "This unfortunate stigma has created an added burden of shame that has made people with substance-use disorders less likely to come forward and seek help."

The report comes at a time when the United States is in the middle of an opioid epidemic.

“Since 1999, the rate of overdose deaths involving opioids, including prescription opioid pain relievers and heroin, nearly quadrupled, and over 165,000 people have died from prescription opioid overdoses,” according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Officials hope the report will lead to more research on prevention, treatment and recovery in the same way the landmark 1964 surgeon general’s report on smoking eventually led to a dramatic reduction in the number of Americans who smoke, saving millions of lives.

"I am issuing a new call to action to end the public health crisis of addiction," Murthy said. "I recognize there is no single solution. How we respond to this crisis is a moral test for America."


Three new astronauts reach
international space station

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The International Space Station has gained three new residents, including the oldest and most experienced female astronaut ever to orbit the world.

A Russian Soyuz capsule carrying the fresh crew docked Saturday at the space station, 400 kilometers above Earth. The new arrivals at the orbital research laboratory, American astronaut Peggy Whitson, French astronaut Thomas Pesquet and Russian cosmonaut Oleg Novitskiy, joined the three men already on board, one American and two Russians.

Astronaut Whitson, who will be the mission commander once her team settles in orbit, already holds the record for time spent in space by a woman, more than 400 days during her various missions. Over the course of the next six months, she will celebrate her 57th birthday in the weightless conditions of Earth orbit, as she extends her time-in-space record every day.

Before their launch Thursday from Kazakhstan, Pesquet paid tribute to Ms. Whitson's leadership and seniority, but said he was carrying with him a small piece of a meteorite from Mars that will become "the most experienced space traveler there is in the world."

The French astronaut, making his first spaceflight, said his intention was to show that human and robotic explorers of outer space are all working together. He intends to bring the stone back to Earth next year and place it aboard a Mars rover for a return flight to its home planet.

Ms. Whitson, a biochemist by training, is making her third flight to the space station. Prior to this mission, no woman older than 55 had flown in space. Novitskiy is making his second spaceflight.


Real estate-related services (paid category)

container
                                  home
Shipping Containers and homes for sale.
New 20-foot containers and 40-foot available. Call us at 8307-8666 or visit www.containerhomes.net  Stop by our workshop and walk through our model home in San Ramón.
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SellATimeshare.com
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. Buy, sell or rent a timeshare at SellATimeshare.com. 
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COSTA RICA SOLAR
Solr Costa Rica
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.
Solar logo
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 
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Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)


Sotheby logo

Costa Rica Sotheby's International Realty is a boutique residential property brokerage firm in San Jose Costa Rica dedicated to creating long-term value for its customers and assist you to reach your property goals in Costa Rica. Whether purchasing or selling, our guarantee is an amazing experience for you and your family. You can rely on bespoke advertising and discretion, independent guidance interchangeable with the brand of the Sotheby since 1744. To those who value the exceptional, Sotheby's International Realty® is identifying properties throughout Costa Rica and local Real Estate service providers that offer unrivaled access to qualified individuals. We encourage you to meet with our representatives and preview our on-line portfolio of outstanding properties in Costa Rica.
Click the link to find the finest Costa Rica Real Estate (www.sircostarica.com)

Sotheby's International Realty
info@sircostarica.com
Phone: 506 2253.5333
Phone: 506.8343.2662
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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.
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Re-Max
If you are looking for information on condos, homes, lots, commercial real estate or development properties our award-winning team of professional agents are ready to help you buying property in Costa Rica. We have over 18 years of experience to educate our buyers in all aspects of purchasing property. Call us or email us today for more information on how to purchase that perfect piece of Costa Rica Real Estate.

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Toll Free 1-877-293-1456
Email: michael@costarica-realestate.com

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Axiom one

Sierra Collection. Meridian House or Chateau Montage.
Near Parque Nacional Marino Ballena,
Pacific Coast. 
For more i
nformation 

Click
HERE!
Axiom two
The Terraces at San Martin.  Discover the essence of Costa Rica on our Luxury Ocean View Villas . Near Dominicalito Beach and Parque Nacional Marino Ballena.
For more information
Click HERE!

Axiom three
Ellan At Ballena Beach.  Welcome to a world of endless adventure on our beachside condominiums at Ballena Beach, Pacific Coast.  For more information click  HERE!
We will be happy to give all the information you need. Contact:

AXIOM DEVELOPMENT GROUP SRL
Costa Rica Office: +506.4001-2343
Mobile: +506.8367-2466
USA Office: +1.786233-1579
sales@axiomcostarica.com
www.axiomcostarica.com
8906-2/21/16


Rich Coast
Rich Coast Realty
REDUCED by $30k! 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!!
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Three-bedroom house and pool near the beach in Herradura, $199k.
Contact us with any questions you have about buying property in Costa Rica, Residency, etc. 12 years’ experience in Costa Rica real estate.
Have a property for sale in the Central or South Pacific, or in Guanacaste? We want to hear from you. We get results.

USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891
Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
www.RichCoastRealty.com
9058-3/1/17

Real estate for sale (paid category)


Ocean view
                                  rollover

Vote San Ramon, New Construction, and Ocean View
Possible Owner Financing on this brand new home with 4-plus bedrooms and 3 bath all overlooking an incredible 180-degree view of the Pacific Ocean and mountains. 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 late November.  See the Virtual Tour:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R03ImsxN0wc   
or click here www.whynotcostarica.com If you would like to take a look at this amazing house, please give me a call at
8755-6743 or if calling from the States call 509-570-1928
or email tim@whynotcostarica.com
9098-12/1/16

San Rmon
                                  rollover
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 
Check out slide show HERE!
9110-3/6/16

New graphic
For sale 5,200 m2 Escazú
Fantastic location for condo, hotel, restaurant. Large lower lot, incredible views. Flexible zoning. Easy to get liquor license. Low interest financing. Up to 40% financing / get residency through investor status / includes a corporation that is 27 years old and offshore banking account with  Banco National / possible 50/50 partnership. Super location in front of the Bosques de Escazú  Condos  / Monthly rentals available
www.hotel4salecostarica.com
www.hotelsescazu.com
hotelescazu@aol.com
Call for more info:
Free US phone 877-778-8515  or 410-975-6703
In Costa Rica 506- 8307-0164
Bruce Cohen

Penthouse
                                  rollover
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
9017-12/1/16

horse ranch
                                  rollover
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.  More information
go to www.ranchforsalecostarica.com  Call Darin Ricco, phone +619-846-8249 or email:  darin_ricco@hotmail.com

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

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 services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Some of our other titles:
A.M. Panama
A.M. Colombia
A.M. Guatemala
A.M. Honduras
A.M. Cuba
A.M. Nicaragua
A.M. Venezuela
A.M. Central America
A.M.
Dominican Republic

A.M. Ecuador A.M. El Salvador
A.M. Bolivia

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The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2016 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
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A.M.
Costa
Rica
sixth
news page


San José, Costa Rica, Monday, Nov. 21, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 230
Calendar
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News from the BBC up to the minute

















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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Here comes another big or little idea

When you are a gardener, you have big projects and little projects and everything in between. Projects usually start out like this:

“Honey, you know that little strip of land where nothing will grow? I’ve

Victoria Torley
been thinking . . . .”

This is where your spouse groans or hides his head under a pillow. Or her head. Either way, same reaction. Anything that starts with, “I’ve been thinking” cannot end well for the non-gardener.

Big projects can include just about

anything from building a greenhouse, to digging a pond, to moving in several tons of topsoil and spreading it around where “nothing will grow.” Little projects are things like transplanting a small shrub, trimming a hedge, or throwing some fertilizer on the rose bushes (Metric Man does not believe in little projects, he thinks every project is big).

And what about that stuff in between? That, friends, is the really boring stuff, and gardening includes a lot of it. For me, the most boring part of gardening is weeding, and we have a lot of weeds. When faced with weeding, I will do almost anything to disappear, and so it was that I went down to the bottom of the property the other day to pop a few plants in along the fence line which is ugly barbed wire.

We have a lot of fencing, and I thought I had a lot of plants, but I was wrong because less than a quarter of the fence was done when I ran out of plants. For a while, I thought I would have to go back to weeding, then I remembered the flowers I pulled out because they had invaded the driveway. Back I went to the house to grab them and put them down by the fence.

Transplanting those invading flowers would have been a good idea except for one small problem. The next time I went to look at them, I found flowers but no leaves. Although the ants had left them alone while they overgrew the driveway gravel, they couldn’t seem to resist when the plants had been carefully placed along the fence. There was not a leaf to be seen anywhere just sad stalks with pink and white flowers. Still, planting them allowed me to skip weeding at least for a while.

Weeding, however, does not go away it only gets worse, especially in the rainy season when weeds will over-top shrubs if you let them. How to cope? Try to have a lot of shade – there is nothing like weeding in the shade on hot days.

tentative
A.M. Costa Rica/Victoria Torley

Plant for the Week

Here is a great flower with beautiful ruffled petals that I am tentatively identifying as in the genus Abutilon which contains about 200 species. Why tentatively? Well, I have never seen one in white before, or have I seen one with ruffles, but it is growing on the same bush with a pink flower that I know to be in the genus. So I leave it to my readers. A genus and species anyone?


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From Page 7:

Lima summit endorses Trans-Pacific pact

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Leaders of 21 Asia-Pacific nations have ended their annual summit with a call to resist protectionism and protect the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade pact, which has been thrown into uncertainty after the election of Donald Trump as U.S. president.

The Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum closed Sunday in Lima, Peru, with a joint pledge to work toward a sweeping new free trade agreement that would include all 21 members as a path to sustainable, balanced and inclusive growth, despite the political climate.

Trump strongly criticized the trade deal, which includes the United States but not China, during an election campaign notable for his strong criticism of U.S. free trade deals.

But at a news conference at the end of the summit, U.S. President Barack Obama said the United States should not retreat from global trade, but should seek to do trade right so that workers are protected and environmental standards are upheld.

Obama said it's time for the U.S. to reaffirm its support for the trade deal. He said if Trump withdraws the U.S. from the pact, it will be a weaker deal and the U.S. would lose an opportunity to shape the rules of global trade "in a way that reflects our values."

Earlier in the day, Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin had brief talks about Syria and Ukraine on the sidelines of the summit, the White House said, in their first face-to-face encounter since the election victory of Donald Trump.

Obama later told reporters he encouraged Putin to uphold Russia's commitments under the Minsk deal aimed at ending the Ukraine conflict. Both the White House and the Kremlin said the leaders agreed that U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov should keep working on initiatives to decrease the violence in Syria and alleviate suffering.