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(506) 2223-1327                                  Published Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, in Vol. 16, No. 237                                  Email us
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New research cites chikungunya brain infections
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Another troubling health dimension has been added to that virus with the funny name.

Researchers are reporting that the mosquito-borne virus may lead to severe brain infection.

The disease is chikungunya, which sickens several hundred persons a year in Costa Rica.  It is spread like dengue by mosquitoes, so the continuing anti-dengue programs seem to have reduced infections.

By contrast, countries like México report up to 7,000 cases a year.

The outbreak that generated the research was on Reunion Island off the coast of Madagascar in 2005 and 2006.

That outbreak affected an incredible 300,000 persons.

So researchers decided to check on the impact.

Chikungunya is marked by severe joint pain, inflammation, headaches, rashes and fever. Symptoms can persist for months in those who survive, causing debilitating arthritis.

Most people recover within a week. For some people, the joint pain can continue for months and even years, according to researchers at Central University Hospital in Saint Pierre, Reunion Island.

They found that the rate of brain infection, or encephalitis, from the chikungunya virus is higher than the rate seen in the United States due to West Nile virus and similar infections between 1999 and 2007.

For the study, researchers looked at whether people on Reunion Island with neurological conditions were still affected three years later. A total of 24 people had encephalitis that was associated with chikungunya virus, for a cumulative incidence rate of 8.6 per 100,000 people.

They concluded that the virus may lead to severe brain infection and even death in infants and people over 65. The death rate

virus pains
Ministerio de Salud graphic 
The pain from the virus seems to be all over.

for those with chikungunya virus-associated encephalitis was 17 percent. The virus was reported to be particularly harmful in newborns.

Those who did not die could have acquired disabilities, they said.

The study was published last week in the online issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology.

There is no vaccination against the virus, and the Ministerio de Salud here and other health agencies encourage protection against mosquitoes, just as they do for dengue. Chikungunya is carried by two mosquito species, Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, that also transmit the dengue virus.

Last year in Costa Rica health officials say that by the end of 2014 there were 106 cases of the  chikungunya virus confirmed in the country. Some 36 cases were of persons who contracted the disease outside the country, but 70 appear to have contracted the virus inside the country.

The ministry launched an alert and encouraged cleanups of mosquito breeding areas. The drought in the western part of the country appears to have cut the mosquito population.

More than a million persons have been infected in the Western Hemisphere, health sources say.

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 237
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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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Legal services

Valdivieco header
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your legal adviser for criminal, civil,
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Reducing emission to zero is urged
by Vice President Chacón in Paris

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Rica is seeking a method so that individuals can measure their own carbon footprint, the vice president, Ana Helena Chacón, told the Paris conference on climate change Monday. She also urged a reduction in carbon emissions to zero by 2085.

She also made note that Costa Rica, with its vast hydro resources and other renewable energy managed to generate 100 percent of its power needs for 255 days this year and also noted that 52 percent of the country is covered in trees.

The vice president is heading the Costa Rican delegation that includes the foreign minister, Manuel González, and Edgar Gutiérrez, minister of  Ambiente y Energía.

Vice President Chacón said that Costa Rica was promoting an ambitious accord on carbon emissions.

Being one of the most vulnerable regions of the planet, she said that the gathering must reach agreement that includes not only significant reductions in the emissions of greenhouse gases but also methods of adaptation that guarantee that communities, particularly the most vulnerable, increase their resilience and human development.
Her statements were contained in a release from Casa Presidencial.

Costa Rica aspires to make itself a laboratory for the process of decarbonization for the world economy, she added. She urged significant reductions in carbon emissions to zero by 2085.

The Paris conference seeks to obtain agreements from countries in an effort to reduce carbon emissions on the theory that doing so will hold the increase in world temperature to one or two degrees C. The temperature had increased about 0.8 degree C. since the beginning of the 20th century.

In elaborating on the measurement of carbon, Casa Presidential said that the government was seeking to have a per capita emission of two tons of carbon dioxide by 2050 and one ton by 2100.

A statement said that this goal was determined by meeting with organizations in Costa Rica.

Manuel Antonio chase leads to arrests

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Bandits held up a small food store in Manuel Antonio Sunday night, but Fuerza Pública officers said patrol car crews chased suspects in a vehicle and finally detained three.

Officers said they found the cash register from the store in the vehicle. Officers said they also confiscated a 9-mm. pistol.

Speeding tickets average 17 per day

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The traffic police director reports that his officers issued 5,234 speeding tickets in the first 10 months of the year.

That is an average of  just 17 tickets a day, admitted Mario Calderón, director of the Policía de Tránsito.  He said the work was difficult and there were not enough radar devices with cameras to make more stops.

Just 25 motorists were ticketed for exceeding the 25-kph limit in school zones when students are present, he said.

Fines range from 51,249.10 colons to 306,448.70 colons depending on the speed greater than the posted limit.

A total of 115 motorists were caught going more than 120 kph, which drew the largest fine, said the director.

Cubans asked to pay their own way

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Rican officials say that negotiations are taking place with Mexican and Guatemalan officials with the goal of finding a way to transport thousands of Cuban migrants out of the country.

One proposal is to airlift the Cubans to one of those countries so they can continue their efforts to reach the United States.

Under a 1966 law that was designed to accommodate political refugees from the island, the Cuban migrants are entitled to U.S. residency and even financial support.

But Nicaragua has closed its borders, perhaps at the behest of the Cuban government which does not wish to lose a steady stream of productive citizens. Ecuador, where most of the migrants landed, has enacted visa requirements.

The latest idea is to have the Cubans purchase their own air tickets to reach either México or Guatemala. That was suggested by Costa Rican officials to groups of Cubans Monday.

News for the Spanish-language press
Translated into English

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 237
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Big show at children's museum is Wednesday evening at 8
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Ricans' love of children and spectacles coincide Wednesday night for the 15th illumination of the facade of the Museo de los Niños.

This is much more than a light show, and the hour-long main attraction has a cast of 70 persons.

The museum at the north end of Calle 4 is the former national prison with towers that have been converted into what can now be called the Castillo de los Sueños or the "castle of dreams."

There are 4,000 lights hung on the front wall of the museum just waiting for 8 p.m. Wednesday night.

But the activities directed toward children really begins along Calle 4 at 2:30 p.m. This is not one of the better areas of the city, so the Fuerza Pública and other police agencies are putting some 210 officers on patrol along the route from Avenida Segunda to the museum.

Involved will be the Ministerio de Seguridad Pública, the Sistema de Emergencias del 911, the Policía de Tránsito, the Cuerpo de Bomberos, the Cruz Roja, the Patronato Nacional de la Infancia, the Policía Municipal and the Ministerio de Salud.

Officials expect about 16,000 persons, mostly parents with children, to attend.

The museum said that groups participating in the 8 to 9 p.m.

Museo de los Niños photo
Museíto and Museíta have leading roles in the show.

show include the Ballet Folclórico de Costa Rica, the Grupo La Cruceta, the Coro Universitario of the Universidad de Costa Rica and the museum's own characters Museíto and Museíta.

Residents all over the city will know the show is taking place because the climax is a loud and colorful fireworks display.

The museum considers the show its Christmas gift to the country and says the event is a message of faith, hope and solidarity.

The event will be on most television channels.

France and Costa Rica agree to accept each others diplomas
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

France and Costa Rica announced Monday that officials have agreed to accept diplomas issued by institutions in the other country.

The agreement was signed by Julio Calvo, president of the Consejo Nacional de Rectores, and Jean-Loup Salzmann and François Cansell, representing French institutions. The agreement was made earlier this month but was announced Monday by Casa Presidencial.

Jean-Baptiste Chauvin, the French ambassador here, and Costa Rican officials met with President Luis Guillermo Solís Monday morning to discuss the agreement.

The agreement reduces the paperwork in the recognition of foreign diplomas. There are many problems associated with diplomas even from prestigious foreign institutions.

Those who studied medicine in Cuba still are battling for recognition here, and the situation has been addressed in the legislature.

Hotel header

Croc Resort

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Hacienda Baru

Recreo Verde

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

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San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 237
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British researchers report brain damage from high potency cannabis
By the King’s College London news staff

Smoking high potency cannabis can damage a crucial part of the brain responsible for communication between the two brain hemispheres, according to a new study by scientists from King’s College London and Sapienza University of Rome.

Researchers have known for some time that long-term cannabis use increases the risk of psychosis, and recent evidence suggests that alterations in brain function and structure may be responsible for this greater vulnerability. However, this new research, published in Psychological Medicine, is the first to examine the effect of cannabis potency on brain structure.

Exploring the impact of cannabis potency is particularly important since today’s high potency products have been shown to contain higher proportions of Δ9-tetrahydrocannabinol than they did around a decade ago. In experimental studies the substance has been shown to induce psychotic symptoms and products high in what is called THC are now thought to be the most commonly used form of cannabis in the United Kingdom.

Paola Dazzan, reader in neurobiology of psychosis from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology & Neuroscience at King’s College London, and senior researcher on the study, said: ‘We found that frequent use of high potency cannabis significantly affects the structure of white matter fibers in the brain, whether you have psychosis or not.

‘This reflects a sliding scale where the more cannabis you smoke and the higher the potency, the worse the damage will be.’

Diffusion tensor imaging, a magnetic resonance imaging technique, was used to examine white matter in the brains of
 56 patients who had reported a first episode of psychosis at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, as well as 43 healthy participants from the local community.

The researchers specifically examined the corpus callosum, the largest white matter structure in the brain, which is responsible for communication between the left and right hemispheres. White matter consists of large bundles of nerve cell projections called axons, which connect different regions of the brain, enabling communication between them.

The corpus callosum is particularly rich in cannabinoid receptors, on which the THC content of cannabis acts.

The study found that frequent use of high potency cannabis was linked to a marker of damage in white matter structure.

Tiago Reis Marques, a senior research fellow at King’s College London, said: ‘This white matter damage was significantly greater among heavy users of high potency cannabis than in occasional or low potency users, and was also independent of the presence of a psychotic disorder.’

Dr. Dazzan added: ‘There is an urgent need to educate health professionals, the public and policymakers about the risks involved with cannabis use.

‘As we have suggested previously, when assessing cannabis use it is extremely important to gather information on how often and what type of cannabis is being used. These details can help quantify the risk of mental health problems and increase awareness on the type of damage these substances can do to the brain.’

Vacation, travel and hospitality

HIdden Garden 2016
Largest art gallery in Guanacaste
Drop in to see some of Costa Rica's finest art
at the largest gallery in Guanacaste.

The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is a great place to find quality remembrances of Costa Rica to take home or to decorate your home or office in Costa Rica.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever.  With more than 60 artists on exhibit and fine art in 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we are easy to locate just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport. Visit our Web site at
or contact us by email:   
Gallery hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tel. 2667-0592 / 8386-6872; U.S. telephone 702-953-7073. International shipping available.

Click photo for another video

The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

 (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!

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.


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Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Real estate wanted

Real estate rental services (paid category)

Spectacular rentals are available for low weekly prices on at resorts such as Bahia Turquesa Residences and Villas Sol Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. We have 
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 
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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
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Real estate for rent (paid category)
rental home

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Unfurnished 400-sq. ft. apartment, with modern kitchen, located on beautiful Junquillal Beach is waiting for you. Sea Turtles are common to this beach. Great area for surfing one of C.R.'s premier surf spots or boogie boarding. Close to a market, restaurants and more touristy areas - Playa Negra and Tamarindo, if you want shopping, etc. This area is a great community. If you are looking for a nice relaxing area, this is it. $500 month + electric, visit our Web page -  - for more info, photos and to view a video. Or call (506) 5004-3473.

Real Estate
About us
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The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
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A.M. Costa Rica's  
Fifth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 237
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LASS Laboratoire photo  
 This is the robot from project Spencer that is
  being tested at Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam.

Robot begins test as guide
at major Amsterdam airport

By the Örebro Universitet newes staff

The robot in the Spencer project is now all set to face the real world at Schiphol, the major international airport in Amsterdam. Its mission: to help passengers find their way around the airport.

Contributions from researchers at Örebro University in Sweden have enabled the robot to map its surroundings. The project is funded by the European Commission and is a collaboration between researchers and businesses in five different countries.

Navigating an airport is challenging. There is a lot of glass and a constantly changing environment in terms of temporary obstructions, such as parked luggage trolleys and people everywhere, says Achim Lilienthal, professor of computer science and project leader of Örebro University’s contribution to the research project.

Over the course of one week, starting Monday, the robot is being tested in the hustle and bustle of the major international airport. After the test run, adjustments will be made in preparation for the real test in March when representatives of the European Commission, along with other prominent guests, will be attending the official premiere run.

The stately looking robot with its friendly but unstirring face will be guiding passengers unaccustomed to navigating international airports, from one gate to another. Researchers from Örebro have equipped the robot with a prerequisite for navigation, maps. The robot then surveys its surroundings by measuring the distance to various obstructions using laser beams.

One of the more basic maps is one that involves fixed obstructions, such as walls.

People in motion are not that tricky either. Objects that are temporary are the most difficult to work around.

"We do not know, for instance, how long that luggage trolley will be parked in a particular spot, which makes it harder for the robot to determine its own location. We are working on a general map representation that includes and allows the robot to handle temporarily permanent objects, said Lilienthal.

All the theoretical components of the robot’s ability will be fused into one system in the upcoming integration week. In addition to the Örebro University researchers’ contribution, another aspect of the project is the robot’s ability to understand human behavior and act accordingly.

This includes actions like navigating around a group of people rather than squeezing through or looking around to see if the group it is guiding is keeping up.

"It is surprisingly difficult to fit all the pieces together. A small error somewhere along the line may take an unpredictably long time to discover and work out," Lilienthal said.

The robot project is run by researchers, but the initiative came from the Dutch airline KLM as a result of unwanted costs incurred when novice passengers missed their flights simply because they got lost.

More of Mrs. Clinton's
released by State Department

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. State Department on Monday released its largest batch yet of former secretary of State Hillary Clinton's emails, 7,800 pages.

Two-thirds of Mrs. Clinton's work-related emails have now been made public, the department said. There will be two more major releases of the Democratic presidential frontrunner's emails, one at the end of December and the other in late January.

Monday's release is the seventh in a gradual process to make public all the messages that Mrs. Clinton says were work-related.

The disclosures are a result of a court order earlier this year, which demanded that the full 55,000 pages of Mrs. Clinton's work-related emails be released by late January.

"Meeting this goal is a testament to our commitment to releasing to the public these emails as expeditiously as possible," State Department spokeswoman Elizabeth Trudeau told reporters.

Mrs. Clinton's exclusive use of a private email setup throughout her tenure as secretary of State has haunted her presidential campaign.

Critics, including prominent lawmakers on Capitol Hill, have worried that Mrs. Clinton's use of a personal email address and private server housed in her New York home could have made secrets vulnerable to hackers and allowed her to keep potentially embarrassing information secret.

She has defended using one server as an issue of convenience.

Mrs. Clinton is the leading Democratic contender for the 2016 presidential election.

U.S. now collecting more data
from visa-free air travelers

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The United States tightened its visa waiver program Monday in the wake of the Paris terrorist attacks, adding new screening for travelers headed to the U.S. from 38 countries around the world who now are allowed to enter the country without a visa.

The White House said the country's homeland security agency is immediately altering its electronic visa-free clearance system to capture information on whether U.S.-bound travelers have made any trips to countries the United States considers to be a terrorist safe haven.

In addition, Washington said it is considering pilot programs to add the use of biometric screening for travelers, such as taking their fingerprints or photographs, to the monitoring process before passengers are allowed to board flights headed to the United States.

Each year, 20 million foreign visitors head to the U.S. from the 38 countries the U.S. has partnered with in the visa-free program. The White House said authorities have repeatedly increased their scrutiny of U.S.-bound travelers in recent years and are tightening them even more given the terrorist attacks in Paris and the ongoing threat posed by foreign terrorist fighters.

The White House said it is seeking quick congressional approval for some of the new security measures, including an increase in fines from $5,000 to $50,000 against airlines that fail to verify a traveler's passport data. The U.S. is also looking to increase information sharing about possible terrorists among the 38 countries and the international police agency Interpol and to better track lost and stolen travel documents.

It also called for quicker adoption of so-called e-passports, passports with embedded security chips.

White House spokesman Josh Earnest said that in addition to giving legal sanction to the new security measures, Congress by the end of the year should approve a ban on gun sales to anyone on the U.S. no-fly list.

The majority leader in the U.S. House of Representatives, Rep. Kevin McCarthy, said lawmakers are aiming to approve an overhaul of the visa-free travel program by year's end, although details of the legislation have yet to be worked out.

Colorado gunman makes
his first court appearance

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The gunman accused of killing three people during a shooting attack at a Planned Parenthood clinic in the western U.S. state of Colorado made his first court appearance Monday.

Wearing a bulletproof vest, Robert Lewis Dear, 57, appeared by video camera, flanked by his court-appointed lawyer.

The judge explained that Dear will face first-degree murder charges and possibly other charges, and Dear indicated that he understood.

Dear has been held in custody without bond since his arrest.

The attack last Friday triggered an hours-long gunbattle and standoff with police in Colorado Springs, leaving one police officer and two other people dead. Nine people were wounded.

Police have not disclosed a motive for the attack. Dear was described by acquaintances as a loner who had past run-ins with law enforcement in Colorado, and earlier in North Carolina.

Police sources were later quoted as saying Dear uttered the words "no more baby parts," as he was led away from Friday's crime scene, an apparent reference to abortions performed at some clinics.

Controversy has swirled for years around Planned Parenthood clinics across much of the country, with critics pointing to branches that perform abortions.  Supporters argue that the bulk of the organization's work centers on providing family-planning services, screenings for sexually transmitted diseases and general health consultations.

In August, about 300 Colorado Springs residents opposed to abortion protested at the Centennial Boulevard clinic as part of a nationwide demonstration over a video that purportedly showed organization employees discussing the sale of fetal tissue. The video has since been discredited.

Some abortion opponents have resorted to violence against U.S. clinics and medical practitioners that provide abortion services. Several have been hit by arsonists and bombers. At least two doctors have been murdered by anti-abortion activists, the most recent in 2009, when a doctor in Kansas was slain because he performed abortions.

Soros foundations blacklisted
under a vague Russian law

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Russian authorities on Monday blacklisted the Open Society Foundations run by U.S. financier George Soros.

Russia's prosecutor general's office added the Open Society Foundations and the Open Society Institute Assistance Foundation to a list of undesirable organizations, which bans them from continuing to give grants to Russian partners.

Under a vague law passed in May and signed by President Vladimir Putin, prosecutors said the Soros foundations were undermining Russia's constitutional foundations, defense and national security.

The law gives prosecutors the power to shut down any foreign and international organizations in Russia deemed a threat, and to fine and imprison any Russian repeat offenders working with them for up to six years.

The Open Society Foundations defended its record in Russia, issuing a statement late Monday saying that “for more than a quarter century, it helped to strengthen the rule of law in Russia and protect the rights of all.”

It expressed dismay at the prosecutor's decision and went on to say, “In the past, our efforts have been welcomed by Russian officials and citizens, and we regret the changes that have led the government to reject our support to Russian civil society and ignore the aspirations of the Russian people.”

The Open Society Foundations said that since 1987 it has helped numerous Russian groups and individuals in the fields of education, science and public health, as well as financing networks of Internet centers in 33 universities and a network of contemporary art centers.

It is the second group shut down in Russia by authorities under the undesirable organizations law, both of them from the United States. The National Endowment for Democracy in late July was the first to be banned from conducting activities in Russia. The organization promotes democratic development, but Russian prosecutors accused it of using Russian groups to discredit elections and army service, as well as try to influence government policy.

Russian officials and state media have portrayed the National Endowment for Democracy and Soros' foundations as creating instability and revolutions, including in Ukraine, because of support for democracy activists and groups.

Rights groups say the blacklisting of undesirable organizations is part of a broader crackdown on independent groups since Putin returned to the Kremlin in 2012 amid a wave of anti-government protests.

Tanya Lokshina, Russia program director at Human Rights Watch in Moscow, says prosecutors are using the undesirables law to stifle dissent and squeeze the life out of Russian civil society. “They are, for now, going after American donors. But, those American donor institutions have been very supportive to Russian civil society groups.”

Russia in 2012 passed a law against foreign agents, Russian organizations that accept foreign funding and engage in activities deemed political, which implies spying or disloyalty.

Ms. Lokshina says more than 100 independent groups, including human rights and scientific organizations, are demonized under the law in the public eye. “It looks like the authorities are dividing non-governmental organizations into loyal and not loyal. And, those that they believe to be not loyal, in other words critical, are treated as enemies of the state and presented as enemies of Russian society.”

A number of organizations chose to shut down operations because of the foreign agent label or were forced to under pressure.

Despite being labeled undesirable and losing the legal authority to work in Russia, Open Society Foundations founder George Soros said he is confident the move is temporary. He said “the aspirations of the Russian people for a better future cannot be suppressed and will ultimately succeed.”

The Open Society Foundations said it would continue to support those who seek assistance in accordance with its mission and within the limits of the law.

Two U.S. senators suggest
sending troops to Syria, Iraq

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Two U.S. senators Sunday said the United States should be part of a multinational force in Iraq and Syria to defeat the Islamic State and pressure Syrian President Bashar al-Assad out of power.

The comments follow an essay by a U.S. foreign policy scholar arguing the need for up to 50,000 U.S. troops, initially, to confront the Islamic State group and create a safe zone for Syrian refugees.

Sens. John McCain and Lindsey Graham, both Republicans, told U.S. television from Baghdad Sunday the U.S. must take part in a multinational force that McCain, chairman of the Armed Services Committee, said will have two key objectives.

"First, you have to, obviously, take out ISIS but, at the same time, you have to establish a no-fly zone that sends a message to Bashar al-Assad that he can stop barrel-bombing and slaughtering innocent men, women and children and driving millions into refugee status, which we are trying to cope with now," said McCain.

Graham, also a member of the Armed Services Committee, was asked if the American people are prepared for another U.S. ground commitment following the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

"They better be because, if we don’t destroy ISIL in Syria which is their headquarters, we’re going to get attacked at home. So, the region is ready to fight. The region hates ISIL. They’re coming after the Sunni Arab nations and Turkey hates ISIL. The entire region wants Assad gone. So, there’s an opportunity here with some American leadership to do two things, which is to destroy ISIL before we get hit at home and also to push Assad out, and I can’t overemphasize the influence of Iran. 

"We’ve been here a day and a half. Iran is all over Iraq. They have filled in the vacuum created when we left, and the region is very worried about Iranian dominance as well as ISIL," said Graham.

Both McCain and Graham suggest the force required may need to be as high as 100,000, but Graham added that it would be comprised mostly of regional troops.

"The kind of force that John and I are talking about is, 10 percent of the force would come from Western powers. The force we’re talking about will come from regional armies. There are large regional armies. Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey, they have regional armies. They would go into the fight if you put Assad on the table. So, most of the fighting would be done by the region," said Graham.

Graham said the estimated 3.500 U.S. troops in Iraq are insufficient to beating the Islamic State any time soon.

McCain said he believes the provincial Iraqi capital of Ramadi, now in Islamic State hands, will be taken back soon.

"But, that’s only the beginning. There’s Fallujah, there’s Mosul and others. We need a more robust presence and Bashar al-Assad is a major cause of the refugees which are now flooding Europe and cause such consternation in the United States. A no-fly zone will provide a refuge at least for some of these refugees," said McCain.

Brookings Institution foreign policy scholar Robert Kagan, writing in The Wall Street Journal, warns the Islamic State has not been confined to the Middle East.  He said the Nov. 13 attacks in Paris have proven that the Islamic State group is both durable and capable.

He said the Islamic State threatens the cohesion of Europe and the trans-Atlantic community. Kagan said a U.S. force, numbering up to 50,000, will need to establish a safe zone in Syria while supporting local forces in uprooting the Islamic State. He expresses hope that eventually those U.S. troops could be replaced by European, Turkish, Saudi and other Arab forces. 
Real estate-related services (paid category)

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Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

Rich Coast Rollover
Thinking of Buying a Vacation or Retirement Home
in Costa Rica?

Rich Coast Realty is a full-service real estate company with property listings in Escazú, Santa Ana, Jacó, Esterillos, Bejuco, Palo Seco, Manuel Antonio, and beyond. We offer efficient, personalized service always protecting our client’s interests. We work hard to find you the property of your dreams, and assist with legal advice, residency, starting corporations, opening bank accounts, etc. Contact us today with your questions about buying property in, and relocating to Costa Rica. With 11 years experience in Costa Rica real estate, we look forward to hearing from you.
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891

Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo
Photo montage of penthouse
Are you  tired of wasting time searching your home….. with no results?
If so, you should not miss this deal !!!

Special Offer

Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo

* Located on 6th floor.
* Elevator.
* Security 24/7.
* Pool, BBQ area.
* 2 underground
        parking,  cellar.

* 3 bedrooms.
* 2 bathrooms.
* 2 terraces.
* Luxuriously
* Negotiable price.

* Enjoy the view,  CLICK HERE
Mafi Real Estate: Houses, lots and farms in Costa Rica
If you do not find, what are you looking for, contact us
WE HAVE A NETWORK OF OVER 500 brokers across the country to get what you are looking for.
English Calls: Miguel Fiatt Sauma or Paule Ortiz
Phone/Fax.+506 2238-5029
Cel. +506 8399-7000
Web Page:

Remax logo
Re/Max Ocean Surf and Sun:

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 sCosta Rica properties, including condos, homes, lots and commercial real estate.  Call us: Ocean Surf and Sun Int. Realty Ldta at 011 (506) 2653-0073 or send us an email at:

Real estate for sale (paid category)

ocean-view home
Property size: 3,405.14 sq. mts. or 37,000 sq. ft.   Gorgeous house built 5 years ago to U.S. standards on 37,000 sq. ft. titled property. This home (240 sq. mtrs or 2,600 sq. ft) has 360-degree ocean and mountain views and electric gated private road access. The large open style home has soaring teak ceillings, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, custom cabinetry and ceramic tiles throughout and a double-car electric garage door. Their is also a beautiful, large swimming pool surrounded by exotic garden, laundry room and bodega. This is a very special and rare property because of the incredible view and excellent location. This one of a kind home and property is truly a must to see. all custom built furnitures included. Photo gallery:  CLICK HERE!  Please contact Jack, Cell phone number  (506) 8812-1789.  Contact email:


Caribbean paradise: CAHUITA

New home, beautiful well-built house 200 meters from a lovely beach. Very private, fully titled, excellent water well.  2 large bedrooms, 2 full baths, tub, large open floor plan 26-foot sliding glass doors open to covered porch. Encircling back yard are coral rocks 10 feet tall and behind jungle reserve. Lots of birds and wildlife. House 240 mts. sq, 2,400 sq ft. Lot 1,850 mts. or 19,000 sq. ft. Price $179,000. Very nice neighborhood. Contact 2755-0014 or   More photos HERE!

New Arenal

There are many good reasons for moving to or investing in Costa Rica

Are you worried about the safety of the money in your 401k?  Do you think your government has painted a bullseye on all of your assets?  Do you believe it might be time to consider moving some money overseas just in case?  This property, at a distress sales price of only $140,000, should gross a 7-10% return this year and the bookings for this season aren’t all in yet.  The best part from a buyer’s standpoint is that it is utilizing only a fraction of its potential.  What’s wrong here?  Divorce, and a lack of funds needed to make the necessary value-added improvements.  Rental manager says rents could double with moderate invesement, but the current owners are unable to resolve those problems, so selling is their only way out.  This extra-large lot with its modern 2-bedroom home was intended to service a dozen or more apartments to be built on the rear, a really great plan, but that was before the wheels came off of the marriage.  It is a really good investment property in a very desirable location, earning a much better safe return than stocks and bonds, but it is also perfect for buyers who only want to follow the original plan and live in the existing home while building out the rest for a comfortable retirement.  Perfect, too, for the person who intends to move to Costa Rica in the future and wants to buy at today’s prices, but needs a property which will carry itself until that time comes.  To find out more about this opportunity contact: or phone 506-8377-8402.

A beautiful American style suburban home just reduced.

A beautiful American style suburban home, 2,700 sq ft of living space with 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, front and rear living rooms, laundry area, kitchen and small attached library nook, arched windows and doors and connected hallways, exotic wood interior ceilings and trim, tile floors thru-out.  The lot is 835 m2 with mature landscape and orchid nurseries surrounding the house. There is an enclosed workshop and BBQ area in the back yard with lots of storage under roof, plus a nursery for an herb/vegetable garden.  This is a very well-kept property with many upgrades, a private feel but yet only 5 minutes from the center of town.  Pérez Zeledón is the commercial hub of the southern zone and considered to be one of the best places to live in all of Costa Rica, the perfect size town, not too big and not too small.  The beach is 45 minutes to the west and a short drive to the cool mountains is to the east. In between, this large valley has a moderate climate.  Pérez has plenty of modern goods and services, an excellent farmers market, private schools, private doctors and clinics, all you need without having to go to the crazy madness of San José.    Just reduced to $199,000.  Call  Jeff: 8824-8113 or 8725-8176.  Email:

Fonseca two
Lovely east coast property for sale
This is a huge property surrounded by beautiful tropical gardens. The house is about 85% built, but I will give you the property completely finished.  The whole land includes 7,886 m2 or 84,884 ft2 of forest and gardens in a mountain area of Cimarrones, Limón, east coast. Full house with large master bedroom plus bathroom. One extra guest bedroom. Large dining room. Large kitchen area. Another extra bathroom for guests. Large laundry room and two cellars (storage areas). The house has wide corridors where you will see a breathtaking view of large gardens and forest.  I am open to hear your offer. The full property and land price is $125,000. Call Harold Fonseca, Phone number (506) 8702-4217, Email:

Grecia casa
Mountain home for sale
in Grecia.
Less than a year old. Owners are motivated.  All information regarding the home as well as many photos can be found at Mountain view home for sale Grecia, Costa Rica.   Contact email:

puriscal photo
Costa Rica home for sale $163,500 / 2bedroom - 1,984 ft2

Central Valley view home: 10 minutes from Santiago de Puriscal and shopping, hospital services, and soon Maxi Pali. Only one hour to San José or Pacific beaches.
- On .55-acre lot with river on one boundary
- Area under roof, 1,984 sq. ft., Area inside walls, 925 sq. ft. Steel, recycled
      Styrofoam, and concrete construction.
- 2 ½ years old with central living room and kitchen, 2 bedrooms and 2 baths,
       ceramic tile throughout.
- Central Valley volcano and SJO airport views from every room.
- Vaulted ceilings give bright open feeling.
- Entrance from concrete road to large graveled parking area
- VERY energy efficient with VERY low property taxes.
- Covered attached carport with entrance to front door or laundry-guest bath
- 2 carport storage bodegas.
- 12 foot x 14 foot storage bodega
- Security lights, And Amcrest day & night video recorder system.
- Producing banana trees, and mango, bread fruit, and guanabana trees

Includes: Refrigerator, gas stove & oven with electric grill element, microwave, electric washer-gas dryer stacked style, gas on demand whole house water heater. Other furnishings are negotiable. ICE electric service and land line phone. Bajo Burgos Water district. Metro-wireless WiFi is available. Tigo Star Satellite T.V. House is in a Costa Rican corporation, will transfer shares. Contract or call 506 2416-9324.  Additional photos are available on Flickr album

Goetl in Palo Seco

Charming small oceanfront hotel for sale in Playa Palo Seco
Ideal oceanfront location with back up to a mangrove estuary. The
charming small hotel has a fully equipped kitchen, bar and restaurant and is exceptionnally well maintained. Located on a very private beach of the central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica 35 minutes north of Quepos-Manuel Antonio and 45 minutes south of  Playa Jacó. The main building is a two-storey house with 12 bedrooms. The lot measures 3,054 M2. Beautiful gardens around the large pool and exceptional flora and fauna. Well mentioned in tourist guides like Lonely Planet and Guide Ulysse. Offered at $999,000. USD
or call (506) 8707-1037  (506) 2778-8408

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.
Toll free US phone 877-778-8515
In Costa Rica 8307-0164

Pacific Sur montagee

These 2 lots are in the Pacific southern zone,
Tres Rio/Coronado de Osa. 

Will give a great deal on one of these lots, only $29,990.  Both of these lots have water, phone lines, Internet accessibility, electricity, easy 3 kms. access to the Costanera.  2-wheel drive accessible.  Close to new hospital, beautiful beaches and county services.  Financing available.   Lote 234, This corner lote is excellently located in lower Tres Rios.  Has 2 well-sculptured lots for 2 houses or one for multiunit cabins.  Lote 236,  1 1/2 hectare.  Big lote for building a grand house, with a smaller plantel for a cabin.  Small ocean view with great sunsets.  Watch the videos for more information, Planos,  and details.   Email: CR phone   2786-5555. USA call  760-536-4717 YouTube link for more real estate deals. 

Osa home
Costa Rica Tropical Paradise Beach House For Sale
Tropical 5-acre forested beachfront property with custom house and guest casita on the Osa Península, South Pacific Coast. Abundant wildlife, exotic plants and fruits, secluded beach.

Located 8 km south of Puerto Jiménez on the way to Matapalo and Corcovado National Park. Great Price $775,000. Contact:
Watch this video for full details.

Big House for Sale in Playa Grande,
Santa Cruz, Guanacaste
834.62 square meters property with 326 square meters construction. Two-storey house with front porch, entry lobby, living room, dinning room, large kitchen, breakfast room, large cupboard, 3 ½ bathrooms, 3 large bedrooms, the main bedroom includes jacuzzi and balcony. Playground, office, laundry area, garage for two cars, own and municipal potable water supply, electricity service, cable TV system, A/C. Located 700 meters from Las Colinas Golf Course, near the airport, Tamarindo Beach and the best beaches of the country. Excellent construction and great details. Price $349,000. 2,866.33 square meters building lot with three terraces. Price $75,000. For more information, please contact us:
Email Phone (506) 2653-6417.
Cell (506) 8825-8942 / (506) 8916-0734.

private ranch home
Small private ranch for sale
This exceptional private ranch sits on a 9+ hectare lot and supports 15-20 horses. Only 2 hours south of San José, on the road to Puriscal. Roomy stalls all with drains, water hookup, lights and fans, grooming and shoeing área. Two-story house all furnished and cowboy house. Don't miss your chance on that turnkey operation.  Offered at $749,000.
E-mail:  or call (506) 8707-1037 
(506) 2778-8408 Web:

San Ramon
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:   Check out slide show HERE!

Aerial Ocean and Volcano Views with Boutique Coffee! 33 Acres $380,000. Click HERE!

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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:

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2015, Vol. 16, No. 237
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News from the BBC up to the minute

BBC news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Gunnar Brehm photo    
This is a Hagnagora anicata from Ecuador.

Speedier classification defines species

By the Pensoft Publishers news staff

Having collected thousands of moth and butterfly species from across Costa Rica, famous ecologist Daniel Janzen and his team at the University of Pennsylvania were yet to find out many of their names.

When they sought help from Gunnar Brehm, the taxonomist realized he needed too much time to describe species in the framework of an extensive revision of the genus, especially as there are still only a few biologists skilled to do this.

In the end, he found a way to revise the Neotropical looper moth genus Hagnagora fast and efficiently through avoiding wordy descriptions, but focusing on diagnostic characters, illustrated external characters, genitalia structures and DNA barcoding instead. His study is available in the open-access journal ZooKeys.

Having been put together back in the 19th century, most of the species within the Neotropical moth genus Hagnagora had been described by 1913. In modern days, it seemed necessary for the population to be revised. As a result, Brehm published what he called a concise revision comprising 20 species. It includes three species new to science.

The author stresses the fact that taxonomists can hardly keep up with the pace inventories are being compiled or with the accelerating destruction of tropical rainforests. "Taxonomists therefore need to accelerate their workflows and try to make their papers useful not only to other taxonomists but for ecologists who need their support," Brehm says.

"What used to be one species ten years ago, known as Hagnagora anicata, is now regarded as a complex of six species, and more might be discovered in South American rain forests," Brehm said. "Integrating information of molecules and morphology, as concisely as possible, appears to be one promising way to cope with the problem of slow taxonomy," he explains in conclusion.

Entrepreneurs to show their projects

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Students in the business administration courses at Tecnológico de Costa Rica will present some 91 entrepreneurial projects at an expo Saturday at the university's Cartago campus. The event runs from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Some 450 students are in the university's business program at locations all over the country.

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From Page 7:

Cyber Monday expected to post 14 percent hike

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. consumers were expected to boost online purchases by 14 percent Monday as more customers use computers and smart phones to purchase holiday bargains offered by competitive retailers.

The research group comScore predicts that e-commerce will hit $70 billion for the holiday season that ends in late December with the traditional exchange of gifts for Christmas.  Researchers say a significant and fast-growing share of e-commerce is done via mobile devices.  The National Retail Federation says total holiday commerce will exceed $600 billion.

Holiday shopping accounts for around one-third of annual commerce for retailers, and in some cases, a strong season is the difference between profit and loss. 

The holiday shopping season traditionally starts the day after November's holiday of Thanksgiving, which is always on a Thursday.  The day after has been dubbed Black Friday because success on that key shopping day is associated with being profitable, or in the black.

Surging e-commerce, however, is eroding holiday sales in traditional or bricks and mortar stores.  That is particularly true on the Monday after the Thanksgiving holiday when workers return to jobs, where they often have access to computers.  So many people take time out from work to bargain hunt that the day is called "Cyber Monday."

The National Retail Federation says 121 million Americans would go online to shop this Monday.  Cyber Mondays have been hitting record-high sales totals for the past six years, and experts predict more than $3 billion in sales this Cyber Monday, which would be another record.

The Consumer Technology Association says around 45 percent of shoppers plan to purchase electronic devices, particularly smart phones and televisions.

Delivering all of those gadgets, toys, clothing and other gifts is a huge task for the U.S. Postal Service, UPS, and FedEx.  FedEx says it expects to deliver a record 317 million packages, and has added tens of thousands of workers to its crew of more than 300,000.

Cyber commerce is also surging in other nations.  China's Alibaba sold a new record $14.3 billion associated with early November's Singles' Day, which has seen commerce expand quickly since 2009.