Chronological index for August 2001
Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2001
Solís brings program to Republicans
Lies and unethical behavior by politicians have undermined Costa Rica
so badly that no major party can orchestrate changes the country needs
to prosper, according to Ottón Solís. Solís is the
former Liberation Party official who has put himself forward as a third-party,
middle-of-the-road alternative in the 2002 presidential election.
Uncle Sam sets another lottery
Costa Ricans who want to win an immigration visa to the United States
have to apply between Oct. 1 and Oct. 31, according to the U.S. Department
Ambassador appointment moves to Senate
John J. Danilovich of California officially got the nomination
to be U.S. ambassador to Costa Rica July 31. that was the day that
President Bush's staff sent the nomination to the U.S. Senate, the
White House said.
Both parents must sign for minors
Passport applications for minors under the age of 14 require
the consent of both parents or legal guardians, The U.S. Department
of State announced. The new regulation is designed to make
it tougher for one parent to take children and run out on the other
Thursday, Aug. 16, 2001
No good news on coffee
Coffee futures have hit a nine-year-low in New York due to increased
Asian production and seasonal lower demand.
Eyes on money laundering operations
All you ever wanted to know about money laundering but were afraid
to ask. That's what Economic Perspectives, an electronic journal, has at
Friday, Aug. 18, 2001
Looking for a few good test-takers
U.S. citizens living in Costa Rica have a chance to register for the
next foreign service exam, but they will have to go to the States to take
Sept. 5 a big soccer day here
U.S. citizens living in Costa Rica are going to need to exercise a
little diplomacy Wednesday, Sept. 5. That's the day the U.S. national soccer
team meets the Costa Rican team in an evening World cup semifinal contest
in San José.
Advanced passport service promised in Miami
The U.S. Passport Agency in Miami now produces passports that federal
officials are calling technologically advanced and secure. The agency is
on the third floor of the Claude Pepper Federal Building, 51 SW First Ave.
New OAS envoy Noriega presents credentials, stresses democracy
Strengthening democracy in the Americas remains one of the United States'
top foreign-policy goals, said Roger Noriega, the new U.S. permanent representative
to the Organization of American States (OAS).
New chipset faster, cheaper, Taiwanse firm says
A Taiwanese firm said yesterday it has begun volume shipments of a
computer chipset that is supposed to be 25 percent cheaper than a similar
chipset manufactured by Intel.
Monday, Aug. 20, 2001
Heavy rains drench several parts of the country
Truck transportation between eastern Costa Rica and the Central
Valley remained blocked early today, thanks to at least four landslides
on the Braulio Carrillo Highway.
Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2001
U.S. gets blame for gun smuggling
Arms smuggling is a growing problem in Latin America, and the United
States is the source of many of the weapons that are being bought and sold
illegally in the underground market.
The turtle season is in full swing
Nesting season is in full swing for the endangered Caribbean
green turtle. The sprawling, unkempt 22-mile beach at Tortuguero
is the most important Western Hemisphere site for this activity.
West Nile virus suspected in Ontario
Canadian officials said Monday they were conducting tests on a dead
crow found in Windsor, Ontario, in early August because preliminary tests
showed the presence of the West Nile virus.
Cuba travel ban may face U.S. vote
The U.S. Treasury Department, which just stepped up enforcement of
the ban on travel to Cuba, is now being urged to pull back. Congress may
vote to ease the restrictions as soon as next month, according to legislative
Shark targets include three surfers
Three shark attacks occurred Sunday in the Daytona Beach area
of Florida, not far from where sharks bit three surfers Saturday.
IRA officials nabbed in Colombia
Three men suspected of being members of the Irish Republican Army worked
with local Colombian Marxist guerrillas to perfect a devastating fire bomb
before their arrest a week ago in Colombia, according to police and intelligence
Wednesday, Aug. 22, 2001
Does 'Betty' say something about Latin lifestyle?
What is the attraction of the so-called ugly woman who has
transfixed Costa Rican television viewers? Is it just another Cinderella
story or does the popularity of "Yo soy Betty la fea" say something
about Latin culture?
Another electrical problem puts out the lights
Electricity in San José went off for about two hours Tuesday
night during the height of a major thunderstorm. However, the
cause, if known, still had not been made public late last night.
The outage might have extended throughout most of the country.
IMF Offers Argentina $8 Billion
The International Monetary Fund is offering Argentina $8 billion
in emergency loans to help the country stave off a feared economic
European Union visits Cuba
European Union officials are in Cuba Wednesday for a three-day visit
aimed at improving relations.
Helms may not run again
U.S. Sen. Jesse Helms of North Carolina, one of the most conservative
Republicans in Congress. will not run for re-election, news reports said
Court to look at Pinochet again
The Chilean Supreme Court has agreed to review an appeals court
decision to suspend human rights abuse charges against former dictator
State Department looks to armed services
The U.S. State Department will try to recruit 1,433 new employees next
year and many of them from the armed services.
Grammys to avoid Miami
Organizers of next month's Latin Grammy music awards decided
to move the event from Miami to Los Angeles. Cuban exile groups had been
granted permission to demonstrate near the arena where the show was
to have been held. Organizers cited security concerns for the move.
Foreign Relations committee seeks secrets
The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee scheduled hearings on John
Negroponte's nomination to be U.S. representative to the United Nations
for early September, when the Senate has returned from its August recess,
a committee statement said Monday. The committee wants certain secret Executive
Branch documents declassified.
Thursday, Aug. 23, 2001
Those from States, Canada not big group, census says
The final report of the 2000 census shows that 9,511 residents here
were born in the United States. Some 3,389 persons were born elsewhere
in North America, the census showed. Some 8,431 persons reported they were
born in Europe.
Big military exercise under way down south
About 400 U.S. troops and more than 700 military personnel from countries
in Latin America are participating in "Cabanas 2001" a military exercise
the United States characterized as peacekeeping practice.
Power outage blamed on tree
The power outage that hit Costa Rica Tuesday night happened because
a tree fell and struck a transmission line at the hydroelectric plant at
La Angostura, Cachí, reports the Costa Rican Electrical Institute.
Assistant secretary defends anti-spray program as safe
WASHINGTON — The United States cannot find any credible
scientific evidence that the aerial drug-eradication spraying
program in Colombia represents a health hazard to humans, said
Rand Beers, assistant secretary of state.
Friday, Aug. 24, 2001
Do the Nigerians have a wonderful deal for you
Has Rasheed Bello got a deal for you. He' s a director of the National
Nigerian Power Authority, and he wants to give you $16 million. Or
at least that's what the e-mail from the a Yahoo Internet mail account
said this week as the latest round of the so-called Nigerian scam
began to hit electronic mailboxes of Costa Ricans and foreigners
UCR plans big expo to show its work
University research projects from palmito production to electric circuits
are on display Friday, Saturday and Sunday at the University of Costa Rica.
Congressman finally admits relationship with missing intern
U.S. Rep. Gary Condit acknowledged Thursday night that he had
a five-month "close relationship" with missing intern Chandra Levy,
but said he knows nothing about her disappearance.
Extraditions approved for drug lords in Colombia
The Supreme Court of Colombia approved a U.S. request to extradite
a top drug lord to the United States for trial on charges of cocaine
trafficking and money laundering.
Rioters gassed in Argentina
BUENOS AIRES — Argentine police fired tear gas and rubber bullets to
disperse thousands of people who took to the streets of Buenos Aires in
the latest protest over government cost-cutting measures.
Himalayan quake feared
Scientists say the Himalayan region is overdue for a major earthquake
that could threaten the lives of more than 50 million people in northern
India, Pakistan and other neighboring countries.
Monday, Aug. 27, 2001
Big show at UCR
The Faculty of Economic Sciences was the setting for what amounted
to a science fair by professors Friday, Saturday and Sunday. To say the
least, the University of Costa Rica event was impressive.
Proposal in Colombia to legalize drugs draws fire
A Colombian legislator last week introduced bills to legalize drugs
and to halt the spraying of poppy and cocoa fields there.
Breakdown in talks causes violence
In Colombia, the breakdown of peace talks with a left-wing rebel group
appears to have set off a new terror campaign, as bombs explode in several
cities and towns around the country, causing millions of dollars damage
to homes and businesses, and injuring scores of people.
Big drug bust draws praise
Colombia and the United States have hailed a joint anti-narcotics
operation that netted some $35 million in cash, said to be
one of the largest-ever seizures of drug money.
Brazil makes up with Iran
Brazil is resuming relations with Iraq, which were downgraded
during the Gulf War. The Brazilian Government said it wants to promote
closer commercial ties with Baghdad.
U.S. pressures Europe on modified foods
The Washington Post newspaper said senior U.S. officials are pressuring
the European Union to abandon restrictions on foods containing genetically
Big winner in Kentucky
The winning numbers for the United States' Powerball lottery
have been drawn, and officials are waiting to hand over top prizes
totalling $295 million as soon as the winners come forward.
Lawyer says Condit stays
The lawyer for U.S. Rep. Gary Condit says the lawmaker has no intention
of resigning over the case of missing government intern Chandra Levy.
Shark diet restricted to fish
Officials in Florida have closed a 1.6 km stretch of beach after
sighting dozens of sharks.
Cubans want Castro indicted
Some Cuban exile groups are urging the U.S. government to indict Cuban
President Fidel Castro for murder in the 1996 shootdown of two planes flown
DNA frees man after 17 years
Authorities in the western U.S. state of Idaho have released
a man who spent more than 17-years on death row after new DNA evidence
proved his innocence.
Bush issues warning to U.N.
President Bush said Friday that the United States will not participate
in a coming U.N. conference on racism if the conference organizers insist
on saying that Zionism is a form of racism.
Free Taiwan called key
"A free Taiwan is the key to the possibility of genuinely close
relations between the U.S. and China and a guarantee that China's
growing impact on the international system will be a positive one,"
Rep. Henry Hyde said Friday in a speech in Taipei, Taiwan.
Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2001
A tight, shallow campaign predicted for Costa Rica
Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera frankly told Democrats Monday
that he was speaking to convince them that his candidate should win
the Costa Rican presidential election. Solís, who taught political
science at the University of Michigan, did so in fluent English.
His candidate is Rolando Araya, of the Liberation National party.
IBM gets even smaller
IBM researchers created and demonstrated the world's first computer
circuit within a single molecule, which may someday lead to a new class
of smaller and faster computers that consume less power than now, the company
We are featured
Hispanicvista.com, the Hispanic point of view, a bilingual website
based in California, is featuring A.M. Costa Rica this week because this
publication is a new arrival on the newspaper scene.
Powell will make a visit to Colombia
U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell will visit Colombia Sept. 11 to
12 after participating in the Organization of American States Special General
Assembly in Lima Sept. 10 to 11, the State Department said Monday.
But he will not go to South Africa
The United States says Secretary of State Colin Powell will boycott
the U.N. Conference on Racism beginning Friday in South Africa because
of what it calls offensive anti-Israel language in the agenda.
Colombia to extradite Ochoa
The president of Colombia has cleared the way for the extradition to
the United States of accused drug trafficker Fabio Ochoa, who was linked
to the now-defunct Medellin cocaine cartel.
Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2001
Costa Rican real estate dances to its own drummer
Dot.com companies come and go, and national and world economies
heat up and cool off. But Costa Rican residential real estate sales
seem driven by other, more fundamental factors.
Venezuela in emergency due to cases of dengue
Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez declared a health emergency
last week in response to the growing number of cases of dengue fever
in his country. The mosquito-borne disease has caused some
600 deaths in Venezuela, with more than 24,000 infections, according
to news reports.
Intel comes out with 2 GHz chip
Intel Corp. Monday introduced the Intel Pentium 4 processor at 2 gigahertz
(GHz) - or two billion cycles per second - crossing a key technology milestone
and extending the PC's ability, the company said.
Budget office reports Social Security on block
The U.S. Congressional Budget Office says the government will
use about $9 billion of Social Security revenue to balance its budget
Annan urges U.S. to go to racism conference
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan is urging the United States to take
part in this week's U.N. racism conference in South Africa.
British fear more surveillance
Laws designed to catch computer criminals could result in a huge
increase in the amount of covert surveillance carried out on British
citizens by the police and intelligence services, BBC News Online
reported last week.
Environmentalists sue over missile defense
Eight environmental groups have filed a lawsuit aimed at forcing the
Pentagon to show how President Bush's missile defense program and a
proposed test range in Alaska will affect the environment on the West Coast.
More money for Argentina
The World Bank has approved a $400 million loan for Argentina
to help finance reforms and other social programs being implemented
by President Fernando de la Rua.
Algerian indicted as terrorist
A London-based Algerian man has been indicted on terrorism-related
charges by a U.S. federal grand jury.
McCain to have surgery
U.S. Sen. John McCain, the former Republican presidential candidate,
undergoes surgery Wednesday for an enlarged prostate.
Cuba won't use U.S. coins
Cuban authorities will no longer allow the use of U.S. coins as currency
for purchases in stores and deposit in banks. Paper U.S. dollars are still
Labor leader dies in Bolivia
Bolivian labor leader Juan Lechin Oquendo, 89, has died in La
Bomb defused near U.S. consulate
Italian police have defused a small bomb placed near the U.S. consulate
Man faces murder charges in fire
Police in Mendocino County in northern California have charged a man
with murder for allegedly starting the campfire that spread into a wildfire
and led to the deaths of two firefighters.
Powerball winners in bliss
A couple from Maine who is sharing in the $295 million dollar
Powerball lottery jackpot describes the last few days as "wonderful
Thursday, Aug. 30, 2001
Surprise: The roads here are not too hot
If you think Costa Rican roads are a bit undermaintained and
full of potholes or "huecos," you are not alone. The U.S. government
rated the roads again this year as part of its annual review of the
Jo Stuart to join as columnist
Jo Stuart, a well-known and respected newspaper writer, will begin
a weekly column in this publication, starting tomorrow.
Drought seems the worst in areas of El Salvador
El Salvador's worst drought in two decades has wiped out farmers'
entire crops in the hardest-hit areas and left an estimated 200,000
people in urgent need of food aid, according to a special report.
Goverment troops go on offensive in Colombia
The Colombian government has stepped up a major military offensive
against leftist rebels as a high-level U.S. delegation visits the
Andean nation for talks on its anti-drug efforts.
U.S. expands veggie list benefiting Costa Rica
The United States Wednesday expanded the list of fruits and vegetables
that could be imported and included some crops from Costa Rica.
Great Latin music going to Hall of Fame
Some of the greatest Latin music recordings are being recognized
for the first time, as the Latin Recording Academy inaugurates a
Hall of Fame.
Auto workers continue strike
The Volkswagen plant in Puebla has served as a model for Mexican
industry. It is the only plant in the world that produces the popular
new Volkswagen Beetle, which is sold in 80 countries.
Friday, Aug. 31, 2001
Cause of man's death still is not clear
Investigators are waiting for autopsy results to find out what
killed a 61-year-old Texan in his home near Curridabat. The
dead man is Roy W. Karsh, who was found Wednesday by a part-time
maid about 1:30 p.m. in his home in Los Faroles de Curridabat.
Computer expo worth a visit but don't expect Buck Rogers
CompuExpo 2001 was a little subdued Thursday. There were fewer commercial
participants than last year, and there was breakthrough that would
knock off your socks.
The U.S. game is on at 8 a.m.!
Who says 8 a.m. is too early for cold beers? That's when the
United States National Team kicks off against Honduras Saturday.
31 soldiers reported killed in clashes in Colombia
The Colombian military says at least 31 leftist rebels and soldiers
are dead in renewed clashes that come as visiting U.S. diplomats
review U.S. policy.
U.S. Customs Service nabs two in encryption exporting case
The U.S. Customs Service has arrested two men suspected of trying
to smuggle military encryption technology to China.
Elian may go back to U.S.
Cuban shipwreck survivor Elian Gonzalez may return to the United
States, this time as a delegate for a U.N. special session on children.
Police nab Ukranian suspect in multiple murder case
California police captured fugitive Ukrainian murder suspect Nikolay
Sotlys Thursday in California. The capture ended a nationwide manhunt for
the immigrant who faces charges in the deaths of six relatives, including
his wife and son.
Colombian daily to go weekly
One of Colombia's oldest and most respected newspapers, "El Espectador,"
is ending publication as a daily and will become a weekly publication.
Nicaraguans protest at capital
Several hundred Nicaraguan farmers hit hard by drought and low
coffee prices have arrived in the capital, Managua, to end their
month-long protest march.
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