A.M.  Costa Rica
October news index
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These news articles were published in October 2001

Chronological index for October 2001

Monday, Oct. 1, 2001

TV marathon ties up downtown traffic big time
San José faced near gridlock Friday night as vehicles were backed up for miles, in part because of temporary construction on Avenida 2.

Pavas market a deal 
Photo essay: Saturday is the big day at the Pavas farmers' market where vegetables, flowers and other home-produced goodies sell for from 40 to 60 percent of the supermarket price. The market takes up five city blocks from Avenida 2 north to the Pavas boulevard in Pavas Center.

Danilovich confirmed as ambassador by U.S. Senate
John J. Danilovich, President Bush's nominee to be ambassador to Costa Rica, has been confirmed by the U.S. Senate.

Once upon a time at a bank in a magic land far, far away
Humor essay by Patricia Martin: Hello there. It is storytime for all you grown-up boys and girls. Oh, not a big adventure saga . . . . we will just spend an average day with Pat in Costa Rica, doing ho-hum things. Clap your hands if you would like to come along.

Wife of Colombian national prosecutor found dead
A beloved cultural figure in Colombia has been found shot to death days after she was kidnapped, reportedly by leftist guerillas. The body of the  62-year-old Consuela Araujo was found by troops late Saturday in a  northern rural region.

Civil liberties under siege due to terror attack
Opinion by Edward B. Winslow: Saying that we are in desperate times, government leaders on both sides of the political aisle warn that Americans' civil liberties are in danger.

Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2001

Polling season upon us as presidential race kicks off
The statistical times are at hand, at least as far as Costa Rican politics are concerned. The political season kicked off Monday, and public opinion surveys are the order of the day.

Randomness is the key
The whole key to a good survey is random   selection of the people who respond. El Día and   Demoscopía used random techniques.

Nimda virus confirmed to be in Costa Rica
A computer virus is stalking computers here in Costa Rica. The virus probably is the Nimda virus. A.M. Costa Rica received one e-mail from a Costa Rican-based account Monday that was believed to be a vehicle for the virus.

Chase is on, and a thief loses prize
It was another story in the naked city. But this one had a happy ending.

Drug dealers are feeling terrorists' impact, too
The terrorist attack Sept. 11 in the United States has had a positive effect on the drug war. While commercial aircraft were grounded for five days, drug shipments, just like legal commerce from Latin America backed up. As a result, Costa Rican police officials have made some spectacular arrests during the last two weeks.

Guerrillas blame army for death of woman hostage
Colombia's largest guerrilla force blames the army for the death of former Culture Minister Consuelo Araujo, who was found shot to death just days after she was kidnapped.

A.M. Costa Rica finishes first full month of publishing news
A.M. Costa Rica completed its first full month of operation Sunday, and the Web pages experienced about 45,000 electronic hits during September. 

Wedesday, Oct. 3, 2001

Web pirate sued for trapping surfers in his sites
Did you ever mistype a World Wide Web address and become locked in a site that dumped ad after ad onto your computer screen? Or worse yet, has this happened to your youngster?

'Ten Little Indians' cast takes that theater curse very seriously
When they tell you in the theater business to "Break a leg," they are speaking counter to their true feelings. The idea is to wish bad luck so that good luck will come.

Please, let's have some evidence, Mr. President
An editorial: As the days become weeks following the Sept. 11  terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, we  become more and more impatient to see the  evidence that links Osama bin Laden to the crime. 

Another politician died in Colombia
Colombian authorities say an opposition Liberal Party representative has been killed by suspected right-wing paramilitary forces. Officials say Octavio Sarmiento was shot dead Tuesday at his ranch in the town of Tame, in eastern Arauca state near Venezuela.

Montesinos wants  Fujimori to return 
Peru's ex-spy chief Vladimiro Montesinos has urged former president Alberto Fujimori to return from Japan to face justice.

New Peace Corps group arrives here to train
A new group of 12 Peace Corps candidates have arrived in Costa Rica and are undergoing 12 weeks of training in León XIII, Lomas de Río, Pavas and Los Guido, according to the U.S. Embassy.

Free trade report says many issues remain
Negotiating groups working towards creation of Free Trade Area of the Americas  must resolve a number of issues if they are to begin discussions on market access no later than their proposed May 2002 deadline, according to a new report by the U.S. General Accounting Office.

Big increase noted in exam
The U.S. State Department has expressed pleasure that more than 23,500 people worldwide registered for the Sept. 29 Foreign Service Written Exam. That's nearly double the number of registrants in 2000, according to a State Department announcement.

Thursday, Oct. 4, 2001

Drug trafficking equated to terrorism in Congress
Partnerships, called "dark synergies," exist between terrorists and drug trafficking, a U.S. congressional committee heard this week.

Evidence about bin Laden 'clear and compelling'
There is "clear and compelling" information that Usama bin Laden and his al-Qaida network were involved in the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on New York and Washington, Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage said Wednesday.

Conspiracy show on TV featured airliner targeting NYC World Trade Towers
Consider it another case of life imitating art. A March pilot of the television show "The Lone Gunman" featured a passenger jet being secretly programmed to crash into the World Trade Center.

Costa Rica seen being hit hard by international economic slump
An international credit-rating agency has singled out Costa Rica as being among a handful of Latin American nations that will bear the brunt of economic reverses caused by the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.

Danger warning is renewed for citizens traveling overseas
The U.S. government has renewed its travel warning in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorists attacks in the United States.

Fox and Bush will meet again today in Washington
Mexican President Vicente Fox is expected to meet with President Bush today in Washington to reiterate Mexico's support for the U.S.-led international fight against terrorism.

Fox promises he will open files on massacre
Mexican President Vicente Fox has commemorated the 33rd anniversary of a student massacre by promising to open secret government documents on the event.

New ambassador picked for position in Caracas
President Bush says he plans to nominate the U.S. State Department's director of Cuban affairs to serve as ambassador to Venezuela. 

Coast Guard liberates hijacked yacht in Haiti
The U.S. Coast Guard says it has stopped an attempt by eight Haitians to hijack a yacht and force the boat's French skipper to take them to the United States.

Television station owner arrested on bribery count
A Peruvian judge has ordered the arrest of a television station owner following allegations he took bribes from the country's former spy chief. 

Friday, Oct. 5, 2001

Osa group on Internet pushes for marine sanctuary
Residents in the Drake Bay area in far southwest Costa Rica have taken to the Internet to win support for a marine sanctuary.

Shot heard round the world came 50 years ago
Fifty years ago what most sports fans consider the greatest baseball game ever played took place in New York. It was played between two bitter rivals on a national stage. For one of those rivals, it ended in bitter defeat. But for another, it was a surprise and dramatic victory.

Here's a great rediscovery of an elegant French restaurant 
Jo Stuary's weekly column: Although French restaurants seem to have gone out of vogue with the advent of nouveau cuisine and food lite, two of the best and oldest restaurants in San Jose are French. One of them is Le Chandelier.

Forest declining at high rate in the tropics
Tropical countries continue to lose their forests at a very high rate, the U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) warned in a report published Thursday. But Costa Rica, the report said, lost only 16,000 hectares of forest cover in the years 1990 to 2000, or about .77 percent, or less than 1 percent of the country's forest.

Muslims in Paraguay claim police extorting money
Authorities in Paraguay have increased surveillance of the country's Arab immigrants. And there have been charges that police are extorting large sums of money from some merchants in return for not detaining them. Paraguay's increased vigilance over its Arab community has come in response to the Sept. 11 attacks in the United States.

Mexican President Fox visits New York scene
Mexican President Vicente Fox is in New York City to meet with Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and view first hand the World Trade Center disaster site. The Mexican president traveled to New York Thursday after meeting with President Bush at the White House to reaffirm Mexico's support for the U.S. led fight against terrorism.

Body of snake victim found at canal mouth
Searchers found the body of César Castillón Mejía. 54, floating near the mouth of the Tortugero canals in extreme northeast Costa Rica Thursday. Investigators think he was the victim of a snakebite.

Robbers were active in three locations
Robbers held up a cooperative in Grecia, a fast-food chicken sales outlet in San Pedro and a gas deliveryman in Tibás Wednesday. 

Reno can be sued, federal judge rules
A U.S. federal judge in the state of Florida has ruled that former Attorney General Janet Reno can be sued over last year's raid on the Miami home where Cuban boy Elian Gonzalez was staying.

Investigators kill man with knife
Two investigators trying to find evidence of drug dealing in San Juan de San Ramón shot and killed a man who challenged them early Thursday, said police. The dead man was identified by the Judicial Investigating Organization as Luis Ramírez Savedra, 21.

It's Costa Rica vs. Mexico
Sunday is another football day in Costa Rica as the National Team takes on Mexico in a game that means a lot to Mexico but not to Costa Rica, which already has qualified for a World cup berth. 

Monday, Oct. 8, 2001

Photo display: Artisans opened up shop (for a fee) along the Avenida Principal last weekend, a return to the place they were ousted from years ago.  But just for three days.

Costa Rica ties Mexico in match at home
Costa Rica and Mexico fought to a scoreless tie in Ricardo Saprissa Stadium Sunday. But Mexico's World Cup hopes remained alive when the Trinidad and Tobago national team beat Honduras, 1-0.

Bin Laden appears to be just one goal of military
The U.S. anti-terrorist operation now under way often appears to be a hunt for one man: Osama bin Laden, the prime suspect in last month's terrorist attacks against New York and Washington, who is believed to be hiding out in Afghanistan.

British PM builds a circumstantial case in public
A report by British Prime Minister Tony Blair gives the fullest public account yet of the evidence the western alliance has against Osama bin Laden.

Italian report shows links among terror cells there
A 100-page Italian investigative report tells what  journalists called a stunning story of cooperation among suspected Bin Laden cells in Europe and includes chilling wiretaps among the "brothers."

Colombia and rebels reach an agreement
The Colombian government says it has reached an agreement with the nation's largest rebel group for immediate cease-fire talks.

State Department urges Nicaraguans to vote Nov. 4
The U.S. State Department says it is crucial for all Nicaraguans to participate in their nation's presidential election next month and for the  balloting to be free and fair. 

Cubans gather to mark bombing
Hundreds of thousands of Cubans gathered  Saturday in Havana's Revolution Square for a rally led by President Fidel Castro to mark the 25th anniversary of an airline bombing.

Schindler's widow dies in Europe
Emilie Schindler, 94, died Saturday in a hospital outside Berlin.

Brazilian senator calls it quits
The Brazilian Senate has accepted the resignation of one of its members who quit his job amid allegations of corruption, fraud and embezzlement of public funds. 

Tuesday, Oct. 9, 2001

Nation's Jade Museum, a great tourism site, to reopen Oct. 31
The Museum of Jade will be open again Oct. 31 on the 11th floor of the National Insurance Institute building in Barrio Amon just north of Morazan 

Orchestra changes dates 
The National Symphonic Orchestra has moved up the dates of its final concert.

Have you met Snow White and her seven little computer worms?
The Snow White virus now speaks Spanish and is alive and well in Costa Rica.

U.S. forces launch second night of air attacks
U.S. planes and missiles pounded military and terrorist targets in Afghanistan for a second consecutive night. 

Second anthrax case found in Florida
The FBI has taken over the investigation of a Florida man's death from anthrax, after one of his co-workers tested positive for exposure to the disease.

Some embassies close in Jakarta
Several foreign embassies in this Indonesian capital have closed their gates and urged their citizens to stay home in the wake of U.S. air strikes in Afghanistan.

Iris, the most powerful storm of season, is inland over Belize
Hurricane Iris was inland and about 80 miles south-southwest of Belize City, Belize about 9 p.m. Monday night, according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

If you go to sale, you can chill out
The Little Theater Group has a deal for you: Go to their yard sale and participate in their auction, and they will put air conditioning in the 
 theater in Bello Horizonte.

Another kidnapping reported in Colombia 
Colombian police say the nation's largest leftist  rebel group has apparently broken an agreement crucial to the peace process by kidnapping six people in southern Colombia.

Mexico wins seat on Security Council
The U.N. General Assembly has chosen Mexico for a two-year seat on the Security Council. 

New ambassador here
The new U.S. ambassador to Costa Rica, John Danilovich, is scheduled to present his credentials today to President Miguel Angel Rodríguez, according to the presidential staff.

New warning issued by State Department
The U.S. government has told U.S. citizens in Afghanistan that they ought to leave the country.

Wednesday, Oct. 10, 2001

Air tickets on their way up for the holidays
There's no place like home for the holidays, particularly when you see what is happening to air fares.

Few signups force Association of Residents to cancel Carnival trip
The Association of Residents of Costa Rica has canceled its trip to the Limón Carnival next week because of low signups.

A third night of attacks rocks cities in Afghanistan
Witnesses reported explosions and anti-aircraft fire in Kabul and other Afghan cities as the United States carried out a third straight night of air attacks against the Taliban and suspected terrorist targets.

Bush will limit info to Congress
President Bush has decided for national security reasons to dramatically limit the number of people in the U.S. Congress who can receive administration briefings that include classified information on the war against terrorism.

Canada warns citizens overseas
Canada has warned its citizens about the possibility of increased dangers for those living abroad. 

Investigators make separate arrests in drug cases
Costa Rica's police agencies made two major sets of drug-related arrests Monday and Tuesday.

Arias will be speaker for Democrats Abroad
Oscar Arias S., 1987 Nobel Peace laureate and former president of Costa Rica, will be the guest speaker Monday, Oct. 29, at the lunch meeting of Democrats Abroad of Costa Rica. 

Hurricane Iris kills divers from U.S.
As many as 20 people are feared dead in Belize, as Hurricane Iris battered the coast of the Central American nation, capsizing boats and flattening buildings.

Intel competitor unveils new chip
Advanced Micro Systems of Sunnyvale, Calif., introduced a new computer chip called the Athlon XP Tuesday. The company is a competitor of Intel, which has chip manufacturing facilities here in Costa Rica.

Colombian officials hope rebels will free hostages
Colombian officials say they hope six people being held by suspected leftist rebels will be freed once their captors learn about a guerrilla agreement to end roadside kidnappings. 

Thursday, Oct. 11, 2001

Investigators make another big anti-drug score
Police are continuing their drug crackdown with the  seizure Wednesday of 65 sacks containing nearly 2,677 kilos of marijuana, some 5,890 pounds.

Bar owner Crouse, still in jail, victimized by thieves
Only a few things in life are certain: death, taxes and that Roger Morris Crouse still is in jail in Liberia.

Big blaze reported near Kabul's airport
A huge fire was reported near Kabul's airport as U.S. forces pounded Taliban and suspected terrorist targets in Afghanistan for the fourth straight night Wednesday.

Most-wanted list
In Washington, President George Bush unveiled a terrorism "most-wanted" list topped by accused terrorist leader Osama bin Laden, the suspected mastermind behind the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.

Another anthrax exposure
In Florida, U.S. federal officials say a third person has tested positive for exposure to the rare, deadly anthrax disease.

Anti-narcotics effort vital to fight terrorism, U.S. official says
Providing support for counternarcotics and other anti-crime efforts around the world is more important than ever, according to James Mack, deputy assistant secretary of state for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs.

Latin terrorism noted in Congress
While there is "clear and compelling evidence" that the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks originated in Afghanistan, with Osama bin Laden's al-Qaida organization, ... we must  also  recognize that the threats to our people and interests can come  from any venue," says  Ambassador Francis Taylor, coordinator for counterterrorism at the U.S. Department of State.

Artists' colony group with Costa Rican link rips Bush as coward
The Alliance of Artists' Communities has come out with a strong statement against the Bush Administration and the war in Afghanistan.

Deaths of Colombian police may derail peace process
Colombian officials say leftist guerrillas have murdered two police officers, a development that threatens to end the country's peace process.

Rabies cases cause concerns
Two deaths, that of a woman and a boy, in the southwestern part of Costa Rica have been blamed  on rabies probably contracted from a cat, and the situation has galvanized the nation's health officials.

Internet connections shaky at some spots in San José 
Computer hookups were erratic Wednesday in parts  of San José, but some commercial Internet cafes said they had no troubles.

Ambassador presents his credentials
The new U.S. ambassador to Costa Rica, John Danilovich, was to present his credentials last night to President Miguel Angel Rodríguez at the Casa Presidential.

Friday, Oct. 12, 2001

Warning for U.S. and overseas
The U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation Thursday warned of imminent terrorists attacks in the United States and overseas. 

The times they are achanging
Jo Stuart’s weekly column on new motorcycles for police

Some cable connections have problems with Web
Computers that hook up to servers in Costa Rica through television cables suffered two days of shaky service.

Gang members shoot it out
Opposing gangs shot it out Wednesday night in La Carpio, La Uruca, and five persons suffered bullet wounds.

The holiday is Monday
Public offices and banks will be closed Monday as Costa Rica celebrates Día de las Cultures.

Bush offers Taliban second chance on bin Laden
President Bush has offered to give Afghanistan's Taliban authorities what he calls "a second chance" to hand over suspected terrorist mastermind Osama bin Laden.

Leader's son believed killed in bombings
U.S. planes carried out a fifth night of raids in Afghanistan amid reports that the first night of western airstrikes killed a son of Taliban head Mullah Muhammad Omar.

Latin nations support terrorism effort, U.S. official tells Congress
Nations of the Western Hemisphere have strongly supported U.S. efforts to construct a global coalition against terrorism, said Curt Struble, deputy assistant secretary of state for Western Hemisphere affairs.

Illegal aliens were lost in NYC terror attacks in U.S., too
Scores of legal and undocumented immigrants were among the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center.

Worsening economy documented by report from embassy
Costa Rica's economy steadily worsened during the first nine months of the year, according to an analysis by the U. S. Embassy. But the predictions in the report are another casualty of the Sept. 11 terror attack in New York and Washington.

Monday, Oct. 15, 2001

Someone who is unclear on the concept: You need a political party!
During political campaigns there is nothing unusual when party activists raise money by promising cushy government jobs after the elections. But one Costa Rican carried this tradition a step further by failing to be involved with a political party before he went out selling government jobs, according to investigators.

Eclipse Dec. 14 could be a boost to tourism here
Just when Costa Rica needed a tourism boost, the sun and the moon decided to get together. The country will witness a solar eclipse Dec. 14, and the section of the travel industry that specialized in eclipse tours already is marketing the country vigorously.

It's a holiday
If you were going to the bank today, forget it. The Día de las Culturas holiday normally held on Oct. 12 is celebrated today, according to a law passed by the legislative Assembly.

It's the ninth day of bombing Afghanistan targets
U.S. warplanes have flown a ninth day of attacks in Afghanistan against suspected terrorist targets and positions of the ruling Taliban.

Nearly 200 more sought
Meanwhile, in Sunday morning television interviews, Attorney General John Ashcroft said law enforcement agencies nationwide continue to track down leads in an effort to find all those responsible and to prevent further attacks. 

Anthrax tests positive
Investigators still are trying to find out who is mailing letters containing anthrax spores to mostly news outlets. No link has yet been made to Middle Eastern terrorists.

Envionmentalists' experts unhappy with Harken's impact statement
Two Mexican experts urged that an environmental impact statement involving a plan to drill offshore near Limón not be approved.

International guitar festival opens tonight 
Victor Monge of Spain will open the Eighth International Festival of Guitars at the National theater tonight at 8 o'clock.

Chavez and pope agree on terrorism
Pope John Paul II and Venezuelan President Hugo  Chavez met Friday at the Vatican and discussed the  current international situation, as well as church issues in Venezuela. 

Farmers march to reform in Guatemala City
Thousands of indigenous farmers marched in  Guatemala City and blocked roadways leading to the  capital as part of what organizers called a "Day of  Indigenous Resistance."

Panel of experts to bring wealth-building ideas 
A Maryland financial expert and a Costa Rican lawyer have teamed up to put on a financial seminar designed to address the needs of U.S. citizens living abroad.

Argentina voting  for senate, house
Argentines have voted for new senate and house  members, in an election seen as a major test of President Fernando de la Rua's 2-year-old administration.

Fox travels to Spain to promote trade
Mexican President Vicente Fox has arrived in Spain, as part of a five-nation European tour to promote his country's latest trade agreement.

Belize puts homeless at more than 14,000
Officials in Belize say thousands of people are homeless after Hurricane Iris battered the country's coast last week.

Intelligence services recalling a few Cold War types
If James Bond were flesh and not a literary creation, he might be getting a big manila envelope delivered by a smiling junior naval officer. Sources in London report that the British intelligence agency, MI6, is releasing some top employees and recalling some James Bond types who can be of more use in the confrontation with Arab fundamentalists.

Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2001

Ex-Canadian minesweeper will become dive boat deluxe
When David Sewell spotted a used Canadian Navy minesweeper up for sale, he quickly realized that he served on the same vessel for 11 months as navigation officer.

Association will help market CD by street children choir
The Association of Residents voted Monday to help market a compact disk featuring The Street Children Choir of the Don Bosco Center in San José.

Holiday was a success
Costa Ricans celebrated Día de las Culturas, or Day of the Cultures, Monday with public offices and  banks closed.

Gunship joins the assault in skies over Afghanistan
U.S. forces have launched fresh attacks near the Afghan cities of Kabul and Kandahar.

Wednesday, Oct. 17, 2001

Immigration sweeps for foreigners in Pacific towns
Costa Rican immigration officials are cracking down on foreigners who have overstayed their tourist visa or otherwise do not have the legal right to be in Costa Rica.

The bells are ringing for illegal tourists
Love (or at least marriage) is motivated by many things: physical attraction, money and, yes, nationality.

Mail handlers here put on gloves and masks  to avoid anthrax
Costa Rican mail handlers donned masks and rubber gloves Tuesday as fears of anthrax-laced letters reached Costa Rica.

U.S. official promises to fight 'terrorist' groups in Colombia
The U.S. State Department's chief of counter-terrorism says the United States will fight terrorism in the Western Hemisphere "with all the elements of our national power."

Final anti-terrorism bill rests with House-Senate committee
The U.S. Senate has overwhelmingly passed a pair of bills that expand law enforcement powers in the fight against terrorism and tighten aviation security. The House of Representatives has approved a companion, but different, anti-terrorism bill.

Peronists post big gains in both houses of Argentina's legislature
The opposition Peronist party has made large gains in Sunday's legislative elections in Argentina.

Spanish king praises language
Spain's King Juan Carlos has called the Spanish language a powerful tool for communication and urged its wider use around the world.

Thursday, Oct. 18, 2001

Surprising optimism found among savvy tourist operators
The much-predicted tourism disaster facing Costa Rica seems to be steeped in faulty logic and faulty statistics.

Immigrant crackdown probably triggered by criminal activity
A crackdown at Playas del Coco on the Pacific coast may have been engendered by the drug-dealing, murders and other criminal activity in the area.

Giant Boruca project draws Indian protests
A typical Goliath vs. David face-off is shaping up, and the giant is the national electric monopoly.

Online casinos dodge bullet in U.S. House money-laundering bill
The House of Representatives has overwhelmingly passed a bill to disrupt money flows to terrorists after lawmakers dropped a measure that would have prevented credit card payments to Internet casinos.

Bush appointee pledges commitment to hemisphere
Despite speculation that the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks against New York and Washington might prevent the United States from addressing important regional issues, U.S. "commitment to this hemisphere is no less today; in many ways, it is [greater]" than before, said Marc Grossman, under secretary of state for political affairs.

Freeze on drug assets maintained by Bush
President Bush says the U.S. federal government will extend a freeze on the assets of Colombian drug traffickers because they continue to pose a threat to U.S. national security.

Quake hits Virgin islands
An earthquake measuring 6.0 on the Richter scale shook the Virgin Islands and was felt in Puerto Rico.

Friday, Oct. 19, 2001

Artist branch out  at handiwork fair
There's not a lot you can do with busted tree limbs someone chucked in the trash. That is unless you are six artists from Monteverde who constructed their display area at the national artists fair with the castoffs.

Double murder and a suicide ends midmorning argument
A man described as either a French citizen or a French Canadian shot and killed a man and a woman early Thursday then turned the gun on himself.

Writing about the bad things in Costa Rica important, too
Jo Stuart’s weekly column

Californian makes history with underage pimping conviction
A former California man became the first U.S. citizen ever convicted of selling children for sex in Costa Rica.

Republicans plan a big weekend to consider elections in 2002
U.S. Rep. Tom Davis of Virginia will be the main guest when Republicans Abroad of Costa Rica celebrate their Pura Vida Weekend Nov. 3 and 4.

Monday, Oct. 22, 2001

Internet junk mailers rattle our computers here
The Costa Rican Internet monopoly ran  into trouble with the rest of the world because it appeared that users were sending a high volume of junk messages.

Publication's advertising section expanded and index updated
This publication has expanded its classifieds to include separate pages.

Dual citizens can vote and not lose out
Some U.S. citizens also have Costa Rican citizenship, and a few are wondering if they can vote in the Feb. 3 presidential elections here without jeopardizing their rights.

Man who shot couple was a French citizen
A man who killed a couple Thursday in Los Cuadros de Guadalupe was definitely a French citizen, diplomats and police investigators affirmed Friday.

Bomb Blast in Colombia blamed on leftists rebels
Colombian authorities have blamed the country's second largest rebel group — the National Liberation Army —for a bomb blast that killed at least five people and injured two others. 

Elian’s Florida home is museum
The Miami, Fla., home where young shipwreck survivor Elian Gonzalez lived has been turned into a museum commemorating his time in the United States.

Greenpeace is upset by pollution of corn's genetic pool
Mexico is conducting an investigation on reports that Mexican corn is being contaminated by imported genetically engineered varieties.

Concern voiced on agro-terrorism
A world authority on agriculture is warning of the potential dangers of agro-terrorism. 

Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2001

'War on terrorism' will have impact here in Costa Rica
Analysis by Jay Brodell,  A.M. Costa Rica editor.
The worldwide fight against terrorism is likely to have far-reaching impacts in Costa Rica.

For him, it's better to receive than give
The Nigerian scam has a blessing for you. 
The latest transmutation of this scam to reach Costa Rica is purportedly from a preacher in Togo who happens to have a trunk in storage with about $30 million contained therein.

Cab driver killed by trio who hailed him
A 30-year-old pirate cab driver picked up the wrong three men about 7:30 Sunday night.

U.S. has triple strategy to fight money laundering
The U.S. government must work closely with the private sector and international partners to "break the financial backbone of terrorist groups and their financiers," a senior Treasury Department official said Monday.

Death of two postal workers blamed on anthrax
U.S. Homeland Security Director Tom Ridge says the deaths of two Washington postal workers reported Monday were probably caused by anthrax.

Warplanes hit Afghani targets
U.S. warplanes have again struck targets in Afghanistan near Taliban front lines north of Kabul. 

Venezuela Stampede Leaves 11 Dead 
Authorities say a stampede at an annual festival here left at least 11 people dead and 25 injured.

Sinn Fein admits link to man nabbed in Colombia
The leader of the Sinn Fein party, the political wing of the Irish Republican Army, has publicly admitted that Niall Connolly, who was arrested in Colombia in August on terrorism charges, was the Irish movement's designated representative in Cuba.

Marathon raises cash for victims of terrorism
Tens of thousands of music fans gathered in Washington Sunday for a marathon concert of pop stars to raise money for victims of last month's terrorist attacks.

Face factors seminar topic
English-speakers are being offered a chance to spiff up their face at a medical seminar Dec. 6.

Wednesday, Oct. 24, 2001

About 8,800 air tourists didn't come to Costa Rica
Costa Rica lost about 8,800 airline tourists in September because of the terrorist attacks in the United States. 

Campaign to boost tourism part ads and part PR
The Costa Rican campaign to boost its tourists has been under way for about three weeks.

CIMA plans seminar as overseas anthrax alert issued
Hospital CIMA plans a seminar about bioterrorism Thursday night for the North American community. Meanwhile, the U.S. State Department says it is "deeply concerned" about the security of Americans overseas, and it has issued a new worldwide terrorist alert that warns of possible anthrax attacks.

Older but effective computer virus on the loose again via RACSA
The Win32SirCam computer virus attacked a computer via a message downloaded from the RACSA server Tuesday morning.

Human rights vital in Central America, UN secretary-general says
U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan said protecting human rights and eradicating poverty in Central America is essential for building peace and democracy in the region.

Colombia issues arrest warrants
The Colombian government has issued arrest warrants for the top leadership of the country's largest guerrilla group on charges of murder.

Conference in Belize is warmup for world ecotourism discussion
Those involved in Central American ecotourism can meet Nov. 26 to 28 in Belize City to discuss ideas and actions to suggest at the World Ecotourism Summit in May om Canada.

Thursday, Oct. 25, 2001

E-mailers still complain the world blocks RACSA
Costa Rican computer users continue to face blocks from Internet servers elsewhere in the world because the government Internet monopoly has been identified as being friendly to unsolicited e-mail senders.

The annoying problem of unsolicited e-mails is not a crime
Unsolicited e-mail messages are annoying but they are legal in most jurisdictions. And they can be protected freedom of speech.

Press law committee votes to remove 'insult'
A legislative committee voted Tuesday to eliminate the crime of insult from the country’s penal code.

Assistant to top judge charged with helping suspects leave country
An assistant to a chief judge in Costa Rica’s judicial system faces charges that he sold permissions to let criminals flee the country before their cases were resolved.

More help sought from First World
Latin American and Caribbean officials are urging industrialized nations to increase their assistance on environmental issues in developing nations as promised at the 1992 Earth Summit.

U.S. House passes massive incentives
The U.S. House of Representatives narrowly passed a $100 billion dollar economic stimulus package for the ailing U.S. economy. Wednesday's vote in the House was a razor thin 216 to 214 in favor of the Republican-backed plan.

U.S. wants to extradict Colombian combatants
The U.S. ambassador to Colombia says the United States will seek to extradite and bring to trial Colombian rebels and right-wing paramilitaries suspected of money laundering and drug trafficking.

Oil workers strike in Brazil over inflation offset
Brazilian union officials say oil workers have begun a five-day strike, shutting down oil refineries and drilling rigs throughout the country.

Friday, Oct. 26, 2001

Grim photos punctuate seminar on anthrax
Anthrax spores are all around us all the time, but clumped up so a normal body filters them out as harmless trash.

Jo Stuart’s column
Weekly column addresses concerns about the war.

U.S.  citizen's body found
Police found the body of a 25-year-old man believed to be a U.S. citizen in a small cabin near Quepos. They identified him as James  Orney and said he had been dead for about  three days.

Salvation Army hopes it will be back helping children soon
The Salvation Army hopes to have a mobil kitchen on the streets within two weeks to help homeless children and others.

Most of the artisans hoping for a better weekend of handicraft sales
The national artisans’ exhibition has some winners and some losers. Some artisans selling their handicraft there report that the first full week was good. Others characterize the week as having fewer sales than the year before.

Samara on the ball to exploit eclipse tourism
The folks in Samara are getting serious about the eclipse. Already they have a big display on their Web site encouraging tourists to visit the Pacific beach town to take in the Dec. 14 astronomical event.

Colombian police grab lot of funny money
Authorities in Colombia have seized $7 million worth of counterfeit U.S. currency and arrested eight members of a counterfeiting ring.

Anti-terrorism measures sent to the U.S. president
The U.S. Senate has cleared the way for President Bush to sign into law a sweeping anti-terrorism bill later Friday. The bill, which the House of Representatives had already approved, passed in the Senate Thursday by an overwhelming vote of 98 to 1.

Candidates in Nicaragua seem to be in a dead heat
A new public opinion poll in Nicaragua indicates that former Sandinista president Daniel Ortega and ruling party candidate Enrique Bolanos are in a virtual tie two weeks before the country's presidential election.

Air war targets hideout of Osama bin Laden
U.S. warplanes are reported to have targeted suspected hideouts of terrorists and Taliban fighters in Afghanistan's eastern Paktia province bordering Pakistan.

Monday, Oct. 29, 2001

Halloween more sedate here as Ticos go to cemeteries
Halloween, the scary holiday in North America, will be celebrated here Wednesday mostly with small private parties.The big day in Costa Rica is Nov. 2, the Day of the Dead, when  family members visit cemeteries to make flower offerings to  their deceased loved ones.

Salvation Army amplifies explanation of shelter situation
Coomentary by Salvation Army Major John Mowers on the problem of youth shelters and the Costa Rican government.

Costa Rica's corruption rate right in the middle
Costa Rica ranked 40th of 91 countries in the perception its public has of corruption among its public officials and employees

Anti-money-laundering measures becomes U.S. law
President George Bush signed into law Friday anti-money laundering legislation that aims to cut off financing channels for terrorist networks.

Rumsfeld denies war has become quagmire
U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says U.S. military action in Afghanistan is going well, stressing it is "not a quagmire."

French judge seeking15 ex-officials in Chile
A French judge has issued international arrest warrants for 15 former Chilean officials. They are  wanted in connection with the disappearance of five French citizens during the rule of former dictator Augusto Pinochet.

More action sought to save environment
Latin American and Caribbean officials are calling  for urgent action to halt environmental destruction and achieve sustainable development. 

AIDS conference begins in Port of Spain
An international conference aimed at improving the lives and strengthening support for people living with HIV-AIDS has begun in Trinidad and Tobago.

Argentine readies plan to bolster economy
Argentine officials say President Fernando de la Rua  is preparing to announce new economic measures  aimed at easing the country's three-year-old financial crisis.

Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2001

Cost Rica sex trade gets airing in Italy
An Italian television station was planning to report Monday night on  the exploitation of underage prostitutes in Costa Rica.

Arias promotes his idea of Marshall plan for poor
Oscar Arias Sánchez, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning former president, called for a Marshall plan to aid the world’s poor before Democrats Abroad Monday.

U.S. vet in Curridabat heads VFW recruitment
Thomas D. Graham of Curridabat has been named a national deputy chief of staff by the Veterans of Foreign Wars.

Watch out for protest downtown today
Students at the University of Costa Rica are planning to rally there today and then go to an unspecified part of San José to demonstrate against government involvement with an oil drilling project in the Caribbean offshore from Limón.

Ashcroft warns of imminent new attacks in U.S. and overseas
U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft has issued a new terrorism alert, saying credible information indicates that within the next week there may be terrorist attacks in the United States and against U.S. interests abroad.

Greenhouse gases are targeted by big meeting in Marrakech
Negotiators from around the world are meeting in Marrakech, Morocco, to write the detailed operational rules of the Kyoto Protocol, which would commit developed countries to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases linked to global warming.

New ambassador plugs commerce on Internet
The Internet has changed the way businesses operate, creating economies of scale and allowing companies to bring new products to market faster, according to John Danilovich, the new U.S. ambassador to Costa Rica.

Dutch citizen dies after his arrest
A Dutch citizen whose arrest prompted snickers all over Costa Rica ended up committing suicide in his jail cell in Alajuela, according to investigators.

U.S. citizen’s death remains a  mystery
Technicians need to await the results of toxicology tests before they can determine the cause of death of a 25-year-old U.S. citizen who was found dead in a cabina in Quepos late last week.

Driver was not pirate
A reader has reported that Mauricio Ulate Jiménez, who was murdered by car thieves Oct. 21 in Desamparados, was not a pirate taxi driver, but a driver of the Decsa company, that offers transport service from Hipermás.

Three men stick up fast-food chicken spot
Armed men held up the Rosti Pollo outlet in Desamparados Sunday night about midnight.

Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2001

Betty does not disappoint her fans as she becomes a beauty
Betty la Fea became Betty the Beautiful Tuesday night as the popular Colombian television novella moved towards its predictable conclusion.

Halloween happiness Tica-style (Photo)
Neyling Moreno Espinoza and Fanny Cordero Chávez, two employees at Sharkey's Bar downtown, model the  masks they will wear tonight for Halloween.

New U.S. law makes changes in civil liberties
The United States has fundamentally altered its domestic civil liberties in order to fight terrorism, and the effects doubtlessly will be felt in Costa Rica. (Related story follows)

These are some of the objections to the anti-terrorism measure
The Center for Democracy and Technology, an electronic watchdog organization, criticized the newly enacted PATRIOT Law thusly: "This bill has been called a compromise but the only thing compromised is our civil liberties."

Photo of marchers
Students from the University of Costa Rica and elsewhere march through San José to the Ministry of Energy and Environment for a one-hour protest Tuesday.

Dead man carried British passport
The Colombian military has found a British passport on the body of a man killed during combat with leftist rebels over the weekend. Colombian authorities are trying to determine what he was doing there.

Storm causes emergency for battered Honduras
Honduran authorities have declared a state of emergency for the northern part of the country following several days of heavy rains and floods that have left at least one person dead and seven others missing.

Another drug suspect extradicted to U.S.
Alleged Colombian drug kingpin Alejandro Bernal Madrigal is in U.S. custody to face trial for allegedly smuggling billions of dollars worth of cocaine into the United States.

Argentina’s finances take new bad turn
Argentina's financial markets suffered their worst one-day losses for the year, amid fears a restructuring deal for part of the country's $132 billion debt will effectively amount to a default.

New firm will track menace of bioterrorism
A local private investigating firm is expanding to provide bioterrorism consultations and assistance in Costa Rica.

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