The August 11th, 2013 issue of The STAR (Cayo) is online HERE

This Week's Stories:

  • First Murder In Benque In Over Two Years:
    Three days after his brutal death, relatives of Pedro Antonio Vasquez are today making final funeral preparations to lay his body to rest in Benque Viejo Town. An arrest is yet to be made as Benque Viejo police say that they are following several leads in what they say is the first murder in the jurisdiction in over two years. The call of the presence a dead body in the municipality was received by Benque Viejo police at around 5:00 am on Sunday, August 4, 2013. Police rushed to the scene where they came upon the still bleeding motionless body, still with a pulse, of a male Hispanic person face downwards in a pool of blood adjacent to the gas station on Churchill Street. The man was rushed to the community hospital in San Ignacio where, on arrival, he was officially pronounced dead by the doctor on duty.
  • Luke Espat – From PUP Financier To PUP Candidate:
    He first busted on the scene in the 90’s as a PUP contractor. Among his first engagement s was the building of houses on the outskirts of Belize City on the Northern Highway. Today over two decades later at least one of the several houses he built, leaning on its side, remains as a permanent testimony of a man who was destined to fail in every venture thereafter. It is like everything he touched thereafter turned to mud. It was in the wake of the leaning Belize City houses that he inherited the name Lucas Eilene. His name at birth is actually Luke Espat. This is the man who this week announced that he is running for the dying opposition PUP in Cayo Central, a constituency to which he is as alien as the Russians landing on our shores, a constituency to which he has absolutely not a single connection.
  • Toledo Alliance for Progress:
    The Toledo Alliance for Progress (TAP) is a grass roots Toledo-based organization, duly registered in January 2013. It comprises of members from the National Kriol Council, National Garifuna Council, East Indian Council and the business community. TAP advocates for the support of developmental activities and programs that assist communities in creating employment, self- reliance and improvement in the quality of lives in the Toledo District. 1. Statistics have shown that Toledo is the poorest district in Belize 2. The government’s stringent budget since the 1960’s can scarcely cope with the district’s call for better education, health & welfare as well as much needed employment and infrastructure.
  • Venezuela Top Court Rejects Capriles' Election Appea:
    Venezuela's highest court has rejected an appeal by opposition leader Henrique Capriles against April's contested presidential election result. The Supreme Court of Justice described the appeal as "inadmissible". After the ruling Mr Capriles tweeted that there was a "lack of justice" in Venezuela. Nicolas Maduro, Hugo Chavez's handpicked successor, won the election by less than 1.5 percentage points - about 200,000 votes. The opposition alleged that the vote had been marred by fraud. In June the Venezuelan National Electoral Commission (CNE) confirmed President Maduro's victory in an audit on millions of votes, but Mr Capriles denounced the audit as "a fake".
  • Twenty-six Belizean Youth Attend Conference in El Salvador to Learn to Contribute to Their Community:
    Youths from six communities in Belize travelled to El Salvador over this past weekend (2 - 5 August) to attend a Bahá’í Youth Conference. They returned Monday night full of excitement to execute the plans they made for themselves to serve their communities of Corozal, Belmopan, Belize City, San Pedro, San Ignacio, and Dangriga. This Conference was attended by 660 youth ages 15 to 30 from Belize, Cuba, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and El Salvador. It was one of 114 similar Regional Conferences being held from July through October around the globe on all continents and many island groups. The purpose of these gatherings is “to summon today’s youth” of all faiths and backgrounds “to put the needs of others before their own” in order “to aid the spiritual and social development of those around them, especially ones younger than themselves”. The Universal House of Justice, which is the international governing body of the Bahá’í Faith, called for the Conferences.
  • Letter:
    I carefully read Scott Stirm’s insulting reply to my letter appearing in your Sunday, July 21, 2013 edition. Stirm attempts to insult me personally by saying that I am a homosexual. I am, and I have no more of an apology for that than I do for being right-handed, bald, or having blue eyes. He attempts to insult me by stating that I am married to a man. I was, indeed, legally married to Thomas J. Brady, M.D. five years ago, after having made a life together for the prior 33 years. Our marriage is legal under the laws of California and the United States Government. I have no apology for my married status. It offers us the legal protections, health care rights, tax benefits, financial obligations to one another, and the protection of our estate that traditionally married couples have without asking for it. We have no issue with our marriage not being recognized by various churches, synagogues, and mosques (although it is by some); ours is a civil marriage, not holy matrimony governed by the church. And Stirm attempts to insult me and my home town of San Francisco (the city where the United Nations got its start) by calling it the “epitome of debauchery” and ascribing to me excitement over a fringe festival I never attend.
  • The Situation In Trinidad Could Lead To Change In Electing Prime Minister:
    Most of the countries that were former British colonies have a government that is similar to the one in Great Britain. In this type of government the Prime Minister is the Head of State and they have a Bicameral Legislative Body. The Prime Minister is the Leader of his or her political party who is elected to serve in the House of Parliament to represent his or her constituency. The Leader of the party that wins his or her seat and the majority of seats in the House of Parliament, automatically becomes the Prime Minister of the country. However, if the Leader of the party loses his or her seat, then he or she cannot serve as the Prime Minister of the country. The elected members of the party can then choose from among themselves their leader to become the Prime Minister.
  • THE BELIZE RED CROSS:
    The Disaster Risk Reduction project entitled “Saving Lives in the Caribbean Through Preparedness” implemented by the Belize Red Cross since July of 2011, and funded by USAID with support from the American Red Cross , is now in its final stage. After two years of working to build resilience in (14) communities in Belize, Community Emergency Response Teams (also known as CERTs), have completed all 14 modules of training in community disaster response. At a ceremony to be held at the Bacab Eco-Park , Burrell Boom , on Saturday August 10th, 2013 at 10:00 a.m., these successfully trained community members will be certified. These teams will then be officially introduced to NEMO and CEMO as first responders to strengthen the national response and recovery teams within their communities, before, during and after an event.
  • "Inspirational Corner":
    Contributed by: Juanita Bradley Chap. 1 - Source and Aim of True Education Our ideas of education take too narrow and too low a range. There is need of a broader scope, a higher aim. True education means more than the pursual of a certain course of study. It means more than a preparation for the life that now is. It has to do with the whole being, and with the whole period of existence possible to man. It is the harmonious development of the physical, the mental, and the spiritual powers. It prepares the student for the joy of service in this world and for the higher joy of wider service in the world to come. {Ed 13.1} The source of such an education is brought to view in these words of Holy Writ, pointing to the Infinite One: In Him "are hid all the treasures of wisdom." Colossians 2:3. "He hath counsel and understanding." Job 12:13. {Ed 13.2}
  • Mayan Sculpture Discovered In Guatemalan Pyramid:
    Archaeologists working in a Mayan pyramid in Guatemala have discovered an "extraordinary" stucco sculpture depicting gods and Mayan leaders. The frieze, which is eight metres long and two metres wide (26ft by six feet), shows three figures decorated with quetzal feathers and jade sitting atop the head of a mountain spirit. It was found at the pre-Columbian archaeological site of Holmul. Site director Francisco Estrada- Belli called it it a once-in-a lifetime find. Snake Lords v Tikal The frieze was found below a 20m-high (65ft) pyramid which was built over it in the 8th Century. "The preservation is wonderful because it was very carefully packed with dirt before they started building over it," Mr Estrada-Belli said. The sculpture is believed to depict the crowning of a new Mayan leader in about AD590.
  • Malaria vaccine shows early promise in clinical trials:
    A malaria vaccine has shown promising results in early stage clinical trials, according to researchers. Researchers found the vaccine, which is being developed in the US, protected 12 out of 15 patients from the disease, when given in high doses. The method is unusual because it involves injecting live but weakened malaria-causing parasites directly into patients to trigger immunity. The research is published in the journal Science. Lead author Dr Robert Seder, from the Vaccine Research Center at the National Institutes of Health, in Maryland, said: "We were excited and thrilled by the result, but it is important that we repeat it, extend it and do it in larger numbers."
  • Colombia coca area down by 25% - UN:
    The area of land planted with coca - the raw ingredient for cocaine - in Colombia has fallen by 25%, a UN report has said. The land under coca cultivation is now about a third of that in 2001, says the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). While coca areas fell nationwide, they rose in three provinces plagued by rebels and drug gangs. Colombia is one the world's top three cocaine producers and has made the war on drugs one of its main priorities. Prevention v eradication The annual report by the UN's Integrated Illicit Crops Monitoring System says that the land planted with coca bushes has dropped from 64,000 hectares in 2011 to 48,000 hectares in 2012, the lowest figure since monitoring started in Colombia more than a decade ago.
  • Hon John Saldivar Donates to El Shaddai Seventh Day Adventist Primary School:
    Belmopan Area Representative Donates $3,000 for Computers to El Shaddai Seventh Day Adventist Primary School in Belmopan Minister of National Security and Area Representative for Belmopan, Hon. John Saldivar, in conjunction with the Reconstruction Development Corporation (RECONDEV), has donated $3,000 to El Shaddai Seventh Day Adventist Primary School in Belmopan to assist in purchasing computers for the School. Hon. Saldivar presented the cheque of $3,000 this afternoon to Vice Principal Valentine Diego at the School’s campus on Macal Street in Belmopan City. Accompanying the Minister was Chairman of RECONDEV Rodney Neal and the Corporation’s General Manager Hector Sabido.
  • Honduras Drug Gang Shootout Leaves 17 Dead:
    Seventeen people have been killed in a clash between rival drug gangs in Honduras, chief prosecutor Roberto Ramirez has said. The shootout happened in La Mosquitia, a remote region on Honduras' Atlantic coast. The area is the main transit route for cocaine being transported from South America to the United States. Honduras has the highest homicide rate in the world, much of it blamed on gang violence and drug traffickers. Mr Ramirez said that one of those killed was a gang leader from neighbouring Nicaragua - Victor Centeno, known as "El Muco".
  • Cocoa 'might prevent memory decline':
    Drinking cocoa every day may help older people keep their brains healthy, research suggests. A study of 60 elderly people with no dementia found two cups of cocoa a day improved blood flow to the brain in those who had problems to start with. Those participants whose blood flow improved also did better on memory tests at the end of the study, the journal Neurology reported. Experts said more research was needed before conclusions could be drawn. It is not the first time cocoa has been linked with vascular health and researchers believe that this is in part due to it being rich in flavanols, which are thought to have an important role. In the latest study, researchers asked 60 people with an average age of 73 to drink two cups of cocoa a day - one group given high-flavanol cocoa and another a low-flavanol cocoa - and consume no other chocolate.
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