FOR TODAY'S BELIZE WEATHER, CLICK HERE

Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7 and Channel 5
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


The San Pedro Sun

Reporter claims Coast Guard used armed and unnecessary force on him
The San Pedro Sun is currently investigating allegations of “unnecessary force” between Senior Staff Reporter Jorge Aldana and Belize Coast Guard officers. Belize Coast Guard Lt. Commander Elton Bennett and San Pedro Police Officer in Charge Luis Castellanos have fully cooperated with The Sun during this investigation. On Saturday November 16th, shortly after midday, Senior Reporter Aldana was detailed to cover an apparent shooting incident involving civilians and members of the Belize Coast Guard. Aldana located and followed a San Pedro police truck making its way from the Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro PolyClinic II to a lagoon location where a Coast Guard vessel was docked. According to Aldana, he followed the police truck that had three armed Coast Guard Officers in blue uniform and one police officer in plain clothes riding in the pan. The truck was transporting two men seated inside. They were bleeding and appeared to have head injuries. While Aldana followed directly behind the truck he snapped several photos of the individuals who were in the pan of the truck until they reached the end of Jewfish Street. Aldana claims that he stopped approximately 300 feet from where the police vehicle stopped.

Fashion Kids for Boxes of Joy
With the Christmas season approaching quickly, Shantell Pascascio is once again organizing Boxes of Joy, an initiative to provide Christmas gifts for underprivileged children of San Pedro Town. On November 15th Pascascio held her first fundraiser: a children’s fashion show called Fashion Kids. According to Pascasio the show was a huge success despite the unpredictable weather conditions. The show consisted of five segments: Swim Wear, Island Wear, Casual, High Fashion formal and a last segment called “My Style”. The “My Style” segment was all about the individual and his/her personal style. For this segment, the models customized their favorite outfit to match their personalities. The young models certainly demonstrated a great sense of fashion and even a great love for the runway.

2013 Inter-Office Volleyball Tournament won by Lady Rebels & Team Legends
Lady Rebels and Legends are the winners of the first ever San Pedro Volleyball Association 2013 6-A-Side Interoffice Male and Female Volleyball Tournament. The final games took place on Saturday November 16th at the Angel Nuñez Auditorium. The last leg of the tournament started with the female game in which Lady Rebels, the leaders in the tournament, took on the Butterfingers. The game started in favor of Butterfingers, who took the first and second sets with 25-14 and 25-23. But the Lady Rebels made a stunning comeback in the last three sets that ended 25-22, 25-23 and 15-8. It was quite the defeat for Butterfingers who were considered the veterans, however the determination of the young Lady Rebels saw them walk away with the championship title. San Pedro High School (SPHS) females settled for third place in the tournament.

Spending your days on Ambergris Caye: (#7) Lions Bingo & BBQ
At the heart of community fun is the Friday night Bingo and BBQ at the Lion’s Den. It is always an event that is thoroughly enjoyed and comes highly recommended to visitors of La Isla Bonita who want to be part of a local, family oriented tradition. When enjoying the evening you not only have a great meal and good fun but help the club raise funds for the community. There is a great camaraderie amongst the crowd, while groups of friends and families devour fingerlickin’ good BBQ chicken, stewed beans, coleslaw and yummy tortillas, all for a very affordable price. The Lion’s Den also has a full bar for those who want to enjoy a cold Belikin or cocktail with their meal, and they sell three beers for just $10 and local rum drinks at the same bargain price! Bingo starts around 7PM and each game costs $2BZ, with a middle and final game costing $5 where you can win more. Depending on the size of the crowd each game can garner up to $100 or more, with the $5 games adding up to as much as $400! It is fun and easy and a great activity to enjoy with friends or as a family. The Lion’s Den is located on the northern end of Barrier Reef Drive in the heart of San Pedro Town.

Ambergris Today

Oceana Marks Fourth Anniversary in Belize
Since officially opening its doors on November 16th, 2009, Oceana in Belize has achieved remarkable victories and established an enviable track record advocating for the protection and sustainable use of Belize’s marine patrimony. Notable among our successes have been a total ban on all forms of trawling within both our territorial seas and exclusive economic zone; the buyout of the trawler fleet and subsequent donation of the vessels for more sustainable and eco-friendly re-use; the People’s Referendum which allowed Belizean voters to weigh in on the question of offshore oil (to which Belizeans responded with an overwhelming “NO”); and challenging Government’s policies & decisions before the Judiciary of Belize, where Oceana and its co-claimants secured a judgment declaring “unlawful, null and void” six production sharing agreements covering offshore oil exploration blocks within our maritime areas. In fact, Oceana’s advocacy bore more fruits when last year just before our 3rd anniversary Princess Petroleum relinquished portions of its concession block which included Belize’s iconic and world famous Blue Hole as well as the Turneffe Atoll and Lighthouse Reef. In keeping with the celebratory spirit, Oceana in Belize takes this opportunity to salute our Garinagu Community and to wish all an enjoyable and safe Garifuna Settlement Day! Oceana was a key sponsor of the 8th Annual Battle of the Drums, hosted in Punta Gorda Town on our anniversary and one of the major events leading up to Garifuna Settlement Day.

Misc Belizean Sources

CAPPS Reading Contest
They had the CAPPS Reading Contest yesterday at the George Price Centre. Congratulations Judah Swasey and Ronan Stewart for winning 1st and 2nd places! "District Finals for the CAPPS reading contest were held at Belmopan City on November 21st 2013. Congratulations to this year's winner Judah Swasey from Belize Christian Academy, and 2nd Place Ronan Stewart from Arms of Love."

Buy and Sell Classifieds 19-Nov
The Buy and Sell Weekly Classifieds for this week. There's a write up of Rio Frio Cave in this week's issue.

Wonders at the Belize Zoo
The Belize Zoo, which is celebrating its 30th year, and just had Panama the Harpy Eagle's 10th 'hatch' day party, is shown in a new video entitled 'The Wonders at the Belize Zoo.' "The Zoo was buzzing with festivities last week as we celebrated the 10th birthday of Panama our male harpy eagle! Over 100 students, parents and teachers from the communities of Indian Church, La Democracia, and San Carlos came to the Zoo to wish this beautiful bird a very happy "hatch" day. Students got to be eagles for a day, with masks and wings, and received prizes, birthday cake, and valuable knowledge about the importance of raptors like Harpy Eagles to our great country. We thank our friends at The Columbus Zoo and Aquarium for helping us provide a special day for the children of Belize."

George Price Highway November Progress
The new road to the soon to be started bridge is looking better each week. Taken on November 19th, 2013.

Thief withdraws thousands using stolen ATM cards
A man from Corozal is the victim of theft and the culprit used his own bank cards to pull off crime. Cyril Perfecto Nal, a resident of San Narcisco village, reported that on Saturday, November 16, he misplaced his wallet containing personal documents, including his ATM cards. Two days later, when Nal went to the banks to block the cards, he got the bad news, that someone had made a total of 13 withdrawals from his account, amounting to $9,000. The police are investigating the incident.

Channel 7

Deputy PM Meets With Cane Farmers: Will There Be A Strike?
On Wednesday, 7News told you about meeting between the executives of the ASR Group and the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association which didn't happen because the BSI did not agree to the agenda which the cane farmers wanted. As we told you, both parties are deadlocked on the bagasse issue, and with the open of the next sugar season only a few weeks away, the negotiations to a renewed commercial agreement have been tense. To denote the importance of finding a resolution, senior ASR executives flew into the country to meet with the Cane farmers, but because they couldn't agree on the importance that the agenda should put on the bagasse issue, the association boycotted by not attending. Since then, the Minister of Agriculture and Deputy Prime Minister, Gaspar Vega, has been hard at work trying to convince both sides to schedule to resume negotiations. On Wednesday, he met with ASR and today at the Sugar Industries Control Board in Orange Walk, he had a 2-hour sit down with cane farmers. 7News was there when the meeting ended, and we spoke to Vega about the progress - if any - he had made:

Mother Of Two Says She Was Cut Off By GOB In IBC Takeover
Tonight, mother of two Shari Muschamp feels like it's her against the world. She was working as a receptionist at the former Ashcroft Allied companies, International Business Company Registry and IMMARBE until government took them over in June of this year. The public pronouncement from the Prime Minister was that no local staff would be fired. But Mushcamp - who had a difficult pregnancy - was on extended sick leave when the government took over - and it seems that when the changeover occurred - and the staff were re-hired as public officers, she was simply left off the employee roll. It wasn't an oversight, Government's legal adviser told Muschamp's attorney that no offer of employment was made to her by government because she was thought to be medically unfit to work. He based that on the fact that by April of 2013, she had exhausted her 16 days sick leave for the year, yet she remained on prolonged sick leave, which earned her a warning from the former management for it.

Hundreds of Head Of Cattle Imperiled By River Valley Floods
The Belize River Valley has been dealing with flood waters for months now. The residents are hardy country folk, so they're doing okay. But, what's starting to be affected is their livestock - and that's because the river has run over the banks and inundated the savannah where their animals used to feed. We found out more when we went down river with the Coast Guard today:.. Jules Vasquez reporting If you are wondering why these cattle have a lean and hungry look, it's because the cattle in this part of the Belize River Valley are starving. The river has run far over the banks and covered much of the available pasture land. Olivia Moody, Chairlady - Maypen Village "Right now the people of Maypen; there are 4 families that have livestock and I think they are the ones that needs more assistance."

Flooding Has Resulted In Agricultural Losses
As we showed you in the Belize River Valley, all around the country, the different communities have been experiencing the serious effects of the flooding caused by the relentless rains of the recent months. The Government of Belize has been studying the situation, and they've been working on the best possible response to help those affected. Today, the Deputy Prime Minister, who is also the Minister of Agriculture, told the media about the meetings that he has been having with the Prime Minister and the Minister of Works. According to Vega, while agriculture is a major area of concern, the priority right now is fixing the roads so that the villages aren't cut off from the main towns: Hon. Gaspar Vega, Deputy Prime Minister "At this moment I know Prime Minister and I and the Minister of Works sat down on Wednesday to talk about the roads because we believe that is priority even though the crops is as important. The roads, we have villages that cannot commute from one village to the main town because bridges have been washed away and stuff like that. We have to prioritize our needs. I think the Prime Minister ask the Ministry of Works to do a complete assessment because, we, crying about San Antonio, San Luis bit other areas on the entire country are as badly affected."

PM Resting, Recovering
We've reported on the success that Prime Minister Dean Barrow had with his back surgery in California. Since then, he's been back in Belize recovering, and today, Deputy Prime Minister Gaspar Vega was asked for an update, since he has been meeting with Barrow. He said that at this time, everything has been going smoothly, and that the Prime Minister is recovering at a rapid rate: Hon. Gaspar Vega, Deputy Prime Minister "He is doing very good. I am very surprised to his recovery, he is doing extremely well. God must have answered everybody prayers and we hope that the recovery will be on the long term as successful as how it has been in these few days."

Curl Gordon Jr Convicted of Child Molesting
30 year-old Curl Gordon Jr. is awaiting a sentencing hearing after he was convicted of indecent assault of a female child in the court room of Justice Adolph Lucas. The child, who was 7 years-old at the time, testified in court that in October 2011, Gordon touched her inappropriately on her private parts. In his defence, Gordon told the court that he didn't do any such thing, and that the report was made to the police because the mother maliciously influenced her child to tell the police lies on him. The jury of 9 deliberated for a little over an hour before they returned with a unanimous verdict of guilty. Justice Lucas has deferred sentencing until next week Friday, to give him time to prepare a mitigation plea.

Ponce Recovering From Massive Butane Related Head Injury
On Wednesday, 7News told you about Danny Ponce, the Trial Farm resident who was seriously injured when an LPG Tank, commonly known as butane, exploded sending debris flying all over, striking him in the head. He was rushed to the KHMH hospital in a critical condition, but since then, he's had emergency surgery which has improved his prognosis greatly. Today, 7News spoke with his sister in Trial Farm, and she told us about what his recovery is looking like, after trying to help a friend and getting in such a disastrous accident. Here's what she told us: Marilyn Ponce, sister "It happened on Tuesday. He went with a person that retails Butane gas to shipyard. When they were doing this whole process it seemed like the tank was filled with too much air and then suddenly it exploded. It was actually the iron that was in the hose that hit him on the right side of his skull. According to the doctors, some of the bones broke damaging his right eye too. We're not sure if he's going to lose his eye but that's basically his situation right now."

FSTV Helps Dara Feed
We've told you many times about Dara Robinson's feeding programme. He just never stops giving. His feeding programme for about 40 children keeps rolling through his steadfast commitment to it. But today, he got a little break from the endless fundraising when the Fort Street Tourism Village sponsored an early thanksgiving lunch for his children. We visited during rice hours and found that there was turkey to go with that rice:.. Sheree Young, HR Manager - FSTV "We were inspired by Dara's feeding program, his passion that he has to feed the kids from day to day. This is just a small gesture to give back to them." Dara Robinson - Grassroots Philanthropist "It's not every day these kids get turkey at the program, so I welcome things like that. This is a special treat. My wife made a well put together Turkey dinner."

Belize U-16 Falters In UNCAF Competition
Right now, the Belize National U-16 Football Team is playing its final game against Costa Rica. Things don't look too good for the Junior Jaguars, because they have lost 3 games and only won 1. The third lost game last night in the match against Honduras, where the team was hoping to make a good showing, to recover from the disappointing defeat at the hands of the Guatemala National team. However, Honduras didn't give the Junior Jaguars an easy time, and in the 22nd minute of the first half, they scored the only goal of the game. Team Belize tried to equalize, but Honduras managed to hold them off, winning the match. So, tonight, they are trying to end with a flourish as they play the final match against Costa Rica, because with their goal average, and losing streak, they can't qualify to the final rounds. At this time, at the end of the first half, Belize is already down 2 goals, and Costa Rica is pressing hard to increase their lead.

Orange Is The Colour Of Support
16 days of activism to end gender violence starts officially on Monday. And the women's commission says you can show your support by wearing orange. Anne Marie Williams explains:.. Anne Marie Williams "This year the Women's Commission has decided as part of its campaign to launch a public campaign whereby Belizeans from all walk of life can get involved in ending violence against women." "The theme this year for 16 Days of Activism is "From Peace in the Home to Peace in the World, Challenging Violence Against Women." I think the theme is very apt because the Women's Commission has decided this year to join forces with the Unite Campaign which is the UN Secretary General's campaign. Ban ki Moon has decided that in 2009 he would have started and launched what is known as the Orange Day Campaign when people unite to end violence against women and girls."

OW’s Taco Supremacy Reinforced
And Sunday is local tacos day. No, not really, but that's what Orange Walk would want as they host their third annual tacos festival. We found out more from the organizers. Dillon Jones - Universal Radio "We do have the best tacos in the country, almost in the region - Orange Walk has it and we just need to keep it that way. We want people to realize that the tacos business is a serious industry. If you check it out on a daily basis there is roughly about 35 tacos stands around Orange Walk operating daily and if you put it on pen and paper, you would see the amount of chicken they are using, the people employed, amount of tortillas, vegetable, pepper sauce, even the phone. To me it is a serious industry and it is just growing and growing."

Channel 5

Cane farmers and B.S.I. stand firm; 2013-2014 cane crop is delayed indefinitely
The 2013-2014 sugar-cane crop season was to have gotten underway this coming Monday, November twenty-fifth. But that is not going to happen. There are two obstacles in the way – [...]

Mother of 2 shows up at her government job, to find someone else at her desk
Sharie Muschamp was employed at the International Business Companies Registry when it was taken over by the government earlier this year. She was, however, on medical leave which transitioned into [...]

A symposium on specific ways to end cycle of violence against children
A two-day symposium to end violence against children ended today in Belize City. The session is being held under the auspices of the Special Envoy for Women and Children, with [...]

Senior Counsel pokes holds in proposed legislation of National Security and Immigration Committee
Whatever happened to the National Security and Immigration Committee? The formation of the committee was announced in the wake of the recent passport and visa scandals as one of the [...]

Minister of Education says UB President has it wrong
It still remains unclear whether or not Doctor Carey Fraser, President of the University of Belize was put on leave by the Board of Trustees or he proceeded on his [...]

Man found guilty of the aggravated assault of a minor
Two years ago, a seven year-old child was the victim of sexual assault by a man, who at the time was twenty-eight years old. That man is now thirty years [...]

DJ Linda Blease is the latest victim of burglary
Popular Belizean entertainer, Linda Blease is the latest victim of burglary, following a break-in at her apartment on Thursday.  The female disc jockey reported to Belize City police that her [...]

Women’s Department kicks off 16 Days of Activism
Sixteen Days of Activism to end gender-based violence against women is an annual calendar of events organized by the Women’s Department to promote awareness on the issue of domestic abuse.  [...]

Alarming reports of demon possessions in Orange Walk
There have been escalating reports of bizarre behavior by young female students in Orange Walk Town. From the little information we have been able to gather so far, this all [...]

Baby Jaguars face Costa Rica in final match of UNCAF U-16 tournament
The UNCAF Under-sixteen Tournament has wound down to its final match with Belize facing Costa Rica tonight.  Despite winning only one of four games thus far, the Baby Jaguars have [...]

Hitler video redone about to reflect sentiments on city streets
There is a video that has gone viral on the internet in the past few days. Actually, it is adapted from a scene from a 2004 German movie named “Downfall” [...]

CTV3

Belizean Will Not Pay FMVL
The Mexican Embassy announced today that the guidelines for immigration formalities and procedures have changed as it pertains to replacing their local visitor’s card (formerly known as FMVL) to the new REGIONAL VISITOR CARD. As we’ve reported, the FMVL cards were only valid until November 8th and as such, a replacement card is needed by all Belizeans travelling to and from Chetumal Quintana Roo. But the good news to us Belizeans tonight is that the application process is free of charge. Applicants must present their passport and submit the original FMVL card at the Mexican Immigration office located at Subteniente Lopez, Quintana Roo. The card is said to be valid for the same one year period upon renewal. Card holders will be entitled to travel within the border state of Quintana Roo for up to 72 hours. It is of note, that Belizeans who are charged a fee for replacement should report the matter to the Internal Control Body of the National Institute of Immigration.

Albion Island Is Experiencing flooding
Although the persistent rains have subsided, some areas prone to flooding are still underwater. This is wreaking havoc for many residents living in low lying areas including the villages of Santa Cruz and San Antonio. CTV3 News spoke with Chairman of Santa Cruz, Thomas Mucul who spoke to us about the situation presently faced by students, workers and even small children who are dealing with the after effects of Mother Nature. THOMAS MUCUL “La situación es que nosotros vivimos en una isla Albion Island, a donde se hace flood y sube el rio y ya no puede pasar ningún vehículo a Santa Cruz ni a San Antonio, tenemos que cruzar en lancha, o en carreta y nosotros vivimos tres millas de la orilla del rio de San Antonio y para que vengan los estudiantes no hay autobús, no hay forma y no pueden llegar hasta San Antonio para agarrar autobús es que los estudiantes llegan tarde al colegio.” Maria Novelo – Reporter “Have you dialogue with the authorities, anybody helping you guys?” THOMAS MUCUL “Yes, I have called the minister’s office and they said that they can’t help and I can’t do nothing and that is my job as the chairman but only to ask for help but nobody can help me.”

The Impact Of The Sugar Cane Industry In Belize
The sugar cane industry of Belize has endured many challenges in the past and has been a solid socio-economic engine for northern Belize and the country. Historically, and even today, we continue to depend heavily on the European Union market access for the survival and resiliency of our sugar industry. But with the on-going dispute between BSI and BSCFA on the revenue profit sharing of sales generated by the Bio Fuel better known as the bagasse, the industry is at risk. While this issue has been making headlines for quite some time now, it is anyone’s guess if and when the parties involved will find common ground. What is of concern to others is the economic downfall that can potentially harm the industry and Belize on a whole. Some fear that if the 2013/2014 crop season is delayed, the effects would be disastrous.

San Joaquin Street Damaged By Heavy Trucking
Residents of San Joaquin Street in Orange Walk Town were enraged this morning. That’s because a developer, who was filling up a lot in the area using heavy machinery caused more damage to the already dilapidated street. Our news team was called to the scene and upon arrival we saw residents up in arms since the road was left completely impassable. Albert Tillett- Resident San Joaquin Street “From since the dump truck start running white marl to fill up a land back there then the big hole started, we could have lived with the little small holes that it had before but since the weight of the big truck coming they start from around 5:30 until about 9:00 in the night and trip after trip and that is what you see right there, it was caused by the dump truck that throw the marl there, the street wasn’t that bad we could have lived with it.”

Eric Gonzalez Sentenced To 15 Years
Eric Gonzalez will spend 15 years behind bars. He was sentenced this morning by Justice Herbert Lord at the Northern Session of the Supreme Court after a jury of 12 convicted him of a lesser charge of manslaughter after they were unable to unanimously agree on the murder charge despite hours of deliberation. Viewers might recall that back in 2009 Gonzales was charge for the murder of Daniel Soto. His case began the first week of November but when it was time to deliberate the jury was unable to unanimously find him guilty of murder and as such found him guilty of manslaughter. During the trial, the Crown was represented by Councils Sabita Maharaj and Linsbert Willis while Gonzalez was represented by Senior Counsel Simeon Sampson.

LOVE FM

Joris Hendrik Presents Spring/Summer 2014 Collection
A young, talented designer from the Cayo District will be hosting a Fashion Show tomorrow evening at the Princess Hotel and Casino in Belize City. Joris Hendrik who hails from San Ignacio, Cayo is introducing his Spring/Summer 2014 Collection to the Belizean public in what promises to be an evening of elegance and creativity. Reporter Linette Canto stopped by this afternoon and spoke to Hendrik about the show. JORIS HENDRIK “It’s my first solo show in Belize it’s my spring summer 2014 collection it’s going to be a really fun show the collection is exquisite its very free its very breezy and its very elegant its very Belizean I would say and the show will include a number of performances. We are trying to create that social scene and ambiance where we all interact and socialize. It will be a year. I started off as a hobby 2 years ago but now I made it into my own business. I am really excited I am a little bit nervous because it’s my first solo show in the country but given what I’ve been doing so far showcasing at this year’s fashion week, attending Caribbean fashion week and participating in Carib Fiesta. Thanks to being invited by Belize. I’m very confident that it will be good. And it will be really great for the country. Lot of people haven’t seen my work and we will enjoy seeing some new talent. It all depends on my mode I get inspiration from everywhere you know you could be driving in the car and you see something that inspires you or you know music but mainly for this collection inspiration was gathered from Belize, the country, everything that we see around.”

Tacos Time in OW
If your mouth water when you hear “tacos” then Orange Walk Town is the place to be this weekend. The third annual tacos fest will be held this Sunday at the Banquitas House of Culture. Cindey Rivero is coordinator at the house of culture. CINDEY RIVERO Banquitas House is culture collaborating with Universal Radio and this is going to be the third year that we are having the Tacos Festival. Orange Walk is well known for Tacos and it is made out of corn. As also it is part of our culture so we are celebrating Tacos and it will happen this Sunday. We are going to start at 9 and we will be having a lot of activities throughout the day. So we will be having the canoe race, were going to be having greasy pole, we are going to be having competition such as best flavored tacos, eating tacos competition for all the people that will be wanting to eat tacos for free and then we will be having games for the kids like lime and spoon, sack race, treasure hunt and a new game we invented called corn hunt which fit in with the whole tacos festival. A lot of other competitions like watermelon. Then for entertainment we will be having Captain Roby and Super Furia for free as well dance and then we are going to be having other performances from local singers and dance groups so it’s going to be a full day of events so I am inviting everyone to come out and enjoy bring the family bring friends. And we are just here to enjoy and eat tacos.

Evangelical Churches Association of Belize Investigates Reports of Demonic Possession
Earlier this week LOVE NEWS reported on claims that some residents of Orange Walk were possessed by demonic spirits. We spoke with a relative of a female victim who went in details of what his sister experienced when she was possessed. Today we learnt that the Evangelical Churches Association of Belize is conducting an extensive investigation on the reports. Oscar Barrera is President of Evangelical Associations OW and told us more. OSCAR BARRERA “Evangelical Church Association of Belize with Pastor Crawford now we are doing a little investigation concerning the issue to see what is going to be the outcome of the days to come so that we can get together as a nation and visit these families and we also go in prayer for these people as well. Well actually we believe in the demon possession because the Bible also talks about it and these people are playing with the Devil literally. They are not using the Ouija board anymore they are using pencils and there are certain things that they do to call upon Satan and the demons are taking their bodies.”

MOH and UNPFA Join to Provide Workshop
The Ministry of Health in collaboration with United Nations Population Fund organized the workshops on obstetric and neonatal care. A one day practical training session to sensitize public healthcare workers of the Maternal and Child Health Units was held today at the Best Western Biltmore Plaza Hotel where new medical procedures, and practices in the care of maternal and child health were taught. Technical Advisor of Maternal and Child Health at the Ministry of Health Doctor Natalie Beer told us more. Dr. NATALIE BEER “There we have a representation from all the different health regions in the connection with the United Nations Population fund UNPF. We are organizing to have a more structured training program; to improve the skills of health care workers when providing care to target populations such as women before, during and after pregnancy and child birth and for the new born.”

Belize Makes Progress in Protecting Women and Children
Today the workshop to end violence against women and children culminated at the Biltmore Hotel. The workshop was strategically held because Belize joins the world in celebrating International Children’s Day. The workshop was the collective idea of a group of children and women advocacy group like the National Committee for Families and Children, NCFC and the United Nations Children’s Fund, UNICEF. Both the NCFC and UNICEF agree that after the culmination of the workshop, Belize has a clear road map on how to meet its objectives. LUWANI CAYETANO “Belize is kind of following the example of the region and the world all over the world right now organizations that work with children’s rights are looking at ending violence against children. So this two day symposium is our way of developing a road map so how do we get to the end of ending violence against children what steps do we have to take and how will we know that we have gotten to certain steps. And so we’ve kicked off the 2 days symposium its ending today and we are leaving here with a road map to end violence against children and that’s the kind of way that I guess we have celebrated and worked really it’s more than a celebration it’s us coming together. And determining how is it we are going to work together towards the protection of our children. So its MCFC and special envoy actually this symposium is hosted by the special envoy restore Belize, the ministry of human development, social workers, police everyone is here to kind of put our minds together and develop a road map to ending violence against children. For us child participation is a huge piece.

Maypen Village Flooded; Area Rep Assists
Over the past few weeks we have brought you stories out of Crooked Tree Village where residents have had to adapt to deal with flooded conditions. The same can be said for residents of Maypen Village as we hear in this report from Marion Ali. RESIDENT “The road is filled with water. See that is my canoe I use right there. Right now I want to go to road I will paddle all the way to Red Sand in that dory.” MARION ALI REPORTING Residents of Maypen Village located about 25 miles from Belize City by road are cut off from the rest of the country except for boat access. The flood waters that have accumulated over the pass seven weeks have now begun to affect the lively hood of the villagers and their cattle and today they received the second round of assistance. The Belize Red Cross Society and Nemo Officials along with area representative Edmond Castro went by coast guard both and distributed items to the 10 neediest of 41 families in the village.

Police Chase on Freetown Road
Reports to Love News are that a police chase led to the capture of a male individual on Freetown Road. Love News understands that about nine o’clock this morning police on mobile patrol set chase a man who attempted to escape their custody. The man attempted to escape by going into the compound of Central Primary School on Freetown Road. Eyewitness reports indicate that the individual hopped over the schools fence and attempted to hide behind the infant two building. Armed policemen followed the individual who after seeing police coming for him, he hopped the fence unto Freetown road in the path of a police mobile. The individual was detained and taken to the police station. We understand that a warning shot was fired.

9K Unlawfully Withdrawn From Account
Belmopan Police are investigating a case of theft. Reports are that Cyril Perfecto of the Corozal District lost his wallet last Saturday. Perfecto’s wallet contained personal documents including ATM cards from two banks. Two days later he visited both banks in order to block his cards. The banks informed Perfecto that a person who apparently found his wallet had made thirteen withdrawals which amounted to nine thousand dollars. Police are investigating.

DJ’s Apartment Burglarized
Someone broke into the apartment of well known disc jockey Linda Blease. According to police, sometime between two and six thirty yesterday evening, someone broke into Blease’s apartment located on Santa Barbara Street and stole a number of items including a black HP Laptop valued at a thousand dollars, one red Pro studio Beats head phone valued at six hundred dollars and three hundred and twenty five dollars in cash. Police are investigating.

Charged with Aggravated Assault of an Indecent Nature
Thirty year old Curl Gordon Junior, a cabinet maker charged with aggravated assault of an indecent nature on a female child who was seven years old, was found guilty of the charge yesterday in the court of Justice Adolph Lucas. Justice Lucas has deferred sentencing until Friday, November 29 in order to give Gordon time to prepare a plea for mitigation. The maximum sentence is three years. The jury of six women and three men deliberated for a little over an hour before it arrived at its verdict, which was unanimous. The incident occurred on October 2, 2011. The complainant testified in camera that Gordon sexually assaulted her. Three other witnesses testified for the prosecution. Gordon, who was not represented by any attorney, testified and denied that he committed the offence. He said that it was malice on the part of the mother of the complainant. Crown Counsel Portia Staine represented the prosecution.

Belizean Trio Charged in Mexico
Aston Michael Ramirez, Orlando Habet and Adelfo Ruperto Dzul; the three Belizeans who were caught with drugs in neighboring town of Subteniente Lopez, Mexico have been sent to a prison cell in Mexico. Love News understands that the three men along with a Mexican National Freddy Andrés Lagos Vargas who were caught with nine hundred grams of cocaine were taken to prison after which they will face a trail that could last six months. Other information coming out of Mexico is that investigations into the role of Lagos Vargas, has revealed that he might be responsible for the transshipment of large amount of drugs form communities in Belize and crosses through villages like La Union across the border. As we reported, all three Belize men, were detained after there were suspiciously riding around in a vehicle with Corozal license plates in Subteniente Lopez. Marines from the Mexican army, who had received an anonymous tip, intercepted the vehicle on Cuauhtemoc Street where their search led to the discovery of nine hundred grams of cocaine in the vehicle.

Belize Cited by Caribbean Financial Task Force
Belize has been cited by the Caribbean Financial Task Force for deficiencies in meeting the international standards of fighting money laundering and terrorism. According to News America, Belize and Guyana have been cited by the task force. The report further states that the CFTF has said that Belize must implement all outstanding issues including addressing its customer due diligence requirements and prohibiting dealings with shell banks; while Guyana is being urged to address the strategic deficiencies that exist in its national architecture to combat money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The Caribbean Financial Task force is comprised of twenty-nine jurisdictions of the Caribbean Basin Region, which have agreed to implement the international standards for Anti-money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism, Financial Action Task Force Recommendations in order to protect the international financial system from money laundering and financing of terrorism risks and to encourage greater compliance with the AML/CFT standards. Both countries are being urged to implement counter measures to protect their financial systems from the ongoing money laundering and terrorist financing risks.

The Road to the Resurrection of the Ex Service League in PG
Efforts to reactivate the Belize Ex Services League Punta Gorda branch began yesterday. Correspondent Paul Mahung has the details. PAUL MAHUNG REPORTING A meeting with a cold group of ex military personnel in Punta Gorda signaled reactivation efforts. The session was facilitated by Major Francis Marin. FRANCIS MARIN “We had a meeting with some key members to discuss the way forward for the development and the enhancement of the Belize Ex-servicemen league Punta Gorda Branch President who are retired officers, 002 Ramon Morales, Private Gilbert Gegeo and of course Captain Paul Mahung and acting sergeant Simion Martin Paulino and myself. We looked at the constitution of the Belize Ex-servicemen League and we also looked at the branch constitution. We throw around certain ideas, techniques and methodologies we can improve the recruiting drive bring more membership before and we discuss the responsibilities and duties at the national and the branch level.”

OW North Area Rep Speaks on Flooding
Yesterday we reported that residents of Santa Cruz in the Orange Walk district faced transportation problems due to flooded water over the main road. When we spoke with Chairman of Santa Cruz he said most affected were students who need to come to Orange Walk Town for classes as no buses were running between Santa Cruz and San Antonio. We asked area representative Gaspar Vega about the situation. GASPER VEGA “Yes as we speak San Antonio has more than two feet of water on the highway. San Luis has the same problem and the water is already swelling from the river in the Douglas Village; something that we just suffered a couple months ago. As you know we had to take groceries to those four villages and we can’t complain – that’s Mother Nature. We are just hoping and praying that it stops raining and like today we are not only praying for the sun but even for a little cold front because we know that the sun alone is going to take extremely long to dry this water in our villages.” Severely affected as well is the agriculture sector in the north. We asked Minister of Agriculture Gaspar Vega what is the impact.