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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

The perfect pairing for rice and beans: Stewed Chicken!

Countries of the Americas hold national consultations to make universal health coverage a regional priority
Washington, D.C., 16 July 2014 (PAHO/WHO) - The countries of the Americas are holding national consultations to discuss the way forward to reach universal health coverage, with the support of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO). National health authorities and other health sector actors are participating in the dialogues, which will help shape [�]

Costa Maya Festival® presents Miss Guatemala!
The beautiful Keyla Bermudez is the final contestant for Reina de la Costa Maya. She hails from Livingston, Guatemala, and is Miss Guatemala World.

Senior Ambassador Alfredo "Fred" Martinez laid to rest with full state funeral
The Government of Belize honored deceased Senior Ambassador His Excellency Alfredo "Fred" Martinez with a full state funeral. The 60 year old diplomat died on Wednesday July 9th in Guatemala City after ailing for a few weeks and up until the time of his death, Martinez was Belize's Ambassador to Guatemala. Martinez was buried on [�]

Ambergris Today

Miss Guatemala Contestant Announced for Costa Maya Festival
Keyla Bermudez has been chosen to represent her country as Miss Guatemala Costa Maya at the Reina de la Costa Maya Pageant that will be taking place during the International Costa Maya Festival in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize on Thursday, August 7, 2014. At 22 years old and standing 5' 7" tall, Keyla Bermudez has black eyes and dark brown hair. She is a Student of Public Accounting and Audit., loves reading and dancing. Keyla participated in the Miss Guatemala Pageant and won the title of Miss World Guatemala 2014.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Las peque�as batallas
The Embassy of Mexico invites the general public to the presentation of the play in Spanish "Las peque�as batallas" by the theater company "Elenco". Don't miss the opportunity to enjoy this magnificent play by Mexican playwright Oscar Palacios, performed by actors Miguel Garc�a-Minaburo and Brayan Albor, under the direction of Miguel Carrillo. This play reflects on family issues and leaves a positive message for their solutions. The theater company "Elenco" was founded in 1989 and has successfully played in several theatres in Mexico. They have also been involved in the regional theater of the Yucatan Peninsula. Elenco has staged in children's plays and has participated in many festivals during their 25 year long career.

Community Policing Initiative for Cayo
With its new management team now consolidated, the San Ignacio Police Formation will be holding a very important public meeting at the Cayo Welcome Center in San Ignacio Town on August 6th to inform the public on crime statistics and other matters relating to community policing. All are welcome to this important interface between the Police and the Community. Members of the Cayo Neighborhood Watch Association CNWA, People's Coalition of Cayo PCC and Police Special Constables are also being invited to this meeting.

International Costa Maya Update
Starting this Friday, July 18, 2014 - Miss Photogenic competition featuring the 8 delegates of Miss Costa Maya 2014. Voting will be done on Facebook. The top 3 winners will receive a gift basket each, which will feature art from local artist Mirza Perez of Azrim Kreashans, among other gifts. Stay tuned for more information. Empezando este viernes el 18 de julio, en Belize Pageant Updates: La competencia de Miss Fotog�nica con las 8 delegadas de Miss Costa Maya 2014. La votaci�n se realiza en Facebook. Las 3 primeras ganadoras recibir�n una cesta de regalo cada una, que tendran arte de artista belice�a Mirza Perez de Azrim Kreashans, y tambi�n otros regalos. Est�n atentos para m�s informaci�n

Navy Medicine Works in Belize
U.S. Navy medical professionals are traveling to rural areas with local doctors and nurses in Belize, Central America, to help with the patient load and observe how the local medical system operates. "These clinics get out and see the rural villages that don't really have access to healthcare," said Lt. Cmdr. Tim Whiting, a public health nurse assigned to Naval Medical Center Portsmith. "We've been able to tag along on these mobile clinics to get out and see what's actually going on out in these villages, and how they do healthcare out there." The mobile clinics are sponsored by the Belize Ministry of Health. The Belize healthcare professionals pack up a truck with medical equipment and travel out to remote locations. "Today we were very stationary," said Whiting. "Some of the other mobile clinics will be very mobile - lots more house calls. This is our fifth mobile clinic that we went on today, and they've all been very different."


Progress with the restoration part of the Historical Mural Preservation and Promotion Project
Underway at the Corozal Town Hall this week. (4 photos)

SPORTS CORNER - Let's continue to support Sports and Body Building fitness in Corozal
Rigo Vellos of Corozal has been accumulating many accolades in his Body Building career. He currently holds the Mr. Belize title. He is hosting the 1st Annual Spartan Fitness Club Bodybuilding Classic on July 19th (Saturday) at the Civic Centre - Corozal. Bring out the entire family.

Channel 7

Lionel Sampson Killed On Early Morning Walk
Last night, we showed you the comments from the Police Minister John Saldivar, who took a swipe at the media. He suggested that the press is responsible for the negative perception surrounding the current crime situation in Belize City. But that perception became real for the family of 28 year-old Lionel Sampson early this morning, when gunmen attacked him will he was on a morning walk. Police say that he was Racoon Street extension his assailants shot him multiple times in the upper body. Officers from Precinct 2 have been investigating his murder, and this afternoon, they briefed the media on the information they have so far:

Robbers Went For Security Guards Gun; Left Bowen Employees Along
Police from Precinct 2 had to respond to another crime in their area when 2 men ambushed a security guard who was guarding a Bowen and Bowen truck. The Bowen employees stopped to make a delivery at one of the shops on Haulze Street, in the Lake Independence area, a short distance away from the Mahogany Street Police Sub-Station. With the police nearby, and their own dedicated guard with them, the delivery team may have believed that they were secured. But, reports say that in an approximate 10-minute operation, armed masked men singled the security guard out, forced him to the ground and gun-point and relieved him of his service weapon, which belongs to his security firm. Police arrived shortly after, and set chase after the men. The officer from Precinct 2 shared more details with us today:

Meet The New OCED
That's great police work today, a few hours before the newly promoted Assistant Police Commissioner Desiree Phillips granted a media encounter in her new post as Officer Commanding Eastern Division. Today, she sat down with us in her office and discuss the current situation in Belize City, and recent spike in crime. Here's what she told us: Reporter "What are the proposals under your command that you foresee trying to bring this back down and have people feel comfortable in coming back to Belize City because we are already hearing people saying once again I am afraid to come to Belize City." ACP - Desiree Phillips - New OCED "Well you know to be honest with you a lot has to do with all the sensitization by the media spilling things over, but realistically speaking the truth of the matter is that things are not as bad as it may seem. You may or may not want to agree with me but that's the reality and I have been involved in different meetings with the different gang groups over the past few months and some of the things that we have been doing it has been working. We will continue to build on those things. Like I said it's nothing new, it's just a matter of building on what we have been doing and doing more of what makes successful; doing more of what works. With respect to the high visibility presence in the streets, that will definitely continue. We will definitely be imploring on intelligence lead policing of course. We will be re-strategizing our efforts, but of course we remain focus."

Money Fight Inside Non-Profit Foundation
Last night, we showed you the 3rd Annual Award Ceremony for the Ariel Rosado Memorial Education Foundation. That happened yesterday, and this time around the foundation handed out 30 scholarships, twice the number it gave when it started back in 2011. Viewers may remember that the foundation was created in memory of the late Ariel Rosado, a prominent cyclist, who was killed in a traffic accident. The non-profit organization's business is to give worthy candidates an opportunity to finish their education, but what wasn't revealed until earlier this week is that the founders of the organization are now embroiled in litigation. Yesterday, we got some brief commentary from the Chairman of the Foundation's Board, Dr. Alvaro Rosado - who is also Ariel's dad. Here's how he explained his grievance with the Sanchez Father and Son, the other half board's management:

PM 3rd Business Forum
Today, the Prime Minister and the Government of Belize hosted it's 3rd Annual Business Forum. As we've featured in our news before, the purpose of this gathering is to bridge the gap between the public and private sector. Today's agenda was all about how this partnership can help to develop Belize's Economy, and at the Opening Ceremony Prime Minister Dean Barrow took the opportunity to remind the attendees that his Government has been working diligently toward this goal. Here's an excerpt of his keynote address: Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister of Belize "On the productive sector side we did put substantial initial emergency funds into sugar and made sustained and ultimately successful attempts to attract a heavyweight investor to buy over the BSI mill and avert industry collapse. Of course a second major investment in sugar leading to the construction of a new factory in the west is now well underway.

Man Accused of Inappropriate Relations With Underage Female
Tonight, 23 year-old Caye Caulker Resident Luis Alberto Barrera continues to face a sexual assault charge after he allegedly took advantage of a 15 year-old girl. Police say that the young lady and her mother visited the station on Monday afternoon and reported that this man has been having intercourse with her for the past six month on 5 different occasions at different locations in the village. A medical examination was conducted on her which certified that she was carnally known. Police have since investigated the girls report, and they've charged Barrera with 5 counts of unlawful sexual intercourse. He has since been arraigned at the San Pedro Magistrate's Court.

The New Taiwanese Ambassador, H.E. Ho
On Tuesday, we told you about the new Taiwanese Ambassador, Benjamin Ho. He's replacing Ambassador David Wu, who's served in Belize for 4 years. Well, Ambassador Ho and his wife arrived at the PGIA this morning to a group of Taiwanese Belizeans who made sure to stop in and greet the new diplomat. We met him at the airport and spoke about coming back to Belize in an official capacity, after so many years: Benjamin Ho, new Taiwanese Ambassador "Like a boy away from home so many years and come back you can imagine how excited I am to be back."

Heredia Jr. Helps Fire Victims
Last week, we told you about the blaze on San Pedro Town which left 16 families comprising 66 people and 32 children homeless. They've since been getting assistance from the Belize Red Cross and other persons of goodwill in the form of relief, but today, the Tourism Minister Manuel Heredia Jr., who is also their area rep, chipped in. That assistance came by way of a $5,000 cheque to the San Pedro Branch of the Belize Red Cross The BTB staff also donated boxes of clothing, food items and toiletries

Kaina's Ready For Glasgow
For the past 6 months sprinter Kaina Martine has been abroad getting pro-level coaching to become a world-class athlete. She became the first Belizean to earn a full athletic Scholarship, studying at Texas A and M Kingsville. She's back in Belize, making final preparations for the 2014 Commonwealth Games, which is only a week or so away. On Tuesday, we got a chance to speak with her, and we asked if that coaching in the US will help her on the goal to a medal in the Glasgow games. Here's what she told us:

British Born Belizean Flag-bearer
Kaina Martinez is one of 12 athletes who will Represent Belize. But the representative who will take the Belizean flag and fly it at the games for the rest of the world to see will be British Born Katy Sealy. A release from the National Olympic Committee says, "At an Executive Meeting held by the National Olympic Committee on Saturday, July 12th, heptathlete Katy Sealy was selected as the flag bearer for Belize at the Commonwealth Games Opening Ceremonies." As we've told you Sealy is a 23 year-old British Citizen, who has Belizean parentage. She lives in Eastern England, and she has been training for years as a heptathlete.

Novellas In Real Life?
Right now, there is a group of theatre actors from Mexico who are in Belize, and they're making final preparations to put on a show in Belize. Their production is called "Las Pequenas Batallas", and if you haven't guessed it by now, the dialog is all in Spanish. So, if you're fluent in the language, the Mexican Institute wants you come out and enjoy the production, should be a treat. After all, it's theatre in Spanish. We went to the Mexican Institute for a preview and spoke with the actors about what you should expect:

Channel 5

Another Brazen Early Morning City Execution in the City
The area of the Raccoon Street Extension is quickly becoming a hotspot in the south side of Belize City. Four shootings, three of which ended in murder, have occurred in [...]

Robbers Steal Security Guard's Gun on Oleander Street
A daring mid-morning robbery during which a Bowen & Bowen delivery truck was held up in the Lake Independence Area, but instead of money, the robbers went after the service [...]

Prison Stabbing Leaves Inmate with Superficial Wounds
Twenty-three-year-old Jamal Ariola, an inmate of the Belize Central Prison, was the victim of a stabbing incident on Wednesday morning when a fellow prisoner stabbed him multiple times with a [...]

Internal Battles at the Ariel Rosado Memorial Foundation Boil Over
The Ariel Rosado Memorial Education Foundation prided itself on Wednesday when it granted thirty scholarships to deserving students. But an internal problem at the Foundation has gone public and the [...]

Bruce Sanchez Accuses Alvaro Rosado of Financial Hanky Panky
Sanchez Senior also provided copies of two cheques that were deposited into Alvaro Rosado's personal account and showed some receipts to substantiate payments made without his knowledge. While the Sanchez's [...]

Public and Private Sectors Meet on Economic Development
Today, the Belize Biltmore Plaza was the site of a very high-profile, high-powered economic forum, under the theme - Strengthening Partnership for Growth. It's the third of its kind, an [...]

Trade and Investment C.E.O. says GOB is Growing Jobs
The latest statistics on unemployment in Belize, released a few weeks ago by the Statistical Institute, shows an increase in joblessness in the districts. The only increase in employment was [...]

OSH Bill Under Discussion by Economic Development Committee
In January 2014 the Occupational Safety and Health Bill was tabled in the House of Representatives. For the unions who pushed the bill, the road was a long one, and [...]

B.S.I. Says Farmers' Demands Unreasonable
The Belize Sugar Industries Ltd. and the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association remain at odds over the proceeds of bagasse which is being used by BELCOGEN to generate the energy [...]

B.S.I. Ready to Make Bagasse Payment�but on its Terms
A meeting of the B.S.C.F.A. will be convened on Sunday, when the membership will decide on the proposal offered by B.S.I.� Meanwhile, Carballo told News Five today that once B.S.C.F.A. [...]

Overnight and Cruise Arrivals Up in First Half of 2014
There's good news coming out of the tourism industry tonight. According to the latest figures from the B.T.B., overnight and cruise arrivals have gone up in every month this year [...]

New Eastern Division Commanders Speak on Crime
Assistant Commissioner of Police Dezerie Phillips is the second woman to take the helm of the Eastern Division. Her new posting was announced last week, and she joined fellow officers [...]

Andres Bol Acquitted of 2011 Murder
Wednesday's acquittal of Renan Brice�o Junior for the murder of Dale Tillett was followed today by the acquittal of forty year old Andres Bol. Bol was set free by Justice [...]

Local Author Releases New Book
The Adventures of Herbert, the Hickatee is the newest publication to be released by a local author. Gianni Martinez is a teacher in Belize City. Her story centers on the [...]

Solid Waste Management Revisited
The Belize Solid Waste Management Project is in full swing at the moment. It addresses various processes, including the creation of waste, collection, transfer and disposal, as well as the [...]

Popular Songstress Releases New Video
Roxana Alcoser is well-known for her melodious voice; she sings with the popular family band Super Furia from Orange Walk Town. The band has released hit songs on patriotism during [...]

Healthy Living Looks at Gestational Diabetes
There aren't statistics available in Belize about how often women develop gestational diabetes. In the US, though, it is estimated that as many as one in ten women will develop [...]


BSCFA Responds To BSI's Letter
Approximately two weeks, that is the amount of time the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association has to respond to the proposal made by the Belize Sugar Industries Limited for 51 cents payment per ton of bagasse. Via a letter sent yesterday to the BSCFA, addressed to the Chairman of the Committee of Management, Leonardo Cano, BSI makes it known that the offer for payment for bagasse made during the negotiations will remain open through 5:00 p.m. on Friday 1st August 2014. This is after the agreement signed on January 13th 2014, became null and void after both parties were unable to reach an agreement on the negotiations of bagasse before the end of the crop season. While the BSCFA did not respond to the letter yesterday, they certainly did not keep quiet today.

Castillo Also Sought By Mexican Police
Mexican Authorities are also the heels of Castillo. Castillo's picture is circulating in ten municipalities of Quintana Roo where it is believed he might have absconded along with his common-law-wife Avicelie Duran. The 37 year old is being sought by the Federal and State Police and the Mexican Army and Navy.

Court To Decide If Novelo Gets Back His Land
Earlier in April of this year, we reported on Jose Novelo's leased land that he claims he had been developing for over 30 years which was given to someone else, in this case, his relative Everisto Novelo. The mix-up prompted an immediate investigation on the hands of the Lands Department. And while the investigation proved that Jose was indeed the true developer of land, he had already taken the matter to court. In an interview with Channel 5, Lands Commissioner Wilbert Vallejos said they were planning on returning the land to Jose Novelo, but with the matter before the court, they will just have to wait and see the outcome of that case. We spoke to Jose Novelo this afternoon who too says that they will wait after July 28th, which is the date set for their 3rd hearing in court. We'll keep you updated as this story develops.

BSI/ASR Meets One On One With Cane Farmers
As you heard at the top of the newscast, the relationship between the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association and Belize Sugar Industries Limited is currently navigating in turbulent waters. The main cause of contention is the payment per ton of bagasse. On one hand we have BSCFA asking for $10.00 per ton of bagasse and on the other we have BSI offering 51 cents per ton. With none of the parties backing down, the sugar industry finds itself under a dark cloud. Both entities have given their side of the story to the media. But here is a first for BSI. The company has been having one on one session's with cane farmers, bringing to the table their case when it comes to the bagasse issue.

Ministry Of Health Receives Eleven New Vehicles
Presently the Ministry of Health, particularly the Vector Control Unit is doing everything in its power to keep Belize free from the Chikungunya disease that has spread throughout the Caribbean and claimed the lives of hundreds. The unit has also been reinforcing the awareness of the Dengue virus since the same species of mosquito that carries the Dengue virus is carrier of the Chikungunya Disease. Today their job has been made a bit easier as they now have access to more transportation to move around. As part of a Contribution Agreement from the European Union to improve and upgrade the Vector Control Unit of the Ministry of Health, today 11 Toyota Hilux 4 X 4 Pick-up trucks were handed over to the Vector Control Unit.

Rotaract To Hold Fourth Annual Bag Drive
For many families, the beginning of a new school year proves to be a financial burden especially in these hard economic times. In that light, the Orange Walk Rotaract Club is lessening the burden of those obligations for the upcoming school year with its 4th annual school bag drive. Rotaract's Secretary, Azalia Torres, says this year the drive is being carried out under the name "Kind Hearts Bag Drive". She encourages the public to take part in the drive which primarily assists needy children. Azalia Torres - Secretary, Rotaract, OW "This year we named it "The heart's kind bag drive" and what we are doing is collecting school bags used and new and as well as school supplies like pens, pencils, exercise blanks, erasers anything that a child would need at the beginning of the school year; we ask the community, usually A&R would donate to us school supplies and last year we donated 100 bags total to the area of San Francisco School and now this year we want to double that we want to give out 200 bags."

New Ambassador To Belize To Arrive On Thursday
Tomorrow the new Ambassador of (China) Taiwan to Belize is expected to arrive in the country. His Excellency Ambassador Benjamin Ho, will succeed His Excellency David Wu, who left the country on Saturday. It's not the first time that Ho will set foot in Belize. From 1994 to 19 98 he served as Belize's First Secretary and Senior Specialist.

Mathew "Mateo Bull" Recaptured By Police
Yesterday we told you about a prisoner who escaped from his holding cell at the Orange Walk Police Station. But that prisoner's freedom did not last long as tonight, he is back in police custody. We understand that Matthew 'Mateo' Bull was recaptured when police got information that he was staying in a house in Trial Farm Village in the Orange Walk District. Police have also detained a female person who we understand will be charged for aiding and abetting a criminal.

Manuel Castillo Makes INTERPOL List Of Most Wanted
And while we are on the topic of Manuel Castillo, the United States Interpol has received word that Castillo is wanted in Belize to serve his sentence so his profile has made the international wanted list. INTERPOL is the world's largest international police organization, with 190  member countries. Their role is to enable police around the world to work together to make the world a safer place. Interpol's high-tech infrastructure of technical and operational support helps meet the growing challenges of fighting crime in the 21st century.

BSCFA Representatives Discuss Cane Quality
While representatives of BSI/ASR have been making their rounds with cane farmers discussing the bagasse issue, so have the BSCFA only because they are touching a different topic. Field officers, the Cane Quality team and members of the Sugar Cane Production Committee under the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association met yesterday morning at the San Estevan Lion's Club to discuss the strengths and weaknesses that were noted over the crop season. Primarily the group is trying to work out the kinks as it pertains to cane quality for the upcoming cane season. Alfredo Ortega- Vice Chair, BSCFA "To see how best we can have a better relation with the different test groups at the branch level so that we can reduce the incidents in regards to the quality of cane that is being brought to the mill."

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More News: Scroll up from here


Bruce Sanchez holds Ariel Rosado Foundation Hostage
Today thirty young men and women were awarded scholarships by the Ariel Rosado Foundation. We'll have that later but first we'll tell you about the latest difficulties the foundation is currently facing. The President of the Foundation and father of the late Ariel Rosado, Dr. Alvaro Rosado, taking the former Treasure, Bruce Sanchez, to court. Sanchez, along with his wife, is a signatory to the Foundation's bank account which has now been frozen. According to the President, Dr. Alvaro Rosado the main purpose of The Ariel Rosado Foundation is to provide funding for educational scholarships and sporting activities to encourage Belizean youths to develop healthy minds in healthy bodies. But the Sanchez had conflicting ideas and they refused to sign cheques. DR. ALVARO ROSADO "We have been having problems with Mr. Sanchez. Apparently what their idea was about the foundation was not our idea. We tried to work it out for a year and a half. They have decided to boycott the foundation so we have had to make a claim in court, asking them to free up the bank account. In the meantime, the foundation has found other ways to provide money to pay for the scholarships that we're giving. But at this point in time, there is a bank account that was frozen with the majority of the money that we have collected so far.

Fairtrade Inspection Committee Suspends Belize Cane Farmers
In other news from the Belize Sugar Cane Farmer's Association, LOVE NEWS has received unconfirmed but credible reports that the BSCFA has been suspended by Flo-Cert which is the inspection and certification body for labelled Fairtrade products. The suspension is for six months, the time given by the inspection body for the association to get its act together and address the eight non-compliances it has on its report card following an audit conducted in April this year. When we spoke with Alfredo Ortega three weeks ago, he mentioned two of the non-compliances: one was underaged children working in the fields and the other is misappropriation of approximately 78 thousand dollars.

Main Opposition Party Moves Against Gun Laws
Yesterday we told you about the Smith Family who says they are the latest victim of Belize's Gun Law. The family of five was sent to jail after a young man, who was carrying a hand gun and running from police, barged into their home. The young man was caught and all those inside the house were arrested for firearm charges. After spending some days behind bars, 47 year old Sandra Casey, 22 year old Leon Smith, 19 year old Tamika Smith, 20 year old Rashida Brooks, 52 year old Alrick Smith and a 16 year old boy were release under the directions of the Director of Public Prosecution. However, the law in question remains the same. The People's United Party has been demanding that the Government of Belize amend the law. Communications Officers for the PUP's Eastern Caucus, Attorney, Kareem Musa, says that the prosecution plays an important role. KAREEM MUSA "The prosecution I think has big part to play whenever a family is brought before a Magistrate's Court because if you have an instance where seven family members are brought to court, one individual is willing to own up to that and actually pleads guilty the prosecution, in my opinion, has a duty and obligation to ensure that the others are released.

Farmers Say Negotiations Have Turned to Ultimatum
On Tuesday BSI issued a release urging cane farmers to accept the proposal they made of 51 cents as payment for bagasse for every ton of cane delivered to the BSI factory. Today we got comments from BSCFA who views the release as utmost disrespect from their partner in the industry. Arturo Cantun reports. ARTURO CANTUN REPORTS "In a release issued yesterday by BSI, the milling company advises that for the benefit of the industry, farmers should accept the fifty one cents as the quantum for bagasse per ton of cane delivered. BSI further tells farmers that the offer remains open until Friday August 1. BSCFA spokesperson Alfredo Ortega told us today that the farmers view this latest position as total disrespect as BSI basically is giving them an ultimatum." ALFREDO ORTEGA "I believe that this is a huge form of disrespect to the farmers and to the Association because they are not giving that opportunity of negotiating that fifty one cents and above because we have presented to them our formula from the very first day since we started negotiating with them. They look upon it and look upon it and just look upon it until the twenty-fifth of march when they came out with their own formula which is the one where, they have again, they have said, take it or leave it, which we don't see that as a form of acting in goodwill or negotiating something that will be beneficial for both sides."

Health Minister Weighs in On Latest Issues at KHMH
While the CEO in the Ministry of Health could not give us concrete answers regarding the transfer of Melinda Guerra and the suspension of Nasley Sommerville and while he did tell us that these decisions are made unilaterally by the public service, the minister of Health, Pablo Marin did contradict that statement by the CEO, saying that it was the ministry that issued a letter of recommended action to the public service. PABLO MARIN "As you know and we have it on record, as things like this happen again, the audit committee was asked to go in. We did send a letter asking Public Service to do certain transfers and there is where it bucks. There is nothing else that we can do; Public Service is the ultimate. Whenever we are going to hire someone, although we have the opening, it has to go to Public Service and if they say, 'no, you can't hire this person', that is where it bucks. Though I am the Minister of Health, it is the board's decision. The good thing is that we have a good relationship with the chair and with the board that whenever things happen like this buying of the x-ray machines, she will come directly to us, what are you going to do , what do you think. We do give advice; this is what is supposed to happen. With the CEO I have put it on record, I do believe that we need to change the CEO (Dr Gary Longsworth), I said it on the National Assembly and that's where it stands."

11 New Vehicles for Belize’s Fight Against Vector-Borne Diseases
The Vector Control Unit in the Ministry of Health became more equipped today as the Pan American Health Organisation came through with eleven motor vehicles via some funding from the European Union. The 2014 Toyota Hilux pickup trucks comes at a time when the unit seems even more determined in working towards a healthier and productive population particularly as they relate to vector borne-diseases. On hand at today's handing over was the Technical Advisor in the Vector Control Unit, Kim Bautista. He explained how the vehicles will be put to use.MOH Vehicle Donation 2 KIM BAUTISTA "The eleven vehicles will be supporting and strengthening our surveillance of malaria and dengue in Belize. The vehicles that are being handed over today will go directly to the Vector Control Units in the six districts and so we should see a direct strengthening of surveillance in the communities as well as other activities such as ULV Spraying of fogging activities. The project currently includes an additional six ULV machines, each one of those machines comes at a cost of $10,000 USD and so that should bring the total amount of fogging machines in the country up to 22 which will give us the ability to not only fit all the regions with at least 2 machines per district including the islands but it will also allow us to have in stock in terms of emergency equipment in the event of a natural disaster. "

Caye Caulker Chronicles

R.I.P. Mr. Tony Vega, Sr.
(from July 6) Condolences to the family of Mr. Tony Vega, Sr. The elder Mr. Vega is one of the founding fathers of the nation's premier fishing cooperative, the Northern Fisherman's Cooperative, which saw its humble beginnings on the island of Caye Caulker. Mr. Vega was also one of the tourism pioneers on the island. He helped to develop the tourist industry in its infancy. Several of his descendants are still giants in the industry to this day. Mr. Vega was 98 years old. R.I.P. to this giant of a man.

Patrick JonesPJ

Escaped convict back in lawful custody in Orange Walk
Orange Walk resident Matthew Bull's run for freedom earlier this week was short-lived as he was taken back into custody, less than 24 hours after his escape. Bull, a resident of Trial Farm, was convicted on Monday for the crime of aggravated assault with a firearm committed [�]

Orange Walk performers to represent the north in National Song Competition
The northern regional elimination for the national Song Competition was held tonight in Orange Walk town. The event, which was staged at the Fort Cairms Market Plaza, featured performers from Corozal and Orange Walk. It was sponsored by Atlantic International Bank. A total of 6 performers took to [�]

Police pick up suspect in early morning murder in Belize City
Police say their quick response to this morning's murder of Lionel Sampson in Belize City led to the apprehension of a suspect fleeing from the scene on Antelope Street Extension. According to Police this person has been identified as one of the shooters. However, police continue their investigations [�]

Mexican actors bring play to Belize
Writing and performing plays in Belize is practically a lost art, but on occasion foreign productions play to local audiences. The latest import comes courtesy of the Mexican Embassy, which has invited the Grupo Elenco de Yucatan to stage a one-act play titled "Las Pequenas Batallas", written by [�]

Prime Minister hosts business forum with private sector
Prime Minister Dean Barrow, who also has responsibility for finance and economic development, has made a concerted effort to reach out to the private sector, to hear and address its concerns on the progress of the national economy. There is now an office dedicated to public-private sector dialogue [�]

New Taiwanese ambassador arrives in Belize
The Republic of China (Taiwan's) new ambassador to Belize landed at the Philip Goldson International Airport this morning. His Excellency Benjamin Ho says it is a sort of homecoming for him, having been in Belize more than two decades last. The former First Secretary and long-time diplomat says [�]

Dissension in the ranks at Ariel Rosado Foundation
The Ariel Rosado Memorial Education Foundation is confronting a break with key founders Bruce Sanchez Sr. and Jr., who according to president Dr. Alvaro Rosado, have a different vision in mind for the future of the Foundation. Dr. Rosado said on Wednesday that for some time now they [�]

Stabbing in the prison yard leaves inmate wounded
An inmate of the Belize Central Prison in Hattieville village was the victim of a stabbing incident. 23 year old Jamal Ariola was stabbed multiple times on Wednesday morning while he was in the prison yard. Police say Ariola was stabbed to the chest, hand, back and [�]

Early morning murder in Belize City
A shooting incident in Belize City this morning has left one man dead. The victim has been identified as 28 year old Lionel Sampson. A brief statement released by the Police Press Office says that the murder happened around 6:20 am on Antelope Street Extension. According to [�]


As an expecting mother, the first thing you pay attention to when moving somewhere new is the state of healthcare of that area. I have lived in Canada, China, the USA, and now Belize, and the services, care and quality of equipment all vary greatly. After I got pregnant last December while living in Seattle, our first task was to see a doctor for the initial checkup. After a few extremely short appointments and tons of paperwork, we got our first ultrasound (no blood work yet), which to my surprise cost a pretty penny, and decided to see what our options were. With the multitude of business opportunities that we saw here in Belize, we decided to move down to Ambergris Caye, and have our baby, which is due early fall, in the country. From our first visit to Belize Medical Associates, we were pleasantly surprised at how fast and affordable everything was. Without an appointment, we got to see an OB/GYN, get an ultrasound, blood work, and have the results explained to us by our doctor all within four hours. As great as this sounds, the hospital is located in Belize city. We are on Ambergris Caye island, which is quite a ways away. You can either take a water taxi, which takes about 1 hour and 45 minutes, or you can fly, which takes 20 minutes (flights also only operate during daylight hours).

One Beautiful Day At The Beach at Ak'Bol Yoga Resort
Completely unrelated (but hoping it continues), yesterday was ABSOLUTELY gorgeous. And I went up north with my friend Jamie�just about 1.5 miles to one of my favorite spots to lay out and swim. Ak'Bol Yoga Resort. The entrance from the parking lot. The view south to the Palapa Bar.

Archaeology News from Belize: Thank you Dr Jaime Awe!
Like many people in Belize, especially those of us with an interest in Maya culture, history and archaeology, the news that Dr Jaime Awe was stepping down from his post as the Director of the National Institute of Culture and History's Institute of Archaeology (IA) came as a surprise. No one, and we do mean no one, has done as much for archaeology in Belize as Dr Awe. Working tirelessly and passionately, Dr Awe makes Belize's rich Maya heritage come alive for a countless number of students, writers, observers and ordinary citizens. From the early days of Chaa Creek when it seemed like every time a hole was dug another ancient Maya artefact was unearthed, Jaime was there to ensure that any excavation was conducted professionally and sensitively, and every find was identified, catalogued and preserved. Fortunately, Dr Awe lives nearby in Cayo, but he would still take time out from a very busy schedule to be where and when he was needed.

10 Breathtakingly Beautiful Attractions in San Ignacio Belize
A trip to San Ignacio Belize would not be complete without planning a visit to each of these breathtakingly beautiful attractions. #1 Barton Creek Cave One of the largest river caves in Belize, Barton Creek Cave consists of giant passages covered with numerous large speleothems over a navigable river and these features of the cave have made it a popular cave tour in the Cayo District. #2 Cahal Pech Maya Ruins Cahal Pech means "place of ticks" in modern-day Maya, and refers to the fact that the surrounding area was once used as pasture land. However, this was the royal acropolis-palace of an elite Mayan ruling family who lived here during the Classic period. Cahal Pech was settled around 1000 BC and abandoned by 800 AD.

4 Things to do in Dangriga Belize
If you love culture and not crowds then Dangriga is the place you have to visit. Located at the end of the Hummingbird Highway, Dangriga is the capital of Belize's Stann Creek District and is home to the Garifuna, a cultural and ethnic group who are descendants of shipwrecked slaves and native Caribs. The town is a suitable base to explore the following Belize tours: Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary was established in 1986 as the first jaguar reserve in the world. Covering approximately 150 square miles of tropical forest, the park lies at the foot of Victoria Peak, the highest peak of Belize's Maya Mountains. Hike through the jungle, splash by the waterfall, or float down the river under a sky of birdsong and green canopy.

International Sourcesizz

Tikal, toads and tarantulas
Wifi isn't all that it's cut out to be. The past couple of weeks I have been adventuring through Guatemala and Belize with the promise of good wifi, the kind of wifi that gets columns back to the states. Unfortunately, wifi didn't always find it's way into the backroads, swamps and highlands that lay before the McKale family summer vacation. The first backroad took us to Tikal. Tikal is one of the largest pre-Columbian Mayan archaeological sites in Latin America. It is located in the Peten region in the northeast portion of Guatemala. Tikal is a National Park and was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979. It is tucked, almost hidden, in the middle of a jungle, a perfect setting for my four inquisitive boys, wife, niece and mother-in-law. Tikal was the capital of a Mayan state that became one of the most powerful, interacting with the great and powerful Teotihuacan in Mexico. The monumental architecture dates back to the 4th century BC and reached its peak during the Classic Period from 200 to 900 AD. All Mayan cities, marked by cohesive military, economic and political structures, came to an abrupt end in 900 AD.

The Mexican Drug Cartel Threat in Central America
Guatemalan President-elect Otto Perez Molina told Mexican newspaper El Universal on Nov. 9 that he plans to engage drug cartels in a "full frontal assault" when he takes office in 2012. The former general said he will use Guatemala's elite military forces, known as Los Kaibiles, to take on the drug cartels in a strategy similar to that of the Mexican government; he has asked for U.S. assistance in this struggle. The statements signal a shifting political landscape in already violent Central America. The region is experiencing increasing levels of crime and the prospect of heightened competition from Mexican drug cartels in its territory. The institutional weakness and security vulnerabilities of Guatemala and other Central American states mean that combating these trends will require significant help, most likely from the United States. From Sideshow to Center Stage Central America has seen a remarkable rise in its importance as a transshipment point for cocaine and other contraband bound for the United States. Meanwhile, Mexican organized crime has expanded its activities in Mexico and Central America to include the smuggling of humans and substances such as precursor chemicals used for manufacturing methamphetamine. Substantial evidence also suggests that Central American, and particularly Guatemalan, military armaments including M60 machine guns and 40 mm grenades have wound up being used in Mexico's drug conflict.

Easy Living in Hopkins Village, Belize - Photo Essay
Hopkins Village is one of the only true villages left with the Garifuna culture as the main culture of the town. All is located along the beach and finding the restaurants and other cool things to do is part of the fun here. Chilling and learning how to play drums with the local boys of the area

Belize Proves "Good Things Come In Small Packages"
The ex-British colony, lodged between big brother Mexico to the north, the jungles of Guatemala to the south and west, and nestled on the world's second largest barrier reef to the east, offers a wide range of exploration to satisfy all travelers. Belize may pack in more flora, fauna and diverse natural beauty per square mile, than any nation on the planet. Roughly 60% of Belize is forested. For many visitors a trip to the Belizean rainforest is the trip of a lifetime. Bring your binoculars to the jungles of Belize as it is a bird watcher's paradise. There are over 600 different bird species, roosting high above in the majestic forest or along rivers and lagoons. If you're lucky, you just might catch a glimpse of Belize's national bird, the keel-billed toucan, or Belize's national animal, Baird's tapir. Although, many times elusive, keen eyed eco tourists, can view: spider monkeys, howler monkeys, peccaries, coatimundis, gibnuts, and other animals that never been seen or even or heard of by the tourist. On rare occasions, one can even view the nocturnal jaguar. The country is also home to 4,000 species of tropical flowers, including 250 kinds of orchids.

Placencia, Belize - The Town is the Main Attraction - Photo Essay
All of Belize is known for their amazing diving and beaches. Yet I didn't know much about the adorable town of Placencia, most of which is only to be discovered by foot. Colorful Caribbean style houses are so cute. This is one of the local restaurants here. The main supermarket of the town

Caye Caulker's The Split, Belize - Photo Essay
The Split in Caye Caulker happened when a Hurricane destroyed this island years ago and split it into two parts. Now it is a great swimming area, with one of the coolest restaurants in town. Plus a killer sunset! What more do you need, cold beer and great location.

The Best Hotel in Hopkins, Belize - Jaguar Reef
Hopkins has officially become my favourite place in Belize. But before I explain it to you guys, just check out the video (and wait for the last 10 seconds, the view will blow you away!): It's low key, small, runs at a snail's pace and is just outright beautiful. I had come straight from Belize's island paradise, Caye Caulker, so it was a long day to get all the way to Hopkins. Boat from the island to Belize City, then a jump on a run-down bus to Dangriga, via the Capital; then a taxi the last 20 miles. It was evening before I finally made it to Hopkins.

Xunantunich Mayan Ruins; Day Trip from Hopkins, Belize
During my amazing stay at the Jaguar Reef Lodge, I wanted to get out to explore the country. Too much time on a beach drives me buts, luckily Jaguar Reef run loads of tours so it was time to get my exploring hat on. Chichen Itza was still buzzing around my head, it was so beautiful but you can't help but be a little overwhelmed by the sheer volume of tourists, so when the staff at the Jaguar Reef Lodge told me they were running a day trip to Belize's best ruins, like Chichen Itza without the people they said, I was in. Xunantunich is a 2 hour drive from Hopkins, the tour ran directly from my hotel to the spot via another set of small ruins at Pacbitun, then lunch (complete with wifi, I'm an unapologetic addict) and back again for late afternoon.

Snorkeling Tour on Ambergris Caye, Belize - Photo Essay
Our private tour man awaits us for the snorkel day with fish and sharks. We headed to Hol Chan Marine Reserve where some of the best snorkeling near Ambergris Caye can be experienced.


Video: Opening a Green Coconut in Belize with Coco Jack!, 14sec.
We get asked all the time if Coco Jack works on green coconuts as well. Yes it does! It works best if you slice away part of the husk first, but we have even seen people "Jack" all the way through the green shell. While Coco Jack was designed specifically for Young Thai Coconuts, depending on the coconut, it can make opening the whole green ones a breeze!

Video: Belize Shark Adventure and Attack, 10min.
Shark dives in Mexico and Belize with Playa Scuba Dive Center

Video: Partnerships Matter: Mobile Medicine in Belize, 1.5min.
U.S. Navy medical professionals are in Belize working with local doctors and nurses. The doctors and nurses are traveling into rural areas to provide medical care.

Video: 2014 Belize Vacation Part 2: Hopkins/Sittee River/Bocawina National Park, 3min.
Hopkins/Sittee River/Bocawina National Park - Ziplining

Video: Los Cayos de Belize, 6min.
Snorkeling in Hol Chan, Marine Reserve in Cay Ambergris, Cay Caulker and San Pedro Island in Belize.

Video: A five day sample vacation on Sailing Catamaran Orion in HD, 50min.
Come along with us on a typical vacation aboard the 90ft charter catamaran Orion. Take note- we are shark tagging, wake boarding, snorkeling and best of all . Here is a short version of the 50 minute sample vacation aboard Orion in the British Virgin Islands. Be sure to change to 720 or HD in settings for best qual. Belize Charter Specialist Belize Sailing Vacations is a Belize based, family owned full service Belize yacht charter business sailing Belize and Guatemala si.

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