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A post by Peter Jordens.

Danielle Palm of Go Weekly recently interviewed Patricia Selbert, author of The House of Six Doors, which tells the compelling coming-of-age story of an immigrant from Curaçao in the 1970s’ United States.

The author successfully manages to put the reader smack in the middle of it all: what it feels like to leave your home as a teenager, carve out a new identity in unfamiliar surroundings and integrate the past with the present to build a new future. This is a book everyone should read. Women of all ages can relate to the story and it offers men a window into the feminine world. Just make sure you have plenty of free time, because once you pick up the book, you won’t be able to put it down.

At thirteen, Serena moves with her Mama and sister to the United States, leaving her beloved grandmother behind. On her journey into adulthood, Serena has to deal with the transformation of herself as an individual and as part of her immigrant family, including clashing cultures, a mother chasing the American Dream, a sister addicted to drugs, falling in love and the loss of her beloved grandmother. Despite the heavy underlying themes, The House of Six Doors is a story about hope. Ancestry, spirituality and the struggle of bringing cultural identities into agreement with each other also play a big part in the story.

Like many Curaçaoans, Patricia Selbert had to learn how to balance her cultural identities. She was born in the jungles of Venezuela to Dutch parents, grew up in Colombia and Curaçao and when she was thirteen her family moved to the United States. “Part of me is very Dutch and part of me is Curaçaoan, however sometimes I can be totally American or Latina. But none of those identities is all of me. It’s almost as if I am broken up into pieces,” says Patricia. The author sees that as a very positive thing. “When I go to one of the countries, eat the cuisine and speak the language, that part of me revives. You need to realize that every cultural identity has good and evil and you need to keep them in balance.” One of the themes in the book explores the situation where the cultural identities do not get along. “Often people who are most critical of certain cultures are dealing with an internal struggle. Mama is a great example of what happens when there is a conflict in the cultural identities. She feels the Curaçao culture is less than the Dutch culture, while Oma [Grandma] feels more secure in her background.”

“My favorite character is Oma. I remember lying awake at night wondering whether she would show up. Being with her in writing and reading what I wrote the next day was probably the most enjoyable part of writing the book.” Although Patricia always loved making up stories, she never set out to be a writer. “I moved to a new country and had to learn a new language at the age of thirteen, so reading and writing didn’t come easy to me. The schooling system didn’t help much either. It wasn’t until my early thirties that I went back to college to polish my language skills.” Patricia wrote the book in short bursts at night when she couldn’t sleep and says that her instructor was instrumental in her becoming a writer. “Writing was like visiting my past every evening. There was no premeditated plan. My instructor recognized my writing as powerful and encouraged me to hone this skill.” Although language skills are important, to Patricia it is secondary to compelling content. “Language skills can be easily learned. However, few schools teach you how to feel the world and that is an important skill to have as a writer. I focus on the emotional and sensory aspect of the experience to create a scene and put my reader in the story. That is a skill I learned from working with horses. With animals, you need to look at other cues than language.”

Patricia says she has fond memories of her time in Curaçao and she believes that the island has a lot to offer in terms of different cultural influences. She is currently enrolled in a Ph.D. program researching sensory aspects of the immigration experience. “What fascinates me the most about the immigrant experience is that we are all immigrants one way or another. With globalization it’s an issue and this book offers a different perspective.”

The House of Six Doors: An Autobiographical Novel

Santa Barbara, CA: Publishing by the Seas, 2012 (2nd edition)

330 pages

ISBN 978-0578063188

Patricia Selbert lives in Santa Barbara, California, and is enrolled in a Ph.D. program at Pacifica Graduate Institute. She has a special interest in the psychology of multicultural identity.

The above interview appeared on pp. 4-5 of the Vol. 10 Nr. 41 (October 9-15, 2014) print edition of Go Weekly. Another interview with Selbert, by Guilie Castillo-Oriard of Amigoe, is available at http://www.amigoe.com/amigoe-express/interviews/189874-patricia-selbert-its-culture-not-race-that-defines-us.

For more information visit http://publishingbytheseas.com/the-house-of-six-doors-2nd-ed, http://thehouseofsixdoors.com and http://patriciaselbert.com.

Posted by: lisaparavisini | October 11, 2014

UN: Ebola No Threat Yet To The Caribbean

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This article by Tony Best appeared in The New York Carib News.

Act now and avert a global public health emergency.

That, in essence, was the urgent demand of Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Dominica, Guyana, Barbados and their Caribbean neighbors and the plea was made at the United Nations in New York at a time when the U.S. was seeking to tame rising domestic worries about the potential spread of the deadly Ebola epidemic to America’s shores. Essentially, what the island-nations and coastal states that belong to Caricom are asking is that the UN’s specialized agencies and rich states ramp up their aid to the African states which are now bearing the full brunt of the deadly Ebola virus disease.

The Caribbean also fears that the outbreak of the highly contagious disease would jump from Guinea, Nigeria, Liberia and Sierra Leone and spread to the rest of Africa and to developing nations in the Caribbean, Latin America, the Pacific and the Middle East. Thousands of victims have already died from Ebola in four African states.

“The specter of the deadly Ebola disease and the scourge of HIV/AIDS and non-communicable diseases have the potential to significantly impact our people and threaten the gains made so far by Small Island developing states,” warned Senator Arnold Nicholson, Jamaica’s Foreign Minister in an address to the General Assembly.

“We cannot ignore the link between our efforts to spur development and the need to safeguard the health of our people,” Nicholson added. “The challenge to security and sustainable development posed by threats to global public health have been devastatingly illustrated by the recent outbreak of the Ebola epidemic.”

Barbados agreed but put it differently.

“The Ebola outbreak constitutes a public health emergency of international concern and a threat to global security,” said Senator Maxine McLean, Barbados’ Foreign Minister. “It also threatens the peacebuilding and development gains of the most affected countries.”

That was why, she went on, there was an urgent need to accelerate the mobilization of resources to assist the affected countries and halt the epidemic.”

Trinidad and Tobago, whose Prime Minister, Kamla Persad-Bissessar was quick to explain to the UN that the epidemic’s potential threat was the main the reason her country had co-sponsored a Security Council resolution calling for prompt international action to combat the “Ebola virus disease.”

She praised UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, for organizing an “Ebola summit” that gave countries a chance “to take steps “to combat the spread” of the virus “and “supplement the United Nations Mission for Ebola Emergency response.”

The U.S. recently recorded its first Ebola case when a Liberian, Eric Duncan arrived in Texas from Monrovia and showed symptoms of the deadly disease. He is now in a Dallas medical center in critical condition. That case raised the fears of hundreds of millions of Americans that the virus would jump to their shores.

When Guyana addressed the UN, its President Donald Rabindranauth Romotar described the epidemic as a “global problem” that required an immediate response of a scale far beyond what was currently being done.

Suriname, a close neighbor of Guyana, called the outbreak an “imminent threat” which must be met head-on, said Winston Lackin, the Republic’s Foreign Minister. That was why Suriname was working with “neighboring countries” in the sub-region as well as the global community “to design and implement programs” that would prevent “the spread of this deadly virus.”

Wilfred P. Erlington, Belize’s Foreign Minister and Attorney General, didn’t simply express concerns that the disease was “increasing exponentially.” He complained “that international health agencies “did not respond more vigorously to the Ebola outbreak many months ago.”

Dominica too raised the alarm while appealing to the UN, its agencies and other international organization not to allow the disease to reverse the region’s health care successes.

“The specter of the deadly Ebola disease and the scourge of HIV/AIDS and non-communicable diseases have the potential to significantly impact our people and threaten the gains made so far by small island developing states,” said Charles Savarin, Dominica’s President. “This myriad of challenges, therefore call for collective global action to protect the gains that small island states like Dominica have been able to achieve over the past two decades, and to lay a path for development that is sustainable and people focused.”

For the original report go to

http://www.nycaribnews.com/news.php?viewStory=4783

Posted by: lisaparavisini | October 11, 2014

Cuba is home to the oldest sign of Christianity in the Americas

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La Cruz de la Parra (The Sacred Cross of Parra), planted in Eastern Cuba by Christopher Columbus upon his landing in the island, is officially the oldest sign of Christianity in the Americas and perhaps the oldest symbol of the cultural clash, Erick Lappin reports for voxxi.com.

With the religious fervor of the time plus the incredibly harsh circumstances of their voyage, it is not surprising that the Genovese admiral and his crew called their arrival to the other side of the Atlantic a miracle.

Among the many goals of the expedition was conquering lands for the Spanish Catholic crown.

Columbus installed a total of 29 crosses that served for Spaniards’ religious practice and to evangelize the native.

“He placed a large cross at the entrance of that port which I believe he named Porto Santo,” wrote Friar Bartolomé de las Casas on Dec. 1, 1492. Porto Santo would be later replaced by Baracoa, the aborigine name for the area.

But, the cross legitimacy goes beyond historical written accounts.

In 1984, Raquel Carrera Rivery, a wood anatomy specialist for the Institute of Forestry Research of the Ministry of Agriculture of Cuba, conducted an extensive scientific study in conjunction with wood expert Roger Dechamps from the Central African Museum in Tervuren, Belgium.

The authenticity of the cross has been challenged through the times. To clear all doubts, the scientists had to prove the age and origin of the relic.

They took fragments and sent them to various research centers. They were compared to 50 different tree species from Europe, 3,200 from Africa, and 4,000 from the Americas.

The scientists concluded that the cross is made of Coccoloba Diversifolia, a tree that populates the Caribbean Antilles including the region where Columbus landed in Eastern Cuba.

The results chattered old rumors that the cross was actually brought from Europe. Either way, carbon dating tests demonstrated with 95 percent accuracy that the date of the fragments oscillates between 860 and 1530 B.C. So, the explorers could make it in 1492.

La Santa Cruz de la Parra or La Cruz de Colon is the only one of Columbus’ crosses that has endured more than five centuries, surviving pirates and corsair’s attacks, hurricanes and historical turbulences.

But, the cross’ role in local folklore, religion and culture is definitely as great as its resilience. La Cruz de la Parra has witnessed many historical events like the first Catholic procession in the New World in 1528 after an earthquake that hit the region.

Many locals considered the cross a divine artifact connected to numerous miracles; therefore, every historical personality that visited the town in colonial times took a piece of it.

That is the case of Spanish General Arsenio Martinez Campos, Captain-General of Cuba, who appropriated of a fragment before his return to Spain in 1879.

The cross extremities were later encased in metal with the purpose of preventing the numerous cuts it was subject to.

La Cruz de la Parra was offered to Pope John Paul II in his historical visit to the island in 1998; but he refused to take away such precious relic from the Cuban people.

The cross was relocated from the bay to an altar in the Minor Basilica of Baracoa in 1757. It is still there.

For the original report go to http://voxxi.com/2014/10/11/cruz-parra-cuba-christopher-columbus

Posted by: lisaparavisini | October 11, 2014

New Exhibition Highlights Experiences Of Black Liverpudlians

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Event will use photography and film to tell the stories of the city’s African Caribbean community in tackling racism, The Voice Online reports.

A NEW exhibition in Liverpool will document the experiences of racism by the city’s black population.

The exhibition, called Continuing the Journey, will share the stories of African and Caribbean residents through a collection of oral histories, photography and film.

Photographers from Liverpool-based Stray Cat Media partnered with prominent local black figures as well as ordinary citizens from a variety of backgrounds and ages to capture the images and experiences that will feature in the exhibition.

The display will be on show at the International Slavery Museum from October 3, and photos of participants will feature alongside quotes that outline their experiences.

PREJUDICE

Cheryl Magowan, project manager at Stray Cat Media, said most participants shared similar experiences of prejudice on a daily basis, whether in shops, the workplace, public transport and even from families and friends.

“The project aimed to help bring communities together and express themselves, in a society often in denial about the continued existence of racism” she said.

“Our contributors had traumatic stories, but we hope the project reflects their resilience, strength and power in battling it at the time and retelling it today.”

Among those who took part in the exhibition was Michelle Charters, the CEO of the Kuumba Imani Millennium Centre, which is a community partner in the project. She shared her experiences growing up in Toxteth.

Born to a white British woman and a seaman from Barbados, Charters recalled that her mother was stigmatised by many white women and that as a baby, she was spat at in her pram. But she is proud of Liverpool as it is today.

She said: “Liverpool is a multicultural city and has been able to celebrate it. It’s a good time for this exhibition too, given the big new student and refugee populations in the city. It’s really good for people to see what’s happened in the past, and what’s happening now.”

Another participant in the project is poet Levi Tafari, 51. He has bleak memories of growing up in Toxteth, known locally as Liverpool 8, where his family had relocated from Jamaica in the 1950s.

He recalled: “I’ve always known my skin was darker, but it didn’t mean anything until someone called me a n***** when I was about five. You had to stand up for yourself as a teenager, as skinheads carried Stanley knives. Otherwise you’d be six feet under.”

POETRY

Tafari said it was tough finding work as a black young man even after training as a chef, but he eventually got his first job in catering. It was then that he began writing poetry as a response to what he saw in Toxteth.

He has since found professional success as a poet and playwright, with plays staged at various Liverpool theatres and many TV appearances.

Tafari said that young black people living in the city today do not experience the type of racism he endured growing up. However, he believes that racial abuse and discrimination are still a major issue.

He said that last year his son – also born in Liverpool– had just got into his car after work when a woman stuck her head in the window and shouted repeatedly: “Go back to where you come from” and “n****, n****, n****” He said the woman was arrested and had to pay compensation.

He also remembers an occasion when his friend’s son was out celebrating his birthday last year and flagged down a taxi, only to be told by the driver who slowed down as if to stop: “Walk, you black b*****ds.” He then sped off.

According to Tafari, racism is about more than alleged “institutional racism” within organisations like the police. Subtle incidents occur every day, which suggest some of the underlying prejudices and stereotypes remain unchanged.

He said: “You give a cashier the money in their hand, but when you put your hand out for your change they put it on the counter instead. That happens a lot.”

Tafari said he would always calmly address such behaviour. Nevertheless, he claims said that no amount of intolerance would stop him from defining himself as a black British Scouser. He added that it was ludicrous for white British people to attack things for being foreign or different.

He said: “What typifies Britishness? Tea – sourced in India, served in a cup from China and sweetened with Caribbean sugar. The symbol on the English football shirt is the three lions – African animals!”

For the original report go to http://www.voice-online.co.uk/article/new-exhibition-highlights-experiences-black-liverpudlians

Posted by: lisaparavisini | October 11, 2014

Cuban doctors train, fight Ebola in Africa

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461 Cuban health workers heading to West Africa, Patrick Oppmann reports for CNN.

In the sweltering Caribbean heat, the Cuban doctor swathes himself in a plastic protective suit.

Seven different pieces of clothing, including two sets of gloves, go on.

When he pulls goggles over his head, they immediately cloud up from the sweat pooling across his brow.

“Its not that bad,” said the doctor, who has scrawled his name, Juan, and a smiley face in red magic marker across the front of his jacket. “You get used to it.”

He will have to.

For at least the next six months, 461 Cuban doctors and nurses are tasked with stopping the Ebola outbreak in West Africa in its tracks.

Despite the limitations and shortages that the island nation’s socialist health care system faces, Cuba was one of the first governments to send health care workers to combat Ebola.

“Our principle has been to share what we have and not to give what we don’t,” said Dr. Jorge Perez Avila, the director of the Pedro Kouri Institute for Tropical Medicine in Havana. “The little we have, we share. Our principle resource is human capital.”

Down the hall from Perez’s office is Cuba’s Ebola “boot camp,” an intense training program where for a minimum of two weeks, doctors and nurses are drilled on how to treat patients while not exposing themselves to the deadly virus.

CNN is the only international news outlet that has been allowed to observe the preparations of the Cuban health workers before they depart for Africa.

Already, 165 doctors and nurses from the island have been sent to Sierra Leone. More health workers will be dispatched to Liberia and Guinea.

“They have the courage and valor to volunteer and have signed consent forms,” Perez said. “We have instructed them how not to get sick, but they are at great risk. It is our hope that none of them get sick.”

“We have the conviction that perhaps a few will fall ill but the majority will not,” he said.

According to Cuban state media, more than 15,000 health workers on the island have volunteered for the risky mission. Officials said they decided to send only male doctors and nurses after seeing reports of attacks on local health care workers in hard-hit and increasingly desperate communities.

“More than one person has been attacked and even murdered,” Perez said.

The Cuban doctors and nurses will work under the supervision of the World Health Organization. If they contract Ebola, the Cubans have been told they will not be brought back to Cuba for treatment, said Dr. Jose Luis Di Fabio, who represents the WHO and Pan American Health Organization in Cuba.

Di Fabio told CNN that while medical equipment and money are pouring in from around the world, what the region needs most are qualified medical personnel.

“You have to identify patients, diagnose patients and treat patients. If you don’t have the human resources to do that, you don’t have anything,” Di Fabio said. “Human resources in Africa is the major thing that’s lacking.”

In a mock field hospital, the Cuban health workers run through mass triage of Ebola patients. They are working in a M.A.S.H. unit, open-air tents. and with the afternoon sun burning high in the sky, their makeshift ER feels like an oven.

An Italian doctor training the Cubans barks orders seemingly without pausing to take a breath or drink from the bottle of water sloshing in her gesticulating hand.

“Here’s how you take their blood, here’s how you give them water,” she commands. “If the patient is unresponsive you need to move onto the next one.”

Dr. Osmany Rodriguez listens intently. A veteran of Cuban medical missions to Venezuela and Zimbabwe, Rodriguez said nothing he has faced in those countries compares to the task of fighting Ebola.

“This is the biggest challenge I have confronted in my life,” he said.

In the coming days, Rodriguez will join colleagues in West Africa and, after more training there, go to the front line of the fight against Ebola.

“My family, they are a bit worried, but they know I will be taking care of everything. They will trust in my daily habits and routines in order to avoid the disease,” Rodriguez said.

“To break the transmission is important,” he said. “Not for the Cuban people, not for the African people. For the whole world.”

For the original report go to http://www.wbaltv.com/national/cuban-doctors-train-fight-ebola-in-africa/29068656#ixzz3FtO8Dwbc

Posted by: ivetteromero | October 11, 2014

Call for Proposals: Conservation of Caribbean Hawksbill Turtles

Hawksbill | Credit: Matt Kleffer

The U.S. National Fish and Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) has developed a 10-year strategy to improve the recovery of seven sea turtle populations in the Western Hemisphere. They are now extending grants for researchers—Sea Turtles Program Spring 2015—focusing on conservation of Caribbean Hawksbill turtles in selected coastal zones of the Bahamas, Dominican Republic and Haiti, Barbados, the Caribbean coast of Mexico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The deadline for pre-proposal applications is October 20, 2014 and the full proposal due date (by invitation only) is December 8, 2014.

The program is open to U.S. nonprofit 501(c) organizations; U.S. federal government agencies; state government agencies; local governments; municipal governments; Indian tribes; educational institutions; businesses; unincorporated individuals; and international organizations. Most grants will range from US$50 thousand to US$300 thousand. A minimum of a 1:1 match of cash and/or in-kind services is required.

Key conservation strategies for this program include:

Reduce incidental capture in fishing gear – support incentive-based approaches for the development and implementation of turtle-friendly fishing gear and practices;

Reduce direct exploitation of adult turtles – create incentives to reduce or eliminate poaching, hunting and directed fishing of sea turtles; and

Reduce or eliminate direct exploitation of sea turtle eggs – support increased nest protection through law enforcement, development of alternative livelihoods for poachers, reduction of feral dogs and other nest predators, and improve outreach and education to local communities.

For more information, all guidelines and application forms, see http://www.nfwf.org/seaturtles/Pages/spring2015rfp.aspx#.VDmVhfk7uFy

[Photo Hawksbill Sea Turtle, Credit: Matt Kleffer; from http://www.nfwf.org/seaturtles/Pages/home.aspx#.VDmYefk7uFw ]

Posted by: ivetteromero | October 11, 2014

Bird Boxes by Bermudian Environmentalist David Wingate Go Global

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Simon Jones reports that a conservation invention— seabird nest boxes—championed by Bermudian environmentalist David Wingate has gone global. In Bermuda, these boxes have helped rebuild the Bermuda petrel (or Cahow, see photo  above) population in Bermuda; now they are going to be used in Hawaii. Bermuda-born Andre Raine will use the nests to help with a translocation project involving Newell’s Shearwater birds (see photo below).

The seabird nest boxes that Dr. Wingate designed have already proved to be a huge success helping to rebuild Cahow numbers in Bermuda.

Now another island has moved to take advantage of the plastic nest boxes, which are dug into the ground. Hawaii’s seabird conservation office, Andre Raine, has ordered 50 of the nests to help with a translocation project involving Newell’s Shearwater birds.

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“They have worked well in Bermuda,” Dr Wingate said. “We took our first batch of 50 earlier in the Spring and have been using them with the translocation programme at Non Such Island. “We also have plans to continue to distribute them this fall in Non Such and perhaps Southampton Island.”

Dr Wingate first began to look at manufacturing seabird nest boxes back in 1995 in a bid to cut costs and time. Since then he has forged a partnership with a factory in California that industrially produces the polyethylene boxes.

“Andre Raine was born in Bermuda and we have been in contact for some time,” the former conservation officer said. “He co-ordinates the seabird conservation programme in Hawaii and thought the boxes would be an ideal for a translocation project he is working on at the moment. “So he contacted me and ordered 50 of the boxes.” The 50 seabird nest boxes arrived in Hawaii last week.

For full article, see http://www.royalgazette.com/article/20141011/NEWS/141019955

Photo (and more information on David Wingate) from http://www.yachtmollymawk.com/2010/12/bermuda-david-wingate/

Posted by: ivetteromero | October 11, 2014

“Post-it” Rewards Emerging Cuban Art

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Cecilia Crespo (On Cuba) writes about “Post-it”—an exhibition and sale of young Cuban art—which took place this Friday at the Miramar Café in Havana, Cuba. It featured an awards ceremony organized by the National Center of Collage Art Havana or Centro Nacional de Artes Plásticas Collage Habana (part of the Cuban Cultural Fund). This event aimed to display and promote the artistic production of the country’s young artists.

Post-it aims since its first edition at functioning as a multiple and heterogeneous platform, an action space for emerging artists. The winners on this occasion were Jorge Dager, Grand Prize for his work Alter ego; Arianna Contino, First Prize for Scarabeo-9; Second Prize for Adislén Reyes for Blue Blood and Adrian Fernandez for Requiem.

It also gave an award for the purchase of materials to the Triangle group for their work Entropy and for conducting a personal showing to Johsue Pagliery for his video art Super Vaseline.

The award consists of the acquisition of the work in an amount that doesn’t exceed three thousand CUC, the ability to purchase materials for creation worth 1500 CUC and performing a solo show in one of the galleries of the National Center of Art with the promotional support that this requires.

The jury, chaired by Moises Finalé and including Maria Milian, Alex Hernandez, Niels Reyes and Yudelkis Martínez, had to select the prizes among the creations of fifty-five artists of various trends and styles. [. . .]

For full article, see http://oncubamagazine.com/culture/post-it-rewards-the-young-cuban-art/

See related article (in Spanish) at http://www.cubadebate.cu/noticias/2014/10/09/finaliza-el-segundo-post-it-del-arte-joven-cubano/#.VDmHm_k7uFw

Posted by: ivetteromero | October 11, 2014

Family lays former Haiti dictator ‘Baby Doc’ to rest

Jean-Claude-Duvalier

Haiti’s former dictator Jean-Claude “Baby Doc” Duvalier was finally laid to rest on today, a week after his death revived bitter divisions over his legacy, reports the Jamaica Observer.

Several hundred people, including powerful players from the 63-year-old’s former regime, gathered at the chapel of his former high school in Port-au-Prince to pay their respects at a family ceremony.

The family still commands respect among some in Haiti’s business and political elite, but Duvalier is remembered by rights activists and opposition figures as a corrupt and brutal autocrat.

“Duvalier is a criminal he won’t go to heaven! Burn him, behead him,” cried a group of youthful protesters as a convoy of expensive luxury SUVs arrived at the church.

Inside the ceremony, politicians, former military officers and churchmen paid tribute to a man who stood accused of having thousands of his opponents killed and presiding over an empire of graft.

Several times the crowd rose in applause as former barons of his regime defended his 15-year reign. The late leader’s 31-year-old son, Nicolas Duvalier, stood with his head bowed.

Duvalier was driven from office in 1986 by a popular uprising and spent a quarter-of-a-century in exile before returning in 2011 — a year after an earthquake so devastating it overshadowed even the crimes of his era.

For full article, see http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Family-lays-former-Haiti-dictator–Baby-Doc–to-rest

Posted by: ivetteromero | October 11, 2014

NY Governor Cuomo to Visit Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic

CuomobioNew York State governor Andrew Cuomo will visit the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico in the next few days. According to Dominican Today, Cuomo is slated to meet with President Danilo Medina in the National Palace, to discuss issues of common interest. See excerpts from today’s Wall Street Journal article below:

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo may travel to the Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico, as soon as next weekend, building on a recent flurry of overseas travel, as he runs for re-election next month. “We are considering it,” Mr. Cuomo said on Saturday, while speaking to reporters aboard a bus to a campaign event on Long Island.

The governor said he would make the excursion to “go down and pay respects.”

“The community here very much resonates with their homeland and I have a history with Puerto Rico—I did a lot of work when I was in the federal government—and Dominican Republic, too,” he said. “So if I can get it done, I would like to get it done.” Mr. Cuomo served as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development under President Bill Clinton.

The trip would come as Mr. Cuomo, after nearly four years of rarely leaving New York, has made international travel a common feature late in his first term in office. [. . .]

For full articles, see http://online.wsj.com/articles/new-york-gov-cuomo-mulls-trips-to-dominican-republic-puerto-rico-1413053262 and http://www.dominicantoday.com/dr/economy/2014/10/10/52996/NY-Gov-Cuomo-to-visit-Dominican-Republic

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