first_imgSoon to be upgraded Paradisus Los Cabos set to open in December Tags: Melia Hotels, Paradisus Resorts << Previous PostNext Post >> Posted by LOS CABOS – Meliá Hotels International has announced it will be transforming the Meliá Cabo Real into Paradisus Los Cabos as part of a US$35 million renovation to convert and upgrade the existing property.Set to open Dec. 23, 2016, the resort will be the ninth Paradisus resort in its portfolio and the fourth in Mexico, and will feature 28 oceanview swim-up suites and more than 90 Royal Service guestrooms. Royal Service is the brand’s signature adult-only offering that comes with personalized butler service.Upon completion, the resort will also boast 30 Family Concierge Suites, four swimming pools, six restaurants and three bars. Family Concierge Suites will feature its own lounge with private check-in/out, Internet access, VIP lounge with snacks and beverages as well as daytime assistance from the resort’s certified Family Concierge staff.Another key selling point of the resort is event space; it will offer one of the largest convention centres in Cabo, set to open in spring 2017. There’ll also be a variety of open areas on property to provide multiple settings for events, including gardens, pools and an oversized beach area that can accommodate up to 3,000 people. For weddings, there’ll be a beachside Wedding Gazebo.More news:  Direct Travel names Smith as Senior VP, Leisure Marketing, North AmericaOther resort amenities include a signature wine cellar, 24-hour room service, a signature YHI Spa and fitness centre.“We are delighted to add Cabo to our roster of Paradisus Resorts,” said Tony, Cortizas, VP of Global Brand Strategy at Meliá Hotels International. “We are growing in Mexico and around the world and this is an exciting moment for the Paradisus Resorts brand and Meliá Hotels International overall.”For more information go to paradisus.com.center_img Monday, November 7, 2016 Share Travelweek Group last_img read more

first_imgHole-in-one caps off another successful YellowBird Charity Golf Classic << Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: WestJet, WestJet Vacations, Yellowbird Foundation Posted by Sharecenter_img Tuesday, May 23, 2017 TORONTO — Another year, another successful YellowBird Charity Golf Classic, which took place last Friday at the Glen Abbey Golf Club in Oakville Ontario. But this year’s tournament ended with a bit of extra excitement, courtesy of Ian Patterson who hit a hole-in-one that won him $10,000 in ClubLink vouchers.“I am absolutely ecstatic that my first ever hole-in-one is in support of the YellowBird Foundation, and according to my calculations I have had over 10,000 attempts in my lifetime!” said Patterson, Director of Business Development Canada, MSC Cruises SA. “I have always supported the tournament and hope my hole-in-one will help re-energize the tournament. But it’s not about me, it’s about the great work that the Foundation does to support education in the Caribbean.”The day also included a BBQ lunch, an exciting silent and live auctions, plus plenty of networking with travel industry friends.Hosted by founding sponsor Travelweek in partnership with title sponsors WestJet and WestJet Vacations, the tournament takes place in support of the YellowBird Foundation, which aims to improve local education initiatives at schools in the Caribbean. Local initiatives include providing financial support, consultative training, solar panel equipment and more.  The YellowBird Charitable Foundation has donated over $350,000 across the Caribbean and Latin America since its inception in 2005.More news:  Marriott Int’l announces 5 new all-inclusive resorts in D.R. & Mexico“We are thrilled to host this tournament for another successful year and Ian’s hole-in-one just adds another layer of excitement,” said Gerry Kinasz, Publisher of Travelweek. “We are humbled by the ongoing industry support – especially from our main partner WestJet – for the YellowBird foundation, which aims to give back to the communities we often frequent on vacation.”For more photos from the event, go to: Travelweek Group last_img read more

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Share Tags: Switzerland, Trend Watch TORONTO — Canadian arrivals and overnights to Switzerland were up in 2017, making for another record year, according to the latest tourism data from the Swiss Federal Office of Statistics.The new numbers show an 11.2% increase in Canadian arrivals to Switzerland in 2017, for a total of 115,180.The number of overnight stays was 247,764, an increase of 9.1% compared to 2016. Overnights in Swiss hotels and youth hostels, vacation homes, other kinds of accommodation and visits with friends and family are not included.The most popular destinations were the Zurich region with 68,837 overnights, followed by Geneva region with 48,457 and the Valais region with 23,219.With 5,782 more overnights in 2017, the Zurich region recorded the biggest growth in Canadian visits.“We are committed to the Canadian market and pleased to see a new record with the best overnight results in 25 years,” says Pascal Prinz, Director Canada, Switzerland Tourism.More news:  Visit Orlando unveils new travel trade tools & agent perks“Over the last 18 months, we have introduced a new travel agent training program, published our first winter sales manual, increased our presence at travel trade conferences, and hired an additional sales and marketing person for our office in New York, with a focus on the Swiss Travel System, the transportation network of Switzerland.“This increased investment in serving and collaborating with the travel trade in North America is paying off.” Travelweek Group center_img Posted by Increased investment in travel trade is paying off for Switzerland Tourism Monday, February 26, 2018 last_img read more

first_imgTags: CIRB, CUPE, WestJet, WestJet Swoop CALGARY – The Canadian Union of Public Employees says it has filed an application at the Canada Industrial Relations Board to represent flight attendants at WestJet.The union says a majority of WestJet flight attendants have signed cards supporting unionization with CUPE, including WestJet’s mainline carrier and low-cost carrier Swoop.The move by CUPE to unionize the flight attendants follows the unionization of the airline’s pilots who are represented by the Air Line Pilots Association.A threat of a strike by the pilots was averted earlier this year when the airline and union agreed to a settlement process and, if necessary, to use final and binding arbitration.CUPE says it represents 12,000 flight attendants at 10 different airlines including Air Canada, Air Transat and Sunwing. CUPE files application with CIRB to represent WestJet flight attendants By: The Canadian Press Tuesday, July 10, 2018 Share << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: Hawaii, Hawaii Tourism Authority Tuesday, July 31, 2018 Share Posted bycenter_img Travelweek Group HONOLULU — A report by the Hawaii Tourism Authority indicates the state’s hotel industry had the highest revenue per available room and the highest average daily rate among its competitors in top U.S. markets for the first half of this year.The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reports the revenue per available room increased 8 per cent to US$229 per night for the first half of this year and the average daily rate grew by 6 per cent to $280, compared with the same period last year.Jennifer Chun, the authority’s research director, says the revenue per available room increased in every class of hotel and in each island county.According to the report released last week, Hawaii ranked second in the country for occupancy at nearly 82 per cent, behind New York but equal to Orlando, Florida.The news follows weeks of volcanic activity from Big Island’s Kilauea Volcano, which first erupted on May 3. Although parts of the island are still seeing brushfires and lava flow, the Island of Hawaii Visitors Bureau has stated that the eruption only affects a small portion of east Hawaii Island’s Puna district (an area of 10 square miles of the 4,028-square-mile island), and that it’s “business as usual”.More news:  Can you guess the top Instagrammed wedding locations in the world?All five National Park Service parks, sites and trails are open, as is the Old Mamalahoa Highway, which is popular for scenic coastal drives. Top attractions like the Mokupapapa Discovery Center and the Imiloa Astronomy Center in Hilo continue to welcome guests, while the Kona Coffee Living History Farm is still offering tours of its coffee estate.Other major attractions that are open for business include the Natural Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority (NELHA) on the Kona Coast, the Puako Petroglyph Archaeological Preserve, the Lyman Museum and Mission House, the ranching town of Waimea, Punaluu Beach (known for its stunning black sands and green sea turtles), the Hawaii Island Coast to Coast Birding Trail, and the 80-foot Waianuenue Falls.Travellers planning a trip to the island of Hawaii can receive updates by contacting the Hawaii Tourism United States Call center at 1-800-GO-HAWAII.For more information go to www.GoHawaii.com/Island-of-Hawaii. Hawaii’s hotels see early-year gains, Big Island is “open for business”last_img read more

first_imgNo related posts. The National Emergency Commission (CNE) on Wednesday declared a preventive “green alert” due to recent seismic activity at three volcanoes: Rincón de la Vieja, in the northwestern province of Guanacaste, Poás, northwest of San José in the province of Alajuela, and Turrialba, in the eastern province of Cartago.“The CNE’s alert is supported by reports from technical and scientific agencies that note the volcanoes are in constant activity,” the commission stated.Turrialba Volcano, 70 kilometers east of the capital, has seen significant volcanic and seismic activity in recent months, prompting the National Seismological Network to upgraded its own color threat level to yellow.Emissions of gas at Poás Volcano are expected to increase, and Rincón de la Vieja Volcano has also seen significant volcanic activity, the CNE noted.Despite the warning, access to the volcanoes will remain open to the public, but visitors must follow guidelines issued at each national park’s entrance. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

first_imgNo related posts. Special discounts on hotels, one-day tours and free extra activities are some of the incentives offered by Costa Rican tourism companies for the upcoming long holiday weekend.Friday’s holiday (Columbus Day) was moved to Monday, according to a Labor Ministry decision. On its website, the National Tourism Chamber (CANATUR) is offering a series of deals, including low rates on accommodation in beach and mountain hotels, special prices on outdoor activities such as canopy tours, rafting and safaris, among others. Promotions are available on the website: www.canatur.org.CANATUR Assistant Director Tatiana Cascante said the strategy focuses on attracting local tourists.But tourism entrepreneurs have complained in recent days that tourism figures released by the government are misleading. Last week, Tourism Minister Allan Flores said the annual number of tourists visiting Costa Rica is 2 million, but some business owners say the figure is much lower.Boris Marchegiani, president of the Quepos Chamber of Tourism, told local Channel 7’s Telenoticias that the government data is taking into account people who enter the country for work. “Some of them do that several times a year, and are counted each time they enter,” he said.Flores responded that official figures are reliable and only tourist visitors are being taken into account. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

first_imgNo related posts. TEGUCIGALPA – Officials from Honduras and Jamaica will meet Thursday in the Caribbean city of Tela to define maritime borders, Honduran Foreign Minister Arturo Corrales said on Monday.“There are proposals for a maritime delimitation. We expect the process to be expedited (…) so we can finish defining Honduras’ border in the Caribbean Sea,” he added.Corrales also said that “the issue is on track” and the missions will discuss in Tela, 300 km north of Tegucigalpa, specific proposals to move towards an agreement.Last August, Honduras concluded maritime delimitation with Cuba and has already defined limits with Nicaragua, Mexico and Grand Cayman, but is still pending negotiations with Jamaica, Guatemala and Belize.Honduras stopped having a maritime border with Colombia after a ruling from the International Court of Justice in The Hague granted some 90,000 square kilometers to Nicaragua in the Caribbean that the South American country considered theirs. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

first_imgRelated posts:One of Sea Shepherd’s missions in Costa Rica: Protecting whales Canadian entrepreneur gives water bottles new life as roof tiles PHOTO GALLERY: A changing tide for Costa Rica’s artisanal fishing communities Costa Rica President Luis Guillermo Solís nominated for ‘Shark Enemy of the Year’ award If the smell of the ambergris itself is pleasant, that’s just a bonus. For now, it sounds like the ambergris up for sale is pretty stinky. But that musk could end up adding important notes to an expensive perfume one day.It’s being sold by Adam Partridge Auctioneers & Valuers, who’ve set the starting bid at $10,000. On the auction house’s Facebook page, representatives are valiantly attempting to educate the super grossed out public. But while you might wrinkle your nose, there’s no doubt that perfumers will rush to throw down cash for the waxy prize. A six pound hunk of ambergris — around three times the size of this one — once sold for over $150,000.If a high-end perfume house’s scent expert takes a whiff of the whale puke in question and finds it particularly thrilling, there’s no telling how high the bidding could go.© 2015, The Washington Post Facebook Comments Now’s your chance to own a nice big chunk of grade A whale vomit for just $10,000. No? Not interested?Don’t be so hasty.Earth Touch News explains that the whale puke, spotted by a lucky gent walking his dog on an island off the coast of Wales, is a prized commodity. A photo from Jan. 28, 2013, in Morecambe, northwest England, shows Ken Wilman posing for pictures with his dog Madge and a yellowish stone which he hopes is a rare form of whale vomit, or ambergris. Nigel Slater/AFPThe substance, which may actually be pooped out more often than it’s vomited, is created in the bile ducts of sperm whales. It may be produced to help whales pass large or irritating objects that they swallow accidentally. In any case, it’s usually expelled with bowel movements, but scientists think that the larger chunks probably come out in vomit.Once expelled, the substance can float around in the ocean for years. It’s stinky when fresh — as one would expect whale poo and/or vomit to be — but as it ages, it can develop a more pleasant, musky odor.But perfumers aren’t inherently interested in it for smell. This so-called ambergris, named for the Latin phrase for “gray amber” (which admittedly sounds better than “cetacean chunks”), is really good at making scents stick to human skin.Here’s more from the BBC:last_img read more

first_imgAs general manger, Wanchope will be assigned the task of finding a full-time coach, as well as building Saprissa’s brand on an international level, according to a press release from the club. Current interim head coach Carlos Watson is expected to be replaced and maintain full-time duties over Saprissa’s minor divisions.“The priority will be to find a coach soon so that he can begin in January,” Wanchope said. “After that, it’s all about building success. Saprissa needs victories.”Despite Wanchope’s rocky career as the manager of the national team, in which he never won a game after his interim tag was lifted in January, optimistic minds will always remember him as one of the greatest Costa Rican football players of all time. As a player, Wanchope led “La Sele” to two World Cup appearances and notched 45 goals in 73 matches.“Wanchope is still one of the biggest symbols of Costa Rican football,” Rojas said.Saprissa is one of the most decorated clubs in the country’s history, with 31 national championships and three CONCACAF Champions’ Cup titles. But the club has gone through some uncharacteristic struggles this season, currently ranking 6th out of 12 teams in the winter season standings of Costa Rica’s top division. Facebook Comments Momento en el que Paulo Wanchope es presentado en nuestro club pic.twitter.com/w53RseibAX— Deportivo Saprissa (@SaprissaOficial) November 11, 2015 Three months after resigning from his post as the head coach of Costa Rica’s national men’s football team, Paulo Wanchope will now take the reigns of the country’s most lucrative club team. Saprissa President Juan Carlos Rojas introduced Wanchope at a press conference Wednesday in San José as the new general manager of“El Monstruo Morado.”Wanchope’s resignation from the national team on Aug. 12 came the day after he got into a fight with a private security guard at a football game in Panama. The incident was caught on video.The 39-year-old Wanchope said he’s excited to get a new start with Saprissa and turn around the club’s mediocre season.“First I want to win over the affection of Saprissa fans,” Wanchope said. “A lot has been said, but I know I have the ability to lead.”center_img Related posts:Costa Rican footballer Álvaro Saborío suddenly retires due to ‘unfair insults’ Costa Rica men’s football team set to take on former world champs Spain FIFA Women’s World Cup: Costa Rica ties 2-2 with South Korea, makes it to second place in its group FIFA Women’s World Cup: Costa Rica hopes to fight its way to the knockout stagelast_img read more

first_imgRelated posts:Pedestrian fatalities in Costa Rica currently outnumber drunk driving deaths Traffic fatalities up in Costa Rica It’s time to reduce motorcyclist fatalities in Costa Rica, says Roadway Safety Council Traffic Police launches surveillance operation for mid-year school vacations The death of a motorcyclist last weekend brought the traffic death toll this year to 356, a figure that surpassed the 355 recorded in all 2014. The number also is the highest in the past 10 years,Traffic Police reported.The average rate for road deaths in December is 30 people, therefore officials fear the new record will grow significantly.Traffic Police Director Mario Calderón Cornejo said that over the past 10 years, the number of deaths from traffic accidents only declined once, in 2012, the year the country approved a new Traffic Law that raised fines to up to $900 for certain traffic violations.Fines, however, were reduced following a ruling from the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court. Justices at the time ruled in favor of complaints claiming the new fines were disproportionately high.Officials from the Roadway Safety Council (COSEVI) believe the fines should be raised again. They also want better patrolling on roads as currently the main cause of traffic deaths is irresponsible driving.COSEVI Executive Director German Valverde González said most road deaths this year are related to driver recklessness. As of Nov. 30, speeding was the main cause of accidents, resulting in the deaths of 98 drivers, followed by unsafe lane changes, which caused 64 deaths.Driving while intoxicated was the third major cause of roadway deaths, killing 23 people.Deaths from motorcycle accidents make up 40 percent of the total number, according to the report.Valverde said it is imperative to change the Traffic Law and set tougher sanctions. He also urged the government to make all necessary changes to increase the number of Traffic Police officers.Traffic Police officials agree, but say they are unable to hire more officers because of a lack of funding.Pedestrian deathsTraffic Police also are concerned about the high number of pedestrians killed so far this year: the death toll through November was 63.Of those, 49 were killed because of their own recklessness, while the remaining 14 deaths were attributed to a motorist, according to Traffic Police data.Police director Calderón said that eight out of ten pedestrian fatalities are related to bad decisions and reckless behavior such as avoiding the use of pedestrian bridges or pedestrian traffic lights. Police also recorded deaths of people who were hit while walking drunk down a street, crossing on a green traffic light or in front of moving vehicles. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

first_img Facebook Comments Por seguridad desalojamos edificios en @PoderJudicialCR #temblorcr pic.twitter.com/wK26AMHTGA— Celso Gamboa Sánchez (@CelsoGamboaCR) August 17, 2016 A strong tremor at 10:07 a.m. on Wednesday shook communities across most of Costa Rica’s Central Valley, the National University’s Volcanological and Seismological Observatory of Costa Rica (OVSICORI) reported.The quake had a magnitude of 4.7 and its epicenter was located 3 kilometers north of Tarrazú in the Los Santos region, south of the capital San José.A few minutes later, at 11:22 a.m., a magnitude-4.6 tremor shook the country again, this time near the Panama border area.Thus far, emergency agencies have no reports of injuries or property damage.As a precaution, occupants of various buildings in downtown San José, including the San José tribunals and the Supreme Court were evacuated after the first tremor.Workers returned to their normal day at around 10:45 a.m.center_img Related posts:Earthquake jolts five provinces in Costa Rica Earthquake in Cartago damaged dozens of houses 23 temblors shake Cartago starting Monday night Strong earthquakes felt on Costa Rica’s northwestern coastlast_img read more

first_imgRead the stories mentioned above.Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court gives tax reform bill the go-aheadDaniel Ortega’s regime has twice as many political prisoners as Nicolás Maduro’sCampbell stars as Costa Rica beats Peru, 3-2How to – Driver’s licenses in Costa RicaDrink wine in Chile, but do it at the Bocanáriz wine barOff the Eaten Path – Wong’sThanks for reading The Tico Times. We strive to keep you up to date about everything that’s been happening in Costa Rica. We work hard to keep our reporting independent and groundbreaking, but we need your help. The Tico Times is partly funded by you and every little bit helps. If all our readers chipped in a buck a month we’d be set for years. Support the Tico Times Facebook Comments Related posts:The Tico Times Weekly Digest: Dec. 17, 2018 The Tico Times Weekly Digest: Jan. 7, 2019 The Tico Times Weekly Digest: Jan. 14, 2019 The Tico Times Weekly Digest: April 1, 2019last_img read more

first_img Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Then she brings her dogs in on Wednesdays, and small miracles happen as the sick youngsters caress and cuddle the dogs. “The children smile, talk. They’re infused with life.”Pardo recalled a patient named Dana, a 7-year-old girl who took a special liking to Lancelot, a 15-month-old American cocker spaniel, before she died early this month.“When she died, her parents told me: `You have no idea how my daughter had fun on Wednesdays,’” Pardo said.When Pardo first started bringing dogs in 2005, they stayed in the hospital garden and played with children before chemotherapy treatments.Over the next five years, statistics at the hospital showed that on Wednesdays, fewer children had to be kept over because of problems after chemotherapy. Doctors found that youngsters’ adrenaline levels rose from being with the dogs, boosting their resistance to chemo’s side effects.So the hospital began allowing Pardo’s dogs to visit children in their beds. She and her husband have 18 dogs in all that they work with.Edison, an 8-year-old farm child whose cancer is declining, is delighted to see Juci, a 5-year-old Parson Russell terrier, holding her tight. “He knows a lot about animals, because they live in the country,” Pardo said.___Associated Press writer Franklin Briceno in from Lima, Peru, contributed to this report.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Top Stories 5 ways to recognize low testosterone The difference between men and women when it comes to pain Sponsored Stories QUITO, Ecuador (AP) – Every Wednesday, Lancelot and Juci scamper into a special mission: nudging and pawing youngsters into smiles at the only hospital in Ecuador’s capital that treats children with cancer.Veronica Pardo, the hospital volunteer who owns the dogs, says the animals are used to cheer up the most discouraged of the patients, especially those with the grimmest prognosis.“Sometimes they do not want to eat, their moms haven’t visited them, they don’t want to take their medicine, or they don’t want to talk with the doctor,” Pardo said. Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Comments   Share   last_img

first_img Sponsored Stories Roeper says the room was used as an office to facilitate the conference’s organization. No motive has been established as police continue to investigate.A spokesman for Merkel’s party declined to comment on the incident.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology Top Stories Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementcenter_img Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day BERLIN (AP) – German police say someone broke into a hotel room that was used as an office of the chancellor’s conservative party while Angela Merkel was holding talks in the same building.Police spokeswoman Antje Roeper said Sunday nothing appears to have been stolen and no explosives were found.She says Merkel and other party leaders were holding an internal two-day conference near the town of Neuruppin north of Berlin when the incident was discovered Sept. 17. Merkel, the Christian Democrats’ chairwoman, was in a meeting on a different floor of the boutique hotel. 4 must play golf courses in Arizona Comments   Share   Parents, stop beating yourself uplast_img read more

first_img Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement ATHENS, Greece (AP) – Greek authorities have brought indecency charges against a U.S. national who allegedly pranced naked at a prominent Athens war memorial following an anti-austerity protest outside Parliament.The 56-year-old man, who was not identified, was arrested late Tuesday in the aftermath of a 50,000-strong rally during a visit by German Chancellor Angela Merkel.A video posted online showed a stark naked man in his fifties talking to presidential guards at the Unknown Soldier’s Tomb in front of Parliament, which had been fenced off for the protest. Police officers first remonstrated with him and, when he carried out a little jig, cheered on by a few remaining protesters, led him away. Sponsored Stories The vital role family plays in society Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Men’s health affects baby’s health toocenter_img Top Stories Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Comments   Share   Earlier, another man performed a naked streak among stunned riot police during clashes with demonstrators. He escaped arrest.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Centerlast_img read more

first_imgMyanmar is the world’s second-largest producer of opium after Afghanistan, accounting for about 25 percent of global poppy production, according to the U.N.The rise in output of opium _ the raw ingredient used to make heroin _ was documented in the latest annual survey by the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime.The report said farmland under opium cultivation rose by 17 percent this year, up from about nearly 40,000 hectares (100,000 acres) in 2011 to 51,000 hectares (126,000 acres) in 2012.Myanmar’s illegal crop is farmed mostly in Kachin and Shan states. The two areas, located along the country’s borders with China, Thailand and Laos, have been plagued by fighting between insurgent groups and the army.Poppy is highly lucrative for impoverished farmers in need of cash, and the fact it can fetch as much as 19 times that of rice poses a huge challenge to government efforts to eradicate it.The estimated 690 metric tons produced in Myanmar in 2012 was valued at roughly $359 million, the report said. That output was up from an estimated 610 metric tons last year.“One probable factor behind the resurgence in opium production in Southeast Asia is the demand for opiates, both locally and in the region in general,” the report said. Sponsored Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix The vast majority of consumers are in China, with opiate users in East Asia and the Pacific Ocean region accounting for about one quarter of the world’s total.The swath of Southeast Asia where the borders of Myanmar, Thailand and Laos meet is known as the Golden Triangle. It produced more than half of the world’s opium in 1990 and one third in 1998.A year later, Myanmar set out to become opium-free by 2014. That campaign had made considerable strides, but production has risen every year since 2006 as demand and prices grew.The latest U.N. survey indicated the government has stepped up efforts to curtail output.Citing government figures, the report said the government had eradicated poppies on about 24,000 hectares of land in 2012, compared to 7,000 hectares the previous year.The 236 percent increase “is a significant increase on the area reported as eradicated in previous years.”(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Comments   Share   Top Stories Associated PressBANGKOK (AP) – The cultivation of illegal opium has increased in Myanmar for a sixth successive year, fueled in part by rising demand for heroin across Asia, the United Nations said Wednesday.The upsurge comes despite a government campaign to eradicate the crop from the Southeast Asian nation, which has won praise worldwide for taking major steps toward democratic reform after the long-ruling military junta ceded power last year. Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona Men’s health affects baby’s health too The vital role family plays in societylast_img read more

first_imgAssociated PressBRUSSELS (AP) – This time, Belgium’s royal family came out swinging.Crown Prince Philippe, 52, had been depicted in a book as less of a man than is needed to become the next king of Belgium. Again.So, in an exceptional move, the royal palace struck back this week with an official complaint to a media ethics body against a journalist who published “Royal Questions,” a new book that includes damaging allegations about the crown prince’s character and marriage. The royal household almost never deigns to answer allegations but the crown prince himself also made an equally rare public denial to the book’s allegations last week.“The day that Mathilde said `Yes’ to my proposal was the happiest day of my life,” he said.`’It is extremely rare to have a reaction like that,” historian Marc Reynebeau said Friday in a telephone interview. `’It is as if they wanted to show: `You can claim whatever, but don’t exaggerate.’”The image and credibility of the royal family matters in this European Union nation, which is riven by divisions between its 6.5 million Dutch-speakers and its 4.5 million French-speakers. Three things still unite Belgium: Admiration for the king, a taste for fries and beer and a love of the national soccer team.Journalists on Friday also questioned the significance of author Frederic Deborsu’s probing into the life of Philippe, who is expected to take over from King Albert.Allegations about ” his `forced marriage,’ the birth of his children in a hospital specializing in artificial procreation,” the journalist group AJP said, “are they really in the public interest?” Top Stories 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Top ways to honor our heroes on Veterans Day Sponsored Stories For most of his life, the crown prince has been seen as a less-than-credible successor for his father, who is now 78.Philippe was considered aloof and awkward, with the charisma of a civil servant. Until his engagement a dozen years ago, he was seemingly headed for terminal bachelorship.`’The general perception is that he is not up to the job to become king,” Reynebeau said. `’Nobody knows, of course, because it is all speculation.”King Albert, who succeeded his brother in 1993, saw his own image darkened a dozen years ago when he had to acknowledge that he had fathered a daughter out of wedlock.The scandal caused by Deborsu’s book comes on the heels of a major municipal election victory by the separatist N-VA party in northern Flanders last month. The party aims to break up the bilingual nation along linguistic lines and is already looking forward to nationwide elections in 2014.If the country breaks up, Belgium’s royal house would become obsolete.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Comments   Share   Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementlast_img

first_imgTEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran has launched its first official matchmaking website, hoping to encouraging millions of singles to marry.In a ceremony marking the launch of the site on Monday, Deputy Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Mahmoud Golzari said the estimated 11 million young unwed Iranians “justified the launching of the site.”The website, Hamsan.Tebyan.net, provides a platform for singles to post their profiles and specify what they are looking for in a potential spouse. 4 sleep positions for men and what they mean Comments   Share   Top Stories A board of mediators matches applicants after reviewing their age, education, wealth and family background.The traditional role of Iranian families and local matchmakers in arranging marriages has declined in recent years. Under the Islamic Republic’s constitution, the government is obliged to encourage marriage.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology Check your body, save your life Sponsored Stories Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving soberlast_img read more

first_img How men can have a healthy 2019 Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Top Stories New Year’s resolution: don’t spend another year in a kitchen you don’t like 0 Comments   Share   In a statement, his mother Sally Evans said she is waiting for official confirmation regarding the death.Giving evidence to the U.K.’s Home Affairs Select Committee earlier this year, Sally said her son turned to Islam in 2009.Obonyo said one of the attackers is Kenyan Luqman Osman Issa who has been the main al-Shabab commander in the area. Issa was believed responsible for the killing of two soldiers in an ambush on May 24, 2014 in the Baragoni area in Lamu County and the attacks on Mpeketoni and Poromoko areas on June 15 -17, 2014 in which at least 60 people were killed.In a firefight, the Kenyan army on Sunday killed 11 militants who attacked the camp — including two apparent foreigners — from the Somali extremist group and suffered two fatal casualties.___This version corrects the name of Kenyan attacker to Luqman from Luqeman.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technologycenter_img Here’s how to repair and patch damaged drywall Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Kenya’s military Monday said they killed a Kenyan al-Shabab commander responsible for two attacks a year ago that killed at least 60 people, killing the extremist as he led an attack on a military camp in the same area.Authorities are also trying to establish whether one of the bodies of two white men, also among the suspected extremists killed in the Sunday attack on an army camp in Lamu County over the weekend, is that of Briton Thomas Evans. Photos of Evans, also known as Abdul Akim, seem to match with the body but only DNA and biometric tests can determine the identity of the body conclusively, military spokesman Col. David Obonyo said. Evans, 25, contacted his family to say he had travelled to Somalia to join al-Shabab in 2012 after leaving their home in Buckinghamshire in Britain. Sponsored Stories New Valley school lets students pick career-path academieslast_img read more