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Italy dishes out hefty fines for hogging beach spots

first_imgTags: Italy Share Italy dishes out hefty fines for hogging beach spots Posted by Travelweek Group center_img << Previous PostNext Post >> FLORENCE – It’s every man for himself on Italy’s beaches, where a new law is preventing overeager sunbathers from claiming coveted beach spots overnight.According to CNN, the habit of staking an overnight spot on the beach with sun loungers and umbrellas has been commonplace throughout Italy’s most crowded summer shorelines for decades. But coast guards are now kicking the habit to the curb by threatening perpetrators with hefty fines of 200 euros.To some, this may sound a bit steep, but La Repubblica reports that things are getting out of control. It has reported the seizure of 30 umbrellas, 37 loungers, towels and even swimwear on a 100-metre strip of sand in Livorno. In Roseta Cap Spulico, 200 umbrellas and beach chairs have been seized after complaints from tourists.In Tuscany’s Cecina, it is now illegal to leave unattended equipment on a beach before it opens at 8:30 a.m.It’s believed that the main culprits of all this beach hogging include umbrella operators and sun-seekers hoping to reserve space for friends and relatives. Hopefully, with the new fines in place, calling shotgun on prime beach real estate will be a thing of the past in Italy. Monday, August 15, 2016 last_img read more

Anthem of the Seas largest cruise ship to dock in Halifax

first_img HALIFAX — A palatial cruise ship described by passengers as a mini, moving city cast an impressive figure on the Halifax waterfront Thursday, breaking port records as thousands of tourists flooded into the city.The Anthem of the Seas arrived in downtown Halifax under grey skies, towering over historic Pier 21 on the south side of the waterfront boardwalk.The Port of Halifax says the ship was carrying about 4,180 passengers plus the crew and weighs a whopping 168,666 tons, making it the largest cruise ship ever to visit Halifax both in terms of its size and passenger capacity.The Quantum Class boat has everything from bumper cars and roller skating to a circus school and four swimming pools, along with more than 2,000 staterooms.Linda Jacobs, a retiree from New York state who was vacationing aboard the mammoth ship with her husband Ed Jacobs, said it took them a few days to get their bearings.More news:  Can you guess the top Instagrammed wedding locations in the world?“It’s big. It’s big and confusing. But after a while you get used to it,” said Linda Jacobs on the boardwalk, adding that there are people from all over the world on the Anthem including China and Australia.“It’s like a mini city,” said Ed Jacobs with a laugh. “There’s people from all different places, and we’ve talked to just about everybody.”A round, mechanical capsule on the ship’s upper deck that lifts passengers 90 metres above the sea could be seen ascending into the fog on Thursday morning.Onlookers were gathering in nearby parking lots and along the water’s edge to snap pictures of the massive vessel, which was built last year.Inside the nearby Halifax Seaport Farmers’ Market, vendor Laura Mae of Osha Mae was anticipating an influx of customers just before the cruise ship passengers were scheduled to reboard the Anthem around 4:30 p.m.Mae, an herbalist who sells handmade soaps and other aroma therapy products, said cruise ships do give her business a financial boost, but they also allow her products to travel to places around the world, including Ireland and Portugal.More news:  Universal enhances popular Harry Potter vacation package with new perks“People will buy the product and use it for a few months at home, and it’s taking them back to their awesome time in Halifax,” said Mae, referring to the phenomenon of smells being linked to memories.“It certainly has an impact on my business.” Posted by Tags: Halifax << Previous PostNext Post >> Friday, September 2, 2016 center_img The Canadian Press Anthem of the Seas, largest cruise ship to dock in Halifax Sharelast_img read more

After a tough 2016 Trafalgar TravCorp are ready for 2017

first_img<< Previous PostNext Post >> Share Michael Smith After a tough 2016, Trafalgar & TravCorp are ready for 2017 Tuesday, October 4, 2016 center_img TORONTO — As it approaches its 70th birthday, Trafalgar finds itself in a similar position to where the company started all those years ago. As a post-war tour operator, back then Trafalgar had to find a way to make clients comfortable to travel to Europe again. After the attacks across Europe in the past 12 months, the company finds itself in familiar territory going into 2017.At an event for partners and media last night, Wolf Paunic, President of Trafalgar Canada, introduced Trafalgar’s 2017 Europe & Britain brochure with a refreshed look for the brand, new itineraries and a message to help destinations that have been hurting from events this past year.The new brochure promotes the confidence that agents and their clients can feel when booking a trip with Trafalgar. Paunic emphasized that one of the safest ways to travel is with a guided tour. With the attacks in Paris in 2015, Trafalgar was able to supply information about the whereabouts and health of all their passengers within 24 hours to agents. Paunic drew parallels to his daughter’s experience in Paris – she was in the city during the attacks and took several days to contact her friends with social media.More news:  Transat calls Groupe Mach’s latest offer “highly abusive, coercive and misleading”Brett Tollman, Global CEO for The Travel Corporation, used his time to ask the industry to support France, Brussels, Turkey and other areas hurting from recent attacks. He reminded the industry that these cities are beautiful destinations that will bounce back just like New York did after 9/11 and that tourism will play a big part in that.So far that seems to be true, with a 25% increase so far for guaranteed departures for 2017. Clients booking early can take advantage of early payment discounts and save 10% on any guided vacation booked and paid in full by Jan. 12, 2017.New itineraries for 2017 include a six-day Amsterdam Explorer and a 20-day Nordic Adventure capitalizing on trends towards Scandinavia. The company also has new Insider Experiences at The Vatican, with an exclusive after-hours private tour followed by dinner in the Missionary Ethnological Museum. Additionally, tailored trips have been introduced, charting interests from the Edwardian era of Britain to the Life of Martin Luther and much more.More news:  Onex paying big to get WestJet and that will send airfares soaring, says CWTThe Trafalgar 2017 Europe & Britain brochure is supported by a revitalised website, now live at www.trafalgar.comTollman was also excited by the recent announcement of the ME to WE partnership with TreadRight. The Canadian non-profit will now give the option to clients to book pre or post trips in Kenya, Amazon, and India with ME to WE where travellers stay among local communities in comfortable lodges, fully owned and operated by ME to WE. For more information, go to trafalgar.com/can/metowe. Tags: Trafalgar Posted bylast_img read more

Training social media group sales at Nexion Canada Symposium

first_imgTraining, social media & group sales at Nexion Canada Symposium Travelweek Group Posted by << Previous PostNext Post >> LONDON, ONT. — For its first ever Nexion Canada Symposium, held last month on April 21-22 in Toronto, Nexion Canada celebrated “the resurgence of the travel agent” and focused on providing the very best training practices to its agents in order to ensure their success.The inaugural event, which was open to Nexion Canada members from all provinces, welcomed more than 40 travel professionals that ranged from experienced to novice agents, plus those new to Nexion Canada but not new to the travel industry. They all took part in educational opportunities on various travel niches, participated in supplier roundtables and gained expert industry advice.“The resurgence of the travel agent is very heartening to see. Many talented people are flocking to the profession because of the appeal of travel, the flexibility the career offers, and the ability for travel agents to earn lucrative commissions,” said Mike Foster, President of Nexion Canada. “To build the travel agent profession, it’s important to provide high-quality education to help ensure success, and Nexion Canada excels at that. The Nexion Canada Symposium let us meet our members in a central location, and bring the very best training to them. The skills learned were designed to be put into use as soon as they got home.”More news:  A new low for no-frills flying: easyJet assigns backless seat to passengerEach day of the symposium focused on segments and skills commonly used by agents, including marketing solutions, selling skills and group sales, along with advertising and social media engagement.Speakers included Tina Shewchuk of TICO who spoke about Ontario regulations and how Nexion Canada members can ensure they are in compliance. Chantal Ford of The Travel Corporation also spoke on how travel professionals can harness the power of social media to build their customer base, while Jeff Element, President of The Travel Corporation, provided an overview of the company’s tour offerings.Participants concentrated heavily on group sales, including how to sell groups, who to sell to, and what Nexion Canada members can do to make their group sales more profitable.“Group sales are one of the segments Nexion Canada members are most interested in exploring, based on their questions,” Foster added. “This niche offers great rewards, but it can be intimidating to break into. By bringing in group travel sales experts to advise our members, we want to empower them to be able to communicate with their group customers in the ways they desire.”center_img Tags: Nexion Canada Share Monday, May 8, 2017 last_img read more

TICO keeps controversial TRVL site out of Ontario ­– for now

first_img TORONTO — TICO has stepped in to quash a website that allows consumers to sign up to become so-called ‘TRVL agents’ and earn up to 10% commissions on hotels booked by themselves, friends and family.TRVL violates provincial laws, says TICO. Shortly after TRVL launched, TICO sent TRVL founder and Dutch entrepreneur Jochem Wijnands a letter saying his unregistered company had staff consulting on travel, in contravention of the province’s Travel Industry Act.“Anybody who is selling travel in the province … must be employed by or otherwise aligned with a registered travel agency in the province of Ontario,” said TICO President Richard Smart.The TRVL site’s home page says ‘Welcome to the secret world of the travel industry’. The site lets travellers bypass travel agents and pocket commissions.After some back-and-forth correspondence, TICO offered a solution: register with the council through a process that requires an annual fee and setting up a branch office in the province, or stop providing access to the service in Ontario.More news:  Consolidation in the cruise industry as PONANT set to acquire Paul Gauguin CruisesSmart said the process allows the regulator to protect consumers by making sure they receive accurate information when booking online, such as passport and visa requirements, and ensuring its roughly 2,400 agents all follow the same rules.Wijnands says he disagrees with TICO’s assessment, arguing the platform’s users aren’t travel agents; the site’s users don’t handle money, he said, but rather use the online advertising platform to make bookings with service providers.He agreed to pull out of Ontario, saying the growing business can’t afford to be destructive at the moment. He says he believes the company can reposition itself to clarify any confusion. TICO is the only complainant to date, he said.A message for visitors trying to access the site in Ontario now reads: “Due to restrictions set by the Travel Industry Council of Ontario, TRVL is currently not available in Ontario. We are working to resolve this issue soon.”More news:  Air Canada’s global sales update includes Managing Director, Canada & USA SalesWijnands says this type of thing is “happening everywhere,” pointing to other online platforms like Airbnb and Uber. “The legacy professions hide behind certain rules that they think will give them protection.”TRVL users can also share a link to their site with followers looking for recommendations. TRVL allows users to pocket most of that commission, except for a cut that the company keeps.The company could write a letter to TICO and the provincial ministry responsible for it, Smart said. While TICO would reply, there’s a slim chance the regulator would budge from its position.“If it’s a question of my interpretation of the law, it’s going to be pretty tough to change my mind,” Smart said. Monday, October 23, 2017 TICO keeps controversial TRVL site out of Ontario ­– for now Travelweek Group With files from The Canadian Press Share Posted by Tags: OTAs, TICO << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

Two new hires for Scenic Group Canada

first_img VANCOUVER — Scenic Group Canada, parent organization of Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours, Scenic Eclipse and Emerald Waterways, has announced the hiring of Juna Ueda as General Manager – Canada Sales, and Amanda McGregor as Brand Manager for Ocean Products. Both positions will work out of the company’s Vancouver office and will report directly to Lisa McCaskill, vp sales & marketing Canada, The Scenic Group.“Juna is a veteran with 23 years in the travel industry and is a results-driven business builder and a consistent achiever of high results,” says McCaskill. “Juna is described as a people leader with a strong belief in a company driven by its people and will be focused on client satisfaction, strategic business plans and client loyalty.”Ueda worked for Rocky Mountaineer as national sales manager and was responsible for strategic planning and execution of Canadian sales for all trade channels. Most recently, in the position as manager, sales development, his responsibilities included sourcing new business in multiple global markets including MICE opportunities in North America. Prior to Rocky Mountaineer he worked with Flight Centre and Japan Airlines in sales positions. He can be reached at Juna.Ueda@scenic.ca.Meanwhile as the new brand manager for ocean products, currently the company’s new ultra-luxury Scenic Eclipse launching in August 2019, McGregor brings a well-rounded consumer marketing skill set, including ocean cruise experience, says McCaskill. “Amanda has a strong business acumen and is trade and customer-focused. Her experience working on co-op marketing efforts and agent incentives and training will be integral to the marketing of the Scenic Eclipse and future sister ships to our Canadian travel partners and clients.”McGregor’s most recent position was with Expedia Group as cruise account manager, Global Cruise Supply, working directly with cruise suppliers to ensure maximum ROI and to drive co-op marketing initiatives for all online and retail channels that sell cruise. Prior to this, she worked at Great Canadian Casinos, as a marketing specialist/coordinator for three different properties. She can be reached at Amanda.McGregor@scenic.ca. Share Posted by Thursday, March 28, 2019 Two new hires for Scenic Group Canadacenter_img << Previous PostNext Post >> Tags: New Hires, Scenic Group Canada, Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours Travelweek Group last_img read more

YVR airport issues manhunt for Ryan Reynolds and heres how you can

first_img VANCOUVER — As the comic book hero Deadpool, Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds is used to being chased by bad guys. But how will he handle being pursued by one of Canada’s busiest airports?Vancouver International Airport has launched a hilarious new social media campaign aimed at getting Reynolds, arguably Vancouver’s most famous native son, to be its official ambassador.Help Craig find Ryan! Quote tweet this and tag @VancityReynolds to be entered to win a $2500 travel voucher. #FindingRyan pic.twitter.com/PFOSNcWsdi— Vancouver Airport (@yvrairport) July 15, 2019The 2.5-minute video, launched on YVR’s Twitter account on July 15, shows YVR president and CEO Craig Richmond narrowing down a list of celebrities with his communications team.Carly Rae Jepson was eliminated due to her “wishy-washy” lyrics (“Call Me Maybe?” says Richmond, “We’re the #1 airport! Call me!”), and so was Seth Rogan, who’s already spoken for after teaming up with Vancouver’s Translink in 2018. Michael Bublé, another famous Vancouverite, was also mentioned as a last resort but Richmond angrily vetoed him for being “too perfect” and “too handsome”.More news:  Venice to ban cruise ships from city centre starting next monthWith no one else to turn to, Richmond mindlessly started doodling an image of Deadpool when the idea finally hit him: Ryan Reynolds!After being told by his team that Reynolds, world-famous actor and now gin distiller, is much too famous for YVR, Richmond promises to “go out and convince Ryan Reynolds to be the spokesperson for YVR”, but he’s going to need the public’s help to do it.The #FindingRyan campaign, which aims to spread the word that YVR is a community-based, not-for-profit airport, invites Twitter users to retweet YVR’s video and tag Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) for a chance to win a $2,500 travel voucher.Who knows how many retweets it would take for Deadpool to say yes, but we are certain of one thing: it’ll be the perfect partnership for Mr. VancityReynolds himself!via GIPHY Posted by Tags: Ryan Reynolds, YVR << Previous PostNext Post >> Travelweek Group center_img YVR airport issues manhunt for Ryan Reynolds and here’s how you can help Wednesday, July 24, 2019 Sharelast_img read more

first_imgThe registration period for presidential candidates from the ruling National Liberation Party (PLN) expires this month, and San José Mayor Johnny Araya is the only registered candidate from the party.Araya is also seen as the winner of the next presidential election in 2014 by 60 percent of respondents in a poll conducted by CID-Gallup and published Thursday by local Diario Extra.Araya reacted by saying he “still faces the challenge of winning the support of all Costa Ricans.”Only seven percent of respondents think a candidate from a coalition of opposition parties could win, while four percent believe a candidate from the Citizen Action Party will be the next president. Three percent think there will be a new government of the Social Unity Christian Party (PUSC).Voter abstention, however, could be very high in 2014, as 26 percent of respondents showed no preference in the candidates or declined to answer.One PUSC candidate, Roberto Suñol, told Radio Reloj that results favored Araya because the mayor is “the only publicly known candidate, and he’s being measured against no one.” Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

first_imgLA PAZ, Bolivia – An inter-oceanic canal the government of President Daniel Ortega plans to build to connect the Atlantic and Pacific oceans will convert Nicaragua into the “richest” country in Central America, Ronald MacLean Abaroa, the Bolivian spokesman for Chinese firm HKDN, which will conduct feasibility studies for the project, told a Bolivian daily on Sunday.MacLean was mayor of La Paz during several administrations in the 1990s, as well as foreign minister, minister of the economy and a presidential candidate in 2002. He is now an adviser to the Chinese company HK Nicaragua Canal Development Investment Co. (HKDN), owned by Chinese businessman Wang Jing.Interviewed by the daily Página Siete de La Paz, the Bolivian economist and politician explained plans for feasibility studies of the 286-kilometer canal project, which were contracted by the Nicaraguan government on June 15.“Nicaragua is going to become the richest country in Central America, and that will affect the entire region,” said MacLean, who also is a former World Bank official.The HKDN spokesman said “investment in this project is three or four times greater than Nicaragua’s entire GDP, and that will affect employment and prosperity. We’re talking about $30-$40 billion in investment.”Studies by HKDN, which has become the target of critics from members of Nicaragua’s political opposition because its headquarters are located in Hong Kong with a subsidiary in the Cayman Islands, will take up to two years, and the construction phase of the massive project could take up to 10 years.MacLean said Nicaragua’s canal would offer several advantages over the Panama Canal.“Bigger ships will travel through Nicaragua, and countries with a coast will have to invest in their ports so that these ships can pass through the canal,” he said. Ships passing through the Panama Canal can carry up to 6,000 containers, while Nicaragua’s canal will facilitate the next generation of super ships, which can carry up to 18,000 containers, he added.MacLean also responded to critics of the plan, who say it will be an environmental calamity for Nicaragua.“Nicaragua, because of the civil war and poverty, is already mostly deforested, and it doesn’t have the resources for environmental conservation. But a project like this [the canal] could generate resources to clean up Lake Nicaragua, which is suffering from sedimentation,” he said. “If the environmental impact was negative, this project wouldn’t be undertaken.” Facebook Comments No related posts.last_img read more

first_img Facebook Comments Related posts:Costa Rica vies for redemption against Italy at 8 p.m. in second U-17 Women’s World Cup match Spain vs. Italy and Japan vs. Venezuela are your semifinal match-ups for the U-17 Women’s World Cup Japan and Spain will meet in the Under-17 Women’s World Cup championship on Friday in San José President Chinchilla gives public employees a half-day Friday to boost attendance at the Under-17 Women’s World Cup championship Japan completed a magnificent Under-17 Women’s World Cup run with a, 2-0, victory over Spain in the final at the National Stadium on Friday evening. The Japanese team dominated the tournament, scoring 23 goals and allowing only one in the World Cup, which began on March 15.  Japan — also the defending Women’s World Cup champions — won every match by at least two goals in securing the country’s first Under-17 Women’s World Cup title.In the third place match, which took place in the National Stadium prior to the final, Italy edged Venezuela in a thriller. Italy took a one-goal lead four times, and each time Venezuela came back to tie the game. The Vino Tinto did it for the final time in the 95th minute of the game, equalizing the game at 4-4. The goal sent the game to penalties, and this time Venezuela couldn’t keep up. Italy outshot Venezuela in penalties, 2-0, to take third place.Costa Rica, meanwhile, hosted a successful World Cup. FIFA President Joseph Blatter visited the country for the championship match, and on Thursday praised Costa Rica’s job as host (the Costa Rica women’s under-17 team was less impressive — losing all three of its matches before being eliminated). Costa Rica hopes to use this year’s success as a springboard for hosting bigger World Cup events.  FULL TIME: @jfa_en are #U17WWC champions after beating @SeFutbol 2-0 in San Jose. #U17WWC – http://t.co/R9YdD2rlhj pic.twitter.com/S3FPJ61zQm— #FIFAWWC (@FIFAWWC) April 5, 2014center_img Women’s football keeps on growing, great to see big atmosphere at the final of the U-17 World Cup in Costa Rica #U17WWC— Joseph S Blatter (@SeppBlatter) April 5, 2014 Asian countries have shined at the Under-17 Women’s World Cup. North Korea won the first edition in 2008 in New Zealand. Two years later, South Korea took the title in Trinidad and Tobago. In 2012 in Azerbaijan, France won the championship. The crown will return to Asia after Friday night, and Japan’s splendid journey to its first Under-17 Women’s World Cup title.last_img read more

Costa Ricas Public Security Minister calls for new organized crime unit after

first_imgRelated posts:Costa Rica serves as a corridor for Asians, Africans migrating to the US US anti-drug trafficking review arrives in Costa Rica as lawmakers debate permissions Organized crime prosecutor named new director of Costa Rica’s investigative police Costa Rica homicide rate hits record high Any doubts about the presence of sophisticated organized criminal organizations in Costa Rica were dashed Wednesday morning. The Judicial Investigation Police (OIJ) raided several properties across Costa Rica and arrested seven people in an international joint operation between Costa Rican, Italian and U.S. authorities to take down acocaine trafficking ring linked to the ‘ndrangheta mafia.In an unrelated incident on Oct. 9, a suspected hitman was gunned down in broad daylight after being picked up by a taxi at a relative’s house in San Francisco de Dos Ríos, southeast of San José. Four men armed with AK-47s blocked the cab with a black SUV and fired up to 100 rounds. Images of the bullet-ridden taxi spread like wildfire over social media. Examples like these, along with a steadily climbing homicide rate, have left Costa Rican authorities struggling to express a strategy to combat increasingly violent and well-organized criminal elements, both international and local. Between the start of the year and August, 370 homicides were committed, 202 of them related to organized crime, according to a statement from the Public Security Ministry.Costa Rica enjoyed a downward trend in homicides between 2010 and 2012 before seeing a spike in 2014, including a rash of killings in Desamparados, south of the capital. Those high numbers so far have continued in 2015, making for an ugly reversal. In 2010, 527 homicides were committed, but that number dropped to 407 in 2012. The number crept up in 2013 to 411, but 2014 saw a spike in killings. By the end of 2014, 471 homicides were reported, up 14.6 percent from 2013, according to statistics from OIJ published in February. According to the Public Security Ministry, a total (not just organized crime-related) of 426 homicides were committed between January and Oct. 9 in 2015.On Tuesday morning, Public Security Minister Gustavo Mata held a news conference calling on the OIJ — which is in the judicial branch, not the executive — to create a specialized unit dedicated exclusively to investigating organized crime. Mata said the fact that 55 percent of the year’s homicides were tied to organized crime was “reason for why a unit focused exclusively on organized crime was necessary.”“The shape that organized crime has taken in our country and its direct relationship with the increase in homicides during the last year merits a more holistic response that institutions involved in its prevention and repression have given,” Mata said in a statement. Costa Rican President Luis Guillermo Solís, right, hands the National Police banner to Public Security Minister Gustavo Mata on Feb. 5, 2015. (Courtesy Casa Presidencial)Mata said he has been pushing for an inter-institutional unit housed in OIJ that would coordinate responses to organized crime between agencies in the judicial branch, including prosecutors, judges and OIJ investigators, and the police force.Chief Prosecutor Jorge Chavarría pointed to examples such as the ‘Ndrangheta raids as examples of successful coordination across institutions and countries, but agreed that a change is needed in how Costa Rica tackles organized crime.“The level of violence that we’re seeing, the kinds of crimes, demand that we re-think how we investigate. In this sense, we’re in agreement with Mr. Gustavo [Mata],” Chavarría said.Despite calls for greater coordination, however, both sides continue to speak past one another.“What we need to do is prevention – prevention of consumption, prevention of trafficking, prevention of money laundering,” said Chavarría, speaking of an area typically under the purview of the Public Security Ministry.Mata’s words, meanwhile, spoke about improving investigations, which are the responsibility of OIJ and the Prosecutor’s Office.Chavarría left little to the imagination if the current trend continues: “I think that there’s no going back on the level of violence that has started in this country. We’re a country with organized crime. The number of homicides indicates the presence of organized crime.”“The example is the Northern Triangle,” he said, referring to El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, the most violent countries in Latin America. And “the path we’re on is toward the Northern Triangle if we don’t take action today.” Facebook Commentslast_img read more

first_imgAssociated PressST. GEORGE’S, Grenada (AP) – A haunting Cold War mystery is getting a fresh look on the Caribbean island of Grenada, where officials are trying to locate the missing remains of a Marxist prime minister executed nearly 30 years ago during a coup that sparked a U.S. invasion.Maurice Bishop was machine-gunned by a firing squad on Oct. 19, 1983, along with three members of his Cabinet and four others during the bloody upheaval, and no one seems to know where the bodies ended up. Rumors have swirled for decades that U.S. forces later hid the remains to prevent the grave from becoming a rallying point for the slain leader’s supporters or that a political rival dynamited the bodies. Grenada’s government wants the mystery solved as a way of healing the national psyche of this now-tranquil country of nutmeg-scented forests known as “the spice island,” which became a flashpoint in the last days of the Cold War. Forensic anthropologists recently failed to find the remains in a hillside cemetery in the capital of St. George’s, but further searches are planned.“It’s important for all concerned to bring some closure to this chapter in Grenada’s history,” Finance Minister Nazim Burke said in his office, just down a winding road from the 17th century fort where the 39-year-old Bishop and the others, including his pregnant mistress, were executed by Grenadian soldiers following a coup by a radical faction of Bishop’s Cuba-backed party.This much is known about the remains: After the execution, one gunman slit Bishop’s throat after he was dead and cut off a finger to steal a ring. The bodies were transported to a military camp six miles outside of town and partially burned in a pit.Six days after Bishop’s execution, about 7,000 U.S. Marines and paratroopers, along with a few hundred security forces from neighboring islands, invaded Grenada, toppling the post-coup military government. Natural spring cleaning tips and tricks for your home New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Some Grenadians believe that U.S. troops calculatingly obscured Bishop’s burial.“I think the sentiment was too overwhelming for Bishop at the time and the U.S. wanted to avoid a shrine,” said Dr. Terry Marryshow, a Cuban-trained medical doctor who once worked as a bodyguard for Bishop and leads a foundation that was instrumental in getting the island’s international airport renamed after the slain leader in 2009. “There must be someone who knows what happened and we just want to finally hear about it from an official source, Grenadian or U.S.”In an email, the U.S. Embassy to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean said “the United States does not have any information about the location of the bodies of Prime Minister Maurice Bishop and members of his cabinet who were killed on October 19, 1983.”The political rival who ordered Bishop’s execution, then-Deputy Prime Minister Bernard Coard, has long accused the U.S. of hiding Bishop’s body. However, others say imperfect evidence suggests that Coard, who is widely reviled in Grenada and settled in Jamaica after being released from prison in 2009, had the remains dynamited before he was captured by U.S. forces. Finding the truth is complicated by the fact that the matter was not investigated with any sort of thorough collection of evidence in the chaotic, tense days before and after the U.S. invasion.In 1983, a power struggle between Bishop, a relatively popular prime minister who took power in a 1979 coup, and a more radical faction led by Coard devolved into the bloody coup.The U.S., already alarmed by Bishop’s Soviet and Cuban ties, said the invasion was necessary to protect the lives of hundreds of American medical students at St. George’s University Medical School and to keep the island from being used as a staging post for communist aggression in the region. U.S. forces quickly gained control after the invasion was launched. But the action killed 45 Grenadians, 29 Cubans and 19 Americans.Jorge Heine, a Chilean who is a fellow at the Centre for International Governance Innovation, a non-partisan Canadian think tank based in Waterloo, Ontario, said a monument to the memory of Bishop and his associates “would be a fitting way to finally bring about reconciliation to the spice island.”“The country needs to come to terms with its past,” said Heine, who edited a book of essays about Grenada’s revolutionary days. Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family Witnesses say the burned, decomposing remains were transported to the island’s medical school and the body bags were later brought to funeral director Leslie Bailey, who was tasked by the U.S. military with burying casualties from the conflict. Bailey died without ever pinpointing where the body bags believed to contain the remains of the political leaders were buried.Bailey’s son, funeral director Clinton Bailey, said he wants to find the remains because people “still point fingers” at his family every time the island celebrates the anniversary of the U.S. invasion, which was almost universally welcomed by Grenadians and is observed each Oct. 25 as a holiday known as Thanksgiving.“I will clear my father’s name,” said Clinton Bailey, who has carried out his own unsuccessful efforts to find Bishop’s remains.Experts suspect the remains of Bishop and the others lie in unmarked graves in St. George’s sprawling cemetery, where his supporters erected a rough, unmarked bust of the slain revolutionary leader among a tangle of white mausoleums and gravestones,An international forensic team led by Marcella Sorg of the University of Maine was brought in by Grenada’s Conference of Churches, the government and the island’s medical school to find the remains. More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements Sponsored Stories center_img Top Stories Not all Grenadians believe officials should spend time trying to find Bishop’s remains.“Some people like to make believe that the revolution days were like getting presents beneath a Christmas tree. But it’s not true. I think Bishop did some good things in his time, but we had no freedom of speech in those days. It’s time to look forward as a country,” said Ezekiel “Eze” Jones, a tour guide operator and taxi driver.But Ann Bishop, the sister of the slain leader, said she has prayed for decades that her brother’s body would be found and her family could have a proper burial at last.“I am still hopeful Maurice’s body will be located,” she said by phone from her home in Grenada. “We’re still trying to get over this, after all these years.”___David McFadden on Twitter: http://twitter.com/dmcfadd Comments   Share   Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Arizona families, Arizona farms: A legacy of tradition embracing animal care and comfort through modern technology (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) The team spent almost two weeks in May excavating a roughly 25-foot stretch of the cemetery, first using a backhoe and then switching to small hand trowels. They scraped at the soil as bones began to emerge from an unmarked grave yards from where a gravedigger discovered three U.S. military body bags a decade ago.Forensic experts say the scattered bones found are apparently not those of Bishop or the others, according to the Rev. Sean Doggett, a Roman Catholic priest who acts as spokesman for the Conference of Churches. But Doggett said he is hopeful that future digs could provide answers.“They might be just outside the area searched,” Doggett said in an email from his native Ireland, where is vacationing.He did not say when the next search will take place, but officials say they will proceed once more money is available.Previous searches in the same cemetery, including a forensic excavation organized by Bishop’s daughter Nadia, failed as well.At the cemetery, burly gravedigger Michael MacIntosh said he’s confident a sustained search of the area will eventually turn up the long-sought remains.“After all, the bodies have to be somewhere,” said MacIntosh, standing by the excavated area, in the shadow of the National Stadium. “They couldn’t have just disappeared into the air.” 4 sleep positions for men and what they meanlast_img read more

first_img Parents, stop beating yourself up LIMA, Peru (AP) – Peru’s Supreme Court has reduced the murder sentence of former spy chief Vladimiro Montesinos along with the sentences of 15 members of a military death squad also convicted in the killings of 25 people in 1991 and 1992.President Ollanta Humala criticized Friday’s decision and his justice minister, Juan Jimenez, called it “an embarrassment for the country.”The court’s decision, which is not subject to appeal, reduced the sentence for Montesinos from 25 to 20 years. The panel also ordered former military intelligence chief Alberto Pinto freed immediately. He had been sentenced to 15 years in 2010. Comments   Share   Sponsored Stories The court ruled that the killings, including of an 8-year-old boy, did not amount to crimes against humanity but rather murders.(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements New high school in Mesa lets students pick career pathscenter_img Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Top Stories 3 international destinations to visit in 2019last_img read more

first_img Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Check your body, save your life Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Traffic jams have become as recognizable a feature of Moscow as the Kremlin’s onion domes. Congestion is so bad that it’s common to travel three hours from downtown to the outskirts in rush hour. Motorists are estimated to spend an average of 15 hours a week stalled in traffic.So in a truly revolutionary step to make Moscow bike-friendly and ease congestion, the city government has earmarked more than 600 million rubles ($20 million) over the next four years to build cycling paths and bike racks.I started cycling to work in the summer of 2010 when a colleague, who lives much farther from the office than I do, mentioned that he occasionally cycles to work. Just five years ago the only people who rode bikes in Moscow were either teenagers or eccentric elderly men. Now it’s not unusual to see an investment banker cycle to work.I try to cycle to work a couple of times a week in warm weather, which is May through early October here. Despite the lack of bike lanes and the hostility of motorists and pedestrians alike, cycling in Moscow can be a joy compared to the headaches of driving: You fly past the gridlock and don’t have to worry about finding a parking spot. Top Stories Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Sponsored Stories center_img For Vladimir Kumov, founder of Let’s bike it!, a group that promotes cycling in Moscow, the awakening came two years ago when he spent three hours in traffic driving in from the airport after a three-month trip to Argentina, where he cycled all over town between his job and Spanish classes.“People are tired of wasting their time in traffic, tired of seeing this city clogged with cars, and are starting to realize that we can change the way we live now,” he said.My cycling day starts with carrying my bike down three flights to the street. One of the issues that Moscow cyclists face is a near complete absence of bike racks. Because there are none in my neighborhood _ and I had a bike stolen once even from inside my apartment building _ I keep my bicycle on my balcony. Carrying the bike up and down the steps is probably the most physically challenging part of my journey. Like most Soviet-era apartment buildings, mine is not equipped to meet the needs of cyclists, wheelchair users or parents with prams.There’s only one cycling path in this city of 12 million and no bike lanes on the roads whatsoever. Traffic rules in Russia provide for cycling on the road, although cyclists are not welcome there. Nor are they appreciated by pedestrians. For me the choice comes down to this: Either risk breaking your neck on the road, where motorists are aggressive and routinely run red lights, or cycle on the sidewalk, even if that means getting nasty looks and having to dismount often to maneuver through crowds. An overwhelming majority of cyclists in Moscow prefer not to test their luck on the dangerous roads.My 10-kilometer (6-mile) route takes me through some of the city’s greenest and most picturesque areas: leafy Sparrow Hills and the park near Moscow State University. But some parts of my route are unpleasant in a bizarre way. I still can’t grasp why a pole with a road sign had to be placed right in the middle of a sidewalk, on a cement slab so large that I have to squeeze through every time I ride by.And there are other small inconveniences, like steep and uneven curbs, which also have me hopping on and off my bike — and are a major headache for the handicapped. The city has made some progress in recent years making the sidewalks more wheelchair-friendly. Even so, it is not uncommon for an embankment to end suddenly with a flight of stairs.The AP Moscow bureau is inside a sprawling compound that houses the offices of scores of foreign media organizations as well as apartments for journalists and diplomats. Still, there’s only one bike rack for the entire compound, so I normally leave my bike chained to a railing, which is more or less safe because of video surveillance. Associated PressMOSCOW (AP) – One popular joke in Moscow goes: “When the drunken driver was taken to the police station he was already sober. Why? Traffic jams.”With congestion in the capital going from bad to infernal, an increasing number of people see cycling as a solution.But riding a bike in Moscow is somehow a different experience from cycling in any other European city. With no bike lanes but plenty of road rage, most cyclists in Moscow, myself included, keep off the streets and stay on the sidewalk. But while cycling on the pavement, you need to watch out not only for pedestrians and baby carriages but for the sudden opening of car doors. Yes, parking on the sidewalk is also OK in the Russian capital. 0 Comments   Share   The Kremlin, apparently, is no better equipped.When Masha Gessen, a prominent journalist, had a meeting with President Vladimir Putin in September, his staff told her there was nowhere to park her bike inside the Kremlin, so she had to leave it chained up at a bus stop nearby.Desperate to do something to ease Moscow’s traffic congestion, city authorities hope that cycling can be part of the solution. Muscovites own about 3 million bikes, but few use them as a means of transportation, according to a recent report.In the next four years, the city plans to increase the number of bike paths to 72 and the number of bike racks to 17,000.The city expects the bike paths to help increase the average speed of cycling to 15.5 kilometers (9 miles) per hour and the share of those cycling to work from 0.01 percent to 1.2 percent by next year. For the city of 12 million, that would be 144,000 people.While supportive of the city plans, cycling activist Kumov remains skeptical, largely because many of the paths are going to be built in parks, thus chiefly to promote cycling as recreation and not as a means of transport.“The way the plan looks now will probably make little difference,” he said. Four benefits of having a wireless security system How Arizona is preparing the leader of the next generationlast_img read more

first_img Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility 5 greatest Kentucky Derby finishes Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Get a lawn your neighbor will be jealous of 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Since 2014, the region has recorded 64 cases of the disease in wild boar, and 11 in domestic swine.In January 2014, Russia banned EU pork imports following four cases of African swine fever found in boar on the Lithuanian and Polish borders with Belarus.Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. WARSAW, Poland (AP) — Polish authorities say they will cull about 5,800 pigs to prevent the spread of African swine fever.Veterinarians are checking 274 pig farms in eastern Poland, near the border with Lithuania and Belarus, for compliance with sanitary requirements to prevent the spread of the disease. Unlike swine flu, it doesn’t affect humans.The pigs are expected to be culled by the end of July, and no pig breeding will be allowed there through 2018. Polish authorities said Tuesday that the farmers will get compensation.center_img New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Sponsored Stories Top Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Comments   Share   last_img read more

first_imgFlight attendants at American Airlines may vote to strike against the Fort Worth-based carrier after “lock-down” negotiations with a federal mediator failed to produce a contract agreement. American’s flight attendants, represented by the Association of Professional Flight Attendants said AA management walked out of the five-day talks, after APFA presented a counter-proposal to American’s offer of an eight-year contract calling for 2 percent wage increases in each of the first four years.American counters that its negotiators departed the discussions to form a counterproposal, but union leaders made their sentiments clearly known:”This conduct is just another demonstration of the company’s bad-faith bargaining that has been in full bloom for the past 23 months,” said APFA president Laura Glading.”Delay only serves the company. Each day without a new agreement equals another million dollars in the pocket of American.” The National Mediation Board mediates airline labor talks under the terms of the Railway Labor Act, which also covers airline collective bargaining. The RLA limits the ability of management to lockout, and bargaining units to strike, before talks have reached an impasse. Work actions by either group are prohibited until the NMB releases the parties from mediation, and a 30 day cooling off period expires.American’s ground workers, represented by the Transport Workers Union, may also ask the NMB to declare an impasse if negotiations reach a stalemate. <a href=”http://www.etbtravelnews.global/click/2a4b9/” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://adsvr.travelads.biz/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=10&amp;cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&amp;n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a> Source = e-Travel Blackboard: C.Flast_img read more

first_imgInterContinental Hotels & Resorts has emerged the most awarded hotel brand in Australasia in the 18th World Travel Awards, as voted by the international travel agent community and announced recently in Bangkok.An inaugural World Travel Award winner, InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa was recognised as Australasia’s Leading Spa Resort. Opened in 2006 and accessible only by boat, the resort is a tranquil sanctuary featuring 80 overwater villas and a Deep Ocean Spa offering treatments using mineral-rich water drawn from the sea at depths of more than 900 metres.Another first, InterContinental Moorea Resort & Spa achieved the title of French Polynesia’s Leading Resort. Fresh from a multi-million dollar renovation, the resort offers more than 140 deluxe rooms and bungalows, a range of restaurants and bars, and on-site activities including the Moorea Dolphin Centre, Bathys Diving Club and the renowned Helene’s Spa, all tucked between Moorea’s lush green mountains and the island’s blue-as-blue lagoon.Achieving success in the awards for a second consecutive year, InterContinental Melbourne The Rialto was once again named Australasia’s Leading Business Hotel. Built within two 19th Century buildings, InterContinental Melbourne is the only international high-end hotel in the city’s central financial district.“It’s a joy to see three of our Australasian hotels being selected by some of the most discerning judges of travel product in the world. Our InterContinental resorts and hotels in the region have consistently featured in the World Travel Awards over the years, which is very encouraging,” said IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) chief operating officer Australasia, Bruce McKenzie. InterContinental Bora Bora Resort & Thalasso Spa resort Source = InterContinental Hotels & Resortslast_img read more

first_imgThe Chinese market continues to prove its importance to the Australian tourism industry, leading international growth into Melbourne Airport during July this year.According to the airport’s latest statistics, inbound travellers from China increased by up to eight percent during the seventh month of the year compared to the same period last year.Although the growth from China was ahead of other international markets, India, Vietnam, Sri Lanka and New Zealand markets also increased over the same period and contributed to the overall one percent rise in international passengers during the month.The airport’s chief executive Chris Woodruff said growth in the overseas market was due to the gateway’s ongoing commitment to introducing more direct flights in and out of Melbourne.“Just last week we welcomed an additional daily A380 service from Singapore Airlines and in October, Emirates will introduce their twentieth A380 into service here in Melbourne, ” Mr Woodruff said.“Later in the year, Jetstar will also reintroduce direct services to Hawaii.”Our investment in terminals, aerobridges and baggage handling systems to serve the A380, is paying dividends with Melbourne becoming a leading A380 destination.“We’ll continue to invest in infrastructure to provide more capacity for domestic and international airlines, including ongoing planning for our new Southern Precinct domestic terminal.”The airport’s domestic operations also picked up over July this year compared to the same month last year, with a five percent increase.Last month Mr Woodruff also said the airport’s curfew-free operations played a significant role in its increasing passenger numbers. Image source: OzHotels.com.au Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.Jlast_img read more

Tok Tok Vanuatu a success with record numbers

first_imgSource = ETB News: Lana Bogunovich Vanuatu Tourism Office’s (VTO) 11th annual tourism and trade show ‘Tok Tok Vanuatu’, which took place in Port Vila last week, has been deemed a success as a record breaking number of wholesalers and media from around the world attended the event.Held at the Holiday Inn’s Private Island golf terrace, more than 70 wholesalers, travel agents and media from around the world, including Australia, New Zealand, China, Fiji, America and even as far as Europe, engaged with more than 100 Vanuatu suppliers, including properties, tour operators and local tourism offices.VTO general manager Linda Kalpoi said Tok Tok Vanautu 2014 plays a key role in attracting visitors to choose Vanuatu as their holiday destination.“This year, we have decided to incorporate the theme of Vanuatu cultures into Tok Tok, to get visitors thinking about Vanuatu as a diverse destination with plenty on offer and it is also the first year that every provincial tourism office will be represented, which is a significant milestone and sign that the event is strengthening its appeal here and abroad,” Ms Kalpoi said.With “Celebrate Vanuatu Cultures” as this year’s theme, Tok Tok kicked off with a choice of famils on the islands of Espiritu Santo or Tanna, showcasing to buyers and media Vanuatu’s unique island cultures and products, from exploring Millenium Cave in Santo to trekking up Tanna’s Mount Yasur volcano. The official conference took place all day Thursday and Friday morning, with an official opening ceremony welcome from major sponsor over ten years, ANZ Bank, which donated more than one million vatu to Tok Tok Vanuatu.“Its no surprise that tourism and hospitality underpin the economic growth of Vanuatu and it is events like Tok Tok Vanuatu that play an integral role in the success of the industry and importantly, highlighting Vanuatu’s unique tourist offering in what is a very competitive global market place,” ANZ chief executive officer Steve Roger said.“Tok Tok not only showcases the strength of the industry and the variety of the tourism products we have here, it also provides the opportunity for stakeholders to share ideas lobby government and community groups and recognise the things we do really well and things we can improve on.”Meanwhile, Vanuatu’s Deputy Prime Minister & Tourism Minister Ham Lini Vanuaroroa, announced he would boost the funding for VTO’s marketing budget, after citing a low level of marketing investment as a significant contributor to the decline in tourist arrivals over the past year.“As the single most significant event in the Vanuatu tourism calendar, and a major catalyst for ongoing tourism growth in the country, Tok Tok is of the utmost importance to the people of Vanuatu and our government, and I will do my very best to increase the VTO 2015 budget.”Although Mr Lini Vanuaroroa did not specify a figure, he said he was confident that a proposal of new initiatives, such as building more accessible ports on the outer islands, would gain the government support needed to move forwarded, stressing that sustainable tourism growth remains the government’s main priority.Furthermore, with tourism in Vanuatu currently contributing around 70 percent to the economy, Mr Lini Vanuaroroa also mentioned plans to focus on the Asian market as well as looked forward to the opening of the new convention centre, which is due to open in Port Vila in 2015, with a 1,000 plus capacity.last_img read more

Air New Zealand and Air China reveal proposed partnership

first_imgDetails of a proposed partnership between Air New Zealand and Air China have been released, which will introduce a new service between China and New Zealand.Following approval, Air China will introduce a new direct daily service between Beijing and Auckland, aiming to double sustainable capacity between China and New Zealand.The partnership will also see the airline continue to codeshare on Air New Zealand’s daily service between Shanghai and Auckland, which will be solely operated by Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner aircraft from 24 August 2015.Air New Zealand chief executive officer Christopher Luxon said the proposed alliance will further the existing relationship between New Zealand and China.“By connecting the Chinese capital with New Zealand for the first time in three years we would provide tourists and business travellers with unparalleled air connectivity between and within each home market,” Mr Luxon said.“I am proud to be able to work with our long term Star Alliance partner, Air China, to ensure these important links make commercial sense, are sustainable and are in the interests of consumers and the wider economies.”Air China chief executive officer Song Zhiyong said by working closely with Air New Zealand they aim to provide better services between China and New Zealand to meet growing market demands.“This service, along with Air New Zealand’s Shanghai — Auckland service, will provide greater benefits to travellers in both countries in the coming years — an outcome which we will feel very proud of,” Mr Zhiyong said.If approved, the alliance services are scheduled to launch in December this year.Source = ETB Travel News: Brittney Levinsonlast_img read more