August 18, 2022

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iNews briefs2Cayman’s National Conservation Law set to GO

According to Cayman Islands Environment Minister Hon. Wayne Panton, Cayman’s National Conservation Law should be enacted in two weeks time.

This follows the approval last Thursday (26) in the Legislative Assembly to two pieces of legislation that relate to animals and plants.

Last year legislators unanimously approved the law that will now give some form of protection to Cayman’s environment.


Chikungunya Virus Spreads to Mexico from the Caribbean

From Repeating Islands

Mexico’s National Epidemic Surveillance System has identified an “imported” case of the chikungunya virus, the Health Secretariat said in a statement, the Latin AMerican Herald Tribune reports.

The patient had traveled to a sports event in Antigua and Barbuda, where the Pan American Health Organization has reported four confirmed cases.

“Up to now no domestic cases have been detected in our country,” the official statement said.

Mexico joins the list of countries affected by a virus that up to seven months ago was unknown in this part of the world.

In December 2013, a local infection of the chikungunya virus was detected for the first time in the Americas with the confirmation of two cases on the island of St. Martin.

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Two traders started a fight over their turf at the New York Mercantile Exchange

By Stephanie Yang From Business Insider

Things got heated at the New York Mercantile Exchange Tuesday, when two traders started a fight over space on the trading floor.

According to The Street’s Joe Deux, the two offenders were arguing over whose spot was whose, which quickly escalated into shoving, punching, and according to one witness, clothes-ripping. They were taken away by security.

It’s been awhile since market trading floors have been as crowded as they once were, thanks to technological advancements and streamlined trading with computers. People interviewed by The Street said this was the first physical fight to break out in years.

Physical violence is rare on the trading floor. In 2011, two UBS traders tussled over a stock transaction and were suspended. Insider trading informant David Slaine got in a fight in 1993, over sharing french fries.

The Street’s sources said while this was a dispute over space, these disagreements tend to break out when trading and volatility conditions are slow.

Sounds like the timing is just about right then.

IMAGE: The NYMEX on a normal day REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

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One of Cayman’s best swimmers resigns

In a surprise announcement with very little details, CITN/Cayman27 said last Thursday (26) in their newscast that one of Cayman Islands top and three time Olympic swimmer, Shaune Fraser, has resigned from the Elite Athletes Programme.

Confirming he is not retiring from swimming via Facebook, he sent an email to Cayman Islands Sports Minister, Hon. Osbourne Bodden, saying thank you to everything Cayman has done for him but “reluctantly deciding it was best for [him and his plans] at this time to resign as an Elite athlete.”

Fraser currently studies law at the University of Florida.


US man rowing across Atlantic reaches Caribbean

NEW YORK (AP) — An American rower who set out to cross the Atlantic Ocean in honor of his brother reached the Caribbean island of Saint Martin.

A spokeswoman for 48-year-old Victor Mooney said early Saturday the specially built oceangoing rowboat was towed about 20 miles to shore Friday while Mooney was aboard a search and rescue vessel. He has lost 80 pounds as he continues a 3,000-mile journey from the African coast to the British Virgin Islands, and then another 1,800-plus miles to New York.

Mooney was taken to a hospital for observation when he arrived, spokeswoman Lisa Samuels said in an email. She said that Mooney survived a shark attack that punctured his boat and will continue to the British Virgin Islands after getting “some needed rest.”

Mooney set off Feb. 19 in a 24-foot boat from Maspolamas, Gran Canaria. His journey is being done in honor of a brother who died of AIDS in 1983. Mooney is hoping to encourage voluntary HIV testing.

Mooney has tried the same feat three other times, without success.

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Late night cinema now made law in Cayman

If you want to watch a late night movie in the comfort of an air conditioned cinema with comfortable seating, wide screen and superb surround sound and on a Sunday, you may soon be able to.

Coming into affect on June 17th the Cayman Islands Cinematograph (Amendment) Rules 2013, it now allows cinemas to show movies designated as suitable for ages 17 and under to be shown on Sundays.

Previously under the cinematographic rules, only movies suitable for viewers 16 and under could be shown on Sundays and this meant no showings at the Regal Cinema (Cayman’s only cinema) on Sundays after 9pm.

There is no date as yet when Regal will be implementing the new change to the law.

However, it is not all good news for the cinema operator – another change to the Cinematographic Rules include an increased fee for annual licenses for each screen in a cinema building, from $1,000 to $1,500!


Bird banded in Dominican Republic found in Vermont

By Lisa Rathke, Associated Press From WRAL

MONTPELIER, VT. — Though its natural habitat is shrinking in the Caribbean, a brownish-gray songbird twice discovered on top of Vermont’s highest mountain is giving scientists hope.

Just weeks ago, researchers identified a Bicknell’s Thrush on Mount Mansfield that had been banded in the Dominican Republic while wintering there in 2010. It was the second time since 2010 that the bird had been captured on the mountaintop as part of research.

“The chances of that are amazingly small and to have that happen is not only just remarkable and very cool … it’s really compelling because it shows you that we have to pay attention to both ends of this bird’s range if we’re going to conserve it,” said Chris Rimmer, executive director of the Vermont Center for Ecostudies.

The vulnerable species has an estimated population of 100,000 worldwide. The migratory birds nest and breed in coniferous forests in northern New England, the Adirondacks and eastern Canada, then fly south to winter in the Caribbean.

Dominican Republic conservation and government workers explored the bird’s Vermont mountain habitat on Friday and spent the week learning about research being done on Bicknell’s Thrush.

“We’re working with them to build their capacity and help them secure more resources so they’re equipped to create some additional protected areas,” Rimmer said of the visitors.

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Cayman opposition leaders applaud government minister

Cayman Opposition Leader McKeeva Bush announced he and his party would abstain from interrogating Finance Minister Marco Archer’s budget proposals and East End Independent MLA Arden McLean applauded Archer for his “hard work”,

There is no doubt Archer has the respect of all Cayman Islands Legislative members and it is deserved.

Archer’s political party colleague, Bodden Town MLA Anthony Eden said, “Well done”.


With murder common, Jamaica morgue plans stall

By David McFadden From Caribbean Life

SPANISH TOWN, Jamaica (AP) — Corpses, the suspected victims of violent deaths, are wrapped in plastic bags or covered loosely in stained sheets. There is no air conditioning and the room quickly becomes sweltering as the tropical sun beats down on the metal roof. A black fly buzzes around the room amid the smell of decay.

A Jamaican forensic pathologist and his sweating assistants can merely shrug at the primitive conditions in the facility, which doesn’t even have an x-ray machine to find bullet fragments.

“What can I say? The lack of resources is definitely a challenge,” Dr. S.N. Prasad Kadiyala said as he waited for police officers to show up so he could start autopsies on a recent morning inside a hospital complex in gritty Spanish Town, on the edge of the Jamaican capital.

Jamaica has had one of the highest homicide rates in the world for years, but its capacity to deal with the wave of killings has not kept pace. While the Caribbean country has made some gains in the gathering and processing of evidence, one of its biggest challenges is simply finding adequate places to store and study the dead.

The island has not had a national morgue since the 1970s despite widespread agreement that autopsies are often performed in facilities so inadequate that investigations are placed in jeopardy, said Hayden Baldwin, who has worked as a forensic consultant to Jamaica’s police force.

“I have never seen such deplorable conditions and lack of support from a government to resolve these issues,” said Baldwin, a retired Illinois state police officer and director of Forensic Enterprises, Inc. of Orland Park, Illinois.

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Cayman insurance broker and NHDT director jailed

Edlin Myles, the former deputy chair of the National Housing and Development Trust (NHDT) and insurance broker with Bogle Insurance Brokers LTD, has been given a six months jail sentence after being convicted of seven counts of deception.

Although the amount of money involved was only $630 the judge said Myles had used his position as a director of the NHDT to arrange appointments to the victims by obtaining their contact details from a Trust employee and then called them introducing himself as a trust member.

Justice Henderson also said the most significant fact was the degree to which a trust had been breached and his position abused for his own advantage.

However, Myles attorney was able to get an extension of his bail pending an appeal and was released.


Haiti ex-president Leslie Manigat has died

By Evens Sanon From Caribbean Life

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Leslie Manigat, a prominent figure in the Haitian political establishment whose term as president was cut short by a military coup in 1988, has died. He was 83.

The former president died at home before dawn Friday after a long period of illness, according to Evans Baubrun, deputy secretary of Manigat’s political party.

Baubrun said Manigat’s condition may have been complicated by a recent bout of chikungunya, a debilitating mosquito-borne virus that has been rapidly spreading in Haiti since the first locally transmitted cases emerged earlier this year.

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Family skills programme sponsorship launched in Cayman Islands

The Family Resource Centre (FRC) aims to provide services and programmes that strengthen individuals and build stronger families within our community. All services are free of charge. FRC facilitates various workshops throughout the year directed towards the enhancement of the family, such as the Family Skills Programme (FSP), which is a closed group of 5-8 persons who are referred by relevant partner agencies or self.

We are currently looking for organisations that would be able to donate gift certificates to be used as a prize for the participating families in our FSP. We are very proud to be able to close with a celebratory session at the end of our programmes, as these families have committed 8 full weeks to building the skills necessary to improve their family dynamic.

We delivery six to eight FSPs annually and are often in need of companies that commit to sponsor fun family outings for the graduating families. Currently, Regal Cinema 6, Atlantis Submarine, Turtle Farm, Kingpin Bowling, Red Sail Sport, Ritz Carlton Grand Cayman, Pizza Hut, Dolphin Cove, Cayman Kayak, Imaginarium and National Trust are sponsors for the programme. We are always seeking for more partners in the community and hope we can continue providing these rewards for very deserving families.


Up to 5 million Android users have malware issues

By Chris Smith From BGR

Ignoring the unexpected protesters who tried to disrupt Google’s major developer event on Wednesday, or the unnecessary code demonstrations to an audience packed with media members excited about sharing with the world details about Google’s new products rather than looking at code demos that didn’t always work, Google’s I/O 2014 was packed with news, interesting announcements and revelations. And Google also talked about Android malware on stage and the measures it takes to prevent its customers from being affected.

Sundar Pichai said during the show that, “based on every data we see, well, well less than half a percent of users ever run into any malware issues.” That number is quite low when looking at percentages alone, but when translated into an actual number of users, based on Google’s Android usage statistics that were also announced on stage – the company said that it has up to 1 billion active Android users per month nowadays, not counting China or Kindle users – it comes to up to 5 million users that may have run into malware issues.

The top Google exec added that Google is now pushing security updates through Google Play services, “in order to get them to users within six weeks,” which is how long it takes between Google Play services update. Pichai added that around 93% of Android users are on the latest version of Google Play.

Pichai’s comments on security come as a response to Tim Cook’s attack on Android from WWDC 2014, where the Apple CEO half-jokingly called out Android for its security and malware issues.

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Mosquito-Borne Virus Found In Caribbean Travellers


LANSING, Mich. (AP) – Michigan authorities say that two state residents became infected with a new mosquito-borne virus while traveling in the Caribbean.

The Michigan Department of Community Health says the people contracted chikungunya.

The disease has broken out in Africa, Asia, Europe, and the Indian and Pacific Ocean regions. It first appeared in the Americas in the Caribbean last year. The virus causes fever and joint pain and generally isn’t life-threatening.

The department says the travelers were from Midland and Wexford counties.

Henry Ford Hospital infectious diseases chief Dr. Marcus Zervos says people who become infected start showing flu-like symptoms such as a rash and fever after three to seven days.

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A big boost for Caribbean conservation

By the Caribbean Journal staff

The Caribbean Biodiversity Fund will be receiving a $7.2 million contribution from the Global Environmental Facility through the World Bank.

The funding will promote the “conservation, protection, management and expansion of national protected area systems and other areas of biodiversity significance across the Eastern Caribbean region,” according to a release.

The World Bank said the contribution was made under the aegis of the GEF/World Bank’s Sustainable Financing and Management of Eastern Caribbean Marine Ecosystem Project, which is working on the conservation and management of fragile ecosystems in the region.

The Nature Conservancy is executing the project on behalf of participating countries.

“The Caribbean is the most biologically rich area in the Atlantic, retaining 10% of the world’s coral reefs and 12,000 marine species,” said Dr Philip Kramer, director of The Nature Conservancy’s Caribbean Program. “Continued investments in the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund, such as this generous support from the World Bank/GEF, are critical for putting the Caribbean on a path to a sustainable future.”

The CBF said the funds would be distributed to conservation trust funds being set up in Antigua and Barbuda, Grenada, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia and St Vincent and the Grenadines.

“The return on investments from the CBF endowment will be a sustainable source of funds that will help countries cover their costs for the management of protected area systems and other conservation needs,” said Yabanex Batista, CEO of the Caribbean Biodiversity Fund. “We are currently working on increasing the CBF capital and bringing more resources to further assist countries.”

The CBF is part of the Caribbean Challenge Initiative, which first launched in 2008.

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Google starts deleting search results in Europe after ruling

By Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai From Mashable

For Google in Europe, it’s time to forget. The search giant began removing search results on Thursday, following the controversial “Right to be Forgotten” ruling last month.

When searching for names using a localized search engine like or, the company displays a notice at the end of the page, saying that some search results “may have been removed.”

Google doesn’t indicate which individual links have been removed. And the notice is displayed for most names — not just those who have actually made a request “to be forgotten.”

Right to be Forgotten

The notice at the end of a search result on for Mario Costeja Gonzales, the Spaniard whose lawsuit led to the ruling that established the Right to be Forgotten in Europe.

“We’re showing this notice in Europe when a user searches for most names, not just pages that have been affected by a removal,” Google said in a FAQ.

In May, Europe’s top court ruled that netizens had the right to ask search engines to remove outdated and irrelevant information that is not in the public interest.

Google has already received more than 50,000 requests, which Europeans can submit via an online form, and the company has a significant backlog to process, according to Google’s European spokesperson Al Verney.

“Each request has to be assessed individually,” Verney said.

The search giant has also started to notify users who have requested links to be removed, The Wall Street Journal reports.

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Cuba calls for end to Puerto Rico’s colonial status

From Caribbean news Now

NEW YORK, USA (ACN) — Cuba reiterated on Monday at the United Nations its call for the end of the colonial status of Puerto Rico and for the materialization of that island’s right to self-determination and independence.

Cuban ambassador Rodolfo Reyes presented a new document on the issue at the UN Decolonization Committee by stressing that such prerogative has been recognized by the United Nations since 1960, when the international community proclaimed the need to put an end to colonialism in all its forms and manifestations.

The committee has adopted 32 resolutions and decisions urging Washington to assume its historic responsibility to favour a process that allows Puerto Ricans to enjoy their rights.

The initiative presented by Cuba and backed by Bolivia, Ecuador, Nicaragua and Venezuela, ratifies the Latin American and Caribbean nature of Puerto Rico and it demands the end of repression against Puerto Rican independence activists and the release of Puerto Rican political prisoners Oscar Lopez Rivera and Norberto Gonzalez Claudio.

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