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CARIBBEAN NEWS: December 13th – 19th, 2014

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FIRE ON CARIBBEAN CRUISE SHIP KILLS THREE—12/13/14
Two contractors and a crew member on a Caribbean cruise liner died after a fire broke out on the docked vessel in St. Lucia. The 656 passengers on the ship Oceania Insignia were evacuated, and the rest of the schedule cruise was cancelled due to the fire. The fire started in the engine room and was contained there.

FIRST CARIBBEAN NATIONAL ELECTED TO UN TRIBUNAL—12/14/14
The Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago, Kamla Persad-Bissessar, gave her congratulations to Deborah Thomas-Felix, who is currently the head of the nation’s Industrial Court, on her appointment as the first Caribbean jurist to have a position on the United Nations Appeals Tribunal. She received 103 of 156 votes available. The Tribunal includes seven judges and reviews appeals against judgments made by the UN Dispute Tribunal.

500,000 JOBS MAY BE LOST IN CARIBBEAN, LATIN AMERICA IN 2015—12/15/14
According to a report from the International Labor Organization (ILO), market forces will cause some 500,000 jobs to disappear from Latin American and Caribbean countries in 2015. The urban unemployment rate for the region may reach 6.3 percent, say researchers. According to Elizabeth Tinoco, regional director of the ILO, there are concerns relating to the creation of fewer jobs in spite of the fact that there continues to be low unemployment.

CARIBBEAN ARCHBISHOP LAUNCHES BOOK IN LONDON—12/16/14
Archbishop Robert Rivas of Castries traveled to London to launch his new book “How Beautiful the Valley.” The book is sponsored by the Constantinian Order and represents a compilation of years of work by the Archbishop as he photographed the values of Trinidad, St. Vincent and St. Lucia. The book contains stories, songs, and prayers in addition to the photographs, which document little-known areas of the region. The Archbishop is from Arouca, Trinidad,

UNITED STATES TO RE-ESTABLISH DIPLOMATIC TIES TO CUBA—12/17/14
The United States and Cuba have entered into an agreement to re-establish diplomatic relations. This mean open economic links and an increased travel by U.S. citizens to Cuba. The agreement represents a major change in U.S. policy towards a country that has been embargoed for more than 50 years. U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuban presidents Raul Castro held personal discussions by telephone in the first real talks between the countries’ leaders since 1961. Pope Francis was cited as having a large role in the change in diplomatic arrangements.

PROMOTERS IN GRENADA OPPOSE WORK PERMITS FOR PERFORMERS—12/18/14
Promoters in Grenada want the nation’s government to eliminate the need for work permits for those Caribbean artistes who are contracted to perform in the country. The major 16 promoters met with Brenda Hood, Grenada’s Culture Minister, to find ways to promote the creative industry in Grenada. The promoters say it is frustrating to promote events since Grenada is the only territory in the Caribbean that demands work permits from other Caribbean artistes who enter the nation to give performances.


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Written by Staff Writer