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Daily News - 02 December 1999

DR calls for special and differential treatment for developing countries
The Dominican Republic, which presides the African, Caribbean and Pacific group of nations, requested before the World Trade Organization Ministerial meeting in Seattle the elimination of subsidies to agriculture by developed countries, and special and differential treatment for the developing economies. ACP nations are seeking a waiver so that the European Union can maintain the commercial preferences granted to the 71 member states of the block under the Lome IV Convention that ends in February 2000. The DR wants the WTO to apply to agriculture the same rules that govern other goods. Head of the Dominican delegation to the Seattle Ministerial Conference, Luis Manuel Bonetti requested that the WTO insure there be coherence between national policies and multilateral commitments assumed by all countries.
For more information on developing countries point of view, as seen by the WTO, see http://heva.wto-ministerial.org/english/about_e/05impl_e.htm
For more on the Dominican delegation, see www.dr1.com/daily/news112999.shtml

It's cold!
With 20 days to go before the official start of winter, residents in the DR, especially in Santo Domingo and Santiago, are dusting off their sweaters and jackets as temperatures drop from the 90s and 80s (30s and 20s Celsius) to the 70s-60s (20s and teens Celsius). Last night winds whistled the trees and morning temperatures unexpectedly dropped to the 60s (20 degrees Celsius) in Santo Domingo. The Weather Department says a cold front is passing by. Noontime temperatures barely increased to 25C (77F), which is unusual for this time of the year. Cool temperatures usually don't start until the end of December. 1999 has been a year of irregular weather throughout the Caribbean in general. Thus it is not strange that the "winter" season may begin a month earlier. The Weather Department reports that in Santiago de los Caballeros, temperatures of 18 degrees were reported. Reports from mountain towns show temperatures in the 50s (13, 11 and 9 degrees Celsius).

Priorities of the new DR ambassador to the US
Roberto Saladín, the new Dominican ambassador to the United States, told the Listín Diario which will be his priorities. These are:
1. Approval by the US Congress of the textile parity bill.
2. Maintain cooperation in regards to drug trafficking and money laundering, harmonization of DR laws with agreements signed with the World Trade Organization, and regarding intellectual property.
3. Support efforts of the Dominican Diaspora to increase the political influence of Dominicans living in the US, primarily in New York City. Support the efforts of the Dominican American Round Table and Dominicans 2000.
4. Attract investments for the different sectors of the Dominican economy.
5. Promote the Cyberpark.
6. Attract US tourists.
7. Seek US cooperation for health and education and judicial matters.
Roberto Bernardo Saladín Selín was born in Santo Domingo on 23 July 1936. He is married to Bertha Nin de Saladín and has had six children (Yovanka, Christopher, Horacio, Pedro Julián, Bertha Atiles and Roberto Alejandro). He is a graduate in law from the Universidad Autónoma de Santo Domingo. He has been Minister of Finances, Governor of the Central Bank, administrator of the Banco de Reservas, founder and executive director of the Dominican Center for the Promotion of Exports, and counselor minister at the DR Embassy in Germany.

Lack of ID papers worsens case of Haitians in DR
El Caribe newspaper points out that the Dominican government plan to provide identification to an estimated 300,000 Haitian agriculture worker has met with serious difficulties in its implementation. Most Haitians do not have a name or say they do not know what it is, are not registered in their country, and have no identification documents whatsoever, or reject receiving the status of temporary workers preferring to attempt to permanently reside in the country.
Miguel Melo, former president of the committee of coffee of the Junta Agroempresarial Dominicana (JAD), the director of Migration, Danilo Diaz Vizcaino and the Deputy Minister of Interior and Police Manuel Tapia Cunillera, concur the lack of identity of the indigent migrants presents extra difficulties to Dominican authorities. Tapia Cunillera said that 99% of those working in farm areas have no identification documents. In Haiti, only a very small minority of the population has identification papers.
Dominican government has requested that the Haitian government provide identity cards to its citizens. The European Union has offered to fund this exercise.

DR and Haiti meet to discuss migration issues
The Ministers of Foreign Relations of the DR and Haiti met yesterday in Santo Domingo for a new round of migration issue discussions. Minister of Foreign Relations Eduardo Latorre urged Dominicans and Haitians to "not allow themselves to be overtaken by voices and insensible media that want instantaneous solutions."
He said it is a duty of both nations to assume with responsibility the obligations, without inherence of any kind.
Latorre again stressed that the migration of Haitians to the DR is the result of the differences in the levels of development of the two countries. People will always migrate to where there are more job and welfare opportunities.
According to a report in El Siglo, Haiti presented a list of 14 requests. Haiti requests that the DR grant refugee status to illegal Haitian migrants. This was rejected by the Dominican negotiators on grounds that there is not a state of war between both countries. The DR agreed to not separate families at the time of deporting Haitians.

President Fernández to campaign for PLD candidate
President Leonel Fernández said he will campaign in favor of Danilo Medina, the candidate for the ruling Partido de la Liberación Dominicana. He said his endorsing and actively supporting the candidacy of Medina, while in office, does not violate any law. Fernández said that President of Uruguay Julio Maria Sanguinetti campaigned for the official party candidate Jorge Batlle, and President Bill Clinton has supported the candidacy of Vice President Al Gore.

Renew your passport at the Las Americas Airport
The Department of Passports has installed a booth at the Las Americas International Airport to assist expatriate Dominicans who would like to renew their passports during their visit to the DR. Raul Hernández, director of the Department of Passports, said the passengers can renew their passports while waiting for their luggage to unload from the plane. The booth is located within the customs department of the airport. Two-year renewals are going for US$40, four years US$60 and six years US$80. Those that want to pay in pesos, can use the passport renewal booth on the second floor of the terminal.

Air France Concorde visits
An Air France Concorde landed at noon in Santo Domingo, en route from Havana, Cuba. The supersonic jet will remain at Las Americas International Airport until Saturday at 10 am when it will continue on to Lima, Peru. This is the third time a Concorde visits. The first time, in 1992, it was chartered by a group of German tourists. The second time, in 1997, it was chartered by a group of Americans that sought to break the Guinness Book 24-hour around-the-world record. The Air France press release did not explain who has chartered the plane this time.

131 Dominicans on Major League rosters
Bienvenido Rojas, sports editor of El Siglo, says that there will be 131 Dominicans on the 28 rosters of Major League teams in the 2000 season. Of these, 58 are pitchers. The Dominican presence is the largest after that of the United States. There are more Dominicans than Canadians, Puerto Ricans, Cubans, Mexicans, Venezuelans, Japanese, Chinese or Koreans. The Marlins (Florida) is the team with the most Dominicans (11), followed by the Toronto Blue Jays with eight players.

President Fernández decorates Pedro Martínez
President Leonel Fernández decorated Dominican pitcher Pedro Martínez with the order of Duarte, Sánchez and Mella, in the grade of "gran oficial". The star pitcher of the Boston Red Sox won the Cy Young award this year, after winning 23 games and only losing four. This was Martínez's second consecutive Cy Young.

Christmas in the Colonial City
"Navidad 99" is the celebration of Christmas organized by the Ayuntamiento de Santo Domingo (city municipality), Secretaría de Turismo (ministry of tourism), Comisión de Monumentos (historic monuments commission), Oficina de Patrimonio Cultural (office of cultural heritage), and the Patronato de la Ciudad Colonial (board of the colonial city).
Activities start today, Wednesday, 1 December and continue all month long. Most of the events take place at the Parque Colón (Isabel la Católica corner Conde), the Patronato de la Ciudad Colonial (Isabel la Católica 103) or the Palacio Consistorial (Arz. Meriño corner Conde), Cathedral of Santo Domingo (Arz. Meriño corner Arz. Nouel), Capilla de los Remedios (Calle Las Damas corner Mercedes).
The first week's schedule is as follows:

Thursday, 2 December
6 pm. Christmas traditions. Exhibition of Dominican Christmas Traditions. Palacio Consistorial.
7:30 p. Ileana Reynoso Concert. Parque Colón.
8 pm. Dominican Theater Festival. Palacio Consistorial.
8:30 pm. Dominican Christmas Concert. Francois Bahuaud, director, soprano Ivonne Haza, Victor Mitrov, invited trumpet player. Patronato de la Ciudad Colonial.

Friday, 3 December.
6 pm. Christmas Sunsets. Concert with the Music Band of the Firemen. Parque Colón.
6 pm. Presentation of Children's Workshops. Municipality of Santo Domingo. Palacio Consistorial.
7:30 pm. Concert of the National Choir. Fernando Geraldes. Parque Colón.
8 pm. Christmas Cinema. Plazoleta de Regina, Padre Billini corner José Reyes.
8 pm. Christmas Tree ceremony of the Santa Barbara neighborhood. Plazoleta de Santa Barbara, Isabel la Catolica corner Av. España.
8:30 pm. Grupo Ensemble Chalumeau Concert. Maestro Roberto Medina Rios, conductor. Parque Colón.

Saturday, 4 December.
6 am Mañanitas (Christmas caroling). Carmen neighborhood group. The singers leave from Calle Sánchez 112.
3 pm. How to make a nativity scene. Workshop for children. Patronato de la Ciudad Colonial.
5:30 pm. Puppets in the park. Presentation of "La Casita de Doña Pulga," by the Teatro Capuchín. Patronato de la Ciudad Colonial and Adoti. Parque Colón.
7 pm. Opening of the exhibition of Dominican nativity scenes. Palacio Consistorial.
8 pm. Exhibition of nativity scenes (open through 7 January). Capilla de los Remedios.l
8:30 pm. Presentation of the Folklore Ballet of the Ministry of Tourism. Frank Usero, director. Parque Colón.

Sunday, 5 December
9 am. Opening of the nativity scene by famous Dominican sculptor Antonio Prats Ventós at the Cathedral of Santo Domingo. It will remain open through 9 January.
7:30 pm. Presentation of "Sangre Mulata" directed by Virgilio López. Parque Colón.
8:30 pm. Christmas Concert. Municipal Choir, directed by Rafael Campos. Parque Colón.

Monday, 6 December
5:30 pm. Christmas Sunsets. Concert by the Navy Music Band. Parque Colón.
8 pm. Banda 25 presentation sponsored by the Municipality of Santo Domingo. Parque Colón.
9 pm. Christmas Festival. Concert by Soprano Ivonne Haza. Palacio Consistorial.

Tuesday, 7 December.
6 pm. Christmas Sunsets. La Salle School Choir, directed by Jose Cueli. Parque Colón.
8 pm. Xiomara Fortuna in Concert presented by the Municipality of Santo Domingo. Parque Colón.
9 pm. Concert for piano and violin. Olga Voigt and Zvedana de Tavar, Palacio Consistorial.
8. pm. Christmas caroling. Board of neighbors
from San Lázaro. Singers leave from Parque Colón.

Wednesday, 8 December
5:30 pm. Christmas Sunsets. Concert by the Music Band of the Army.
8 pm. Carlos Alfredo Fatule in Concert sponsored by the Municipality of Santo Domingo. Parque Colón.
8 pm. "Gloria a Dios", presentation of the choir of the Estudio Diná music school. Convent of Santo Domingo. Padre Billini corner Hostos street.
9 pm. Concert of the Marianela Sánchez children's choir. Palacio Consistorial.
9 pm. Christmas caroling by the neighbors of Regina. Leaving from the Parque Colón.

Peace Corps arts and crafts fair
Members of the US Peace Corps will be holding their traditional arts and crafts fair. It will take place, Sunday, 5 December at the headquarters of the Peace Corps in Santo Domingo at Bolívar 451 corner Félix María del Monte street in Gazcue. Arts and crafts from all throughout the country will be exhibited.
For more information, Tel. 685-4101.

Winter baseball weekend games and standing
Thursday, 2 December 1999
Santo Domingo: Aguilas vs. Escogido
San Francisco de Macorís: Estrellas vs. Pollos

Friday, 3 December 1999
Santiago: Escogido vs. Aguilas
San Pedro de Macorís: Licey vs. Estrellas

Saturday, 4 December 1999
Santo Domingo: Aguilas vs. Licey
San Pedro de Macorís: Pollos vs. Estrellas

Sunday, 5 December 1999
5 pm game Santo Domingo: Licey vs. Escogido
8 pm Santo Domingo: Licey vs. Escogido
8 pm Santiago: Pollos vs. Aguilas

Team standing as of Thursday, 2 December 1999:
Leones del Escogido 19-7 (.731)
Aguilas Cibaeñas 16-19 (.615) ­2.5 game
Estrellas Orientales 13-14 (.481) ­6.5 games
Tigres del Licey 9-17 (.346), -10 games
Pollos del Cibao 8-17 (.320) ­10.5 games

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