President congratulates baseball team
President calls for transparency
Danilo should run again according to poll
Ministry demolishes irrigation system in protected area
Electricity-generating barge to be moved from Ozama River
Exports to Commonwealth nations show a surplus 
Deputy Assistant Secretary Kenneth Merten visits
Lost hikers are found alive and well in El Seibo
Piantini neighbors on Hard Rock pulling out of city center
Money from confiscated assets goes to fight drugs
Calls for Blas Peralta to stay in jail
Drugs incinerated
Tsunami exercise on 21 March 2017
Flights cancelled due to snowstorm Stella
PR vs DR on Tuesday in WBC



President congratulates baseball team
Dominican President Danilo Medina has congratulated the Dominican Baseball team for having advanced to the second round of the World Baseball Championships with a win over Colombia on Sunday, 12 March 2017. 

Via his Twitter account, Medina said “Our Team is unstoppable! Now on to the quarterfinals! All of the Dominicans are proud of this new victory”.

The team, managed by Tony Pena defeated Colombia at Marlins Park in Miami and thus won all three of their games in the first round in Group C.

The team will now go to San Diego where the second round begins on Tuesday, 14 March 2017. 

http://almomento.net/medina-vuelve-a...olombia/297432


President calls for transparency
President Danilo Medina has called on all government officials to comply completely with the Law of Transparency and to be held accountable to the public for all of their work.

He also urged all of government agencies to update technologically so that they could comply with these tasks and responsibilities.

The call was made by Medina during a meeting at the Presidential Palace with administrators and directors of government agencies at the Presidential Palace. The government officials were meeting with the President to follow up on the planning process for government agencies for the next four years.  

http://www.listindiario.com/la-repub...-transparencia


Danilo should run again according to poll
According to an opinion poll carried out by Alfonso Cabrera and Associates, 93.3% of Dominicans who voted in 2016 for President Danilo Medina, would cast their vote again today for him, if the same set of presidential candidates were on the ballot. Some 5.5% said they would not vote for Medina, while 1.2% of those polled were undecided. 

Of those interviewed, 50.8% said they wanted Medina to be the candidate for the Dominican Liberation Party (PLD) in 2020, 25.5% preferred Leonel Fernandez, 10.4% Margarita Cedeño, 5.1% Reinaldo Pared Pérez, 4.7% Francisco Javier García, 1.2% others and 2.3% undecided. 

When asked if they believed Medina was protecting corrupt government officials, 55.4% said no, 37.6% said yes. 

The poll said that 60.4% of Dominicans believe that President Medina was sincere when he said in his State of the Nation speech on 27 February 2017 that there were no “sacred cows” and that those officials involved in corruption would be prosecuted.  28.4% of those polled felt that Medina would indeed shield government officials from prosecution, while 11.2% respondents were undecided.

The research was carried out from 28 February 28 to 4 March with a sample size of 2,400 interviews who voted in the last election. The margin of error was ±2.0%.

The 2015 Constitution bans President Danilo Medina from running for office again. This is the constitution that was pushed through Congress to enable President Danilo Medina to run for re-election in 2016. For Medina to run again, a second change to the Constitution would be necessary. 

The company did not reveal who had paid for the poll. 

The poll findings are revealed at a time when local groups are calling for an end to impunity for government corruption after two Brazilian companies have admitted in US courts they had paid bribes to Dominican government officials. Embraer, the Brazilian aircraft company, admitted in October 2016 to having paid bribes to Dominican officials to facilitate the sale of their planes in the Dominican Republic. Odebrecht, the Brazilian construction giant, admitted in December 2016 to having paid millions of dollars in bribes to secure construction contract work in the country.  

http://almomento.net/54-1-de-los-que...en-2020/297440


Ministry demolishes irrigation system in protected area
The Ministry of the Environment has removed around nine kilometers of irrigation pipe that served several large farms in Monte Llano, inside the limits of the Valle Nuevo National Park. 

According to a press release from the Ministry, 15 different irrigation systems, some with pipes as wide as six inches, were removed. This means that river water would no longer be diverted for agricultural use, thus increasing the flow in the Yuna River and its tributaries in the region.

The Ministry of Environment reports they are already seeing the results of the efforts to stopping farming in the protected area. Only three months after the ban, the Ministry says a significant increase in water volume can be seen in the levels of the Grande River and others in the area. 

The Ministry of Environment also reports removing tons of metal and plastic infrastructure from the area.

http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/2017...lle-nuevo.html
http://www.diariolibre.com/medioambi...uevo-BF6557300


Electricity-generating barge to be moved from Ozama River
The Ministry of the Environment has announced that it has suspended the renewal of the environmental license for Seaboard /Transcontinental Capital Corporation, a power-producing generator barge. The Ministry ordered the barge that is located on the eastern edge of the Ozama River be relocated to the other side of the river where it will cause less contamination.  The government has given the company six months to relocate the barge, after its license runs out on 21 March 2018.

The Ministry said that while the plant operates mostly with natural gas, it is also known that 5% of its fuel is diesel. River water is also used to cool the generator.  This water is then pumped back into the river. 

http://www.elcaribe.com.do/2017/03/1...-del-rio-ozama


Exports to Commonwealth nations show a surplus 
Fernando González Nicolas, president of the Commonwealth Round Table in the Dominican Republic, announced the Dominican Republic experienced a US$664 million trade surplus with Commonwealth countries in 2016. Exports were US$1.47 billion and imports US$782 million. 

González said that exports of Commonwealth countries form a conglomerate that would be the third largest trade partner of the country, after the United States and Haiti. González said that of the five main countries the Dominican Republic exports to three are members of the Commonwealth – Canada, India and Great Britain.  

González spoke on the World Commonwealth Day event held at the Torre Empresarial on Av. Sarasota with the participation of ambassadors and consuls from Commonwealth countries. 

The Commonwealth organization groups 52 countries that span Africa, Asia, the Americas, Europe and the Pacific. 

http://elnacional.com.do/dice-hubo-s...bio-comercial/


Deputy Assistant Secretary Kenneth Merten visits
The Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary and Haiti Special Coordinator, Kenneth Merten is visiting the country. The announcement was made by the US Embassy. The Embassy says he is visiting to make advances in the forming of alliances in the Western Hemisphere for regional economic stability. 

The US Embassy says he will meet with senior government officers and civil society groups to discuss trade, cooperation for strengthening of institutions and security, and joint development of the Dominican Republic and Haiti border areas. In Haiti, Merten will meet with international donors, senior government officers, and private sector leaders. 

Merten was appointed to the position on 20 January 2017 at the start of the Trump administration. He has been serving in the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs since August 17, 2015. As the Acting Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary, he has responsibility for Haiti, Canada, Caribbean Affairs and the Office of Policy, Planning and Coordination in the same bureau. 

A two-time Ambassador, he was the United States Ambassador to the Republic of Croatia, from 2012 to August 2015, and prior to that served as the United States Ambassador to Haiti from 2009 to July 2012. He also served as a Deputy Executive Secretary to US Secretary of State Clinton and earlier to US Secretary of State Rice. He was awarded the 2011 Ryan C. Crocker Award for Outstanding Leadership in Expeditionary Diplomacy for his extraordinary leadership in the wake of the 2010 Haiti earthquake. 

In serving as Ambassador to Haiti, Merten oversaw the United States Government’s on-the-ground efforts to provide immediate relief after the 2010 earthquake through a presence of 8,000 US military personnel as well as hundreds of other professionals drawn from many other US Government agencies. 

http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/2017...to-estado.html


Lost hikers are found alive and well in El Seibo
Around 28 hikers, who alerted authorities that they were lost on Sunday morning, 12 March 2017, in a heavily wooded mountain area of the La Jalda Waterfall National Park in El Seibo, were found by a brigade from the Ministry of Environment at 1am on Monday morning. 

With darkness closing in, the hikers called for help when it became obvious they could not find their way out the Park. The excursion was organized by two people known only as Leonelito and Alex.

After receiving calls from family members of the lost campers, Onny Johanna Constanzo, provincial director of the Ministry of Environment in El Seibo, sent out the search party. 

http://www.diariolibre.com/noticias/...alda-CE6556747


Piantini neighbors on Hard Rock pulling out of city center
Responsible and coherent was how neighborhood groups are calling the decision of developers of the Hard Rock Santo Domingo Hotel & Casino to cease the construction project at the corner Abraham Lincoln and Andrés Julio Aybar. The neighbors had brought legal action against the construction, arguing it violated many zoning regulations and would bring chaos to the residential and commercial area. National District Mayor David Collado broke the story of the company’s change of heart. The city government under Mayor Roberto Salcedo had authorized the construction. 

Carmen Alonzo, president of the Piantini neighborhood board that led the resistance to the project, said they do not oppose the construction of a hotel in the area as long as it complies with existing zoning regulations.

Hard Rock International in January 2016, had announced the construction of a 400-room, 40-floor hotel for Santo Domingo. The zoning laws stipulate the maximum limit for the area, including the planned underground parking, is 23 floors. The hotel would have also featured a casino that would have been double the size of any other casino in operation in Santo Domingo. 

As resistance to the project heated up, the company revised its proposal, saying that only 38 floors would be built, but which were still 15 floors more than what zoning allows for in the area. The hotel/hectare density for the area is 400 rooms/hectare versus the 1,333 rooms/hectare the developers had proposed. In addition, the developers were short 500 parking spots of the zoning requirements in their architectural plan. 

Hard Rock International has not yet issued a press release confirming the news released by Mayor David Collado. It is still unclear what the company will do with the location, and whether it will seek a new site in the city for the mega hotel construction. 


Money from confiscated assets goes to fight drugs
The confiscation of assets owned by drug dealers by the Dominican state has brought into government coffers over RD$669 million between June 2007 and August 2016.

Of these assets, as stipulated in law 72-02, 85% of their value is distributed among the National Drug Control Agency (DNCD), the National Drug Council (CND), the Attorney General’s Office and the National Police. The remaining 15% goes to 17 institutions dedicated to helping fight drug addiction.

The assets seized include funds from the sale of houses and apartments, a rice factory, cars, SUVs, jewelry and cash.

Those who had goods and assets confiscated included public figures such as Quirino Ernesto Paulino Castillo in 2011, 2012 and 2013, as well as Sobeida Felix Morel, part of the network of Jose David Figueroa Agosto in 2011 and 2012.

In 2011 assets were confiscated belonging to Mesa Beltre (El Gringo), and the Zapata Molett brothers. 

http://www.listindiario.com/la-repub...ones-al-estado


Calls for Blas Peralta to stay in jail
National District Prosecutor, Yeni Berenice Reynoso, has warned that she will not allow preventive custody to be lifted in the case of those on trial for the murder of the former rector of the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo (UASD) Mateo Aquino Febrillet, which took place on 11 March 2016.

She said that all of the delays and postponements in the case had been instigated by the lawyers of Blas Peralta, Rafael Herrera Pena, Geraldo Felix Bautista Mena and Franklin Alejandro Venegas Rivas, which is why proceedings in the case had been postponed back 14 times for the preliminary hearing.

Reynoso spoke on Thursday 16 March. Those accused have now completed one year in jail on remand as handed down by Judge José Alejandro Vargas. She asked them to be kept in jail until the trial is over as requested by the widow and daughter of the deceased.

However, yesterday, Monday 13 March, the lawyer of Blas Peralta said that as the year of coercive measures comes to an end this week, he would possibly request that his client be released from jail. He acknowledged, nevertheless, that while the Dominican Penal Code says that preventive custody in jail should not last longer than 12 months, this does not automatically mean the accused would be released at the time.

http://www.listindiario.com/la-repub...erte-febrillet


Drugs incinerated
The Central Anti Narcotics Division (DICAN) of the National Police has confiscated 55 kilos of the drugs out of the 78 kilos which was incinerated by the Attorney General’s office which is 72% of the drugs confiscated last week, and the National Drug Control Agency (DNCD) confiscated the other 22 kilos. 

The drugs were confiscated between 27 February and 5 March, mostly marijuana (64 kilos for 82.4 %) followed by cocaine (13.5 kilos for 17.3%); crack (118 grams for 0.15%); heroin (88 grams for 0.09%) and ecstasy (18 grams for 0.02%).  

The drugs were confiscated from the provinces of Elias Pina, Santo Domingo, Santiago, La Romana, San Juan, National District, La Vega, Duarte, San Cristobal, Pedernales, Monseñor Nouel (Bonao), Espaillat, San Jose de Ocoa, Azua, San Pedro de Macoris, Peravia, Puerto Plata, Maria Trinidad Sanchez, Samana, Valverde, Hato Mayor, Sanchez Ramirez, and Hermanas Mirabal.

No drugs were seized during the period indicated in Independencia, Monte Plata, La Altagracia, Barahona, El Seibo, Dajabon, Montecristi, Santiago Rodriguez and Bahoruco.

http://eldia.com.do/dican-decomiso-5...amos-de-droga/


Tsunami exercise on 21 March 2017
The Intergovernmental Coordination Group for the Tsunami and other Coastal Hazards Warnings in the Caribbean announced they will be going ahead with the Caribe Wave 2017 exercise in the Caribbean on 21 March 2017. 

The initial mock alert for the three scenarios will be issued by the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC), which is the CARIBE-EWS Tsunami Service Provider, on March 21, 2017 at 1400 UTC and will be disseminated over all its standard broadcast channels.

The exercise seeks to test the Tsunami response capacity in the Caribbean. The event has the backing of the Intergovernmental Oceanic Commission of the UNESCO. 

In the past five centuries there have been 75 tsunamis in the Caribbean, or about 10% of those that have happened worldwide, causing 3,500 deaths. The demographic explosion and large flows of tourists make the Caribbean region even more vulnerable to tsunamis today. 

The Tsunami Exercise Caribe Wave 17 will have three scenarios: Santiago de Cuba, Costa-Rica and Northeastern Antilles. All scenarios will start, with one mock alert, at 1400 UTC (time of the earthquake) and the 1st message for each of the three scenarios will be 5 minutes later (1405 UTC).

For Caribe Wave 2017 three different scenarios will be simulated. Each country will choose the one that best fits their objectives. The first scenario simulates a magnitude 7.9 earthquake generated off the Caribbean coast of Costa Rica. The second scenario is an 8.2 magnitude earthquake off the Southeastern coast of Cuba. The third scenario is a magnitude 8.5 earthquake Northeast of the Lesser Antilles.

http://www.tsunamizone.org/caribewave/
http://www.weather.gov/ctwp/


Flights cancelled due to snowstorm Stella
Due to snowstorm Stella that will affect the northeast of the United States on Tuesday 14 March 2017, two airlines have cancelled 13 flights both on Monday 13 and Tuesday 14 March, to and from the cities of New York and Boston and Las Americas International Airport and Gregorio Luperon in Puerto Plata. 

According to a communication from Aerodom that operates both airports, the cancelled flights yesterday, Monday, were 810 from Jet Blue and 885 and 947 from Delta all from Las Americas to New York.

Today, Tuesday, 14 March 2017, the JetBlue flights 829 and 830 to Boston are cancelled as are flights 509, 409, 09, 310, 410 and 510 to and from New York. 
At Gregorio Luperon International, JetBlue Airways 627 and 1528 to and from New York are cancelled today.

Aerodom recommends anyone flying to the north east of the United States to contact their airline to verify the status of their flight.

http://www.listindiario.com/la-repub...menta-de-nieve


PR vs DR on Tuesday in WBC
Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, the playoff teams in the 2013 World Baseball Championships, will have a go at each other at 9pm ET on Tuesday, 14 March 2017 from San Diego’s Petco Park. Both teams swept all their three games played in the opening divisions of the World Baseball Classic. 

The Dominican team will be flying in from Miami where it had played in Pool C; the Puerto Ricans will cross the border from Mexico after playing in Pool D. 

Twins right-hander Ervin Santana will be pitching for the defending champs Team DR. 

"We have to face the best teams, and definitely Dominican is one of them," Puerto Rico manager Edwin Rodriguez said. "We're ready for them, and I'm sure they also have been watching us, too, in the same way we've been watching them. It's going to be a great game."

http://m.mlb.com/news/article/219109...an-win-wbc-17/

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http://www.dr1.com/calendar


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