DR1 Daily News next update on Monday
Venezuelan government and opposition leaders meet in Santo Domingo
Porsche dealership closed by DGII
Castillo Pantaleón advises caution before DR takes on civil registry responsibilities for Haiti
Dominican Republic: a bad place to die
Crops destroyed in west Puerto Plata province
Dominicans lose everything in St. Martin
Marlin Martinez was prepared to pay a million pesos to dispose of body
Violence against women on the rise
Bon ice cream old-fashioned marriage proposal goes viral

DR1 Daily News next update on Monday
The next DR1 Daily News update will be published on Monday, 18 September 2017. The Monday issue will compile headline news for the previous Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Breaking news can be followed 24/7 in the Forums. See the Forum at http://www.dr1.com

Venezuelan government and opposition leaders meet in Santo Domingo
Former Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Zapatero and Dominican President Danilo Medina invited both sides to restart dialogue in the Caribbean nation. The Venezuelan government and the country’s opposition have begun a new round of talks in Santo Domingo, where the lead government representative has announced an agreement is close.

Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro appointed Jorge Rodriguez, mayor of Caracas’ Libertador municipality, to represent him along with his Foreign Minister Delcy Rodríguez and Venezuelan OAS ambassador Roy Chaderton Matos.

Jorge Rodríguez told the press he is optimistic that the Venezuelan government and the opposition will reach an agreement on key points during the talks in Santo Domingo that are moderated by former President of Spain, Jose Luis Zapatero, and Dominican President Danilo Medina.

Delcy Rodríguez is also president of the National Constituent Assembly. She told the press she expects the talks to produce a “peaceful coexistence”. “We have come here with a flag of peace,” she told the press.

Nevertheless, the Democratic Unity Table (MUD) alliance in Venezuela denied the reopening of negotiations with the government. Nevertheless, MUD agreed to send a delegation to meet with President Danilo Medina and present the objectives of their national democratic fight. Julio Borges, president of the National Assembly, is leading the opposition at the talks. MUD issued a note detailing the coalition’s requirements for any talks with the Maduro administration. As reported, representing the opposition are deputies Eudoro González and Luis Florido and political leaders Gustavo Velásquez and Timoteo Zambrano, Manuel Rosales and Vicente Díaz who also accepted to meet with President Medina.

Among the conditions set by the opposition is the announcement of a complete electoral schedule, including presidential election; the freeing of political prisoners; and lifting of detentions and restrictions on opposition members, recognition of the elected National Assembly, and immediate action to alleviate the economic and social crisis of the country. We reaffirm to Danilo Medina and Antonio Guterres that there will be no talks until these conditions are met and there is international brokering, said Borges.

UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres welcomed the movement in the talks. His office said in a statement: “(We) encourage the Venezuelan political actors to seize this opportunity. The situation in Venezuela requires a political solution based on dialogue and compromise between the government and the opposition to ensure peaceful coexistence among all Venezuelans.”

In Santo Domingo on Wednesday, 13 September 2017, Zapatero met with Foreign Minister Miguel Vargas and both called for urgent dialogue in Venezuela.

As reported in local media, on the same day, the former President of Spain, also met with former President Leonel Fernández at the Fundación Global Democracia y Desarrollo (Funglode), the Fernandez think tank. Fernandez has also served as a mediator in the talks between Maduro and the opposition in Venezuela.


Porsche dealership closed by DGII
The Tax Agency (DGII) has closed the company Porsche Center in Santo Domingo owned by the family of the deceased politician Jacinto B. Peynado Garrigosa. On the entrance to the business, located in Bolivar Avenue with Lincoln, the DGII affixed a notice saying closed.
Neither the DGII nor company representatives have given any explanation

Castillo Pantaleón advises caution before DR takes on civil registry responsibilities for Haiti
Lawyer Juan Miguel Castillo Pantaleón alerted the DR should not finance the civil registry for Haiti, as recently proposed the president of the Central Electoral Board (JCE), Julio Castaños Guzmán. Castillo said that while the intention is good it could be inconvenient for the Dominican Republic, and may set a troubling precedent.

He alerted against the Dominican government taking on responsibility to identify and document citizens of another country. “That is an obligation of the corresponding state,” he stressed. He said the Dominican government must avoid making commitments and taking on responsibilities that may be construed as a Dominican state driven solution to the structural problems that affect the neighboring country.

He said the announcement is even less timely when the Haitian government has just announced it is more than doubling the cost of documentation in Haiti that should lead to an even higher level of undocumented persons.


Dominican Republic: a bad place to die
According to a study by Dr. Virginia Navarro, presented at the 7th Scientific Journal of the Ney Arias Lora Hospital, the Dominican Republic is ranked after Mexico, Chile and Argentina in palliative care. Navarro presented the study “Comparative Analysis between Spain and 12 Latin American Countries Regarding Final Life Stages Care and Donation of Organs and Tissues” within the framework of the conference.

Navarro conducted a comparative study of different countries to look at the advantages and disadvantages of national health concentrating on provisions for palliative care during the final stages of life. She said the data was tabulated to create the Quality of Death Index published by the Economist Intelligence Unit that encompasses 80 countries. The DR was ranked the worst country for palliative care in the 2015 Quality of Death Index.

The study factors that directly influenced the bad local ranking were deficient policy of palliative care, deficient focus on treatment in the final stages of life, lack of legislation, insufficient resources and lack of knowledge on the subject by health professionals. She also highlighted the lack of adequate infrastructure and lack of beds in intensive care units.

Dr. Navarro observed that palliative care in the country is primarily directed to cancer patients. She said there are also no efficient policies for organ donations, which she said leads to trafficking in organs and mentioned the case of the child Carla Massiel, being investigated by the judiciary.


Crops destroyed in west Puerto Plata province
Following Hurricane Irma, reports are of major losses in agricultural crops in the municipalities of Luperón, Villa Isabela and other parts in the west of Puerto Plata province due to destructive winds and intense rains.

The wind gusts destroyed entire plantations of plantains and bananas in the communities of Belloso, Ranchito de Los Vargas, Las Paredes, Martín Alonzo, La Sabana, Los Arquies, Las Culebras, Las Maras, and others in Luperón.
Farmer Evelio Tavares, said that not a single plantain tree was left standing in Ranchito de Los Vargas.

Puerto Plata senator José Ignacio Paliza toured the area and said that just in the municipal district of Belloso around 8,000 tareas of plantains and bananas had been destroyed.

He asked the government, especially the Ministry of Agriculture and the Special Fund for the Development of Agriculture to help the affected producers.


Dominicans lose everything in St. Martin
Dominicans who had been living on the eastern Caribbean island of St. Martin for 10, 15 and even 30 years have been returning to the Dominican Republic over the last two days, brought back by the Pawa Dominicana airline. They confirmed that they have lost everything due to Hurricane Irma.

Octavio Orlando, master builder and shopkeeper said that his 30 years work on the island has been reduced to nothing, he was left with only the clothes on his back. He gave thanks to Pawa Dominicana for sending planes to rescue them. Pawa Dominicana has evacuated 295 Dominicans in two flights to St. Martin.

He said that there was nothing left in St. Martin, no electricity, no water, no food and no medicines and that the island was completely destroyed.


Mother of Emely Peguero says the fight for justice continues
The mother of Emely Peguero Polanco, the murdered 16-year old pregnant teenager, has assured she will not rest until all of those involved in the death of her daughter have been arrested and brought to justice.

Adalgisa Polanco, the deceased’s mother, said that she was pleased with the work of the authorities so far on the case, and identified with other crimes across the country involving minors.

She spoke when participating in an activity of the Movement for Life Without Violence, which took place, Tuesday 13 September 2017 at the Juan Pablo Duarte Park in Santiago.

The protesters were carrying nine photographs of minors who have died recently. The protestors complained that the Dominican state was indifferent to acts of infantile violence and that the crime against Emely Peguero should become exemplary in ensuring justice for cases such as this.


Marlin Martinez was prepared to pay a million pesos to dispose of body
According to Simón Bolívar Ureña Almánzar (Boli o Machú), in his statement to the Public Prosecution agency in San Francisco de Macorís, Duarte province, Marlin Martínez, the mother of Marlon Martínez, the lead suspect in the murder of pregnant teenager Emely Peguero, was prepared to pay between RD$600,000 and RD$1,000,000 to ensure that the body of the teenager not be found.

Ureña Almánzar was arrested on suspicion of participating in the hiding of the body and maintained that he combed slums in Moca with Marlon on the orders of his mother to find someone to get rid of the body. They were not able to find anyone and he said that Marlon took on the task instead.

He said that he and Marlon drove to where the body had originally been dumped, put it into the pickup and then drove to a farm in Los Algarrobos where Marlon moved the body into the trunk of his car, and Boli said he then went home.


Violence against women on the rise
The Gender Committee of Mujercoop has complained that violence against women has increased, as well as cruelty against woman, given the number of victims so far this year.

Anaisa Pérez and Eufracia Gómez Morillo, officials of Mujercoop, warned that so far this year, compared to the same period last year (up to 30 August) the number of women assassinated had increased by 21% according to their figures.

In a press conference they said that the problem was not simply the increase in the number of females murdered, the serious issue was that acts of cruelty and sadism have increased. They also highlighted the unethical use of pictures of the victims especially in social media.
Nevertheless, they said that the authorities only act to resolve the crimes when the case was circulated on social media and other forms of media.

Mujercoop condemns these crimes and called on the Public Prosecution authorities to work together with the Ministry for Women and social organizations to develop a national strategy against gender violence.


Bon ice cream old-fashioned marriage proposal goes viral
Venezuelan Juan Manuel Ávila is a Bon ice cream motorized delivery boy and motocycle taxi. His girlfriend is 20-year old Yaritza Alexandra Acosta is an ice cream store vendor at the Moreno family Bon ice cream shop in the La Sirena shopping mall located in Las Caobas in northern Santo Domingo. On Wednesday, 13 September 2017, her birthday, boyfriend Avila decided it was time to celebrate her birthday by asking her to marry him.

His pals at work backed him up all the way, helped him buy cake and red roses and then taped the emotional surprise marriage proposal and posted it online for all to share. Avila, encouraged by his pals, would propose the old fashioned way, kneeling down to ask for her hand. His pals wouldn’t stop asking for kisses until they heard the big “yes!” from Yaritza, and all is captured in the video.

The couple’s friends were prompt to make good on important wedding gifts, including house furniture from La Curacao store. And Bon Ice Cream company had promised the honeymoon trip would be on them. And of course, the ice cream for the wedding celebration would be on the house. Others gifts include the bathing suit and beachgoer clothes for when Avila goes to the beach resort for the honeymoon.

The happiness of the couple and friends has been spreading. Even El Torito (Hector Acosta), the merengue band leader, has offered to sing free at the wedding. La Sirena shopping mall announced they would pick up the tab of the young couple’s monthly shopping bill for a year.

Media reports that Avila migrated with his mother to the Dominican Republic 14 months ago, fleeing from the difficult situation in Venezuela.