AREQUIPA RECIEVED 355 THOUSAND TOURISTS DURING THE FIRST SIX MONTHS OF THE YEAR
The Southern Department of Arequipa received around 355 thousand tourists during the first six months of the year, which equals the figures of last year. Of the total of visitors to nthe area 280 thousand were Peruvians and 75 thousand were foreigners. Among the overseas visitors the majority were Spaniards, French and Germans, while the majority of Peruvians that visited the city of Arequipa and the World famous Colca Valley were from Lima. The City of Arequipa itself, with its imposing volcano Misti, its monumental Colonial buildings, including the Santa Catalina Monastery and its Inca remains, including the famous "Juanita" Ice Maiden, together with its bucolic countryside, its excellent cuisine and the above mentioned Colca Valley make up its major attractions.
THE PARACAS NATIONAL RESERVE WILL RECEIVE NEW INFRASTRUCTURE
The Reserva Nacional de Paracas National Reserve, which was hit by the earthquake that struck the Ica Pisco area on August 15th , 2007 will be implemented with no less than 14 new infrastructure projects for a total value of over 800,000 USD. The National Reserve, which saw two of its major attractions plummet into the sea during the earthquake, namely the so called Cathedral and the Monks, both scenic rock bridge formation bridges. The Paracas National Reserve is located in the area of Ica, about 250 kms South of Lima and has an extension of 335 thousand hectares, out of which about 200 thousand encompass areas of the Pacific Ocean, making it the only protected area in Peru that includes the Ocean. Many tourists visit the area to tour the world famous Ballestas Islands with their Fur Seal and Sea Lion Rookeries.
IN 2007, PERUVIANS LIVING IN THE UNITED STATES WIRED BETWEEN $1.6 AND $1.8 BILLION TO FAMILY MEMBERS IN PERU
The results of a two-month survey, conducted between November and December 2007 by twelve Peruvian consulates across the United States, were presented this week by Talavera during a conference attended by Peruvian entrepreneurs and professionals in Washington D.C. According to Talavera, approximately 66.5 percent of the Peruvians living in the U.S., mostly illegal aliens, sent money to Peru in 2007, while 27.6 percent, most of whom are legal residents or US citizens, did not. “This is because those that are legal residents have, in many cases, brought their families. And this is why they don’t have to continue sending money” said Talavera. The sums wired will continue to be significant, but there could be a noticeable drop in 2008 due to the recession in the United States, the consul said. The consul reported that there are currently 935,855 Peruvians living in the United States, 140.147 of who have a DNI, or National Identification Card, and are registered to vote in Peruvian elections. The largest Peruvian immigrant populations are located in Miami, New York, Los Angeles and Patterson, New Jersey.
PRESIDENT ALAN GARCIA SIGNED AN ACCORD WITH HIS COLOMBIAN AND BRAZILIAN COUNTERPARTS SUNDAY TO REINFORCE SURVEILLANCE OF THE AMAZON REGION’S RIVERS
In order to combat the illegal traffic of arms and drugs and rebel groups such as Colombia’s FARC guerrillas, the three countries signed an agreement last Sunday regarding common military vigilance of their common Amazon borders. “This tri-national action in the Amazonian jungle rivers will bolster our work in this very important territory and prevent it from becoming a zone where illegal crops are cultivated and arms are trafficked,” said Garcia. The pact, which includes Brazilian air and satellite monitoring of the region’s rivers, was signed by Garcia, Colombian President Alvaro Uribe and Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, in the Colombian jungle border city of Leticia. This joint effort is extremely important, according to Colombian Defence Minister, Juan Manuel Santos, because the rivers will become the highways of tomorrow for the guerrillas, drug traffickers and arms dealers. Before the private meeting, the presidents were greeted by Colombian singing sensation Shakira, who led an international day of protest demanding the release of hostages taken by Colombia’s FARC. The “Day against kidnapping,” which coincided with Colombia’s Independence Day, was celebrated throughout Colombia and via 17 Colombian embassies around the world. In Lima, a march in the district of Miraflores coincided with the annual peace march held in commemoration of the car bomb attack by Sendero Luminoso insurgents in July 1992.
PERU OPENS PARACAS EXHIBITION IN PARIS
The exhibition, "Paracas, Undiscovered Treasures From Ancient Peru" was opened at the Quai Branly Museum in Paris. Well-known cultural artists and workers, representatives of French public organisations, journalists and students took part in the opening ceremony. The exhibition features 46 funerary robes from Paracas necropolis period, which were kept at the Peruvian Museum of Archeology, Anthropology and History. The restoration process of these pieces was funded by support from the French government.
Former General Secretary of the United Nations, Javier Perez de Cuéllar, and the Member of the French National Assembly, Former French Minister of Culture and Minister of Education, Jack Langwere, were present at the opening ceremony along with many other distinguished personalities of the academic and cultural world of Paris. The French media qualifies the Paracas exhibition as an “exceptional” work. This is the first time that the world can see the cultural heritage of the ancient Peru. The museum is particularly proud to present these textiles, which are rarely allowed to leave Peru because of their great aesthetic and scientific value and their extreme fragility.
UNCONTACTED INDIANS REPORTEDLY SEEN BY OIL CREWS IN THE PERUVIAN AMAZON
AIDESEP, the National Association of Indigenous People from the Peruvian Amazon claims that so called voluntarily isolated or uncontacted indigenous people were sighted on two different occasions by oil workers close to the border to Ecuador. The workers were from the company Global - a sub contractor exploration company of the Spanish Repsol - YPF an integrated Oil and Gas Company, which operates in over 30 countries around the globe, occupying a place among ten of the largest private oil companies in the world. On at least two different occasions two individuals of uncontacted indigenous people were seen crossing the seismic lines located around 15 to 20 kms from the Ecuadorean border. The sightings were brief and at a distance but they took place in an area where Repsol YPF company lawyers had claimed that there was no presence of uncontacted indigenous people. In an apparent try at covering up the incidents they were not officially reported by the company.
THE ELECTION OF MACHU PICCHU AS ONE OF THE NEW SEVEN MAN MADE WONDERS IN THE WORLD HAS GENERATED SURGE IN NUMBER OF VISITORS.
The election of the Citadel of Machu Picchu as one of the Seven Wonders of the Modern World, increased the influx of visitors to the Sanctuary by 10 percent, is reckoned by the local authorities. At the start of 2007 the authorities has estimated a natural increase of ten percent over 2006 figures, but with the July distinction, by the end of the year 2007, more than twenty percent more visitors had arrived, thus increasing the numbers by almost ten percent, which is thought to be a fall out effect from the distinction of being named one of the Seven Man Made Wonders of the World. Thus, during 2007 more than 900 thousand visitors were received in Machu Picchu and the numbers for 2008 seem to be increasing even more. Earlier this year the UNESCO accepted the Peruvian Authorities Report regarding the observations UNESCO had raised regarding the vulnerability and the mitigating efforts carried out by the Peruvians to allow the Inca Citadel to remain as a Mankind’s Cultural Heritage site. Amongst the worries by UNESCO, was the number of yearly visitors.
YOU HAVE NEVER SEEN A GOOD LUCK CHARM LIKE THE E’KEKO!
Have you ever wondered about those sometimes garishly painted usually small ceramic figurines (although some are very big!), showing a stout little man wearing a typical chullo Andean woollen headgear with its distinctive ear flaps, and carrying a myriad of small packages on his shoulders and back. If you look closely you will see his fists full of monopoly type bills, small ceramic or lead cars, houses, maize and other seedlings; you name it, he’s got it. And IF you’ve got (a figurine like) him AND stick a lit cigarette between his lips every Tuesday and Friday and IF he smokes it through; HE will give you what you are asking for, whether it be a car, money, new house, WHATEVER. Or at least, that is what millions of Aymara indigenous peoples from the Puna High lands of Bolivia and Peru believe. In many homes you will find the small statue of the Ekeko. Traditionally you are not supposed to buy an ekeko for yourself. It has to be a present from somebody else. Each January 24th, the Feria de las Alacitas festival is held for, and hosted by, the Ekeko, in central La Paz. People will come from far away to buy miniature versions of goods they would like to own. Then they must have them blessed by a shaman. Throughout this region the festival for the Ekeko used to be held in October and was known by the name "'Calvario” This Southern hemisphere Spring festival also celebrated the “abundance" or fecundity of humanity. It was moved to January in La Paz after a military victory. In some parts Alacitas is still celebrated in October ". Hmmm, I wonder if they have any miniature Marilyn Monroes for sale????
THE MACHU PICCHU ECOLOGICAL RESERVE, AMONGST THE FAVOURITES TO THE NEW SEVEN NATURAL WONDERS OF THE WORLD.
The Machu Picchu Ecological Reserve, not to be confounded with the Machu Picchu Sanctuary itself, which is considered one of the New Seven Man Made Wonders, is postulating to a place among the New Seven Natural Wonders of the World. At present the Machu Picchu Ecological Reserve, in an impressive and effective campaign is located in position number 29 of a total of 285 competitors.
The Machu Picchu Ecological Reserve is not the only Peruvian candidate in this competition where the Amazon River is in fourth place, the Colca Canyon outside Arequipa in the tenth, the Lomas de Lachay, just North of Lima in the twelfth and the “World’s Most Beautiful Mountain Peak” the Alpamayo is in position 77. These are the five Peruvian candidates, which have to compete fiercely in ordre to be among the 21 finalists on December 31st, 2008, when the Organisation New7Wonders gives out its first estimate. Do you want to vote? Check out: http://www.new7wonders.com/nature/en/liveranking/
THE MUNICIPALITY OF CALLAO PROMOTES FREE NIGHT TOURS OF THE MAIN PERUVIAN PORT.
The Municipality of the first Port of Peru, Callao, where the International airport is located has decided to offer free tours of the major attractions of the port, free of charge. The tours take place every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night, starting at 18:00 hours. The Callao Light House, the Main Church and the Spanish Fortress Real Felipe are only a few of the attractions that have been known by hundreds of tourists during the nocturnal tours that are promoted by the Municipality of Callao. A fleet of buses that can be boarded from 18:00 hours onwards from different places in the area will take the visitors on a tour that will give a historic perspective of the Port as well as showing off the recently installed Son et Lumiere installation at the Real Felipe fortress. The tour takes approximately an hour and half and you can find out more by phoning the following numbers: 429-0558 – 429-1834.
THE PETRO TECH COMPANY ANNOUNCES MAJOR OIL FIND OFF THE NORTHERN COAST OF PERU
The oil exploration company Petro Tech, a conglomerate of US and Argentinean capitals announces the discovery of an oil field holding 1.132 millions of barrels of oil in the continental shelf off shore the northern Peruvian Regions of Piura and Lambayeque. Should these figures and the discovery be confirmed, it would mean one of the major discoveries in the country during the last decades. Peru is at present barely self sufficient in oil products, importing some that is not produced within the country itself, although it has turned into a major natural gas exporter through the discovery and exploitation of the Camisea field in the Manu area between Cuzco and Madre de Dios Regions of Peru.
THE PERUVIAN CORDILLERA MOUNTAIN RANGE GLACIERS WERE REDUCED BY 25 % DURING THE LAST 40 YEARS.
Specialists confirm that the Peruvian glaciers were reduced by 25% during the last 40 years. And the rhythm is picking up speed. In 1989 a national inventory of glaciers was carried out and it was determined that in the 18 Cordillera Mountain Chains in Peru there were 3,044 glaciers, which covered an area of 2,041 square kilometres. However, in 1997, a study showed that the area covered by glaciers was by then 1,595 square kilometres, which meant that in a lapse of only 8 years the mass of the glaciers was reduced by 25%. A team of French glacier specialists working in conjunction with Peruvian counterparts estimate the life expectancy of the Andean glaciers to be around another 15 to 20 years. Many species of flora and fauna are already disappearing from the area or moving uphill away from the rising temperatures downhill. Already the Broggi Glacier has disappeared completely and the famous Nevado Pastoruri Snow Peak is going down the same way. The experts say that the Cordillera Blanca suffers from a terminal illness occasioned by global warming and there is no cure in sight. Between the years 1948 and 1976, the snow clad areas of the Cordillera Blanca retreated an average of nine metres, but from 1977 till today, the shrinkage was between 19 and 20 metres.
NEW INTEROCEANIC HIGHWAY BETWEEN BRAZIL AND PERU EXPECTED TO BRING UP TO 50,000 BRAZILIAN TOURISTS TO SOUTHERN PERU NEXT YEAR.
Next year approximately 50,000 Brazilian tourists will arrive in Peru, travelling on the Inter Oceanic Highway that will connect Brazil and the Atlantic Ocean with Peruvian ports in the South Pacific, the Director of Social Responsibility of the Brazilian contractor Odebrecht, Ms Delcy Machado said in an interview. Most of these tourists will be coming from the Brazilian States of Rondonia, Acre and Mato Grosso, and will be interested in visiting the tourist attractions in Southern Peru, such as Cuzco and other areas.
In this sense, she said that Odebrecht assumed the responsibility to make the highway not only a physical infrastructure but also a tool to bring tourists to Peru. She said that Odebrecht, which is a part of the Consortium Conirsa, which won the concession of the lengths 2 and 3 of the Southern Inter Oceanic Highway, is about to start the construction of five tourist look out points along the highway during its trajectory through the Peruvian Regions of Cuzco and Madre de Dios.
"A total of five tourist look out points will be built, out of which three will be in Cuzco and two in Madre de Dios, each one with an investment of 70,000 US Dollars making a total of 350 thousand US Dollars". She added that in these look out points, local residents would be able to install stands offering local produce such as handicrafts, knit work and food stuffs. She said that the first one to be built would be the so called Mirador Cuyuni, which would be located in the Cuzco locality of Ccatcca and which would permit visitors to appreciate the magnificent view of the Peruvian Highlands, which would be crossed by the Highway. "We should be starting to build this outlook point towards the end of July and should have it finished approximately by the end of September", Machado said.
However, she mentioned that the so called Iniciativa Interoceánica Sur (ISur), which is carried out by the Asociación Odebrecht Perú, contemplates other complementary projects that will allow to incentivise the practice of different types of tourism. As an example she mentioned the possibility to bring tourists to certain points of the Highway to practise activities such as kayaking and rafting.
The Highway, a project that has been plagued by cost overruns and heavily criticised by environmentalists is planned to connect Brazil with Peruvian ports to allow Brazil easy access for its soybean exports to the Far East, avoiding having to ship through the Panama Canal or go around the tip of South America as today.
SPECTACULAR HOSTAGE RESCUE BY ELITE COLOMBIAN TROOPS IN JUNGLE AREA IN SOUTHERN PART OF THE COUNTRY. (PART 3)
) (PART 2
Also released on Wednesday were three Americans and 11 members of the Colombian security forces, all said to be in relatively good health. The 11 members of the Colombian security forces who were released had been captured over the years in several different guerrilla attacks. The group still holds hundreds of people hostage, but Ms Betancourt was their highest profile captive.
The Americans - military contractors Marc Gonsalves, Thomas Howes and Keith Stansell - have been flown back to Texas, where they are expected to be reunited with their families and undergo medical tests. The rescued Americans were captured after their light aircraft crashed in the Colombian jungle in 2003.
The Farc has been fighting to overthrow the Colombian government for 40 years.
President Alvaro Uribe congratulated the army on the operation, and urged the Farc to release its remaining hostages and seek peace.
A pale Mrs Betancourt smiled as she emerged with other hostages from a military plane in the Colombian capital, Bogota, to be embraced by her mother and husband.
She appealed to the FARC to free its remaining hostages and make peace.
She thanked Mr Uribe, against whom she was running as a presidential candidate when she was kidnapped, and said he "has been a very good president".
She added: "I continue to aspire to serve Colombia as president."
ANDEAN GUANACO ANIMALS TO BE MONITORED AFTER THEIR RELEASE IN AN EFFOERT TO REPOPULATE THIS RARE ANIMAL
Specialists will be monitoring the eight guanacos released into the Chaparri Reserve in the District of Chongoyape in Lambayeque in Northern Peru in order to establish the conservation corridors of these South American camelids.
Heinz Plenge, the director of the Huerta Encantada (Enchanted Orchard) of the Reserve of Chaparrí, said that a total of eight guanacos that had been donated by the Regional Government of Lambayeque will be monitored with the help of a French biologist which will evaluate the routes.
The number of spectacle bears in the areas will also be monitored although a preliminary number of twelve have already been identified by automatic cameras.
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC WILL SUPPORT PERU WITH DOCUMENTS REGARDING THE CASE OF MACHU PICCHU ARTEFACTS
Recognises that the time limit for the loan of the pieces has passed.
Terry García, Vice president of National Geographic, declared that the institution will provide important documents to the Peruvian government to help it in its claim for the devolution of the pieces from Machu Picchu held by the University of Yale. This announcement was made by the Minister of Health, Hernán Garrido-Lecca, representative of the President of Peru in the negotiations with the US University. According to García, his institution will provide Peru with copies of the correspondence between the National Geographic, the University of Yale and the North American explorer Hiram Bingham. As is known, National Geographic was a partner of the University of Yale in the exploration by Hiram Bingham of the famous Inca sanctuary. The representative of this scientific organisation once more underlined that they have always said that these Machu Picchu artefacts belong to and must return to Peru. He also says that National Geographic recognises that the pieces left Peru as a loan to the NatGeo and its partner the University of Yale, and that the time limit for devolution was long past. García is visiting Lima coordinating with the Peruvian authorities an itinerant exhibition dedicated to the Inca culture, which will be shown in the principal cities of the US and Europe. On the other hand, the Minister Hernán Garrido-Lecca said that Peru is in a better position to claim the pieces from Machu Picchu than a few months ago, when the discussions on their return started with Yale University. He indicated that there is now a complete inventory of the pieces as well as the recognition of the Yale University of the rights of Peru over the pieces. He also said that Peruvian specialists have corroborated that most of the pieces have not been studied since Bingham’s times, thus overturning one of the main arguments of the Yale University to keep the pieces for longer. The next meeting between Yale and Peruvian authorities will take place in Lima in the month of August.