Confirmed: Cuba scraps exit visa requirement





The Cuban Government has announced that it will no longer require its citizens to apply for an exit visa when travelling overseas.

The decision by the Communist Party eliminates a major bureaucratic stumbling-block for many seeking to travel abroad as Cubans had to provide a letter of invitation before permission was given. This decision will take effect on January 13 which will now require Cubans to provide their passport and the visa of the country they seek to travel to.   



  
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Dozens drown near Libyan coast after migrant boat capsizes

A boat transporting around 250 African migrants heading to Europe, capsized before leaving the coast near the capital Tripoli. Dozens are feared dead according to a Libyan coast guard official who stated that dozens of bodies were being retrieved, and some are still floating 18 km near the coast of Tajoura district. A total of 36 migrants including a pregnant woman were rescued today.
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JA dollar finishes at J$112.71 to US$1

The Jamaican dollar began the week on a positive note as it gained in value against the US currency in foreign exchange trading today. The American dollar lost $0.02 to close at an average of J$112.71 to US$1. In other trading, the Canadian dollar slipped by $0.34 to end an average selling rate of J$102.08 to CAN$1, and the British pound weakened by $0.06 to end trading at J$182.90 to £1.
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50 students from Brown’s Town Comm College to receive Govt scholarships

A total of fifty students from the Brown’s Town Community College in St. Ann are to benefit from scholarships amounting to J$5 million under the Government’s Access to Higher Education Partnership (AHEP) programme. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed by Youth and Culture Minister Lisa Hanna along with officials from the institution to facilitate the awards during a ceremony to launch the programme, the JIS reported.
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Key INDECOM witness identified as prison escapee in St. James

Police have confirmed that the man who escaped from Police custody, on Sunday is a key witness in the probe by INDECOM in the beating death of 31-year-old Construction Worker Mario Deane. 21-year-old mechanic Fahdeen Ferguson who was jailed for house breaking and burglary escaped police custody in St. James yesterday. Reports at that around 8:45 am, Ferguson was being transferred from the Barnett Street lockup to take part in a video identification parade. Further reports are that while he was waiting in the holding area, to be transported back to his jail cell at the Barnett Street lockup, he allegedly escthrough an unlocked window. Ferguson was last seen wearing a white merina, and pink shorts.
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JPS bills in September to rise by 4%

Customers supplied by the Jamaica Public Service (JPSCo) will see a 4 percent increase in their utility bills for the month of September. The Fuel and IPP Charges will see an increase at the end of this month. Customers are being urged to remain vigilant in their conservation efforts.
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52-yr-old Market Vendor fatally shot in St. James

52-year-old Byron Cameron o/c “Karba” a market vendor was shot and killed by a lone gunman in the vicinity of the Charles Gordon Market in St. James yesterday. According to Police, around 2:50 pm, Cameron was on Railway Lane when he was approached by a man, and both got into a heated exchange. The man reportedly brandished a handgun and opened fire hitting Cameron once in the head, and he died on the spot. Police were alerted to the area, and they processed the scene upon arrival, and the body was later removed.
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STATIN: Inflation rate increased in August

STATIN: Inflation rate increased in August
The Statistical Institute of Jamaica is reporting that in August 2014, the inflation rate for Jamaica as represented by the ‘All Divisions’ Consumer Price Index was 1.1 per cent. This inflation rate according to STATIN, was chiefly the result of a 2.7 per cent upward movement in the index for the division ‘Food and Non-Alcoholic Beverages’. The index for the group ‘Food’ increased by 2.8 per cent as production levels of some agricultural crops declined due to the continued drought conditions across the island. This resulted in higher prices for the classes ‘Vegetables and Starchy Foods’ and ‘Fruit’ which rose by 9.8 per cent and 2.6 per cent respectively. A copy of the full press release can be viewed below.
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Apple unveils its own smart watch

Apple unveils its own smart watch
Apple unveiled its version of the Smart watch which is dubbed the “Apple Watch” today. The watch comes in two sizes and an array of interchangeable wrist straps. Apple says its newest device will be sold for a starting price of US$349, when it goes on sale early 2015.
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JA dollar closes at J$112.73 to US$1

The Jamaican dollar remained stable against the US currency at the end of today’s close of the foreign exchange market. The Jamaican dollar finished at an average selling rate of J$112.73 to US$1. In further trading, the Canadian dollar slipped by $0.64 to finish at an average of J$102.25 to $CAN1, and the British pound weakened by $0.81 to close at J$181.46 to £1.
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Flash Flood Warning in effect for St. Mary and Portland

The Meteorological Service has upgraded the Flash Flood Watch to a Flash Flood Warning for low lying and flood-prone areas of St. Mary and Portland, ffective until 5:00 a.m. on Wednesday. A Tropical Wave west of Jamaica, continues to produce unstable weather conditions across the island and its territorial waters. Today scattered showers and thunderstorms were detected over sections of most parishes with the greatest rainfall intensity over Portland and St. Mary. The forecast is that scattered showers and thunderstorms, which may be heavy at times, will continue affect sections of all parishes, especially northern parishes and territorial waters mainly to the north, tonight into tomorrow morning. Sea conditions will deteriorate in the vicinity of showers and thunderstorms due to gusty winds. Fishers and other marine interests should exercise caution. Gradual improvement is expected Wednesday afternoon into evening. A Flash Flood Warning means flooding has been reported or will occur shortly. Motorists and pedestrians should not attempt to cross flooded roadways or other low-lying areas, as strong currents are likely. Residents in low-lying areas should be on the alert for rising waters and be ready to move quickly to higher ground. The Meteorological Service will continue to monitor the situation.
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Former reputed leader of the Stone Crusher Gang shot dead

31-year-old Eldon CalCalvert the former reputed leader of the Montego bay-based Stone Crusher Gang was shot dead along the Salt Spring main road in St. James. Reports are that the shooting incident took place sometime before 7 mp, when armed men opened fire ekilling him on the spot. Police are processing the scene of the incident.
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47 students receive Scholarships from J. Wray and Nephew

47 students receive Scholarships from J. Wray and Nephew
J. Wray and Nephew Limited recently awarded secondary and tertiary scholarships to 47 students. Among the grantees are students from the Waterhouse and Seaview Gardens communities in Kingston and Siloah in St. Elizabeth. The company also provided grants to children of employees of J. Wray & Nephew Limited. “We recognize the inter-connectedness of business and education, and in this regard, we are pleased to once again award academic scholarships to the youth of our communities. We are making this investment in these young people as we want them to develop and become the next generation of leaders,” said Jimmy Lawrence, Managing Director of J. Wray & Nephew Limited. A copy of the full press release can be viewed below.
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Flooding claims over 400 lives in Pakistan, India

400 persons have so far perished in floods which have wreaked havoc in Pakistan and India, according to the AFP News. Rescue efforts have been launched in Kashmir, after rains associated with monsoons flooded hundreds of villages in the area. On the Indian side of the border, officials stated that the death toll rose to 200, while on the Pakistani side, 206 persons were confirmed dead.
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Israel’s treatment of Africans criticised by Human Rights Watch

Israel’s treatment of African migrants has been criticised by Human Rights Watch, who accused them of forcing them to return to their home counties, where they could face abuse. A report issued by Human Rights Watch, said officials in Israel coerced nearly 7,000 Sudanese and Eritrean migrants to return to their country of origin.
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Jamaica Mad to Raas!

Image courtesy of  www.ridoutphoto.com
When did it come to this? Where do we begin to look for answers? Turns out that these are deep rooted psychological problems. And what the good Professor Hickling has concluded, might in fact be right. Jamaicans are mad people.
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Successful Asian Leader says former Jamaican PM – “Ruinous”

Successful Asian Leader says former Jamaican PM – “Ruinous”
"(Jamaican) professionals felt they had no future"
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Controversy in London

The 30th Olympiad is very much underway and of course with big Games come big controversies. I have highlighted just a few of the notables below.
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9.63s - Asafa's Pain

  9.63s was the time that flashed on the clock inside the stadium in London. Less than 10s after the starter fired the gun, the Men’s
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Will Usain's 'Mobot' Pose After Winning the 4x100m Relay At The London 2012 Olympics Cost Him?

Trademarking a Pose, Can you? - Image and Branding The famous Mobot Pose - In honour of Mo Farah One of the biggest issues in the world
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J$3 Million Phone Bill for Government Minister ?

J$3 Million Phone Bill for Government Minister ?
A Cabinet Minister racked up an over JA$3 million cellular phone bill with taxpayers having to pony up the cash soon. The massive bill was
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"24 Things I wished I knew before getting pregnant"

So, I’m browsing the internet minding my own business when I stumbled upon new research which shows that women lose 90% of their eggs at
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