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Guatemala Prosecutor Accuses Electoral Body of Fraud, Abuse :



Guatemala’s prosecutor’s office requested on Wednesday the removal of immunity from the electoral magistrates for alleged irregularities in the acquisition of a computer system for the presidential elections this year, which the social democrat Bernardo Arévalo won.

The request was filed with the Supreme Court of Justice “for the possible commission of the crimes of fraud, breach of duties and abuse of authority” by the four incumbent magistrates and an equal number of alternates, prosecutor’s office spokesperson Juan Luis Pantaleón told journalists.

The spokesperson said the legal action is being carried out following a complaint filed on June 29 against the full panel of magistrates of the Supreme Electoral Tribunal (TSE), as well as the entity’s computer department.

The prosecutor’s office, headed by Attorney General Consuelo Porras, has undertaken a crusade against the TSE and Arévalo’s Semilla political party for alleged irregularities in the registration of members for its founding in 2017.

On September 14, President-elect Arévalo asked for the removal of immunity from Porras and Judge Fredy Orellana, whom he accuses of orchestrating a “coup d’état” and preventing him from taking office on January 14 to replace right-winger Alejandro Giammattei.

The legal persecution against Semilla began after Arévalo came in second in the June 25 elections and went to a runoff, where he defeated former first lady Sandra Torres on August 20.

The alleged irregularities

Pantaleón detailed that the magistrates may have incurred possible irregularities by signing an administrative contract for the computer program for the Transmission of Preliminary Electoral Results (TREP).

The TREP was acquired for about $19.3 million from a local company and served to count the voting certificates that were entered into the system and expedite the preliminary results of the elections.

According to the prosecutor’s office, the high officials committed fraud against the State by acquiring a service about $4.5 million more expensive than the one offered by another company.

TSE President Irma Palencia rejected the accusation on Wednesday night at a press conference and argued that the winning firm “was more efficient, robust, offered us alternative plans and the other did not have the degree of maturity we were looking for.”

Likewise, she expressed her concern about the persecution undertaken by the prosecutor’s office, after announcing that they are analyzing “what the legal position is that we are going to take in the face of this, although of course it is a political trial and we have that very clear.”

According to the prosecutor’s office, among the illegalities is also the fact that the company that provided the software recommended to the entity that acted as supervisor “usurping public functions and duties inherent to the Supreme Electoral Tribunal, such as the summation and transmission of votes.”

That action “is illegal because there is a conflict of interest, since supervision cannot be carried out by an entity that the provider itself recommends,” he insisted.

However, Palencia assured that the results offered by the TREP were not binding and the vote count is the responsibility of the voting tables made up of citizens and party poll watchers.

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Revolution in Canine Care: The Dawn of Anti-Aging Treatment for Large Dogs



In an era where medical science is leaping forward, a groundbreaking development from San Francisco’s biotech world is setting tails wagging. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is on the verge of approving a drug that promises not just a longer leash on life for large-breed dogs but better quality years. It’s a development that could redefine canine care.

LOY-001: A Leap for Dogkind

The brainchild of the biotech company Loyal, the drug, known as LOY-001, is on the fast track to becoming the first FDA-approved medication for extending the lifespan of our furry friends. With over 25 million large-breed dogs in the U.S., the potential impact is enormous.

How Does It Work? Tackling Aging at Its Core

The secret to LOY-001’s potential lies in its unique approach. It targets the hormone IGF-1, which accelerates aging, intending to prevent age-related canine diseases before they manifest. “Think of it as a time machine in a syringe,” joked Loyal CEO Celine Halioua in a recent statement.

FDA’s Nod: A Step Closer to Reality

Loyal announced that LOY-001 had cleared early hurdles with the FDA, showing promising effectiveness data. However, there’s still a journey ahead, including a large clinical trial and a comprehensive review of safety and manufacturing data.

The Aging Dilemma: Why Big Dogs Age Faster

For large-breed dogs, the tick-tock of the biological clock is a bit louder and faster. The growth-promoting hormone IGF-1, found at higher levels in large dogs, is believed to play a significant role in accelerating aging and reducing lifespan. LOY-001 aims to target this very hormone.

Groundbreaking, But With a Side of Caution

Veterinarians across the board are cautiously optimistic. Dr. Ivana Crnec, a Texas-based veterinarian, sees LOY-001 as a potential game-changer. “It’s like we’ve finally cracked a code in canine longevity,” she said. Meanwhile, Dr. Jeffrey Krasnoff expressed his intrigue, “If this works, it’s a dog lover’s dream come true.”

A New Era of Treatment: Pill Form on the Horizon

Currently administered via injection every three to six months, Loyal is also developing a daily pill form of LOY-001. This shift could make the treatment more accessible and easier for pet owners to manage.

Anticipated Launch: A 2026 Debut

Subject to FDA’s nod on manufacturing and safety, LOY-001 is expected to hit the market in 2026. This timeline means hope is on the horizon for pet parents dreaming of more golden years with their large canine companions.

A Pawsitive Future Ahead

As we wait for the final word from the FDA, the buzz around LOY-001 continues to grow. This isn’t just a drug; it’s a potential new chapter in the way we care for our canine companions, promising a future where “growing old together” takes on a whole new meaning for dogs and their humans.

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160 Years of Costa Rican Historical Painting: Capturing National Identity on Canvas



For over 160 years, the brush strokes of Costa Rica’s artists have been etching the nation’s history onto canvases, creating a vibrant visual narrative of its cultural and political evolution. Let’s embark on a journey through time, exploring how Costa Rica has depicted its past through the art of historical painting.

The Essence of Historical Painting

Before the dawn of photography in the mid-19th century, historical painting was considered the pinnacle of visual art. This genre, characterized by large-scale oil paintings, depicted historical events, literary narratives, and mythological and biblical scenes. Rooted in the classical humanist aesthetics of the Renaissance, these artworks were the realm of master painters and graced the walls of churches, government buildings, and the residences of the elite.

Historical Painting in Latin America

In Latin America, including Costa Rica, historical painting gained prominence in the mid-19th century following independence movements. These artworks played a crucial role in shaping nationalist narratives, reflecting the visions of the ruling elites. Initially crafted by foreign artists, these works soon gave way to local talent trained in Europe.

Historical Painting in Costa Rica: A Unique Evolution

Costa Rica’s tryst with historical painting began with the introduction of the first printing press in 1830. This was followed by the compilation of the ‘Álbum de José María Figueroa Oreamuno,’ a rich repository of national history. The country’s political and military events of the 19th century heavily influenced its early historical paintings.

Political Tensions and Artistic Expressions

The political turmoil of the 1870s led to a renewed interest in historical painting, particularly in commemorating the events and heroes of the War of 1856-1857. These works served as pillars of national identity and were incorporated into public statues and monuments by European sculptors.

Enrique Echandi Montero’s Legacy

The peak of Costa Rica’s historical painting can be attributed to Enrique Echandi Montero’s masterpiece ‘La quema del mesón,’ a grand portrayal of national hero Juan Santamaría. This painting has become an emblem of Costa Rican artistic heritage.

A Shift Towards Rural Landscapes and Muralism

The late 19th and early 20th centuries saw a shift from historical themes to rural landscapes and allegories. The influence of Mexican muralism in the mid-20th century marked a return to large-scale representations of historical themes, reflecting the social democratic ideals of the era.

Manuel Carranza Vargas: A Modern Chronicler

Manuel Carranza Vargas emerged as a significant figure in modern Costa Rican historical painting. His works, rooted in meticulous research, offered fresh perspectives on historical themes, including scenes from the colonial period and the War of 1856-1857.

Celebrating Historical Events in the 21st Century

The early 21st century saw historical commemorations become intertwined with public dissent, notably against government policies. These events coincided with significant anniversaries, such as the 150th anniversary of the War of 1856-1857, providing a platform for alternative narratives.

Carranza’s Legacy and Public Exhibitions

Carranza’s vast body of work, encompassing around 30 paintings, is now a valuable educational resource, offering a visual exploration of Costa Rican history. His legacy continues to be celebrated through public exhibitions, such as the one at the Museo Histórico Juan Santamaría.

A Canvas of History

Costa Rican historical painting is more than just art; it’s a canvas of history, narrating tales of triumphs, struggles, and the evolution of a nation’s identity. From grand oil paintings to modern interpretations, these artworks remain an integral part of Costa Rica’s cultural fabric.

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Costa Rican Coffee-Rubbed Pork: A Surfer’s Delight Post-Wave Riding



In the world of surfing, there’s a code: “Take only photos, leave only footprints.” But what about leaving footprints that lead to a culinary adventure? Let’s dive into the story of a dish that became a legend in its own right among the surfing community in Costa Rica: the Coffee-Rubbed Pork with Marmalade Glaze.

The Surf, the Salt, and the Savory

Imagine riding the head-high peelers at Boca Barranca, where once there were only shacks and a single hotel. Surfing in the warm Costa Rican waters is bliss, but the post-surf hunger is real. The remedy? A local snack shop just off the beach, where simplicity and flavor meet in dishes like rice and beans topped with an egg, washed down with fresh coconut milk. It’s the kind of meal that reconnects you with the earth and sea.

An Encounter with Gary and His Legendary Recipe

It’s at these humble beachside eateries where the real magic happens. Enter Gary, a local culinary wizard, who introduced us to the marvel of Costa Rican Coffee-Rubbed Pork. This dish, he promised, would change the way we looked at post-surf meals forever.

Coffee-Rubbed Pork: A Taste of Pura Vida

The recipe, a fusion of Costa Rica’s finest coffee and succulent pork, topped with a tangy marmalade glaze, is simplicity at its finest. But don’t be fooled; this dish is a flavor explosion waiting to happen.

The Secret’s in the Rub and Glaze

The key to this dish lies in its spice rub – a blend of freshly ground Costa Rican coffee, sea salt, sweet paprika, dark brown sugar, black pepper, garlic powder, and onion powder. It’s a melody of flavors that perfectly complements the pork.

The glaze, a mix of orange marmalade, Grand Marnier, triple sec (or Cointreau), and soy sauce, adds a sweet and tangy dimension that elevates the pork to new heights.

Grilling to Perfection: A Dance of Flavors

Grilling this masterpiece is an art. The pork tenderloins, rubbed in spices and oil, are grilled to perfection. The trick is to not overcook them; keep a close eye on that meat thermometer. As they grill, brush them with the marmalade glaze, creating layers of flavor that meld beautifully with the smokiness of the grill.

Serving the Costa Rican Way

Once off the grill, let the tenderloins rest before slicing them into mouth-watering pieces. The result? A dish that’s not just a meal but an experience – a perfect amalgamation of Costa Rica’s natural bounty and culinary innovation.

Beyond the Waves and Onto the Plate

This Costa Rican Coffee-Rubbed Pork recipe transcends the realms of surfing and cooking, offering a taste of the Pura Vida lifestyle. It’s a dish that tells a story – of waves, warmth, and the wonderful simplicity of Costa Rican cuisine.

Conclusion: A Dish That Embodies the Spirit of Costa Rica

In a nation where surfing and culinary delights go hand in hand, this coffee-rubbed pork is more than just a meal. It’s a testament to the creativity, resourcefulness, and sheer joy of Costa Rican cooking. So next time you find yourself in Costa Rica, or simply craving a taste of its vibrant culture, give this recipe a try. It’s a culinary ride worth taking!

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