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Calderon Criticized For Vieques Omission

Sound Waves’ Law Sought

Vieques Deal Talks Denied

Vivoni: No Need To Increase Police

Calderon Asks For Vieques’ `Space'

Navy Wants More Protection

PIP Revamps

Ferre To Meet With Card


Calderon Criticized By Opposition For Vieques Omission

By Proviana Colon Diaz

January 25, 2001
Copyright © 2001 PuertoRicoWOW News Service. All Rights Reserved.

Gov. Sila Calderon's failure to file legislation aimed at regulating ship to shore shelling sonic booms produced by military exercises in Vieques on Wednesday caused disappointment among lawmakers, especially those from the minority.

Although she was among those who gave Calderon a standing ovation when she announced that the Vieques legislation would be filed soon, New Progressive Party (NPP) Interim President Norma Burgos said it was "worrisome" that such bill was not filed.

Burgos said she applauded because she supports everything in favor of Vieques.

"It worried me, however, that she did not say she was going to file it now. That has to worry all Viequenses, all Puerto Ricans, and all of us who have defended the Vieques cause, because it has no logic," said Burgos, who is an NPP at-large senator.

Burgos questioned what had prevented Calderon from filing legislation and pondered whether Calderon could be negotiating, or "giving in" to pressure.

Puerto Rican Independence Party (PIP) Sen. Fernando Martin said the decision not to file the bill for Vieques was "really sad."

"When she brought up the Vieques theme she had to endure the embarrassing moment of reminding [the people] that she had no intention to file the bill they were expecting. Frankly, it seems like she was making fools of us."


Calderon: Legislation Regulating Sound Waves In Vieques For March

January 24, 2001
Copyright © 2001 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

SAN JUAN (AP) - Gov. Sila Calderon suggested Wednesday that legislation to regulate sound waves in Vieques may be filed before the next U.S. Navy military practices that are scheduled for March 9.

"I would like to use this legislation if we cannot stop nor bring to the attention of the federal government the damage that those sounds and those practices are having on the health of the Viequenses," she said in a radio interview.

The legislation will be directed at paralyzing the military practices, even though opponents allege that it would have no effect because the zone is under federal jurisdiction where the local statutes do not apply.

Calderon said prior to filing the legislation her administration will submit to the Bush White House the results of the pilot study showing the existence of cardiac abnormalities compatible with "vibroacoustic disease" in a group of Viequenses and will give them time to react.


Caldeon Denies Talks With US On Vieques Deal

January 24, 2001
Copyright © 2001 Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP)--Puerto Rico Gov. Sila Calderon denied news reports she was negotiating with the U.S. Congress for more political autonomy in exchange for allowing the U.S. Navy to continue practice bombing on the inhabited island of Vieques.

"It's not true that my government is taking those actions," Calderon said in a written statement Tuesday.

Local opposition legislator Miriam Ramirez said that Calderon's staff had approached members of the U.S. Congress with proposals to trade support for Navy bombing for more political independence and incentives for investments in Puerto Rico's faltering economy.

"The cause of Vieques is a human rights issue on which I maintain my firm position," Calderon said in the statement. "The Puerto Rican conscience cannot be sold."


Vivoni: No Need To Increase Police Protection In Vieques

By Proviana Colon Diaz

January 24, 2001
Copyright © 2001 PuertoRicoWOW News Service. All Rights Reserved.

After a visit to Vieques, Police Superintendent Pierre Vivoni announced that he saw no need to either increase the police force at Camp Garcia in Vieques or to stop plans to remove the Riot Squad from that area. He said he will investigate claims by an eyewitness that someone threw an incendiary device into the U.S. Navy facility.

The removal of the Police Riot Squad was one of Gov. Sila Calderon's campaign promises. Calderon has said she would replace the squad with another unit.


Calderon Again Asks For `Space' To Solve Vieques Problem

By Proviana Colon Diaz

January 23, 2001
Copyright © 2001 PuertoRicoWOW News Service. All Rights Reserved.

Gov. Sila Calderon on Monday asked again to be given "space" to solve the Vieques issue with the new Republican administration of U.S. President George W. Bush.

She said during the first months of the new administration it would be "nearly impossible" for her to meet with Bush but that her efforts will be directed at members of the White House, the U.S. Congress and federal agencies.

Calderon was reacting to published reports indicating that White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card ordered a halt to all executive orders, regulations and instructions issued by former President Bill Clinton during his last days in office until a study is performed about their consequences.

One of Clinton's last executive orders had to do with the presence of the U.S. Navy in Vieques. In his last order, Clinton ordered the Navy to get ready to leave Vieques because the election of Calderon, the new Legislature and a new mayor in the island municipality were all clear indications that the military body would not prevail in Vieques.


Navy Wants Protection At Vieques


January 22, 2001
Copyright © 2001 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) - The U.S. Navy on Monday asked Puerto Rico 's governor for increased police protection after protesters allegedly threw cinderblocks and lead weights at a base near the Navy's Vieques bombing range.

During the weekend, protesters cut fencing, threw the broken cinderblocks and launched weights by slingshot at the Camp Garcia base, Rear Admiral Kevin Green alleged in a letter to Gov. Sila Calderon on Monday.

"I am deeply concerned with the increase in violent and criminal acts targeted against Navy people and property on the island of Vieques ," Green said in the letter. "I believe that swift and effective (police) support will stop this dangerous and disturbing trend in the violent acts committed by a small number of individuals."

Calderon ordered Police Superintendent Pierre Vivoni to investigate the alleged incident and take necessary action, according to a statement from the governor's office Monday.


PIP Revamps Its Party Directory

January 22, 2001
Copyright © 2001 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

SAN JUAN (AP) - During Sunday's assembly session, Puerto Rican Independent Party (PIP) agreed to restructure its leading board and to create the position of executive president, which will be filled in by PIP Vice President Fernando Martin.

The new position makes Martin the party's spokesman and puts him in charge of keeping an eye on public and institutional affairs.

Former gubernatorial candidate Ruben Berrios Martinez will remain as PIP president. He will now concentrate on discussing Vieques' demilitarization and Puerto Rico's status issue.


Ferre To Meet With Andrew Card

January 22, 2001
Copyright © 2001 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

SAN JUAN (AP) - Puerto Rico Republican Party President Luis A. Ferre will travel to Washington, D.C. in the next few weeks to discuss island issues with White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card.

"We have to discuss the appointment of Puerto Ricans and the liaison for Puerto Rico issues in the White House. All those are very important topics," said Ferre in published reports.

Meanwhile, former Justice Secretary Jose Fuentes Agostini, a member of Bush's transition committee, said Bush will make several appointments of Puerto Ricans and other Hispanics to his administration.

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