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COSTA RICA'S LEADING ENGLISH LANGUAGE NEWSPAPER

Mysterious Lights Over Costa Rica Attributed to Chinese Rocket Debris

Early Monday morning, strange lights lit up the skies over various parts of Costa Rica, sparking awe and numerous videos. Experts identified the celestial spectacle as space debris, specifically remnants of the Chinese rocket Chang Zheng 53358 burning up as they reentered Earth’s atmosphere. Astronomer Erick Sanchez explained that the bright flashes occur when human-made objects like satellites and rocket parts disintegrate and ignite upon atmospheric reentry.

While parts of the 2022 Chinese rocket launch were speculated as the source, Sanchez noted such debris typically burns up completely. However, the accumulating space junk orbiting Earth poses a growing threat of dangerous collisions. Sanchez dismissed notions of meteorites given the slow speed of the lights. The lantern-like movement points instead to human space debris plunging back to Earth.

Costa Rica Pins Down 36 Crime “Hot Spots” Endangering Tourists

The Costa Rican Ministry of Public Security has identified 36 “hot spots” across the country where tourists face heightened risks of theft, assault, robbery, and other property crimes. These high-risk destinations include popular beach towns like Jacó, Tamarindo, Quepos, and Manuel Antonio which saw an alarming spike in tourist-targeted offenses in 2023. While reported crimes against tourists decreased slightly nationwide compared to 2022, the vast majority occurred in 10 key areas like San José and Puntarenas.

On February 8th, the National Chamber of Tourism announced expanded initiatives with the Ministry to curb ongoing tourist safety concerns in vital travel regions. With tourism integral to Costa Rica’s economy, officials seek to safeguard the country’s reputation as a leading eco-tourism destination by directing security resources towards newly designated high-risk zones.

Costa Rica Asked to Address Unauthorized Foreign Surf Teachers

The Association of Surf Instructors of Playa Tamarindo (AISPT) has filed a complaint stating that foreigners without proper permits are working illegally as surf instructors in the popular beach town. They report that in recent months, dozens of non-resident individuals have been offering surf lessons at cut-rate prices, undercutting legal establishments and decreasing wages.

The AISPT urges authorities to enforce regulations requiring that foreigners obtain valid work and migration documentation in order to be employed as instructors. Though stressing the necessity of fair competition and non-xenophobic attitudes, the Association emphasizes that all parties in the local surf instruction market must comply with the same rules.

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