Posted by: Idioma Extra | January 10, 2011

Tuesday´s News

Chinchilla Asks Obama and Clinton For Support With Nicaragua Conflict


Costa Rica’s president, Laura Chinchilla, confirmed she held talks last month, by telephone, with her U.S. counterpart, Barack Obama, and the Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton.

Noticias Reloj said sources close to the president confirmed that Chinchilla spoke with them, to personally broaden their information on Costa Rica’s position in the conflict with Nicaragua.

Chinchilla is said to also have asked for their support.

The president and the diplomatic team are also said to have talked with several U.S. senators, mostly Republicans, which could increase pressure on President Obama to take a more forceful position on Nicaragua’s invasion of Costa Rica and the stationing of troops on Isla Calero.

Costa Rica’s vice-chancellor, Carlos Roverssi, said he was unaware of the phone calls by Chinchilla to Obama and Clinton, only confirming the calls to the senators.

The sources also told Noticas Reloj that neither Obama, nor Clinton gave strong support.

On Christmas Day, the Washington Post dedicated its editorial by criticizing Obama and his flexible position with regards to Nicaragua and its president, Daniel Ortega.

Last October, it was discovered that Nicaragua, during a dredging operation of the San Juan River, had set up a military camp and hoisted the flag on Isla Calero, the south bank of the river.

More than a century old agreement and confirmation by the International Court of Justice in The Hague (ICJ) in 2009, confirmed that the river belongs to Nicaragua, but the south bank belongs to Costa Rica.

Nicaragua, using Google Maps, considers the island its own, being part of the “old” path of the river and thus setting out an international conflict that led to two, Organization of American States (OAS) resolutions for Nicaragua to remove its troops, orders that it has not accepted.

Meanwhile, Costa Rica, in addition to diplomatic efforts to garner international support, has filed suit against Nicaragua in the ICJ, a hearing which is scheduled for next Tuesday, January 11.

Also, Mexico and Guatemala have offered their help in mediating the conflict, with a meeting scheduled for January 17, where Nicaragua and Costa Rica are invited to dialogue.

Chinchilla, for her part has said she will sit down to dialogue if and only when Nicaragua has removed its troops, while Ortega says he will meet and talk anytime, but without any prior conditions.

Word of the Day

gar·ner: \ˈgär-nər\
Origins: Middle English (Scots), from Middle English gerner, garner granary, from Anglo-French gerner, grenier, from Latin granarium, from granum grain — more at corn
First Known Use: 14th century
transitive verb
1a: to gather into storage
b: to deposit as if in a granary <volumes in which he has garnered the fruits of his lifetime labors — Reinhold Niebuhr>
2 a: to acquire by effort: earn b: accumulate, collect

More Vocabulary

Bank: n. the rising ground bordering a lake, river, or sea or forming the edge of a cut or hollow
Counterpart: n.
one having the same function or characteristics as another
Hoist: v.
lift or raise
Station: v.
to assign to or set in a station or position; post

Below are some common phrases used when speaking on the phone in English. To learn more, consider Idioma Internacional’s AFD 550 Telephoning and Business Communication Course!

Useful Active Listening Phrases

Uhuh. Oh, I see. Tell me more about… Oh, that´s interesting.
Hmmm… Yes, well… OK. Of course.
OK, I´ve got that. That sounds like a real problem! No. That´s one good thing at least.



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