Lakota Spiritual Leader Receives Award For Peace

New York (UCTP Taino News) - Chief Arvol Looking Horse, 19th Generation Keeper of the White Buffalo Calf Pipe Bundle, and President and founder of World Peace and Prayer Day was in New York on October 18th, 2006 to receive the Juliet Hollister Award at the United Nations.

Presented by the Temple of Understanding, the award has been bestowed upon such international spiritual luminaries as His Holiness the XIVth Dalai Lama, Ravi Shankar and President Nelson Mandela.

In honor of the Temple of Understanding’s founder, the Juliet Hollister Award was created to support those secular and religious people whose life work has helped to create interfaith understanding. Along with Chief Looking Horse, two other honorees included the Venerable Dr. Yifa, a Buddhist nun from Taiwan, and Daniel Pearl the late Wall Street Journal Reporter. Daniel Pearl’s award was accepted by his father Dr. Judea Pearl.

Among those at the United Nations supporting Chief Looking Horse, Roberto Mucaro Borrero stated “The Great Sioux Nation and the sacred pipe have long been at the forefront of the international indigenous movement and in my opinion this recognition honors that sacred relationship.”

Borrero, a representative of the United Confederation of Taino People continued stating “This same week the UN is discussing the adoption of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, so for me this is confirmation that these events are linked spiritually.”

While in New York, Chief Looking Horse took the opportunity to also meet with local indigenous community representatives at the American Indian Community House and the Shinnecock Nation on Long Island to share the wisdom of the White Buffalo Calf Prophecy.

Chief Looking Horse recently shared a part of this prophecy in a well-publicized address stating “Each of us is put here in this time and this place to personally decide the future of humankind… Understand both the blessing and the burden of that. You yourself are desperately needed to save the soul of this World. Did you think you were put here for something less?"

Chief Arvol Looking Horse visits the American Indian
Community House (AICH). In photo from left:
Rosemary Richmond (Mohawk), Director of AICH;
Roberto Mucaro Borrero with Mainaku Borrero;
Chief Arvol Looking Horse;
and Joselyn Borrero, International Indian Treaty Council.


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Victory Cheers for Cheyenne FoxTree-Mcgrath

Bedford, Mass (UCTP Taino News) - Cheyenne FoxTree (Arawak) was part of the exceptional team effort which lead her team to victory in the Eastern State Pop Warner Cheerleading Competition at the Tsongas Arena in Massachusetts. In a day filled with great dancing, cheering, tumbling, and music, Cheyenne’s team competed against many great competitors who had already in their respective counties. Cheyenne and her “A-Team” will now advance to Regional Competition in one month in Providence, Rhode Island.

Cheyenne is the daughter of Claudia FoxTree, an educator, writer, artist and UCTP Liaison Officer in Massachusetts.

Claudia FoxTree and daughter Cheyenne victorious
at the Eastern State Pop Warner Cheerleading Competition


Indigenous Rights Struggle Continues at the UN

UCTP Taino News – Following adoption of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples by the newly established United Nations Human Rights Council, a handful of Nations continue to attempt to stand in the way of the document’s final ratification by the 192-member General Assembly.

During this month’s meetings of the General Assembly’s Third Committee a scathing statement against the Declaration was presented by the government of New Zealand in a joint intervention with the United States of America and Australia.

The statement has been described as a desperate attempt at “fear-mongering” by some indigenous leaders attending the current session of the General Assembly.

Despite the remarks presented by New Zealand, Indigenous Peoples around the world remain confident of the General Assembly’s passage of this non-legally binding human rights instrument, which was been debated in the halls of the United Nations for twenty years.

“The Declaration has unwavering support of many countries with large indigenous populations such as Mexico, Peru, Boliva, Guatemala and the Nordic countries” stated Roberto Mucaro Borrero, a representative of the United Confederation of Taino People who was at the UN lobbying various country representatives. “These governments, along with United Nations Agency representatives have been actively working toward alleviating any concerns some may have had about the text.”

“From the European Union to CARICOM, UN Member-States continue to express their support for the declaration and that is indeed very positive” added Borrero.

Enrique Berruga, Mexico’s ambassador to the U.N. agreed stating “We expect the declaration would be adopted with consensus for sure… it has been discussed long enough. It is high time for it to be adopted."

Indigenous Peoples in the UN halls lobbying for the Declaration
on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples: From left,
Roberto Mucaro Borrero with Mainaku Borrero,
Jose Carlos Morales (Costa Rica), and
Adelfo Regino Montes (Mexico)


Adios Mr. Columbus…

UCTP Taino News - This year, the United Confederation of Taino People’s campaign to end the Columbus Day celebrations continued on various fronts. UCTP representatives mobilized locally, nationally, and internationally to bring attention to this highly contentious issue.

Promotion of educational materials was a major focus of the campaign with a re-issue of the "Columbus the Exploiter" summary essay developed by UCTP Liaison Office Evelyn Dye-Garcia (Washington). The summary was distributed via the UCTP communications network with a recommendation that the information be forwarded to local news papers, radio stations etc. A new e-strategy was also implemented with the distribution of "Columbus the Exploiter" via thousands of free internet "e-cards". UCTP members and allies also noted a marked increase of other communities etc. using and adapting UCTP Columbus related resources since the expansion of distribution; widening the educational impact of the campaign.

In an effort to provide some of the most up-to-date materials available on this subject, UCTP web resources on the Columbus issue at http://www.uctp.org/archives.html#7a were also updated.

As in previous years, UCTP representatives were invited to appear on several radio broadcasts as well as support and participate in indigenous led actions, such as the Transform Columbus Day (TCD) action in Denver, Colorado. Dr. Enid Conley, a UCTP Liaison Officer in the State of Florida was a special guest of the TCD organizers. The UCTP is a proud member of the Transform Columbus Day Alliance.

Providing an alternative to Columbus Day, an Indigenous Peoples Day event was co-organized on Monday, October 9th 2006 in the Bronx, New York with Friends of Brook Park, the Cacibajagua Taino Cultural Society, and the UCTP Regional Coordinating Office.

The Indigenous Peoples Day, Prayer Vigil & Unity Gathering focused on a central theme of "unity" and statements of solidarity were read as received from across Turtle Island and from as far as Nepal. The UCTP was also informed that Chief Sidney Hill, Taddadaho (Spiritual Leader) of the 6 Nations Haudenosaunee (Iroquois) Confederacy burned sacred tobacco for the event in an important expression of support from the local Indigenous Nations.

After an opening ceremony and lighting of the central fire, the gathering began with a reading of the 1493 Papal Bull Inter-Caetera. The reading was followed by burning a copy of this document in solidarity with other Indigenous Peoples performing similar ceremonies around the world. Since 1992 Indigenous Peoples around the world have called for the revocation of this infamous document by the Vatican.

A significant focus of the event was also dedicated to re-affirming solidarity with Leonard Peltier, a Native American activist who has been wrongfully incarcerated for 30 years. Activists Esperanza Martell and Onaji who were on a 12 day fast to draw attention to Peltier’s case participated in the event.

Local Taino organizations such as Maisiti Yucayeke Taino, KuKarey Spiritual Circle, and Tanama Yucayeque Taino were also represented at the Indigenous Peoples Day event along with members of the local Native American and Mexica communities as well as various community activists from diverse backgrounds.

Later that week, on Sunday October 15th UCTP and other Taino representatives were invited to a “Festival of Corn and Resistance” at the non-denominational San Romero de Las Americas Church in New York. Led by Father Luis Barrios, a special mass focused on social justice as well as Indigenous, and African resistance in the Americas. Invited speakers included Esperanza Martell, Roman Guaraguaorix Perez, Marta Morales, and Roberto Mucaro Borrero. The speakers focused contemporary Taino affirmation, and the situation of Leonard Peltier. A poem “To be or not to be Taino” was read by Atabuxi (Jacqueline Rodriguez). Recognizing the importance of Maisi (corn) to indigenous communities throughout the Americas, a feast of corn based foods was celebrated after the gathering.

Though the far-reaching affects of these initiatives are at times difficult to determine, community members are noting they are having an affect on some of our young people.

Dr. Rose Quinones, a UCTP Liaison Officer in Ohio notes for example that her 9-year old niece Alexis stopped to pray for Native America Day at her school. On October 12th when young Alexis asked her fellow students to excuse her because she had to pray at that moment, a group of curious students asked what she was praying for. In the spirit of her ancestors Alexis replied that she was praying that Columbus Day would be renamed Native American Day. She added that “we weren't lost!”

Upon hearing her explanation the other children decided to join Alexis in prayer.
UCTPTN 10.24.2006


Who really sailed the ocean blue in 1492?

Who really sailed the ocean blue in 1492? Spanish scholars are on a mission to demystify Christopher Columbus's life, long shrouded in a veil of mythic heroism.

By Lisa Abend and Geoff Pingree
Correspondents of The Christian Science Monitor

Genovese nobleman or Catalan pirate? Adventurous explorer or greedy tyrant? What if the Italian gentleman who discovered America was in fact a brutal torturer and slave owner? And what if he wasn't even Italian?

Schoolchildren may learn about a daring hero who proved the Earth wasn't flat, but because his biography is pocked with holes, Christopher Columbus is a figure around whom elaborate theories and enigmatic rumors have long circulated. This year, the 500th anniversary of his death, two Spanish scholars are working to clear up some of the mysteries.

José Antonio Lorente, a geneticist at the University of Granada, is attempting to resolve one of the greatest enigmas - the question of Columbus's origins. In 1927, Peruvian historian Luis Ulloa Cisneros claimed Columbus was from Catalonia - in what is today northwestern Spain - rather than from the Italian port city of Genoa.

Since then, theories have proliferated, some suggesting that Columbus was a Catalan nobleman who rebelled against King Ferdinand's father, King John II, by engaging in piracy on behalf of the French, and then hid his origins to win favor with the son. Others maintain that he was the illegitimate child of Prince Carlos de Viana, a Majorcan nobleman related to Ferdinand and Isabella. Still others suggest that Columbus was a Jew, whose family fled to Genoa to escape persecution.

A historian at the University of Seville asked Mr. Lorente (who had previously used genetic testing to determine that bones in the Cathedral of Seville belonged to Columbus's own illegitimate son), to help resolve the Catalan/Genovese issue.

Collecting saliva samples from hundreds of people in Catalonia, the Balearic Islands, Genoa, Valencia, and the south of France with the last name of Colón, Colom, or Columbo, Lorente is comparing their DNA with that taken from the bones of Columbus, his brother, and Prince Carlos de Viana. "This way, we can try to determine which population with the same last name as Columbus has the most genetic similarities and differences to him," says Lorente.

The study, results of which were supposed to be released last week to coincide with the Spanish celebration of Columbus Day, has been delayed due to the technological difficulties. "Right now, we haven't developed sufficient markers that can be applied to DNA that comes from bones," says Lorente. "We're working on improving it every day, but we can't say when we'll have results."

Until he finds conclusive answers, the geneticist finds the Catalan theory compelling. "Although the majority think he was Italian," Lorente comments, "there are certain aspects of his biography that suggest non-Italian origins."

But while Columbus's origins remain undetermined, Consuelo Varela, a historian at Spain's Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Cientificas, has answered another question: Why, once he was governor of Hispaniola, did Columbus fall so far from favor that Ferdinand and Isabella ordered him arrested and returned in chains to Spain?

After archivist Isabel Aguirre discovered an uncatalogued transcript of Columbus's trial and brought it to Ms. Varela's attention, the answer was clear to her: Even by the uncharitable standards of 16th-century Spanish colonies, Columbus was a brute.

In her book "The Fall of Columbus," Varela uses the testimony from 23 witnesses contained in the document to show that as governor of Hispaniola, Columbus regularly used torture to maintain order on the island. "It was far more brutal than we had known," says Varela. "It was a frontier society, with terrible misery and injustice."

Columbus was also a strong supporter of slavery, refusing to baptize the indigenous people of Hispaniola so that he could enslave them (Spanish law prohibited the enslavement of Christians), and auctioning Spaniards into slavery, including a young boy caught stealing, as punishment. Varela also notes that Columbus was "surprisingly greedy. He was always tremendously worried about making money."

Although academic specialists have largely hailed Varela's work, popular readers have been less welcoming. An Italian author of historical novels recently wrote her to complain about the unflattering portrait and accused her of falsifying the document. Varela understands the resistance. "No one likes to see the dark side of a mythic person," she says.

For both scholars, it is the mythic elements of Columbus's personality and history that explains public fascination with him. "Columbus is a universal figure," says Lorente. "When you add in the fact that he never said anything about his origins, you have the perfect mystery."

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Presentation on Taino Culture: November 8th 2006

Another Volunteer Opportunity, Prayer Vigil & New Moon Unity Gathering

Volunteer Opportunity, Prayer Vigil & New Moon Unity Gathering
Saturday, October 21st 2006
Brook Park in the South, South Bronx, NY
141st Street and Brook Avenue

Dig your hands in the Earth, chop wood, gather stones and celebrate Autumn! We invite you to join us in giving active and loving care to Brook Park as well an opportunity to stand in solidarity with Indigenous Peoples. We welcome both “skilled and unskilled alike to join us for a day of service to Mother Earth and All Our Relations through focused and joyful work. Please let us know if you are intending to participate and sign up through our website via the Volunteer section at http://friendsofbrookpark.org/

10am - Volunteers needed for garden and to plant bulbs! And to prepare
purification lodge etc.

12noon - Lighting of Fire for the Stones

3pm - Purification Ceremony (aka Inipi, Temascal, Kansi/Guanara), facilitated by Roberto Mukaro Borrero(Boriken Taino)

All are welcome - Bring food to share, instruments, tobacco, and a good heart. Please consider offering a contribution if you are attending the activity so that we can obtain more resources to share. This gathering is sponsored by the Friends of Brook Park, the Cacibajagua Taino Cultural Society and the UCTP Regional Coordinating Office.

Brook Park141st St. and Brook Ave.
South Bronx, New York

By train:#6 Local Subway - Ride to Brook Avenueget off
at Brook Ave. Walk up 3 blocks to 141st - the park is
on the corner

or #2, #5 Subways to 149th Street and Third Ave. walk
down Willis Ave. to 141st St. take a left and walk to
Brook Avenue there we are on the corner.

By car:
From the North West Side
Take the Major Deegan Expressway to 138th Street exit,
take a left and go on 138th street for about 6-10
blocks, left on Willis Avenue, right on 142nd Street,
right on 141st Street and park is there on the corner.

From the East side
Take the Bruckner Expressway exit at 138th Street,
take a right on 138th Street, go a few blocks to St.
Anns Avenue, take a right on St. Anns, and go to 141st
Street. Take a left on 141st street, go one block,
pass Brook Ave. and the park is there on the corner.

For information on the ceremony contact uctp_ny@yahoo.com

For Information on Brook Park visit http://friendsofbrookpark.org/ or call Harry J. Bubbins at 646.206.5288



Honduras - From September 24-29, hundreds of Garifuna community members affiliated with the Honduran Fraternal Black Organization (OFRANEH) descended on Tegucigalpa, with drums, high spirits, and a broad spectrum of demands regarding the rights of the afro-indigenous Garifuna people. Sleeping and dancing in the plaza underneath the Congress building and demonstrating outside the Presidential Palace and various governmental institutions, the group met with the National Congress president and later with Honduran President Manuel Zelaya, who agreed to convoke officials from the key ministries and institutions addressed in the communities’ demands.

The marathon negotiations resulted in important victories for a few of the communities’ priorities, such as a detailed short-term agreement and funding for the respect of the land rights of Punta Piedra. The community’s case was brought before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and resulted in an agreement between the community and government; however, the government has yet to compensate and relocate the outsiders who have violently settled within Garifuna communal lands.

Another major victory was the immediate dissolution of the ‘Wadabula’ Regional Garifuna Commission, a non-representative body created under the previous government administration to carry out the World Bank-financed Honduran Lands Administration Program (PATH, for its Spanish acronym) in the Garifuna communities along the Caribbean coast. PATH and Wadabula have both been denounced for the lack of community consultations and their promotion of the individualization of communal land titles, using the highly contested 2004 Property Law as their legal basis.

Ofraneh also reiterated the demand to reform the Property Law, presenting a proposal to replace the harmful Chapter III of Title V with a new chapter based on the demarcation, recognition and respect of ancestral indigenous and Garifuna communal territory.

The organization continues to work hard to move forward with the remaining demands, many of which were left for future meetings.

Threats and hostility have continued against San Juan community leaders, demonstrating the Honduran government’s failure to carry out the protective measures ordered by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights for the security of the lands and leaders of both San Juan and Triunfo de la Cruz.

While the municipal government of Tela has finally cancelled the contract signed with real estate companies Idetrisa and Maserica concerning Triunfo de la Cruz communal lands, tourism development and real estate speculation continue to threaten the Garifuna communities of the Tela Bay.

Recently, a representative of the private investors in the Los Micos Beach & Golf Resort announced that president Zelaya has offered an additional 500 hectares for the environmentally destructive mega-project, which includes a golf course, villas, luxury hotels (to be operated by Hyatt and Hilton) and more. The planned resort – financed in part by both the Inter-American Development Bank (IADB) and the Central American Bank of Economic Integration (CABEI) –sits along the coast between the Garifuna communities of Tornabé and Miami and is located entirely within the buffer zone of the Jeanette Kawas National Park, an important and fragile wetlands system threatened by the golf course and constructions.

The creation in the 1990s of protected areas covering and controlling ancestral Garifuna lands and resources has violated Garifuna territorial rights in several cases. In the Cayos Cochinos (Hog Keys) just off the coast, the basic rights to subsistence of the Garifuna people in the region have been violated since the archipelago’s designation as a national park in 1993 by a series of actors: the Smithsonian Institute, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the AVINA Foundation (controlled by multi-millionaire Swiss businessman Stephan Schmidheiny).

While no serious action has been taken to halt the illegal activities of commercial fishing boats in the area, restrictions on the subsistance fishing practices of the local Garifuna are rigorously enforced by the private foundation in charge of the park’s management, along with the help of the naval base in one of the larger keys. Over the last two months, the community of Chachauate has actively denounced the militarization of their small key, demanding the immediate withdrawal of the soldiers stationed on Chachauate during the day, as well as a thorough revision of the archipelago’s management plan in consultation with the local Garifuna
communities in order to guarantee the respect of their ancestral territorial rights.

Source: www.rightsaction.org


UCTP Taino News - DINA SHOMAN (Belize), speaking on behalf of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM), said that the Second International Decade of Indigenous People had brought the situation of indigenous people onto the international agenda and had resulted in growing awareness of the obstacles they faced in preserving their cultures, livelihoods, and communities. One of the greatest achievements of the Decade had been the establishment of the Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues, which was a valuable meeting point between States, indigenous organizations and the United Nations system and other inter-governmental bodies. The Forum could play an important role in facilitating development initiatives for indigenous people of the Caribbean region, including through advocacy for greater coordination of efforts of United Nations agencies and by encouraging those agencies to help collect reliable data on indigenous people of the region so that their problems could be more precisely addressed.

Acknowledging important advances made during the first Decade, she also recalled the High Commissioner’s report pointing out that indigenous peoples in many countries continued to be among the poorest and most marginalized. Much remained to be done to protect them from human rights violations, to alleviate the poverty they faced, and to safeguard against discrimination.

CARICOM noted that after almost two decades of debate, the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples had been adopted by the Human Rights Council with a view to being adopted by the General Assembly during this sixty-first session.
UCTPTN 10.18.2006


Bolivians mark Columbus Day and Indians' return to power

Thousands of Bolivians gathered
to celebrate the day when power
was restored to Indians, and
President Evo Morales quelled rumors of a coup.

BY DAN KEANE Associated Press

LA PAZ, Bolivia - About 15,000 people packed a plaza Thursday in La Paz as President Evo Morales hosted a rally to mark the anniversary of Christopher Columbus' arrival in the Americas in 1492 and celebrated the return of Bolivia's Indian majority to power more than five centuries later.

Morales, who was elected last December as the country's first Indian president, spoke on Columbus Day -- commemorated as Día de la Raza, or Indigenous Peoples Day, in much of Latin America. The crowd also came to support his populist government amid vague rumors this week of a coup.''

My friends, surely 514 years ago the Western invaders thought to finish us off, sought to exterminate the indigenous people,'' Morales said. ``We have not only defended ourselves, we have not only resisted . . . here in Bolivia, we have begun to liberate ourselves.''

Oct. 12, once known as a day of disgrace, is now a day of liberation,' ' he continued.

Morales appeared with his customary wreath of coca leaves around his neck and confetti in his hair, speaking through clouds of incense. Many admirers waved the rainbow-checkerboard flag known as the Wiphala, a Bolivian symbol of Indian pride.

Morales also told the crowd that rumors of a coup against his government had been circulated by the conservative opposition to ''frighten and intimidate'' his government and its allies.''

They wanted to defeat us psychologically, but this gathering today demonstrates the unity of our people,'' he said.Earlier in the week, Heinz Dieterich, a Mexican university professor and sometime advisor to Venezuelan President Hugo Chávez, suggested in an article published in the opposition paper El Mundo that a coup against Morales was in the works.

Chávez on Thursday reiterated his own suspicions of an effort to depose his ally Morales, and said U.S. President George W. Bush would be to blame if there were a coup in Bolivia.''

If something were to happen to brother President Evo Morales, the president of the United States would be responsible, '' Chávez said while attending a celebration of his own country's indigenous heritage.

U.S. officials deny plotting against either Chávez or Morales, who are united by their leftist policies and have close ties with Cuba. Morales also said Thursday that ''nobody is going to stop'' sweeping reforms such as the nationalization of Bolivia's oil and gas reserves and the drafting of a new constitution for the country -- both longtime goals demanded by Bolivian Indian groups.


Review related story on President Evo Morales at:

A Message from Chief Arvol Looking Horse...

Mitakuye (my relative),

I, Chief Arvol Looking Horse, of the Lakota, Dakota, and Nakota Nation, ask you to understand an Indigenous perspective on what has happened in America, what we call "Turtle Island." My words seek to unite the global community through a message from our sacred ceremonies to unite spiritually, each in our own ways of beliefs in the Creator.

We have been warned from Ancient Prophecies of these times we live in today, but have also been given a very important message about a solution to turn these terrible times around.

To understand the depth of this message you must recognize the importance of Sacred Sites and realize the interconnectedness of what is happening today, in reflection of the continued massacres that are occurring on other lands and our own Americas.

I have been learning about these important issues since the age of 12, upon receiving the Sacred White Buffalo Calf Pipe Bundle and its teachings. Our people have striven to protect Sacred Sites from the beginning of time. These places have been violated for centuries and have brought us to the predicament that we are in at the global level.

Look around you. Our Mother Earth is very ill from these violations, and we are on the brink of destroying the possibility of a healthy and nurturing survival for generations to come, our children's children.

Our ancestors have been trying to protect our Sacred Site called the Sacred Black Hills in South Dakota, "Heart of Everything That Is," from continued violations. Our ancestors never saw a satellite view of this site, but now that those pictures are available, we see that it is in the shape of a heart and, when fast-forwarded, it looks like a heart pumping.

The Dine have been protecting Big Mountain, calling it the liver, and we are suffering and going to suffer more from the extraction of the coal from there and the poison processes used in doing so.

The Aborigines have warned of the contaminating effects of global warming on the Coral Reefs, which they see as Mother Earth's blood purifier.

The Indigenous people of the rainforest relay that the rainforest are the lungs of the planet and need protection.

The Gwich'in Nation has had to face oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge coastal plain, also known to the Gwich'in as "Where life begins!"

The coastal plain is the birthplace of many life forms of the Animal Nations. The death of these Animal Nations will destroy Indigenous Nations in this territory.

As these destructive developments continue all over the world, we will witness many more extinct Animal, Plant, and Human Nations, because of mankind's misuse of power and their lack of understanding of the "balance of life."

The Indigenous people warn that these destructive developments will cause havoc globally. There are many, many more Indigenous awarenesses and knowledge about Mother Earth's Sacred Sites, her Chakras, connections to our spirit that will surely affect our future generations.

There needs to be a fast move toward other forms of energy that are safe for all Nations upon Mother Earth. We need to understand the types of minds that are continuing to destroy the spirit of our whole global community. Unless we do this, the powers of destruction will overwhelm us. Our Ancestors foretold that water
would someday be for sale. Back then, this was hard to believe, since the water was so plentiful, so pure, and so full of energy, nutrition, and spirit.

Today we have to buy pure water, and even then the nutritional minerals have been taken out; it's just empty liquid. Someday water will be like gold, too expensive to afford.

Not everyone will have the right to drink safe water. We fail to appreciate and honor our Sacred Sites, ripping out the minerals and gifts that lay underneath them as if Mother Earth were simply a resource, instead of the Source of Life itself.

Attacking Nations and having to utilize more resources to carry out destruction in the name of peace is not the answer! We need to understand how all these decisions affect the Global Nation; we will not be immune to its repercussions. Allowing continual contamination of our food and land is affecting the way we think.

A "disease of the mind" has set in world leaders and many members of our global community, with their belief that a solution of retaliation and destruction of peoples will bring Peace.

In our Prophecies it is told that we are now at the crossroads: Either unite spiritually as a Global Nation, or be faced with chaos, disasters, diseases, and tears from our relatives' eyes.

We are the only species that is destroying the Source of Life, meaning Mother Earth, in the name of power, mineral resources, and ownership of land, using chemicals and methods of warfare that are doing irreversible damage, as Mother Earth is becoming tired and cannot sustain any more impacts of war.

I ask you to join me on this endeavor. Our vision is for the Peoples of all continents, regardless of their beliefs in the Creator, to come together as one at their Sacred Sites to pray and meditate and commune with one another, thus promoting an energy shift to heal our Mother Earth and achieve a universal consciousness toward
attaining Peace.

As each day passes, I ask all Nations to begin a global effort, and remember to give thanks for the Sacred Food that has been gifted to us by our Mother Earth, so the nutritional energy of medicine can be guided to heal our minds and spirits.

This new millennium will usher in an age of harmony or it will bring the end of life as we know it. Starvation, war, and toxic waste have been the hallmark of the Great Myth of Progress and Development that ruled the last millennium.

To us, as caretakers of the heart of Mother Earth, falls the responsibility of turning back the powers of destruction.You yourself are the one who must decide.

You alone - and only you - can make this crucial choice, to walk in honor or to dishonor your relatives. On your decision depends the fate of the entire World.

Each of us is put here in this time and this place to personally decide the future of humankind.

Did you think the Creator would create unnecessary people in a time of such terrible danger?

Know that you yourself are essential to this World. Believe that! Understand both the blessing and the burden of that. You yourself are desperately needed to save the soul of this World. Did you think you were put here for something less? In a Sacred Hoop of Life, there is no beginning and no ending!


Carib descendants ponder another holiday

Carib Chief Ricardo Bharath-Hernandez, with calabash in hand,
leads followers in prayer at yesterday's Sacred Smoke Ceremony.

PRESIDENT of the Carib Community in Arima, Ricardo Bharath-Hernandez, yesterday called on the Government to show more “meaningful recognition” to the indigenous people. However, MP for the area, Pennelope Beckles said Cabinet has already appointed a committee to look into the needs of the group.

Bharath-Hernandez, who was speaking at the Carib Centre on Paul Mitchell Street during a function to mark the 7th anniversary of Amerindian Heritage Day, also made an impassioned plea for state protection of sacred sites, lands for his people, and an end to the destruction of medicinal herbs and plants used in craft making, by quarrying activities in the Tamana Forest.

“The Carib community will continue to struggle for meaningful recognition. We think the time is now for government to appropriate a portion of land for the survival of this community,” he said.

The Carib president, who earlier conducted a sacred smoke ceremony at the foot of the statue of Amerindian freedom fighter Hyarima on Hollis Avenue, said the Caribs needed their own village to ensure preservation of their heritage.

“We should have the choice to live together as a community, if we want to,” he said.

“All our indigenous materials for making crafts are being lost, our wild life is being hunted, and medicinal herbs destroyed. Soon all of these things will be lost forever.”

Bharath-Hernandez added, “Our burial grounds are being destroyed and people are digging up all the artifacts and are selling them as far as New York for a few dollars. We have no laws to protect these sites.”

Bharath-Hernandez said the jury was still out on whether the group should demand a public holiday. He said although the group was celebrating its seventh anniversary of recognition, there were still people who did not know about the event. Bharath-Hernandez also heads the Secretariat of the Caribbean Organisation of Indigenous Peoples (COIP).

Beckles said instruments were already handed out to the Cabinet-appointed committee “to liaise with the Carib community to find out what their needs are and to make recommendations to the Cabinet.” She said she was sure that some of the requests made by the group will be “realised”, adding that Government has already begun to structure the quarrying industry.

Monsignor Christian Perreira, parish priest of the Santa Rosa Church, admitted that there was much more “healing” to take place between the First Peoples and the Church.

“This relationship still has to be fleshed out,” he said. “The apology and intention are there, the atonement is there and while in very many ways the First Peoples have accepted that atonement, there is still the healing to come.”

Fr. Perreira added that the country’s oldest feast, The Feast of Santa Rosa, which is shared by the Church and the Carib community, has sought to bridge the divide for the past 220 years.


Transforming Columbus Day in Denver 2006...

Denver, Colorado (UCTP Taino News) – Hundreds of participants from throughout the country took part in the annual of Denver’s Columbus Day Parade on Monday, October 9, 2006.

The protest was organized by the Transform Columbus Day Alliance, which has been protesting the Columbus Day Parade in Denver since 1989. According to the Alliance's website, "The celebration of Columbus is the veneration of colonialism, conquest, and genocide. As people of conscience, we must move our society closer to the democratic values of equality for all, through historical accuracy, justice in the judicial and political processes of the country, and respect for diverse peoples and cultures."

On the night of October 6th, a Four Directions March brought together people of all Nations who wound through downtown Denver, singing traditional tribal songs, and displaying various banners and signs. The march actually converged from the four directions at the protest camp at Veteran's Park in front of the state's capitol building.

Representatives from the American Indian Movement of Colorado offered prayers and local tribes expressed their concerns with the celebration of Columbus Day, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, sacred sites protection and ongoing struggles for Indigenous People's rights.

Glen Spagnuolo, a member of the group Progressive Italians to Transform the Columbus Holiday, urged peaceful action against the parade and called for national support to halt the 100th year of the Columbus Day celebration scheduled for 2007.

The beginning of this years parade only fueled more tensions as the Sons of Italy's Columbus Day Parade began with the mounted Calvary from Fort Carson's 3rd Armored Cavalry Regiment. The 3rd Colorado Calvary is infamous for its role in the 1864 "Sand Creek Massacre" in which hundreds of Cheyenne and Arapaho including women and children were killed and mutilated. According to historic reports the Calvary reportedly “paraded” scalps and other body parts, including human fetuses and genitalia through the streets of Denver.

The Sons of Italy procession ended with additional messages of intolerance as several vehicles proudly displayed slogans such as, "Homosexuality is a sin that will kill" and "Stop gay marriage".

Recognizing the significance of the event, UCTP Liaison Officer Dr. Enid "Tati" Conley (Taino Arawak) noted "The Denver Columbus Day Protest is an important event because we need to be agents of change and promote the truth about our history. Columbus was not an explorer, he was a SPANISH criminal who was a pirate and slave trader. There was nothing romantic about the man - he was a theif, and a mass murder."

Conley who was invited to attend the action by the organizers continued stating "I believe in my heart that all of us must promote social justice and truth and remember that our silence becomes the ally of the racists and the colonists who still exist today."

Transforming Columbus Day in Denver: (from left) Glenn Morris (Colorado AIM), Kim Morris,
Kenny Frost, Dr. Enid Conley, and John Scott. Photo: UCTP News

Famed Welsh Athlete is Part-Taino

UCTP Taino News - Colin Ray Jackson, born February 18, 1967 in Cardiff, Wales is a sprint and hurdling champion of Jamaican and Scottish ancestry.

The athlete who recently turned TV sports commentator and television presenter predominantly for the BBC took part in an episode of the TV genealogy series “Who Do You Think You Are?” in September.

The program aired in the UK and in the genetic tests that are the focus of the show, Jackson genetic tests showed his ancestry to be 55% African, 7% Native American, and 38% European.

Jackson’s seven per cent Native American DNA showed that he is descended from the Tainos, the original indigenous inhabitants of Jamaica, who later mixed with escaped slaves and formed their own Maroon communities. The Maroons also fought against slavery and for Jamaican independence in the 17th century.

Cynthia Rosers, a genealogist at the Jamaican register general’s department, said: “Colin Jackson, is very light skinned. In Jamaica we would call him brown, but in American they would call him ‘redbone’.”

"The fieriness that the maroons had, first with their fight with the Spanish and then the English, I think I've got that in me now” said Jackson.

“When I lined up on many occasions to compete for Great Britain, it took a lot of heart and soul to get out there and to really be at war with my competitors... I feel really proud that I'm still linked genetically to the first settlers of Jamaica."
UCTPTN 10.13.2006





We are in urgent need of your support. Kiko, Native Youth Movement Warrior, was arrested by the Vancouver Police yesterday, Tuesday, October 10th, 2006, in Vancouver, BC, Canada and is being held captive for ransom.

The vehicle that his family was driving in was targeted and followed by the Vancouver Police and when his family stopped at a gas station, the police blocked access and began to harass the family. The police told Kiko's wife, Kanahus, that the reason for being harassed was that the license plate didn't match up on the vehicle, but even after this was clarified and all paper work was produced, they demanded to know the identity of the passengers, the police only concern was to make an arrest.

Kanahus was threatened by the police that she will be arrested for "obstruction of a police officer" if she didn't let them interrogate her passengers. This family has been targeted by the police on many occasions for the work that they do with Native Youth Movement and the fight for the Indigenous land struggle. Kiko is now being held captive with no criminal charges laid, but on an immigration issue, which is unknown until later on today.

Kiko, is an indigenous Taino Warrior with the Native Youth Movement, he was adopted by a Lil'wat family in Mount Currie through the indigenous ways and is married through Indigenous Laws and customs to a Secwepemc indigenous woman from here in BC and they have two children together. On paper, his citizenship is in the US. How can Indigenous People be told by the invaders / colonizers that we are "illegal aliens", we were here far before the borders. Our Laws and customs must be honored and respected; we have rights from our Creator to continue to practice our Ways of Life, to conduct our marriage and adoption ceremonies in our indigenous way. Kiko has every right to be in our country, in our Territory, he is married into the Secwepemc Nation and has rights to be here with his family.

The lawyer has asked us to raise $1000 CAD for his ransom (bail). We have received $250 so far, we are now seeking $750. Any help you can give is gratefully appreciated. You can donate several ways.

If you are in Vancouver and would like to drop off a cash donation you can do that to Harjap at 12 E. Hastings St. Harjap's contact info is (778) 552-2099 or email: mailto:harjap@resist.

Or deposit into Scotiabank Institution #002, Transit #10140, Account # 0105082, Routing # 026002532

Any donations from the U.S. can be donated to the above account through wire transfer all the information needed is there.

If you would like to send via Western Union you may to Amanda Soper, in Vancouver, BC, the info we would need on this end is the name of the sender and the place sent from in order for us to pick up.

Let us know of your donations by calling (604) 682- 3269 ext. 7845 or emailing us at mailto:nymcommunications@


For all the help and contributions. NYM Communications



Local Bronx Konuko (Garden) Gets NY City Council Support

Photo: From left Harry Bubbins, NYC Council member Melissa Mark Viverito, NYC Council Speaker Christine Quinn, and Roberto Mukaro Borrero.

South Bronx, NY (UCTP Taino News) – New York City Council Member Melissa Mark Viverito and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn visited Brook Park in the South Bronx on Friday October 6th 2006.

The visit was an opportunity for community members to meet with the Council members as well as for the Council members to express their support for Brook Park and its environmental education, and community based programs. 5th Grade Students from PS. 30 were on hand to greet the Council members as well as demonstrate the harvesting of several varieties of vegetables grown right in the park’s konuko (Taino word for garden).

“Friends of Brook Park” board members, Harry Bubbins and Roberto Mukaro Borrero (Boriken Taino) were also present to welcome the distinguished guest. Both Borrero and Bubbins took the opportunity to highlight the connection between local indigenous community support and environmental education.

Friends of Brook Park is a leading commuity based environmental organization in the South, South Bronx. The organization engages youth and adults in organic gardening, community supported agriculture, arts and indigenous cultural events and activities that convey a deep respect for the Natural world. In addition, Friends of Brook Park are strong advocates for environmental justice, waterfront access and green space development while leading shore clean ups and canoe and kayak introductions and eco adventure tours.

UCTPTN 10.10.2006


Sculptor’s trip shaped by fate

Oswald Hussein chisels out a
new statue based on one of
his mother's stories

Broken bones and bereavement were not enough to stop the Horniman Museum's latest artist in residence travelling 4,500 miles to share his culture. Reporter LOUISE TWEDELL spoke to South American sculptor Oswald Hussein.

TRAVELLING home by motorbike along a dusty Guyanan road on July 10, Oswald was eager to pack his belongings for his first trip to England the following day.

He was due to showcase his skills in a four-week project, Amazon to Caribbean, at the Forest Hill museum.

But before the acclaimed artist reached his home that evening his plans came to an abrupt halt after the driver of an oncoming car shunted him off the road and into a trench.

As the driver sped off Oswald pushed his bike from on top of his body and struggled back onto the road.

His right leg was broken and two fingers on his right hand were almost severed.

The father-of-two said: "I remember seeing the car coming towards me and thinking no, no, no, before I went off the road.

"My crash helmet was like a crushed eggshell and I was covered in mud."

He was taken to hospital where doctors stitched his fingers and put a cast on his leg.

The 52-year-old continued: "I just thought what will be will be.

"I have always believed things happen for a reason and thought this would be one of those times."

The reason became clear to Oswald on August 6, when his 92-year-old mother, Olive, died suddenly.

He said: "The last time I saw her I was in my cast and she started to cry. She said she was worried about me.

"She died shortly afterwards and I felt in dying she'd given me a chance to live and survive.
"If it had not been for my accident I would not have seen her before she died."

Re-booking his flights Oswald would now arrive in London on September 14, but a final obstacle needed to be removed before he could leave.

He added: "I had an appointment with the doctor to remove my cast but when I turned up there had been a mistake, so I went home and cut it off myself with a knife and a saw." Now two weeks into his project Oswald, from a small village of 1,500, is pleased to finally be sharing his work with visitors to his exhibition.

He began carving in the 1960s and has displayed his work at 10 solo exhibitions.

Oswald says his art is more than a job - it is a way of life.

His wooden sculptures, which can take between one day and four months to complete, are all based on rituals, spirits and animals held sacred by his culture.

Oswald said: "Some are based on stories my mother told me when I was younger. They were about animals, humming birds or fish and some related to the sun and rain gods which mark events in our lives."

He added: "I'm glad I made it here eventually and am able to share my culture with the world."
Visitors to the museum, in London Road, can see Oswald carving his works between 10.30am and 5pm, Wednesday to Sunday, until October 8.

For more information, visit www.horniman.ac.uk

Source: http://www.thisislocallondon.co.uk/indepth/features/display.var.949725.0.sculptors_trip_shaped_by_fate.php


Indigenous Peoples Day: Volunteer Opportunity, Prayer Vigil & Unity Gathering

Indigenous Peoples Day
Volunteer Opportunity, Prayer Vigil & Unity Gathering
Monday, October 9th 2006
Brook Park in the South, South Bronx, NY
141st Street and Brook Avenue

Dig your hands in the Earth, chop wood, gather stones and celebrate Autumn! We invite you to join us in giving active and loving care to our Brook Park as well an opportunity to stand in solidarity with Indigenous Peoples. We welcome both skilled and unskilled alike to join us for a day of service to Mother Earth and All Our Relations through focused and joyful work. Please let us know if you are intending to participate and sign up through our website via the Volunteer section at http://friendsofbrookpark.org/

Indigenous Peoples Day
Volunteer Opportunity, Prayer Vigil & Unity Gathering

10am - Volunteers needed to prepare purification lodge etc.

12noon - Lighting of Fire for the Stones

1pm - Reading of the Papal Bulls and Bulls Burning

3pm - Purification Ceremony (aka Inipi, Temascal, Kansi/Guanara), facilitated by Roberto Mukaro Borrero (Boriken Taino)

Following the Purification Ceremony will be a time for sharing from the heart around the sacred fire…

All are welcome - Bring food to share, instruments, tobacco, and a good heart as we pause to acknowledge Mother Earth and the over 500 struggle of Indigenous Peoples throughout the Americas and beyond. In solidarity, prayers and songs will be extended to Leonard Peliter who is enduring his 30th year of imprisonment, as well as those who are fasting for Leonard’s Freedom until October 12th.

Solidarity through prayer and song will also be extended to the Anti-Columbus Day rally in Denver as well as in other places around Turtle Island, the Mohawk protesters in New Caledonia, the Taino and other Caribbean Indigenous Nations, and for those preparing to lobby the United Nations for the passage of the Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

This gathering is sponsored by the Friends of Brook Park, the Cacibajagua Taino Cultural Society and the UCTP Office of International Relations and Regional Coordination.

Brook Park141st St. and Brook Ave.
South Bronx, New York

By train:#6 Local Subway - Ride to Brook Avenueget off at Brook Ave. Walk up 3 blocks to 141st - the park is on the corner

or #2, #5 Subways to 149th Street and Third Ave. walk down Willis Ave. to 141st St. take a left and walk to Brook Avenue there we are on the corner.

By car:
From the North West Side
Take the Major Deegan Expressway to 138th Street exit, take a left and go on 138th street for about 6-10 blocks, left on Willis Avenue, right on 142nd Street, right on 141st Street and park is there on the corner.

From the East side
Take the Bruckner Expressway exit at 138th Street, take a right on 138th Street, go a few blocks to St. Anns Avenue, take a right on St. Anns, and go to 141st Street. Take a left on 141st street, go one block, pass Brook Ave. and the park is there on the corner.

For Information on Brook Park visit http://friendsofbrookpark.org/ or call Harry J. Bubbins at 646.206.5288

For information on the UCTP visit
http://www.uctp.org/ or contact uctp_ny@yahoo.com


Caribbean Indigenous Peoples Turn A New Page in Kaieri (Trinidad)

Arima, Trinidad (UCTP Taino News) - The Secretariat of the Caribbean Organization of Indigenous Peoples (COIP) was officially “handed over” from Guyana to Trinidad at the Carib Community Center in Arima on September 23. 2006.

In a ceremony that was a feature program of CARIFESTA IX, Chief Ricardo Bharath Hernandez accepted the Chairmanship of the organization on behalf of the Santa Rosa Karina (Carib) Community. The Santa Rosa Caribs are currently the only indigenous descendant community in the twin island republic of Trinidad and Tobago officially recognized by the State Government.

In an impassioned acceptance speech, Chief Bharath Hernandez touted some gains for the local community but stressed the need for much more to be done for the Indigenous Peoples of Trinidad. Apparently anticipating the Chief’s challenge, the honorable Minister of Culture and Gender Affairs, Ms. Joan Yuille-Williams announced that a new Cabinet Committee had been established to address long standing issues for the community. Three members of the Santa Rosa Community were appointed on to this special committee, receiving their appointment letters at the event directly from Minister Yuille-Williams.

The ceremony was also attended by the honorable Minister of Amerindian Affairs of the Republic of Guyana, Mrs. Carolyn Rodrigues and the honorable Minister of Utilities & Environment, M.P. for Arima, Ms. Pennelope Beckles.

Indigenous member representatives of COIP were also on hand from Dominica, Guyana, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Belize to pledge support of the new COIP Chairman. Representation within COIP is by country with the Secretariat usually rotated every three years to the next member country.

Roberto Mukaro Borrero (Boriken Taino) was honored as a special invited guest representing the United Confederation of Taino People (UCTP) at the ceremony. On behalf of the UCTP Borrero also pledged Taino support of COIP as he presented Chief Hernandez with a gift from his Boriken (Puerto Rico) homeland.

Noting the historic significance of the event, Borrero stated “this is a special moment for our region as we can see by the participation of Government and Indigenous representatives that our Peoples are beginning to be taken more seriously.”

The ceremony included speeches, special presentations, and a dynamic cultural performance featuring Karina and Arawak music and dance by the Surinamese delegation. With the local community attending in full force, the celebration continued into the evening with additional cultural presentations from local groups.

Another historic and precedent-setting event occurred during the momentous gathering as an official “Declaration of Unity” between the Santa Rosa Carib Community and the United Confederation of Taíno People was adopted on September 24, 2006.

“As we move forward in the region it is important that as Caribbean Indigenous Peoples we recognize and respect each other officially, Nation to Nation.” stated Borrero.

The Caribbean Organization of Indigenous Peoples (COIP) was established in 1987 following the first Conference of Indigenous Peoples of the English Speaking Caribbean, held in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines.

Columbus the Exploiter...

UCTP Taino News - In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue, in search of new lands, gold and the wealth that these "discoveries" would bring him. He 'discovered' and 'claimed' many islands throughout the Caribbean. But, what kind of 'discovery' is it if there are already people there? And, what right did he have to 'claim' these lands, when the Taino people had been living there for thousands of years?

As if that weren't enough, what he did next was truly despicable. Columbus wrote in his journal that the Taino were strong, well-built people and that with his weapons and 50 men he could enslave the entire population. He forced the Taino to mine for gold for him. Those who refused were killed, those who did not meet their quotas had their hands cut off and were left to bleed to death. Women and children were raped. The people were tortured, starved and worked to death.

Others were killed in even more horrific ways... they were cut in half with swords, hung in groups of 13 representing the Savior and the Apostles, roasted alive, while others were chased down by starving attack dogs and torn apart. Shiploads of Taino people were taken to the slave markets in Seville, Spain to be sold for profit. Many died enroute and were thrown overboard. Other exploiters who came after Columbus said it was possible to find your way to the Indies by following the bodies in the water.

Columbus was the first slave trader in the Americas. Millions died as the greed and brutality he brought to their shores caused death and destruction to the Taino people.

Although the truth is known about Columbus, the USA still honors him with a federal holiday.

Columbus Day is the ONLY disputed holiday with 17 states refusing to honor this murderer.



Arawak Artist In Residence At the Horniman Museum

By Kate Smith

Two years ago the Horniman's intrepid head curator, Hassan Arero went on a collecting mission to South America - to visit the rainforest tribes of Guyana who are descended from the earliest settlers of the Caribbean. Many of his purchases have ended up in the Horniman's popular exhibition Amazon to Caribbean, including work by Guyanese sculptor Oswald Hussein.

The Horniman have now invited Oswald Hussein to visit the museum, and make more of his wooden sculptures in the main hall. Surrounded by lathes and hammers, he says he is undisturbed by the rush of school parties past his bench, and can simultaneously keep a vision in his head of the natural forms which influence his work. His sculptures are abstract, but represent the whole experience of his life (recently traumatic) and a description of the surroundings of his home. Guyana is the only English-speaking country in South America.

Hussein is from the Arawak tribe and speaks Lokono - which predates the arrival of Europeans in Latin America - but he says that all children learn English at school. In the current generation there were fears that Lokono would die out, but there has been a revival in the language in recent years. As the Amazon to Caribbean exhibition records, the Arawak tribes have been threatened with extinction for some time. Once numbering in the millions, their numbers were depleted first by the Spanish invasion, and then by the Caribs. Arawaks have no tradition of war, which made them especially vulnerable.

Hussein tells us that he was prepared for London to some extent by the British Army base close to his home where he grew up - soldiers from the UK do jungle training in the area. But he was not expecting the density of buildings in London - "you can't see the horizon at all" - and he says the regulation of life by clocks also seems alien - "usually I need a watch about once a year when I go to see the doctor". He is also struck by the impersonality of London "no-one looks at you on the bus or the tube". Perhaps nothing reveals the subtle differences in culture so much as the interview process. Faced by a series of questions, he weaves seamlessly between his life and work - his hallucinations and dreams - the importance of talking to posterity through his sculptures. His great openness makes his conversation difficult to pare down into soundbites.

He tells us about Arawak beliefs about avoiding death. "You have to be a shapeshifter" he says, changing form to avoid capture by the spirits. Hussein has recently had a close escape: days before he was first expected at the Horniman in April, he was knocked off his motorbike by a hit and run driver in a remote spot. Aided by a passer by reviving him with sugar water, he was carried to hospital and eventually pulled through. Shortly afterwards his mother died; she had been an enormous influence on his work and was, he says, almost as old as Horniman Museum itself. His sculptures always begin with a slice of treetrunk, and its dimensions dictate what the sculpture can show. Some of his completed pieces have most of the wood sculpted away, leaving fine strands, others (like the one shown above) are chunky and substantial. Oswald has yet to see the Amazon to Caribbean exhibition and his own work in it - though he seems to compare himself to an anxious father outside a delivery room "You know the baby is there. You don't have to go and look yet."

You can see Oswald Hussein making wooden sculptures Wednesday - Sunday at the Horniman until October 8th. Afterwards his work will become part of the handling collection at the Horniman Museum. Visitors may also like to check out the museum's Aquarium - recently refitted to a Victorian design. It includes some scenes that closely reflect the Guyanese jungle, and give a little context to the Amazon to Caribbean exhibition, which continues until January.

Lokono artist Oswald Hussein
carving in London


Featured Venue:
Horniman Museum & Gardens

Saint Lucia and Puerto Rico Tops Caribbean in World Business Ranking

CASTRIES - A World Bank report ranks St Lucia and Puerto Rico among the top 30 places in the world in which to do business. According to a BBC report on Thursday, the only Caribbean country or territory within the top 20 is Puerto Rico ranked at number 19. St Lucia is ranked 27th out of 175 countries.

The study looks at how effective they were at stripping away the bureaucratic obstacles to opening businesses, getting licences and conducting imports and exports. The private sector arm of the World Bank, the International Finance Corporation, published the report after doing a survey of how easy it is to do business in 175 countries.

The IFC measured the time, cost, and hassle for businesses to comply with the countries' legal and administrative requirements---- in other words how easy it is to cut through the red tape. So they found that the easiest country in the world in which to do business is Singapore, followed by New Zealand and the United States. ReformsIn terms of introducing reforms that make it easier for businesses, Africa is reforming faster that Latin American and the Caribbean, Asia and the Middle East.

The reforms the IFC approves of are simplifying business regulations, strengthening property rights, easing tax burdens, increasing access to credit, and reducing the cost of exporting and importing.World Bank President, Paul Wolfowitz, says that in many countries the costs of doing business are so prohibitive that businessmen are forced to operate outside the formal economy -- that is, the country is more open to bribes and corruption.

He says the report is a critical tool for developing countries to determine where more reforms are needed."Statement of Confidence"Meanwhile, Prime Minister Dr Kenny D. Anthony has welcomed the report. "This is great news. I am exceedingly pleased," he said on receiving the news Thursday.Dr Anthony said the report "is also great news for us as a Government because sometimes we can be hard on ourselves and feel that even all that's done is not enough."

The PM, who is also responsible for Finance, Economic Development, International Financial services and Information, said the World Bank/IFC report "will help us in our quest to continue to attract business and to do business in ways that would be even more business friendly."He said the reports was "also an international statement of confidence in Saint Lucia, which will certainly help the world better understand that Saint Lucia is not just good for tourism, but also good for business."