|40th & 45th President of Costa Rica|
8 May 2006 –8 May 2010
Laura Chinchilla Miranda
Kevin Casas Zamora
|Preceded by||Abel Pacheco|
|Succeeded by||Laura Chinchilla|
8 May 1986 –8 May 1990
Jorge Manuel Dengo Obregón
Victoria Garrón de Doryan
|Preceded by||Luis Alberto Monge|
|Succeeded by||Rafael Ángel Calderón Fournier|
Óscar Arias Sánchez
13 September 1940
Heredia, Costa Rica
|Political party||National Liberation Party|
|Alma mater|| Boston University |
University of Costa Rica
London School of Economics
University of Essex
Óscar Arias Sánchez (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈoskaɾ ˈaɾjas] ; born 13 September 1940 in Heredia, Costa Rica) was President of Costa Rica from 1986 to 1990 and from 2006 to 2010. He received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1987 for his efforts to end the Central American crisis.
Heredia is a city in the Heredia province of Costa Rica, of which it is the capital; it is 10 kilometers to the north of the country's capital, San José.
Costa Rica, officially the Republic of Costa Rica, is a country in Central America, bordered by Nicaragua to the north, the Caribbean Sea to the northeast, Panama to the southeast, the Pacific Ocean to the southwest, and Ecuador to the south of Cocos Island. It has a population of around 5 million in a land area of 51,060 square kilometers. An estimated 333,980 people live in the capital and largest city, San José with around 2 million people in the surrounding metropolitan area.
The President of Costa Rica is the head of state and head of government of Costa Rica. The President is currently elected in direct elections for a period of four years, which is not immediately renewable. Two Vice presidents are elected in the same ticket with the president. The president appoints the Council of Ministers. Due to the abolition of the military of Costa Rica in 1948, the president is not a Commander-in-chief, unlike the norm in most other countries, although the Constitution does describe him as commander in chief of the civil defense public forces.
He is also a recipient of the Albert Schweitzer Prize for Humanitarianism and a trustee of Economists for Peace and Security. In 2003, he was elected to the Board of Directors of the International Criminal Court's Trust Fund for Victims.
The Albert Schweitzer Prize for Humanitarianism is a prize given to people who made exemplary contributions to humanity and the environment. The goal of the prize is to advance the cause of humanitarianism. The prize was established in 1986 by Albert Toepfer, an international grain merchant from Hamburg, Germany. Previously given under the auspices of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation in New York and administered by Johns Hopkins University, it is named after noted humanitarian and physician Albert Schweitzer and is now administered by The Albert Schweitzer Fellowship.
Economists for Peace and Security (EPS) is a New York-based, United Nations accredited and registered global organization and network of thought-leading economists, political scientists, and security experts founded in 1989 that promotes non-military solutions to world challenges, and more broadly, works towards freedom from fear and freedom from want for all.
The International Criminal Court is an intergovernmental organization and international tribunal that sits in The Hague in the Netherlands. The ICC has the jurisdiction to prosecute individuals for the international crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and crimes of aggression. The ICC is intended to complement existing national judicial systems and it may therefore exercise its jurisdiction only when certain conditions are met, such as when national courts are unwilling or unable to prosecute criminals or when the United Nations Security Council or individual states refer situations to the Court. The ICC began functioning on 1 July 2002, the date that the Rome Statute entered into force. The Rome Statute is a multilateral treaty which serves as the ICC's foundational and governing document. States which become party to the Rome Statute, for example by ratifying it, become member states of the ICC. As of March 2019, there are 124 ICC member states.
Arias is currently facing several judicial accusations, one for criminal malfeasancedue to a decree of national interest about gold mining in a protected area, and nine for sexual assault.
Malfeasance in office, or official misconduct, is the commission of an unlawful act, done in an official capacity, which affects the performance of official duties. Malfeasance in office is often grounds for a just cause removal of an elected official by statute or recall election.
Arias was born within an upper-class family in the province of Heredia.Arias concluded his secondary schooling at the Saint Francis College in the capital city of San José. He then went to the United States and enrolled in Boston University with the intention of studying medicine, but he soon returned to his home country and completed degrees in law and economics at the University of Costa Rica. In 1967, Arias traveled to the United Kingdom and enrolled in the London School of Economics. He received a doctoral degree in political science from the University of Essex in 1974. Arias has received over fifty honorary degrees, including doctorates from Harvard University, Princeton University, Dartmouth College, Oberlin College, Wake Forest University, Ithaca College and Washington University in St. Louis.
Heredia is a province of Costa Rica. It is in the north-central part of the country. As a result, the province covers areas as diverse as the agriculture-rich Northern plains to the more metropolitan areas such as the city of Heredia in the Central Valley. It contains several major environmentally important areas such as the Braulio Carrillo National Park and the Sarapiqui River. The capital is the city of Heredia.
San José is the capital and largest city of Costa Rica. Located in the mid-west of the Central Valley, San José is the seat of national government, the focal point of political and economic activity, and the major transportation hub of this Central American nation. The population of San José Canton was 288,054 in 2011, and San José’s municipal land area measures 44.2 square kilometers, and an estimated 333,980 residents in 2015. The metropolitan area stretches beyond the canton limits and has an estimated population of over 2 million in 2017. The city is named in honor of Joseph of Nazareth.
Boston University is a private research university in Boston, Massachusetts. The university is nonsectarian, but has been historically affiliated with the United Methodist Church.
Arias joined the National Liberation Party (PLN), Costa Rica's main social democratic party. In 1986 he ran successfully for president on that party's ticket. Arias's presidency saw the transformation of Costa Rica's economy from one based on the traditional cash crops (coffee and bananas) to one more focused on non-traditional agriculture (e.g., of exotic flowers and fruits) and tourism. Some within the PLN criticized his administration for abandoning the party's social democratic teachings and promoting a neoliberal economic model. He is now often regarded as a neoliberal although he is a member of a nominally social democratic party.
The National Liberation Party, nicknamed the verdiblancos, is a political party in Costa Rica. The party is a member of the Socialist International.
Social democracy is a political, social and economic ideology that supports economic and social interventions to promote social justice within the framework of a liberal democratic polity and a capitalist economy. The protocols and norms used to accomplish this involve a commitment to representative and participatory democracy, measures for income redistribution and regulation of the economy in the general interest and welfare state provisions. Social democracy thus aims to create the conditions for capitalism to lead to greater democratic, egalitarian and solidaristic outcomes. Due to longstanding governance by social democratic parties and their influence on socioeconomic policy development in the Nordic countries, in policy circles social democracy has become associated with the Nordic model in the latter part of the 20th century.
A cash crop or profit crop is an agricultural crop which is grown to sell for profit. It is typically purchased by parties separate from a farm. The term is used to differentiate marketed crops from subsistence crops, which are those fed to the producer's own livestock or grown as food for the producer's family. In earlier times cash crops were usually only a small part of a farm's total yield, while today, especially in developed countries, almost all crops are mainly grown for revenue. In the least developed countries, cash crops are usually crops which attract demand in more developed nations, and hence have some export value.
Arias received the 1987 Nobel Peace Prize with the help of John Biehl, his peer in England, and Rodrigo Madrigal Nieto for his work towards the signing of the Esquipulas II Accords. This was a plan intended to promote democracy and peace on the Central American isthmus during a time of great turmoil: leftist guerrillas were fighting against the governments in El Salvador and Guatemala, which were backed by the United States under the auspices of the Cold War; the Contras, supported by the United States, were fighting an insurgency against the Sandinista government in Nicaragua; Honduras, only recently wresting political power from its military, was caught in the middle as a base for U.S. military forces; and on Costa Rica's other border, Panama faced the oppression of Manuel Noriega's military dictatorship. With the support of Arias, the various armed conflicts ended within the decade (Guatemala's civil war finally ended in 1996).
The Esquipulas Nicaraguan Peace Agreement, also known as the Central American Peace Accords, was a peace initiative in the mid-1980s to settle the military conflicts that had plagued Central America for many years, and in some cases for decades. It built upon groundwork laid by the Contadora Group from 1983 to 1985. The agreement was named for Esquipulas, Guatemala, where the initial meetings took place. The US Congress lobbying efforts were helped by one of Capitol Hill's top lobbyists, William C. Chasey.
Democracy is a system of government where the citizens exercise power by voting. In a direct democracy, the citizens as a whole form a governing body and vote directly on each issue. In a representative democracy the citizens elect representatives from among themselves. These representatives meet to form a governing body, such as a legislature. In a constitutional democracy the powers of the majority are exercised within the framework of a representative democracy, but the constitution limits the majority and protects the minority, usually through the enjoyment by all of certain individual rights, e.g. freedom of speech, or freedom of association. "Rule of the majority" is sometimes referred to as democracy. Democracy is a system of processing conflicts in which outcomes depend on what participants do, but no single force controls what occurs and its outcomes.
An isthmus is a narrow piece of land connecting two larger areas across an expanse of water by which they are otherwise separated. A tombolo is an isthmus that consists of a spit or bar, and a strait is the sea counterpart of an isthmus.
Arias then called for a higher level of integration in the Central America region and promoted the creation of the Central American Parliament (Parlamento Centroamericano). During his current administration, Arias has declared that Costa Rica will not enter the Central American Parliament. Arias also modified the country's educational system. The most notable action in this respect was the reintroduction of standardized academic tests at the end of primary and secondary school.
The Costa Rican constitution had been amended in 1969 to include a clause forbidding former presidents to seek re-election. Arias challenged this at the Sala IV, the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice of Costa Rica, which initially rejected his application in September 2000. In 2003, a group of Arias supporters presented an unconstitutionality challenge against the 1969 constitutional amendment forbidding re-election, and this time the ruling in April 2003 struck down the prohibition against non-consecutive re-election.This decision was denounced as a "state blow" or "coup d'état" by ex-president Luis Alberto Monge.
Arias announced in 2004 that he intended to run again for president in the February 2006 general elections. By then, he was the only living former president who was not either in jail, under indictment or facing an investigation. Though for years private polling companies and several news media published polls predicting Arias would win by a wide margin, the election was initially deemed too close to call. A month later, on 7 March, after a manual recount, the official results showed Arias beat center-left contender Ottón Solís by 18,169 votes (1.2% of valid votes cast), and finished just a few thousand votes over the 40 percent threshold required to capture the presidency in a single round. He took the oath of office at noon on 8 May 2006 at the National Stadium. In his speech on 15 September 2008, he admitted that he was tired because of the criticism of his opponents.
On 1 June 2007, he switched Costa Rica's diplomatic recognition from the Republic of China (Taiwan) to the People's Republic of China, making Costa Rica the 167th nation in the world to do so. Subsequently, under diplomatic and financial pressure from Beijing, he induced the Dalai Lama, a fellow Nobel Peace Prize laureate, to postpone indefinitely a proposed and much anticipated visit during Beijing's suppression of controversial riots in Tibet..
At the 5th Summit of the Americas in Trinidad and Tobago, on 18 April 2009, Arias gave a speech on the topic "We've been doing something wrong". Directed at fellow Latin American leaders, he decried Latin America's lack of development compared to other parts of the world, calling for pragmatism, and more resources directed at education rather than militaries.
In 2009, the Supreme Court of Honduras issued an arrest warrant for Honduran President Manuel Zelaya because of violations of the constitution and laws.Two days later, the National Congress of Honduras (in which Zelaya's own party held 62 out of 128 seats, more than any other party), also voted to dismiss Zelaya. Zelaya fled to Costa Rica. The Honduran constitution mandated that the head of Congress, Roberto Micheletti, who was next in the presidential line of succession, becomes the provisional head of state since Vice President Elvin Ernesto Santos had resigned in December 2008 to run for president. Micheletti's term ended 27 January 2010.
Arias began serving as mediator between Zelaya and Micheletti in the 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis. Representatives of the two Hondurans met with Arias on various occasions but so far have failed to reach any kind of agreement. As described above (with factual citations), Arias himself was initially prohibited by Costa Rica's constitutional court from another term, due to constitutional term limits, but this was reversed using legal means, with the consent of the Costa Rican Sala IV court, unlike in Honduras. New elections in Honduras are planned for 29 November 2009. Micheletti's government stated on 2 July 2009 that it is willing to hold this year's presidential election early. Arias presented a seven-point agreement, which calls for the return of Zelaya as president – a condition deemed unacceptable to the interim government. Zelaya's representatives accepted the Arias proposal "in principle" but Micheletti's representatives balked at the key point of Zelaya returning to power in Honduras.
In August 2007, Arias was affected by tendinitis, and in April 2008 he canceled some activities because of muscular pain in his lumbar region. Subsequently, due to increasing difficulty in speaking over the course of several weeks, Arias went to the Philadelphia Ears, Nose and Throat Associates medical center in the United States on 20 May 2008, where it was determined that he had a nonmalignant cyst on his vocal cords. As a result, it was announced on 21 May that doctors advised him not to speak for one month, saying that if this did not help, surgery would be considered.On 11 August 2009 Arias was diagnosed with H1N1 Influenza, but he recovered.
Some Oscar Arias acts have generated controversy:
Further controversies followed him even after his role as a president had come to an end. The route from Escazú to Caldera built by the Spanish company Autopistas del Sol has undergone heavy criticism over the years for its high tolls and dangerous roads (which had to undergo heavy maintenance to prevent further rock slides). Oscar Arias was also blamed for having invited a Canadian corporation to perform heavy mining which could potentially compromise the local biodiversity. Their permissions were revoked during the Chinchilla Miranda administration which gave the impression of Arias-Chinchilla enmity following his sudden criticism of then president Laura Chinchilla Miranda who was popularly regarded as a successor.
In 2017 Costa Rica’s General Attorney office indicted Arias for the Crucitas case, a case in which former Environment Minister Roberto Dobles and Arias as president signed a 2008 decree ceding the Canadian company Infinito Gold control over a protected area near the Nicaraguan border known as Crucitas for gold mining and declaring it "national interest",something that the Prosecution argued was illegal as protected areas can’t be granted for exploitation of any kind. Dobles was previously found guilty of the charges, but Arias was not indicted alongside him by the previous General Attorney Jorge Chavarría (often accused of being close to Arias). The new General Attorny Emilia Navas reopened the case indicting Arias.
Also in 2019 psychiatrist and anti-Nuclear activist Alexandra Arce von Herold formally accused Arias of rape at the Public Ministry. Following her allegation three more women came to light accusing Arias of sexual harassment and misconduct.Arias denied the charges.
The politics of Costa Rica take place in a framework of a presidential, representative democratic republic, with a multi-party system. Executive power is exercised by the president and his cabinet, and the President of Costa Rica is both the head of state and head of government. Legislative power is vested in the Legislative Assembly. The president and 57 Legislative Assembly deputies are elected for four-year terms. The judiciary operates independent of the executive and the legislature but remains involved in the political process. Costa Rica is a republic with a strong system of constitutional checks and balances. Voting is compulsory in Costa Rica but it is not enforced.
The Citizens' Action Party is a center-left political party in Costa Rica.
José Manuel Zelaya Rosales is a Honduran politician who was President of Honduras from 27 January 2006 until 28 June 2009. He is the eldest son of a wealthy businessman, and inherited his father's nickname "Mel". Before entering politics he was involved in his family's logging and timber businesses.
Roberto Micheletti Baín is a Honduran politician who served as the interim de facto president of Honduras from June 28, 2009 to January 27, 2010 as a result of the 2009 Honduran coup d'état. The Honduran military ousted the President, and the National Congress read a letter of resignation, which was refuted two minutes later by Zelaya in conversation with CNN en Español; days later, the coup-plotters claimed that the Supreme Court had ordered to forcefully detain President Manuel Zelaya because "he was violating the Honduran constitution"; Zelaya was exiled rather than arrested. Micheletti, constitutionally next in line for the presidency, was sworn in as president by the National Congress a few hours after Zelaya was sent into exile by the Honduran military. He was not acknowledged as de jure president by any government or international organization. The 2009 General Election took place as planned in November and elected Porfirio Lobo Sosa to succeed Micheletti.
Johnny Francisco Araya Monge is a Costa Rican politician. He was the mayor of the country's capital San José from 1998 to 2001 and again since 2003. He was also the Co-President of the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) from 2010 to 2013. He is a member of the National Liberation Party (PLN) and was presidential candidate in the 2014 election.
Laura Chinchilla Miranda is a Costa Rican politician who was President of Costa Rica from 2010 to 2014. She was one of Óscar Arias Sánchez's two Vice-Presidents and his administration's Minister of Justice. She was the governing PLN candidate for President in the 2010 general election, where she won with 46.76% of the vote on 7 February. She was the eighth woman president of a Latin American country and the first woman to become President of Costa Rica. She was sworn in as President of Costa Rica on May 8, 2010.
The 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis was a political dispute over plans to either rewrite the Constitution of Honduras or write a new one.
The Political Constitution of the Republic of Honduras was approved on 11 January 1982, published on 20 January 1982, amended by the National Congress of Honduras 26 times from 1984 to 2005, and 10 interpretations by Congress were made from 1982 to 2005. It is Honduras' twelfth constitution since independence in 1838. Previous charters were adopted in 1839, 1848, 1865, 1873, 1880, 1894, 1906, 1924, 1936, 1957 and 1965.
International reaction to the 2009 Honduran coup d'état of June 28, 2009, was that the coup was widely repudiated around the globe. The United Nations, every other country in the Western Hemisphere and others, publicly condemned the military-led 2009 Honduran coup d'état and ouster of Honduran President Manuel Zelaya as illegal and most labelled it a coup d'état. The Obama administration, along with all other governments in the hemisphere, branded the action a "coup." Every country in the region, except the United States, withdrew their ambassadors from Honduras. All ambassadors of the European Union were recalled. Venezuela said it would suspend oil shipments, and Honduras's neighbors — El Salvador, Guatemala and Nicaragua - stopped overland trade for 48 hours. The World Bank and Inter-American Development Bank suspended lending to Honduras.
The 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis was a political confrontation concerning the events that led to, included, and followed the 2009 Honduran coup d'état and the political breakdown associated with it. The coup was repudiated around the globe, but Roberto Micheletti, head of the government installed after the coup, has claimed that the Honduran Supreme Court ordered the detention of Manuel Zelaya, deposed President of Honduras, and that the following succession was constitutionally valid.
The 2009 Honduran coup d'état, part of the 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis, occurred when the Honduran Army on June 28, 2009 followed orders from the Honduran Supreme Court to oust President Manuel Zelaya and send him into exile. Zelaya had attempted to schedule a non-binding poll on holding a referendum on convening a constituent assembly to rewrite the constitution. Zelaya refused to comply with court orders to cease, and the Honduran Supreme Court issued a secret warrant for his arrest dated 26 June. Two days later, Honduran soldiers stormed the president's house in the middle of the night and detained him, forestalling the poll. Instead of bringing him to trial, the army put him on a military aeroplane and flew him to Costa Rica. Later that day, after the reading of a resignation letter of disputed authenticity, the Honduran Congress voted to remove Zelaya from office, and appointed Speaker of Congress Roberto Micheletti, his constitutional successor, to replace him.
Guaymuras dialogue – Tegucigalpa/San José accord is a diplomatic agreement between two rival political factions in Honduras during the 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis. Representatives from the de facto Micheletti government and deposed President Manuel Zelaya reached the agreement after several weeks of diplomatic dialogue in late 2009.
The cuarta urna or fourth ballot box referendum was a plan by Honduran president Manuel Zelaya to run a non-binding referendum to consult the public regarding the administration of a second, binding referendum to convoke a constitutional assembly. The referendum was planned to run concurrently with the November 2009 presidential, congressional, and mayoral elections. Some Hondurans opposed the plan, including many politicians from the two largest parties. When Zelaya pushed ahead with plans for this referendum on whether to include a fourth ballot box, the Supreme Court issued a warrant for his arrest and the army expelled him from the country in a June 28 coup d'etat, precipitating the 2009 Honduran constitutional crisis.
General elections were held in Costa Rica on 2 February 1986. Óscar Arias of the National Liberation Party won the presidential election, whilst his party also won the parliamentary election. Voter turnout was 81.8%.
Events in the year 2013 in Costa Rica.
Costa Rica held parliamentary and presidential elections on Sunday, 2 February 2014 to elect a new president, two vice presidents, and 57 Legislative Assembly lawmakers. Voting is compulsory in Costa Rica, nevertheless abstentionism was 35 percent in 2006 and 32 percent in 2010. In accordance with Article 132 of the Constitution, the incumbent President, Laura Chinchilla Miranda, was ineligible to run for a second consecutive term.
Costa Rica–Mexico relations refers to the diplomatic relations between Costa Rica and Mexico. Both nations are members of the Association of Caribbean States, Community of Latin American and Caribbean States, Organization of American States, Organization of Ibero-American States and the United Nations.
A primary election was held among the members of Costa Rica’s then ruling National Liberation Party (PLN) on June 7, 2009 in order to choose the PLN’s nominee for presidency in the 2010 general election. The two main candidates for the nomination were then vice-president Laura Chinchilla and San José Mayor Johnny Araya. Former security minister Fernando Berrocal also ran a basically testimonial candidacy. PLN’s main rival party, PAC, ran its own convention a month before.
The Reform State or Reformist State is a period in Costa Rican history characterized by the change in political and economic paradigm switching from the uncontrolled capitalism and laissez faire of the Liberal State into a more economically progressive Welfare State. The period ranges from approximately 1940 starting with the presidency of social reformer Rafael Angel Calderón Guardia and ends around the 1980s with the first neoliberal and Washington Consensus reforms that begun after the government of Luis Alberto Monge.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Óscar Arias Sánchez .|
Luis Alberto Monge
| President of Costa Rica |
Rafael Ángel Calderón Fournier
| President of Costa Rica |