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Las Islas del Sol

The islands of Las Islas del Sol, a protectorate of the Republic of Jamaica, are located in the Caribbean Sea with its closest neighbors—the Barbados Islands—lying 43 miles to its east. The islands are home to several nature preserves, various national parks, a military base, and a thriving fishing industry throughout its coastal communities. Originally a Spanish colony during the 1700’s, Las Islas del Sol were sold to the British Empire in an effort by the Spanish king to fund the rapidly developing cities scattered in Latin America. Following the independence of the Republic of Jamaica in 1962, Las Islas del Sol officially became the only spanish-speaking territory under Jamaica’s protection.

The islands have a population of 7,203 according to Jamaica’s recent 2017 Census (census of population, conducted from January to March 2017), and has reportedly decreased along the years due to severe hurricane weather conditions. During the summer season, Las Islas del Sol sees an average  temperature of 82 degrees Fahrenheit. In its winter season, the island chain experiences an average temperature of 45 degrees Fahrenheit. In the past two years, there have been 67 reported deaths due to the extreme weather conditions produced by hurricanes. Scientists from the University of Las Islas claim that the protectorate’s many natural preserves benefit from the winter seasons’ excess water, which in turn help irrigate local farms and  refill water wells in rural neighborhoods.

The Republic of Jamaica does not contribute much to the repairs of local shelters, hospitals, or schools due to the corrupted state of government and the island’s distance from the mainland. The islands are known for many natural goods such as its island quail eggs, blue dye, copper deposits and exotic fruits. As a result of foreign investment, the islands have recently been commercialized and has grown its tourist industry after rebuilding many of its historical buildings and landmarks to expand their utility as event venues and marketplaces. The municipal government approved a grant request from the islands’ governor, Y.M. Teen, in 2006 to fund the construction of an additional airstrip, located at the east side of the military base for both military transports and commercial civilian flights. Although this has added to the local revenue and has flourish the island with small jobs, some locals are not too happy about the development of commercial attractions that are detracting from the natives’ environmentally-conscious lifestyles.

Las Islas del Sol have many famous national spokespeople such as its native son and two-time league MVP, Kevin Riviera, who was born in Las Islas del Sol in 1982, and resides in his coastal home during the baseball league off-seasons. Famous poet, Sylvia Ramirez, was born in Las Islas del Sol in 1935, and published many of her first poems while teaching english at the University of Las Islas.

Mario Martinez