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SundayApril 29, 2012

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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Another Journalist Killed in Mexico, Beaten and Strangled in Her Bathroom

Another Journalist Killed in Mexico, Beaten and Strangled in Her Bathroom

Photo: Regina Martinez of Proceso Murdered

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The body of Regina Martinez, the Proceso magazine correspondent in the eastern Mexican state of Veracruz, was found in her house, officials said.

Martinez, who covered drug trafficking, was found Saturday in the bathroom of her house in Xalapa, the capital of Veracruz, and appeared to have been beaten and strangled.

Emergency services personnel found the body around 6:00 p.m. after responding to an anonymous tip about a dead body.

Veracruz Gov. Gabriel Duarte ordered an investigation to determine who killed the reporter and expressed his condolences to her family.

Martinez had worked for a number of different media outlets during a career that spanned more than 30 years.

Mexico, where nearly 80 journalists have been murdered and several others have disappeared since 2000, is considered the world’s second most dangerous country for members of the media.

Nine journalists were murdered in Mexico last year, the National Human Rights Commission, or CNDH, said in a statement released in January.

Journalists have increasingly been targeted in recent years by drug traffickers and other organized crime groups, especially in northern Mexico.

Media members must also contend with long-running abuse at the hands of federal, state and local officials.

Veracruz has been plagued by a turf war between rival drug cartels that has sent the state’s murder rate skyrocketing.

Residents of Veracruz city were stunned on Sept. 20 by the discovery of 35 bodies dumped on a busy thoroughfare.

A week later, 32 bodies were found at three drug-gang “safe houses” in the Veracruz-Boca del Rio metro area.

The Gulf, Los Zetas and relatively new Jalisco Nueva Generacion cartels, as well as breakaway members of the once-powerful La Familia Michoacana organization, are fueling the violence in Veracruz, which is Mexico’s third-most populous state and coveted as a key drug-trafficking corridor to the United States, officials say.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Dead Dolphins and Now Hundreds of Dead Pelicans in Peru

Dead Dolphins and Now Hundreds of Dead Pelicans in Peru

Photo: Peru Pelicans Dying After Dolphins Deaths

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Fishermen and environmentalists are calling on officials to investigate the deaths of more than 200 pelicans on the beaches of northern Peru, media reports said.

The dead seabirds were found along a 200-kilometer (124-mile) stretch of beaches in the Piura and Lambayeque regions over the past few days, the elcomercio.pe Web site reported.

“More than 200 dead pelicans were found in the entire area. The cause of this new environmental disaster is not known,” the newspaper said, alluding to the deaths of some 800 dolphins in the same area since the beginning of the year.

The majority of the dead pelicans were found from San Jose Bay to the Illescas preserve, located on the border of Piura and Lambayeque.

Dozens of other dying birds have been spotted on the beaches, Puerto Eten Fishermen’s Association president Francisco Ñiquen said.

The Peruvian Sea Institute, or Imarpe, and international scientists should investigate what is happening on the north coast, Ñiquen said.

Hundreds of dolphins have been found stranded since January for unknown reasons, environmentalist Heinz Plengue said.

A number of possible causes, ranging from a virus to mining exploration in the Pacific Ocean, may be responsible for the deaths of the animals, experts said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Three Generations of Dominican Family Die When Car Plunges 60 Feet into Bronx Zoo from Overpass

Three Generations of Dominican Family Die When Car Plunges 60 Feet into Bronx Zoo from Overpass

Photo: Bronx River Parkway Car Plunges, 7 Dead

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Seven people perished today, all from the same Dominican family, as their Honda minivan plunged off an overpass into the Bronx zoo. 

Three generations of the Dominican family that was reportedly only blocks from their house when their vehicle went off the edge and according to reports flew 60 feet up and then plunged 60 feet down into the woods in a non-public area of the Bronx Zoo. 

The horrific accident occurred around 12:30 p.m. on the Bronx River Parkway.  Early reports indicate that a 45-year-old woman was driving in excess of 70 miles-per-hour.  The name of the Dominican family has not been released by police at this time. 

No one else was injured in the accident.  All victims, that included an 84-year-old man, his 80-year wife, their two daughters age 45 and 39 and three granddaughters ages 10, 7 and 3, were pronounced dead at the scene of the accident. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

‘Missing’ Cuban Actors Seek Asylum after Winning Big at Tribeca Film Festival

‘Missing’ Cuban Actors Seek Asylum after Winning Big at Tribeca Film Festival

Photo: Javier Nunez Florez and Anailin de la Rua seek Asylum

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The two Cuban actors who disappeared as soon as they set foot in the United States, where they had traveled to present at New York’s Tribeca Film Festival the film “Una noche” (One Night), in which they both star, will request asylum in this country.

Anailin de la Rua and Javier Nuñez Florian, both 20, confirmed their intentions in an interview granted exclusively to the America Teve television network, where they said that they had spent a week “frightened” in Miami and “without wanting to leave the house” of her uncle, who lives there.

“What I most want is to continue acting. It’s what I like most, but if I can’t attain that dream I would work at something else, because what I want is to fight,” said Nuñez, who won the best actor award at the Tribeca Festival, which he did not attend.

The award he won for his role in “Una noche,” directed by Lucy Molloy, who wrote the screenplay for the film after living several months in Cuba, comes with $2,500 cash and he won the honor along with his castmate Dariel Arrechada.

During the interview, which was given on Friday night, De la Rua said she feels she is a part of the generation of young Cubans who are desperately seeking to leave their country, although “thank God I came to this country by plane and not by sea.”

The young woman started to cry when she saw images of the Tribeca Festival where last Thursday her castmates were awarded the prize, and she apologized to the third star of the movie, Arrechada, for having disappeared without telling him.

Nuñez and De la Rua, who play two siblings in the film, got to know each other during the cast selection process and are now boyfriend and girlfriend.

Both shared the dream of coming to the United States: “It was something we talked about constantly. There, the youth has no future. We wanted to help our parents,” the actor explained.

“We’ve already prepared a large part of the (papers to request) asylum, and I think that next week we’ll present them and we’ll be able to have a response relatively quickly,” said their lawyer, Willy Allen.

The actors left Cuba en route for New York along with other members of the cast and film crew for “Una noche,” but last Wednesday when they made a stopover in Miami the pair left the group and went into hiding.

The movie tells the story of Raul and Elio, two Cuban teenagers who face the difficulties of leaving the island in search of a better life in Miami. The two build a raft but, contrary to their plans, the sister of one of them named Lila chooses to go along with them.

“Una Noche” is a co-production of Cuba, the United States and Britain.

Read more by HS News Staff →

The Rubio Watch:  Grandfather Almost Deported

The Rubio Watch:  Grandfather Almost Deported

Photo: The Marco Rubio Watch

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Florida Senator and possible Republican Vice Presidential candidate, Marco Rubio, finds himself defending his family’s history yet again as reports break about his maternal grandfather’s immigration to the United States. 

In a report by the Associated Press, Rubio’s maternal grandfather, Pedro Victor García, originally arrived in the United States after fleeing the dictatorship of Fulgencio Batista, three years before Castro’s regime began in 1959.  Two weeks after Castro took power; García returned to his home country with high hopes for Fidel Castro yet soon realized that Cuba was turning into a communist country under his rule.  As a result, García fled Cuba for the United States in the summer of 1962. 

Although several of the original reports are incomplete on all the details of García’s immigration, the Associated Press reported that on October 4, 1962, García received orders from an immigration officer to “be excluded and deported from the United States.”  Yet this never happened as a result of the Cuban Missile Crisis, which was later followed by the 1966 Cuban Adjustment Act.  This act allowed exiles such as García, legal residency in the United States.

Although the Florida Senator has been criticized by many in the Latin American community for his conservative viewpoint and more specifically his opposition to the proposed DREAM Act, his alternative plan for military or college bound immigrants has gained some supporters.  In a statement to McClatchy Newspapers, Rubio said, “These kids are trying to get right what their parents got wrong.  No one’s making the argument that these kids have a legal right to be here.  They don’t have a legal claim.  I would make the argument, however, that they have a claim on our conscience.”

Rubio is currently working on an autobiography entitled, “An American Son: A Memoir.”  Its publication is scheduled for June.  An unauthorized biography of the Florida Senator scheduled to come out around the same time written by Washington Post writer Manuel Roig-Franzia will be entitled, “The Rise of Marco Rubio.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Colombian Adventure Park Plans to Construct Largest Jesus Christ Statute in the World

Colombian Adventure Park Plans to Construct Largest Jesus Christ Statute in the World

Photo: Large Jesus Christ Statute Coming to Colombia

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Huila Africa, a wildlife adventure park located in central Colombia, plans to construct the two largest statues in the world of Jesus.  The extreme sports and adventure park known for activities such as camping, horseback riding, paintball, and kayaking, will now add religion to that list. 

The project will consist of building a crucifix shaped church large enough to accommodate 500 people along with an 80 meter (196.9 ft) statue of Christ crucified on the cross as well as a 60 meter statue of Christ Redeemer. 

The statue will tower over all other Christ figures including the statue of Christ Redeemer in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  Western Poland’s statue measuring at 53 meters will also be smaller than the proposed 60 meter statue.  German Garrido, the park’s owner and engineer hopes the project will increase tourism in the area.  “It’s a monumental work for Catholics and we will have the world’s biggest Christ,” Garrido stated to Colombia.net.  According to the park’s spokeswoman, Maria Cenis the project is being constructed in an effort to bring more publicity to the Huila department as well as increase tourism in Colombia. 

Plans for this project have been in development for a year and a half and the estimated costs are $5.7 million.  Garrido hopes to complete the project by Easter of 2013; however no date has been confirmed. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

First Ladies of Latin America Combating Number of Minor Children Immigrating Alone to Find Parents

First Ladies of Latin America Combating Number of Minor Children Immigrating Alone to Find Parents

Photo: Children Illegally Migration on the Rise

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During a conference sponsored by the United States Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, first ladies from Mexico, Honduras and Guatemala joined forces to raise awareness of the growing numbers of illegal immigration of unaccompanied children.  The conference occurred one week after 100 undocumented immigrant children were taken to a dormitory at the Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. 

Other local shelters and nonprofit facilities which typically house unaccompanied children were out of space.  Last year alone, more than 7,000 undocumented migrant children were detained in the United States.

Mexico’s first lady, Margarita Zavala, along with Rosa Elena Bonilla de Lobo of Honduras and Rosa Maria Leal de Perez of Guatemala provided several reasons for the surge in unaccompanied children during the international conference, titled “On Their Own,” which was held at the Organization of American States.  According to the first ladies, many of these children are attempting to find their parents or relatives that have already arrived in the United States.  Some are looking to flee from dangerous or troubled homes and still others are avoiding gang activities. 

According to Zavala, efforts are being made to reunite children with their parents while also improving educational opportunities and social services for these families.  She believes it is imperative that all immigrants are educated in the dangers of illegal immigration as well as the realities new immigrants face upon arrival.  This issue raises concerns as overall illegal immigration from Mexico to the United States is down most likely as a result of the economy and unemployment rate according to a study done by the Pew Hispanic Center.   

Bonilla de Lobo stated at the conference, “Our children should have the greatest protection that adults and agencies can provide them.”  According to Zavala, the majority of the unaccompanied children come from Central and Southern Mexico as well as other Central American countries. 

The children at Lackland are undergoing evaluation and efforts are underway to reunite them with their families or find foster families.  Legal counsel will be available for some that obtain refugee or protected status. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

In Case You Were Wondering:  Frida Kahlo’s Mysterious Infertility Solved

In Case You Were Wondering:  Frida Kahlo’s Mysterious Infertility Solved

Photo: Broken Column by Frida Kahlo

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Dr. Fernando Antelo, a surgical pathologist at the Harbor-UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, believes he has unlocked the mystery of celebrated Mexican artist, Frida Kahlo’s, infertility.  After researching her life as well as her numerous self portraits, the surgeon believes Kahlo suffered from a rare condition called Asherman’s Syndrome.

This rare syndrome occurs when the endometrium, or lining of the uterus, becomes damaged and scar tissue appears.  As a result, a woman will undergo repeated ‘D & C’, or Dilatation and Curettage, procedures to clear out the scar tissue.  In today’s world of modern medicine a condition such as this can be treated with the use of an internal camera which guides doctors to the scar tissue needed to be removed.  Yet in Frida’s time, technology such as this was not available. 

During Dr. Antelo’s investigation into Kahlo’s repeated miscarriages and therapeutic abortions, he found the artist’s self portraits provided him with an honest portrayal of not only her emotions at the time, but also her medical symptoms.  Using the piece, “The Broken Column,” Dr. Antelo felt like he was having a conversation with not only a patient but also a colleague. 

The self portrait, painted after the artist underwent spinal surgery depicts her encased in a body brace.  Nails are piercing her face as tears stream down her cheeks.  Her flesh is missing from her neck, chest and abdomen allowing the viewer to see her broken spinal column. 

It is believed that Kahlo had an interest in medicine and even planned on attending medical school.  Yet, after her horrific streetcar accident as a teenager, many of her future plans vanished.  Bedridden for many months afterwards in an attempt to heal her numerous wounds, Dr. Antelo believes that her uterus, punctured by a metal handrail in the accident, never recovered and thus the Asherman’s Syndrome began, which also dashed any hopes of Frida’s for becoming a mother.  Kahlo died at the young age of 47 in 1954.

Antelo states to MSNBC, “She kept attempting to have children with a uterus that wasn’t in any condition to do that.  There could be other contributing factors, but in my mind, this has got to be a key thing.  We have a major injury to the uterus.”

Dr. Antelo presented his investigation’s conclusion recently at the American Association of Anatomists in San Diego.  Antelo also noted in his report, that although many historians have discussed possible reasons for the artist’s infertility, none have connected it to the streetcar accident. 

Read more by HS News Staff →

Guillermo Del Toro’s New Project

Guillermo Del Toro’s New Project

Photo: Guillermo del Toro is to option a script for The Bloody Benders.

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Guillermo del Toro’s Necropia Entertainment is teaming up with Angry Films in optioning the spec script by Adam Robitel called ‘The Bloody Benders.’

This adds another project to the long list of ongoing movie work the Mexican director/producer has taken on his shoulders. In fact, Del Toro had just completed shooting the science fiction thriller ‘Pacific Rim’, and will be doing post-production for the next year on the film.

However, Del Toro was so animated and eager to move forward after reading the script. He even told the press ” It is a beautiful and brutal yet poetic story, based on a famous murder.”

The script by Adam Robitel, a protege of Bryan Singer (X-men), is a true story based on the Benders family who ran a hotel near the outskirts of the prairie land in Kansas. The guests who check in were robbed and then murdered by the Benders, who were never punished for their crime.

Del Toro also found the story very alluring because of its contrast and hints of transition towards the age of modernity. He states, ” If you consider America back then, it was a great transition into modernity…” placing the murder as a tainted image of the quiet life.

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Dominican Hanley Ramirez of Miami Marlins Get Endorsement Deal with New Balance Shoes

Dominican Hanley Ramirez of Miami Marlins Get Endorsement Deal with New Balance Shoes

Photo: Hanley Ramirez and New Balance Deal

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Third baseman, Hanley Ramirez has just inked a new deal with shoe and athletic wear provider New Balance.  As part of the deal, the Dominican ball player will wear New Balance cleats and all his off-field footwear will also be New Balance.

The 2010 season saw Hanley make his third All-Star appearance in a row and also participate in the Home Run Derby for the first time in his career, in which he came in second place. Hanley battled through injuries to get 21 homeruns, 76 RBIs, and a .300 batting average.

New Balance has signed Ramirez to a multi-year endorsement contract. To launch the partnership, Ramirez will auction off a pair of his custom New Balance cleats worn on opening day, with all proceeds benefitting The Marlins Foundation, an organization committed to improving the lives of youth through education, the arts and baseball, with a special focus on children with special needs.

This season, Ramirez will be wearing a special make-up of the New Balance 4040 baseball spike.

Read more by HS News Staff →

U.S. Ecuador Ambassador Gets Senate Approval

U.S. Ecuador Ambassador Gets Senate Approval

Photo: Namm will be the new Ecuadorian Ambassador.

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The United States Senate confirmed this week that Adam Namm is the new U.S. ambassador to Ecuador replacing Heather Hodger, who was expelled last year.

Nathalie Cely, the representative for Ecuador in Washington, announced the news of his conformation through her twitter account. She also congratulated Namn wishing him the best in his diplomatic pursuits in her home country.

The selection for the new ambassador took a period of six months, which Cely believes is due to conflicts within the internal government of Ecuador and with its prior U.S. ambassador. Now that the selection process is finished, both countries have their respective ambassadors and ties with Rafael Correa and the Ecuadorian government will improve announced Washington.

Cely also sees this new tie as a step closer to a more democratic style of government with similar ideals as the United States. According to the press, she states,“With the arrival of Ambassador Namn to Ecuador we will push forward the bilateral dialogue. This discussion forum includes the five axis: commerce and development; cooperation; security; human mobility and immigration; and the environment”.

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President Barack Obama Endorses Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva for Congress

President Barack Obama Endorses Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva for Congress

Photo: Obama Endroses Grijalva

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Rep. Raúl M. Grijalva announced his endorsement by President Barack Obama in Grijalva’s bid for reelection. President Obama released the following statement:

“Congressman Raul Grijalva is and always has been a strong ally for working families in Southern Arizona. From day one, he has been a tireless champion for good-paying jobs, education, and health care for his constituents. That is why we need his dedication and vision back in Congress to continue the fight with me to provide every family an opportunity to reach the middle class. I need you to cast your vote for Congressman Grijalva in this August’s primary.”

“Republicans want to continue doubling down on the failed economic policies of the past. We can’t afford to turn back the clock, and that’s why we need a pro-jobs champion like Congressman Raul Grijalva back in office to keep moving Arizona forward.”
Congressman Grijalva is running for reelection in Arizona’s newly drawn 3rd Congressional District. “I am humbled and honored to have the President’s endorsement,” Grijalva said.

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Brazilian Film Maker Carlos Diegues to Chair Jury for Cannes Film Festival

Brazilian Film Maker Carlos Diegues to Chair Jury for Cannes Film Festival

Photo: Brazilian Carlos Diegues to Chair Cannes Film Jury

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After Bong Joon-Ho, Gael García Bernal, Roschdy Zem and Abbas Kiarostami, the demanding task of selecting the best new filmmaker this year falls to Carlos Diegues.

The Caméra d’or, launched in 1978, is awarded to the best first film presented in the Official Selection (Competition, Out of Competition and Un Certain Regard), La Semaine de la Critique or Directors’ Fortnight – a total of 22 films in 2012.

He will be accompanied in this task by Gloria Satta, journalist with Italy’s Il Messaggero, Rémy Chevrin, representing the French Association of Film Cinematographers, Hervé Icovic, on behalf of the Federation of of Cinema, Audiovisual and Multimedia Industries, Michel Andrieu, representing the Society of Film Directors and Francis Gavelle, for the French Union of Film Critics.

The Prize will be awarded by the President of the Jury, Carlos Diegues, at the Closing Ceremony on Sunday 27th May.

A native of the Northeast, Carlos Diegues studied law in Rio de Janeiro, whilst also running film clubs. He became a film critic and directed short films imbued with social realism. A pioneer of Cinéma Novo, in particular with Glauber Rocha, he sought to imprint Brazilian filmmaking on the national consciousness. His first feature films Ganga Zumba (1964) and The Big City (1966), spoke of his dream of a fairer world. He then went on to direct The Heirs (1969), Joanna Francesca (1973) with Jeanne Moreau and Xica da Silva (1976) which ushered in a period of great popularity for Brazilian cinema, reinforced by the success of Summer Showers (1978) an Official Selection at Cannes, as were Bye Bye Brasil (1980), Quilombo (1984) and Subway to the Stars (1987). His exploration of popular culture continued with Rio’s Love Song (1994) and Orfeu (1999). In 2006, he won the Best Film Award at the Montreal Festival, with The Greatest Love of All.

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Association of Farmworkers Denounce Obama’s Withdrawal of Efforts to Protect Child Field Hands

Association of Farmworkers Denounce Obama’s Withdrawal of Efforts to Protect Child Field Hands

Photo: Child Farmworkers Not Protected

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This week the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a press release announcing the Obama Administration would be withdrawing the proposed updates to protect children under the age of 16 who are hired on farms.  The rules would have restricted farmworker children, aged 12 through 15, from performing work that data has shown to be especially dangerous.

“We are profoundly disappointed the Administration will not be pursuing the proposed protections for children employed in agriculture,” said David Strauss, Executive Director of the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs (AFOP). “These were common sense protections that would have saved many children’s lives.”

The exemption in the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 protects the tradition of children working on their parents’ farm. In a factsheet released by the DOL, “Myth vs. Fact,” it was stated that these agricultural protections would only apply to those children involved in an employer/employee relationship. Despite this fact, in the press release issued by the DOL, it stated the withdrawal “was made in response to thousands of comments expressing concerns about the effect of the proposed rules on small family-owned farms.”

The proposed rules that were issued in September, were strongly opposed by the agribusiness community. The Republic Report noted in an article last week that National Milk Producers Federation, just one segment of the farm lobby, spent $130,502 lobbying Congress against the child safety rules in the first three months of this year.

“Farm work for many children is not a vocation,” said Norma Flores Lopez, Director of the Children in the Fields Campaign at AFOP. “For the children of farmworkers, whose lives will continue to be put in jeopardy to harvest America’s food, this is not an educational experience to prepare them to own their own farm one day. They are left exposed and unprotected through this move to withdraw the safety rules for children employed in agriculture.”

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SundayApril 29, 2012