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SaturdayDecember 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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Argentina Produces 103 Million Tons of Grains This Year

Argentina Produces 103 Million Tons of Grains This Year

Photo: Argentina's crops

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The 2012-2013 crop season in Argentina, one of the world’s biggest grain exporters, will produce 103.2 million tons, according to a report released Saturday by the private consulting firm IES.

According to the report, the strong comeback of the harvest after a poor showing in the 2011-2012 season is the result of improved weather conditions.

According to figures from the Agriculture Ministry, a severe drought caused production in the 2011-2012 season to drop to 90.4 million tons from a record 104.3 million tons in the 2010-2011 season.

“With favorable climatic conditions, we have an excellent outlook for soy, corn and malting barley,” the IES said.

According to the report, in the first 11 months of 2012 Argentine agricultural exports were worth $27.9 billion, a downturn of 8.2 percent compared with the same period in 2011, while export volumes fell by 3.3 percent to 68.7 million tons.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Julio Iglesias and President of Haiti Michel Martelly Perform in Dominican Republic

Julio Iglesias and President of Haiti Michel Martelly Perform in Dominican Republic

Photo: Julio Iglesias and Michel Martelly

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Spain’s Julio Iglesias gave a concert in the Altos de Chavon Amphitheater in the eastern Dominican city of La Romana, where he shared the stage with Haitian President Michel Martelly.

Iglesias kicked off the Friday night show with several references to relations between the Dominican Republic and Haiti, the two countries sharing the Caribbean island of Hispaniola.

The concert was a benefit raising money for a children’s institution presided by Haiti’s first lady, Sophia Martelly, who was there with her husband, as were the country’s Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe and Tourism Minister Stephanie Balmir Villedrouin.

Iglesias spoke French to greet Martelly, who was seated in the front row, and thanked him for joining him at the show, to which the ever-smiling Martelly thanked the Spaniard for his concert on behalf of Haitian children.

Haiti’s president connected immediately with the audience when he said he has been a singer all his life, but never imagined he would be performing once day alongside “a singer called Julio Iglesias.”

At that point Iglesias invited his illustrious companion to come onstage to do a duet of “Corazon, Corazon” (Heart, Heart), which they sang in Spanish.

Martelly displayed a clear, strong voice and several times won applause from the audience, above all for the second song he sang with the Spanish artist, “To All the Girls I Loved Before,” which Iglesias made famous with U.S. country singer Willie Nelson.

With that, the Madrid artist hugged Martelly, who left the stage waving at the audience to another resounding ovation.

The concert continued with Iglesias singing “Hey,” highlighting the admirable qualities of his friend, the famous Dominican designer Oscar de la Renta, who was in the audience, as was the no less famous American journalist Barbara Walters.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Adamari Lopez Promotes New Book in People en Español Magazine

Adamari Lopez Promotes New Book in People en Español Magazine

Photo: Adamari Lopez (People en Español)

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Actress Adamari Lopez will end 2012 appearing on the cover of People en Español magazine and with the publication of her book “Viviendo” (Living), in which she recounts her battle against cancer and the cheating ways of her then-husband Luis Fonsi.

The Puerto Rican, host of the program “Un Nuevo Dia” (A New Day) on the Telemundo network, told People en Español magazine that when she came down with breast cancer in March 2005, she started writing about her chemotherapy but never thought about writing a book.

“When I got sick I started writing a diary about how I was feeling, how the chemo was working, and everyone asked me, ‘When are you going to write a book?’” she recalled in the interview to be published in the issue coming out on Jan. 1.

“I wrote this book thinking about myself and about other women I could help, women who might be going through the same troubles I did, either with the same illness or because of breaking up with someone they love or used to love,” she said.

Lopez and Fonsi wed on June 3, 2006, announced their separation on Nov. 8, 2009, and got divorced in June 2010. Fonsi is currently in a stable relationship with Spanish model Agueda Lopez, with whom he had a baby girl, while the actress is going with Spanish dancer Tony Costa.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Some Venezuelans Doubt Positive Reports of Hugo Chavez’s Health

Some Venezuelans Doubt Positive Reports of Hugo Chavez’s Health

Photo: Hugo Chavez

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The Venezuelan opposition asked the government to release the latest medical report on President Hugo Chavez, who is recovering in Cuba from an operation made necessary by the reappearance of his cancer, the location and type of which have never been made public.

The formal request was presented by the lawmaker and head of the Family Commission of the National Assembly, Dinorah Figuera of the Primero Justicia party, who expressed concern about the “contradictory reports” given by official spokespersons.

Figuera asked Vice President Nicolas Maduro for “the medical report issued by those doing the diagnosis, analysis and treatment of the president.”

The request is made “with all the consideration of someone who has had a cancerous illness herself,” said the legislator, who has suffered from the same disease for which Chavez was first diagnosed in Cuba in June 2011.

“We believe the Venezuelan people deserve an official, institutional report,” Figuera said.

Lawmaker and general secretary of the Proyecto Venezuela party, Carlos Berrizbeitia, told Efe that Venezuelan and Cuban authorities “always tried to hide” Chavez’s condition so that “irresponsibly, he might go to an electoral campaign as a sick man.”

He said that with a doctors’ report, “everyone would have known he was in no condition” to continue in the office he has occupied since 1999.

“Neither Venezuela nor the rest of the world has seen a medical report on the president’s cancer,” he said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Bolivian Government Takes Over 4 Spanish-owned Firms

Bolivian Government Takes Over 4 Spanish-owned Firms

Photo: Iberdrola

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President Evo Morales announced Saturday the nationalization of four Bolivian units of Spanish utility Iberdrola, including the main electricity distributors in La Paz and Oruro provinces.

“We have seen ourselves obliged to take this step to make the charges for electric service equitable in the provinces of La Paz and Oruro and the quality of electric service uniform in rural and urban areas,” the leftist president said.

The nationalization decree applies to power distributors Electropaz and Elfeo, services company Edeser and investment firm Compañia Administradora de Empresas.

All four are majority owned by Iberdrola subsidiary Iberbolivia.

As in previous nationalizations, the Bolivian government will hire an independent auditor to determine the amount of compensation to be paid to Iberdrola, the president said.

La Paz has yet to come to an agreement with another Spanish utility, Red Electrica Española, on compensation for the nationalization in May of its stake in power distributor TDE.

Bolivian state utility ENDE will assume control of the four former Iberdrola units, Morales said.

The president said he nationalized Electropaz and Elfeo because of the wide gap in the rates charged rural and urban customers in La Paz and Oruro.

In La Paz, he said, the average rate for urban customers is less than a penny per kilowatt-hour, while rural subscribers pay 23 cents for the same amount of electricity.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Obama Remains Positive After Budget Talks

Obama Remains Positive After Budget Talks

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President Barack Obama described himself as “moderately optimistic” after Friday’s talks with congressional leaders on a possible solution to the so-called fiscal cliff.

The president said that if a workable bipartisan plan fails to materialize within the next 24 hours, Reid will schedule a Senate vote on the current White House proposal.

That initiative would preserve tax cuts for the middle class, extend unemployment benefits and lay the groundwork for deficit reduction in the medium- and long term, the White House says.

An aide to Republican House Speaker John Boehner told CBS News that it is now up to the Senate to produce a bipartisan path toward avoiding the “cliff,” a combination of tax increases and spending cuts set to begin taking effect Jan. 1.

Some fear the impact of the tax hikes and lower government expenditures will undermine the economic recovery.

Republicans oppose Obama’s call for higher taxes on households making more than $250,000 a year - around five times the median family income - and instead demand bigger cuts in social programs.

“We’re dealing with big numbers and some of the stuff that we do is somewhat complicated. But I think it was a very positive meeting,” Sen. Reid said after the meeting with Obama.

“I share the view of the majority leader,” McConnell chimed in. “We had a good meeting down at the White House.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Two Arrested in Mexico for Trafficking 22,000 Turtle Eggs

Two Arrested in Mexico for Trafficking 22,000 Turtle Eggs

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Two people were arrested in Mexico as they attempted to traffic the more than 22,000 turtle eggs they were carrying on a public bus.

The arrest was made on a highway in the southern state of Oaxaca on an unspecified date by officers patrolling beaches where the turtles nest, Mexico’s environmental protection agency said in a communique.

The 22,470 eggs that were seized came from olive ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys olivacea). The suspects were also transporting 105 turtle parts from the same species.

The olive ridley sea turtle is an endangered species.

Recently, Mexican environmental groups reported that over the past six years some 7,000 loggerhead sea turtles (Caretta caretta) have died in waters off the Baja California peninsula, presumably due to the impact of commercial fishing activities.

This species, also in danger of extinction, nests in Japan and reaches Mexican waters when it migrates.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Car Accident in the Andes Kills 5, Injures 25

Car Accident in the Andes Kills 5, Injures 25

Photo: Andes mountains

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Five people died and another 25 were injured Friday when a bus and truck collided on the international route connecting Chile with Argentina through the Los Libertadores mountain pass in the Andes, authorities said.

One person remained unaccounted for after the accident, which took place at 7:30 a.m. on the highway linking Los Andes, Chile, with the Argentine city of Mendoza.

A truck with an Argentine license plate and loaded with wheat apparently had a brake failure and crashed head-on into a bus full of workers from the Chilean construction company SalfaCorp, Chilean police Capt. Cristian Becerra told the news Web site Emol.

Three of the fatalities were workers from the firm while the other two were the bus and truck drivers.

Police believe that one person is still missing, since there were originally 29 workers on the bus and up to now only 28 have been found.

The highway, which at this time of year has more traffic than usual as a result of the Christmas and Southern Hemisphere summer vacation seasons, is the main border gateway between Chile and Argentina.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Latino Voices Supported California Coastal Conservation

Latino Voices Supported California Coastal Conservation

Photo: NewsTaco

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By Jose Gonzalez, NewsTaco

Good news for California’s coast: California has now completed its Marine Protected Areas (MPA) network. This is in addition to President Obama’s recent announcement for a proposed extension of national marine sanctuaries. 

The network is the largest of its kind and it covers a heavily populated coastline, making the completion of California’s MPAs a big deal and exciting news for coastal conservation. As the LA Times reports:Image

“Surviving budget cuts, mobs of angry fishermen and death threats, California officials today completed the largest network of undersea parks in the continental United States — 848 square miles of protected waters that reach from the Oregon state line to the Mexican border.”

The LA Times articles also mentions how it was a contentious process:

“The size of the network is exactly what filled auditoriums with red-shirted, shouting fishermen, angry at impending closures of favored fishing spots.”

“‘We got death threats,’ said Richard B. Rogers, a lifelong recreational fisherman. ‘There were threats of physical violence.’”

Overall, as a mainstream conservation effort this whole story is a win, though there is still some fair criticism of the network.

But an important component of the story to also highlight is how Latino participation in the process—specifically one case from 2009 that highlights the continued need for diversification of the conservation movement and dealing with embedded stereotypes.

The story is from Project Economic Refugee, which documented the process at one MPA hearing and noting how some of the anti-MPA sentiment was directed at Latino students:

“Some white fishermen that were unequivocally opposed to any kind of MPA being implemented in Southern California started attacking Latinos that came to the hearing in support of the MPA’s.  In one instance, totally unprovoked, a high-strung white guy started yelling at some Latino high school kids from Compton, harassing them with insulting questions like ‘do you even know what this is about?’,  ‘who brainwashed you?’, or ‘are they giving you extra credit to be here?’.  Never mind that these were mostly Advanced Placement Compton students that knew quite a lot about the issue, having studied and prepped for the hearing because they wanted to learn about the democratic process.

Read more by HS News Staff →

INFOGRAPHIC: Hispanic Health in America

INFOGRAPHIC: Hispanic Health in America

Photo: Hispanic Health in America (United Health Foundation)

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Diabetes, health care, and cancer are all major topics of conversation for hispanics in America.  Unfortunately, 31 percent of adult latinos in America are obese.

With these facts, the United Health Foundation explores the current state of hispanic health in the United States.

Image

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spanish Tennis Player Nicolas Almargo Reaches Finals in Abu Dhabi

Spanish Tennis Player Nicolas Almargo Reaches Finals in Abu Dhabi

Photo: Spanish Tennis Player Nicolas Almargo Reaches Finals in Abu Dhabi

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World No. 1 Novak Djokovic of Serbia and Spaniard Nicolas Almagro, 11th in the rankings, advanced to the final of the exhibition event in Abu Dhabi with wins Friday over David Ferrer and Janko Tipsarevic.

Djokovic easily triumphed over Ferrer 6-0, 6-3 in the first match of the all Spain-Serbia semifinal.

Almagro, invited to Abu Dhabi at the last minute as a substitute for ailing countryman Rafael Nadal, lost the first set 6-2 before taking the second 7-6 in a tiebreaker and dominating world No. 9 Tipsarevic in the third 6-2.

Djokovic beat Ferrer, ranked fifth in the world, in two sets in the 2011 final at Abu Dhabi and Friday’s victory left the Serb with a 10-5 career record against the Spaniard.

Tipsarevic and Ferrer will face each other in the third-place match before Saturday’s final.

Nadal, the top-ranked Spanish player, has been sidelined with a knee injury since last summer and had to pull out of the exhibition in Abu Dhabi due to a stomach virus.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Argentina’s YPF Partners with Bridas to Develop Shale Resources

State-run energy company YPF announced Friday a preliminary accord with Bridas International to exploit the massive non-conventional Vaca Muerta formation in southwestern Argentina.

The pact calls for an initial investment of $1.5 billion, YPF said in a regulatory filing.

Bridas, majority owned by Argentine mogul Carlos Bulgheroni, will receive 50 percent of YPF’s rights in the Bajada de Añelo and Bandurria shale-oil fields if the deal materializes.

The agreement also envisions Bridas’ loaning YPF $500 million for development of the non-conventional deposits.

YPF signed a similar accord last week with U.S. oil supermajor Chevron Corp. to develop the Loma La Lata Norte and Loma Campana areas within Vaca Muerta.

The Argentine government earlier this year seized a majority stake in originally state-owned YPF from Spain’s Repsol, which maintains a 12 percent interest in its former unit.

The Spanish company has sued the Argentine government before the World Bank’s International Center for Settlement of Investment Disputes.

It also brought suit against Chevron on Dec. 4 in a federal court in New York in the wake of the memorandum of understanding between YPF and the U.S. company to develop Argentina’s energy assets.

YPF announced the discovery of non-conventional oil and natural gas reserves in Vaca Muerta in 2011 after successful results in the exploration phase.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Chile Indicts 8 Former Army Officers For Murder of Victor Jara

Chile Indicts 8 Former Army Officers For Murder of Victor Jara

Photo: Victor Jara

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The murder of popular folk singer Victor Jara in the wake of Chile’s Sept. 11, 1973, military coup became front-page news again Friday with a judge’s decision to indict 8 retired army officers for the crime.

Jara’s killing remains a powerful symbol of the atrocities committed by Chile’s 1973-1990 military regime, which is blamed for more than 3,000 deaths and some 25,000 documented instances of torture.

Judge Miguel Vazquez originally said he planned to charge two people with killing the singer and five others as accomplices, but he ended up adding another name to the indictment.

Jara, a musician, actor, theater director and cultural icon, was a prominent supporter of Socialist President Salvador Allende, who took his own life during the Sept. 11 putsch.

The singer was arrested the day after the coup at the State Technical University - now the University of Santiago - along with numerous students and instructors and taken to Chile stadium, where roughly 5,000 Allende sympathizers were being held.

Not long after his arrival at the stadium, Jara was taken into an underground passageway together with about a dozen other prisoners.

He was never seen alive again.

Jara’s body was found a few days later and the coroner’s office turned the remains over to his wife, British-born dancer Joan Turner, who buried her husband in a Santiago cemetery.

“He had 44 bullet wounds, burns and other injuries,” Turner later wrote.

One of the former military men accused of killing Jara, Pedro Barrientos Nuñez, now lives in the United States and Judge Vazquez issued an international warrant for his arrest.

Chile stadium was renamed for Victor Jara in 2003.

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Breakups Inspire Colombian Singer Marre’s New Album

Colombian pop singer-songwriter Marre sought inspiration in bygone romances to create the songs of love and loss she composed in New York and will launch in January 2013 in the album “Sombras de Luz” (Shadows of Light).

“They’re love stories, stories of friendship, stories about life. In the disc you’ll find all the things that can happen to a woman and how a woman feels about them - how, for example, she notices time passing and feels the change when she stops being a little girl and starts seeing and feeling life as a woman,” the singer told Efe.

Marre said she is preparing the launch of her second disc from the United States, a “very beautiful” work in which the lyrics of the 14 songs are all autobiographical.

“The songs on this disc tell how we women enter a stage when we must start taking our own decisions about the man we love, even when mom and dad might not like him or don’t want him around,” she said.

The album was produced by Grammy nominee Stephan Galfas, who has worked with such artists as La Union, Miguel Mateos and Kool and the Gang, among others.

“I’ve written more than 250 songs and since I was little I’ve always felt something like an affection for music, so I’m grateful to my parents for backing me ever since they saw how crazy about music I was - and my discs are the result,” Marre said.

Read more by HS News Staff →



SaturdayDecember 29, 2012