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TuesdayJanuary 22, 2013

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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Sami Khedira: Real Madrid Needs Better Defense, No More Easy Goals

Sami Khedira: Real Madrid Needs Better Defense, No More Easy Goals

Photo: Sami Khedira: Real Madrid Needs Better Defense, No More Easy Goals

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German center-fielder Sami Khedira engaged in some self-criticism for the bad run Real Madrid has had and emphasized the team’s improvement after speaking with everyone in the locker room, admitting that some of the errors occurred due to the team’s play on defense and confirming that they could not continue to “allow goals so easily.”

“When lots of games have been lost you have to change a lot of things,” Khedira said. “We had to play tighter, above all on the defensive line. It couldn’t be that we’d allow goals so easily. It’s been seen that we’ve improved on defense and in Valencia our punch was magnificent.”

Khedira is playing his best ever on Real Madrid, and he said a large part of that was due to the confidence Jose Mourinho has in him.

“I feel very good. It’s very important to have the respect of the coach. I note that I’m in perfect form and the team is getting very good again,” he said.

Regarding the turnaround, Khedira spoke about the important talks among the players.

“We had a difficult situation, (we weren’t) getting good results. It’s logical that we’d talk about it. We’ve seen that things were going bad and we worked hard during these last few weeks. We’re on a good road. Not only have the results changed but (our) game has improved,” Khedira said.

He said he did not want to give excuses for the team’s bad performance, such as blaming the refereeing, like teammate Angel Di Maria has done.

Khedira said “everyone makes mistakes,” and in Spain “there are good referees ... (and) there are no differences with Germany.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Andrea Bocelli Sings “Quizás, Quizás, Quizás” With Jennifer Lopez (LISTEN)

Andrea Bocelli Sings “Quizás, Quizás, Quizás” With Jennifer Lopez (LISTEN)

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On Andrea Bocelli’s upcoming album he sings a duet with Jennifer Lopez.

The album, titled Passione, features a duet with Lopez on the song “Quizás, Quizás, Quizás.”

Passione is the Italian tenor’s 14th studio album. It is scheduled to be released on January 29. The album also features duets with Nelly Furtado, and Edith Piaf. The duet with Piaf was made possible with the help of modern technology, as Piaf passed in 1963.

Listen to Bocelli’s duet with JLo below.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Shakira and Pique Welcome Baby Boy, Name Him Milan

Shakira and Pique Welcome Baby Boy, Name Him Milan

Photo: Shakira and Pique Baby Milan

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Colombian singer Shakira gave birth to her first child - a boy - in a Barcelona hospital on Tuesday, her family confirmed in a communique.

The pop star gave birth at 9:36 p.m. local time to a boy weighing almost 3 kilograms (6.6 pounds) and both the mother and child are “in perfect health,” the communique stated.

Shakira has been admitted to the private Teknon clinic at 6:30 p.m. accompanied by her boyfriend, F.C. Barcelona soccer star Gerard Pique.

In the communique, the couple and the family said “We are happy to announce the birth of Milan Pique Mebarak, son of Shakira Mebarak and Gerard Pique ... The name Milan (pronounced MEE-lahn), means dear, loving and gracious in Slavic; in Ancient Roman, eager and laborious; and in Sanskrit, unification.”

Since early Tuesday morning, numerous reporters and photographers had remained on alert outside the clinic, given recent rumors that this would be the day the child would be born.

On Tuesday morning, before the birth, Shakira had tweeted, “I’d like to ask you all to accompany me in your prayers on this very important day of my life.”

The baby was delivered by previously-scheduled Caesarean by a medical team headed by Dr. Carlota Garcia-Valdecasa.

Shakira, 35, last appeared in public on Jan. 14 at the Casa del Libro in Barcelona, where she attended the presentation of a book written by her father, William Mebarak.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Violence at Puerto Rico’s San Sebastin Festival Leaves 13 Dead

Violence at Puerto Rico’s San Sebastin Festival Leaves 13 Dead

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Violence during the long San Sebastian Street Festival weekend in Old San Juan, the best-known festival in Puerto Rico, left 13 people dead.

Island police announced Tuesday that the 13 killings raise to 44 the number of murders so far in 2013, albeit that total is 13 less than the number of people killed by the same date last year.

One of those killed was Julio Ramos, 32, who was gunned down before hundreds of people who had gathered early Sunday morning in San Juan’s historic district for the street festival.

Ramos, a fisherman, was shot from close range in the mouth and back of the neck after he apparently got into an argument with a man on Quinto Centenario Square, the local press reported.

Capital Mayor Carmen Yulin Cruz said that about 25 police officers were deployed on that square at the time of the shooting, and about 1,000 officers had been stationed around Old San Juan for the festival.

About 400,000 people attended the popular San Sebastian celebration, and the sheer size of the crowd caused traffic problems and resulted in a number of robberies and altercations, not to mention a large accumulation of trash.

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Latin America News:  26 People Injured in Argentine Prison Riot

Latin America News:  26 People Injured in Argentine Prison Riot

Photo: Chaco Province Prison Riot

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At least 26 people were injured and an undetermined number of inmates managed to escape during a violent riot that erupted Tuesday in a prison in Argentina’s Chaco province, officials said.

Among the injured are 19 prisoners, three police officers and four prison guards.

The riot broke out at the Penitentiary Complex 2 in the town of Saenz Peña, some 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) from Buenos Aires, late Monday and degenerated into a violent clash between prisoners and guards that lasted all night and required the intervention of provincial authorities.

Chaco Government Minister Juan Manuel Pedrini confirmed to the state-run Telam news agency that prison personnel had retaken control of the facility and that “the situation is absolutely normal” after weapons in the hands of the prisoners were seized and several guards who had been taken hostage were rescued.

He also said that six inmates who had fled were recaptured but an unknown number still remain at large.

Pedrini went on to say that the riot originated in a wing of the prison housing some 60 prisoners, who took over various prison facilities and were able to free the inmates in other wings.

In all, authorities estimate that at least 200 prisoners, half the penitentiary’s population, participated in the riot.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Banco Santander’s Emilio Botin Says He’s Only Looking to Buy in Brazil, Not Sell

Banco Santander’s Emilio Botin Says He’s Only Looking to Buy in Brazil, Not Sell

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Banco Santander chairman Emilio Botin denied Tuesday that he is selling his company’s assets in Brazil and said his bank is only interested in “buying” in the South American country.

“Banco Santander comes to buy. Sometimes we sell off something, but in Brazil we come to buy,” Botin told reporters before being received by President Dilma Rousseff, putting down rumors doing the rounds in the financial market that he might sell part of the Bradesco bank.

“Brazil, for Santander, is the most important country in the world,” Botin said, adding that he was confident the Brazilian economy will bounce back.

The banker announced investments of 3 billion reais (some $1.5 billion) in Brazil this year for the opening of new offices and ATMs and for the construction of a data center in Campinas, a city in Sao Paulo state, that will be “one of the biggest in the world.”

Santander’s goal for this year is to increase its loan portfolio in Brazil by between 15 and 20 percent, Botin said.

The Spanish bank plans to open a line of financing of up to 5 billion reais (about $2.5 billion) for medium- and long-term infrastructure projects.

The investments are justified above all in a scenario in which Brazilian economy will grow 3 percent this year, according to his company’s estimates, Botin said.

“I’m convinced that the year 2013 will be better than last year, and Banco Santander believes in the economy because last year it grew 1 percent, which isn’t much for Brazil but compared with Europe it’s very good,” Botin said.

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Latinas Launch ‘Yo Te Apoyo’ Campaign in Honor of Roe v Wade Anniversary

Latinas Launch ‘Yo Te Apoyo’ Campaign in Honor of Roe v Wade Anniversary

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In honor of the 40th anniversary of the landmark decision of Roe v. Wade, the National Latina Institute for Reproductive Health (NLIRH) is launching a first-of-its-kind campaign, “Yo Te Apoyo,” (“I support you”) to correct outdated assumptions about Latino/as and reproductive care.

Lingering stereotypes about Latino/a attitudes about abortion remain.

The truth says NLIRH states “is that Latino/as have compassionate views on abortion and support access to reproductive care for Latinas.”

NLIRH’s poll found that nearly three in four registered Latino voters agree that a woman has the right to make her own personal, private decisions about abortion with out politicians interfering and that Latino/as agree we shouldn’t judge someone who doesn’t feel ready to be a parent.

Still, far too often, Latino/as are characterized as “anti-abortion,” says NLIRH, even though research has consistently shown that outdated labels like “pro-life” and “anti-abortion” don’t accurately reflect Latino/a sentiment.

To bring attention to the changing attitudes about reproductive health, NLIRH is collecting stories of support from Latino/as across the country.

The organization is also hosting receptions and speak outs and holding free, online trainings for Latino/as who want to learn to talk to their communities about abortion and to take action for reproductive justice.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Petroglyphs Dating Back From 850 to 1350 AD Found in Nayarit, Mexico

Mexican archaeologists have discovered in the western state of Nayarit a series of petroglyphs estimated to have been carved between 850 and 1350 A.D., the National Anthropology and History Institute, or INAH, said.

The bas relief carvings have a symbolic character and are attributed to ancient groups from the Aztatlan cultural complex, and they were found at a site called “Cantil de las animas” (Cliff of the souls), in the mountainous portion of Nayarit’s southern high plateau, an area where archaeological finds have been practically unknown.

The carvings appear along a horizontal band almost 4 meters (13 feet) long by 2 meters (6.5 feet) wide, arranged on volcanic rocks that form a cliff approximately 10 meters (32.5 feet) high, the INAH said in a statement.

The iconography of the petroglyphs is linked to the pictorial tradition of the Aztatlan culture, which from about 850-900 through 1350 A.D. inhabited mainly the low coastal lands in northern Nayarit and southern Sinaloa state, INAH archaeologist Mauricio Garduño said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Latin America News:  No Date Set for Hugo Chavez’ Return to Venezuela

Latin America News:  No Date Set for Hugo Chavez’ Return to Venezuela

Photo: Hugo Chavez Still in Cuba

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No date has yet been announced for the return to Venezuela of President Hugo Chavez, who underwent surgery more than a month ago in Cuba, but he “has been in very good spirits,” Communications Minister Ernesto Villegas said Tuesday.

The president’s son-in-law, Science and Technology Minister Jorge Arreaza, gave the Council of Ministers a “very encouraging” report on the improving health of the president, Villegas said.

The 58-year-old Chavez went to Cuba on Dec. 10 to undergo his fourth operation for a cancer detected in mid-2011.

“The president is also following closely the way things are progressing in Venezuela,” Villegas said, adding that the leader has fought a “tough, complex battle” with “strength and fortitude, both spiritual and physical” since his operation.

Since Dec. 10, one day before the operation described as “complex” by the government, no photos or videos have been released showing the Venezuelan president, who did not attend the swearing-in ceremony on Jan. 10 to begin his 2013-2019 term in office, due to the state of his health.

Bolivian President Evo Morales, meanwhile, said Tuesday that Chavez is receiving physical therapy so he can soon return home from Cuba.

“Yesterday they communicated with me from Cuba and we have good news: our brother comandante, President Hugo Chavez, is now doing physical therapy in order to return to his country,” Morales said in La Paz as he began his state of the nation report at the start of his eighth year in office.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Half the Families in Durango Lack Basic Necessities

Half the Families in Durango Lack Basic Necessities

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Five families out of 10 in Durango, in northern Mexico, live in food poverty. Of the 203,000 families who do not have sufficient means to purchase basic necessities, partly because of the severe drought, 148,000 live in urban areas and 55,000 in rural areas.

According to local offices for Social Development, the increase in food poverty is due to the lack of rain in 2012 and not a misapplication of social programs. According to the National Commission of Evaluation of Social Development Policy (Coneval), in 2008 352,000 people, 22% of the population of Durango, lived in food poverty, and in 2010 the figure dropped to 20.1%, or 328 000 inhabitants. In 2012, food poverty in Durango reached 48% of families, about 800 000 inhabitants. 220 000 inhabitants in rural communities have daily food problems.

The increase in food prices has aggravated the situation. In addition, due to the lack of rain, 100 000 hectares of land have dried up. Durango is considered by the federal authority institution poorer than the north of Mexico reports Fides Services.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Sundance 2013: Gael Garcia Bernal’s Documentary Picked Up by Mundial

Sundance 2013: Gael Garcia Bernal’s Documentary Picked Up by Mundial

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Who Is Dayani Cristal? a documentary made with actor Gael Garcia Bernal just showed at this year’s Sundance Film Festival and it has already been picked up by Mundial.

On August 3, 2010, in Pima County, Arizona, border police discover the decomposing body of a male in the blistering heat of the Sonora desert. When the lift up the man’s shirt, they see a tattoo reading, “Dayani Cristal”.

Who is this person? What brought him here? How did he die? And who—or what—is Dayani Cristal?

Marc Silver’s masterful documentary assembles the answers to these questions using beautifully realized dramatic sequences with famed actor Gael García Bernal. Silver and Bernal reconstruct this John Doe, denied an identity at his point of death, into a living and breathing human being with a full and deeply engaging life story. Unfolding like a thrilling crime drama, the film builds to an emotionally devastating climax.

- David Courier, Senior Programmer, Sundance Film Festival

The deal, which was announced Monday morning, was reportedly brokered by Mundial’s vice president Cristina Garza and members of IM Global, Mundial’s parent company.

Bernal both appeared in the documentary and co-produced it with Lucas Ochoa and Thomas Benski.

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U.S. Border Patrol Agents Catch Aggravated Felon Previously Deported by US

U.S. Border Patrol Agents Catch Aggravated Felon Previously Deported by US

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Swanton Sector Border Patrol agents stopped the smuggling attempt of an aggravated felon Wednesday.

At approximately 1:30 a.m., agents from the Champlain Border Patrol station encountered a suspicious black SUV with four occupants traveling east on State Route 276 near Rouses Point, N.Y. When agents stopped the vehicle they discovered a male driver and three male passengers all claiming to be nationals of El Salvador.

Further research revealed that the driver and one of the passengers are nationals of El Salvador residing in the United States as Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR). The second passenger is also a national of El Salvador illegally present in the U.S. The fourth passenger turned out to be a national from the Dominican Republic and an aggravated felon previously removed from the United States.

The three El Salvador nationals were charged with Alien Smuggling while the national from the Dominican Republic was charged with Re-Entry after Deportation.

“This is another example of our agents’ vigilance in performing their day to day operational duties while keeping our border community safe,” said Swanton Sector Border Patrol Chief Patrol Agent John Pfeifer.

All four subjects are currently in Federal Court proceedings. A conviction for Alien Smuggling can result in up to 10 years in prison and up to a $250,000 fine.

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Two Young Mexicans Attempt to Enter U.S. on Foot with Fake Documentation

Two Young Mexicans Attempt to Enter U.S. on Foot with Fake Documentation

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U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Brownsville Port of Entry intercepted a woman and a man for alleged violations of immigration law.

The citizens of Mexico allegedly presented a U.S. naturalization certificate and a counterfeit authorization in alleged attempts to enter the country.

A 22-year-old female Mexican citizen who resides in Celaya, Guanajuato, Mexico applied for admission into the U.S. as a pedestrian.  Further review indicated that the naturalization certificate was a fraudulent document.

Just minutes later, a 22-year-old male Mexican citizen who also resides in Celaya, Guanajuato, Mexico applied for admission to enter the country as a pedestrian as well. CBP officers used a CBP database and discovered that the presented document was in fact fraudulent.

CBP officers seized the document; the adults were taken into custody for alleged violations of immigration law.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Dominican Republic’s Exuberant Ecotourism Provides Countless Escapes

Dominican Republic’s Exuberant Ecotourism Provides Countless Escapes

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Dominican Republic is the Caribbean’s most bio-diverse country, with 25 percent of its lush land and pristine coastline protected as national parks, reserves and sanctuaries. With the creation of the Dominican Republic’s Marine Mammal Sanctuary for Humpback Whales in 1962, Dominican Republic has been a forerunner in environment and marine-oriented protections ensuring magnificent nature abounds.

“We work hard to preserve Dominican Republic’s nine distinct ecological zones so that visitors can have incredible eco-adventures and witness nature’s wonders,” said Magaly Toribio , Marketing Advisor for the Dominican Republic Ministry of Tourism. “Our 19 national parks, many forest reserves, natural monuments and wildlife refuges are a national treasure protected for generations to come.”

January through March is an especially exciting time in Dominican Republic as up to 5,000 whales migrate to the Northeast Coast and Samana Bay ‘s warm waters. The males claim the outer bays while the females nurse their young by the inner cove’s shallow waters. It is a sight to see, and tours make it easily accessible.

While whale watching is must, so is visiting these top Dominican ecological escapes:

Los Haitises National Park: Step back in time and sense what the world was like millions of years ago in Samana’s Los Haitises National Park, one of the world’s most marvelous and mysterious treasures. The mangrove swamps, islets and caves are meant to be explored.

The 27 Waterfalls of Damajagua: The 27 Waterfalls of Damajagua, located 30 minutes from Puerto Plata in the Northern Corridor mountain range, is one of Dominican Republic’s best-kept secrets. Your adrenaline will undoubtedly kick-in as you hike to and from each waterfall – jumping from the tops, and swimming and sliding your way back to the base camp.

Kiteboard: Located just east of Puerto Plata , Cabarete is the kiteboarding capital of the world. Its mixture of sundrenched beaches, perfect winds and seamless waves create ideal kiteboarding conditions. If you have never ridden a kiteboard, instructors give daily lessons and provide the necessary equipment.

Jarabacoa: Located in Dominican Republic’s La Vega Province, Jarabacoa is considered the country’s ecotourism birthplace and the ideal spot for a breathtaking horseback ride. Often called the “city of eternal spring” by Dominicans, the town’s steady climate provides ideal weather for outdoor adventures.

Saona Island: Take a catamaran from Bayahibe Beach in La Romana and you’ll see the National Park of the East, the sea’s natural pool and a mangrove swamp reserve before reaching Saona Island – the country’s largest off-shore island. Stretching 42 square miles (68k), it boasts more than 112 species of birds, turtles, sharks, bottle-nose dolphins and manatees.

El Limon Waterfall: Visit the Samana Peninsula’s interiors where the mountains reach up 2,100 feet (640m). Mule ride along steep paths surrounded by tropical vegetation, coffee and cocoa plants, and wildlife. Once you reach the top, you will be amazed by the sight. Join in as other onlookers put their cameras aside and plunge into the waterfall’s cool and calming rush.

Bahia de las Aguilas: On Dominican Republic’s Southwest Coast is Pedernales, a bio-diverse locale with abundant nature and breathtaking views. Must-sees include the flora-filled Jaragua National Park, Lake Enriquillo, the deepest point in the Caribbean and Bahia de las Aguilas, a striking beach made up of fine white sand and coral reefs.

To learn more about ecotourism in Dominican Republic, visit www.GoDominicanRepublic.com.

Read more by HS News Staff →

LATINO BLOTTER: Colombian Robbers’ Plan Foiled by Uncooperative Donkey

LATINO BLOTTER: Colombian Robbers’ Plan Foiled by Uncooperative Donkey

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A Colombian shop owner is very grateful for the stubbornness of a donkey.

At around 2 a.m. on Sunday, three criminals entered Fabio Orozco’s shop in Juan de Acosta from the roof and stole oil, rice, cans of tuna and sardines, and rum.

Waiting outside was a donkey they had stolen about 12 hours earlier. The robbers loaded up the donkey with all their loot and attempted to sneak away with the animal.

The donkey was not having it however, and began braying and alerted police. When officers arrived they found the donkey, 10-year-old Xavi, standing there with all the stolen goods. The men had run off when the donkey began making noises and refused to move.

The donkey was taken to the police station and later picked up by his rightful owner. The shop owner was able to have all his merchandise returned.

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Spain Saw Increase in Tourism in 2012, 57.7 Million People Visited

Spain Saw Increase in Tourism in 2012, 57.7 Million People Visited

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Spain welcomed 57.7 million foreign tourists in 2012, up 2.7 percent from the previous year, the Industry, Energy and Tourism Ministry said Tuesday.

Tourist arrivals, however, fell 1.3 percent last month, compared with December 2011, to 2.6 million, the ministry said.

France, Germany and Russia were the top sources of tourists last year, while the northeastern Spanish region of Catalonia registered the biggest increase in tourist arrivals.

Spain was unable to break the pre-recession tourist-arrival records set in 2007, when 58.7 million visitors came to the Iberian nation, and 2006, when 58 million people visited the country, despite the strong performance last year.

The figures released Tuesday were slightly weaker than the numbers discussed last week by Industry, Energy and Tourism Minister Jose Manuel Soria, who said 2012 tourist arrivals would hit 57.9 million, up 3 percent from the previous year.

Tourism is one of the engines of Spain’s economy, accounting for more than 10 percent of the gross domestic product.

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Immigrants Gather in DC to Call for End to Deportations

Immigrants Gather in DC to Call for End to Deportations

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Thirteen immigrants including a number of farm workers, who had traveled 1,600 kilometers (995 miles) in a caravan from Florida, called Tuesday in the U.S. capital for President Barack Obama to stop deportations and for Congress to pass comprehensive immigration reform.

“We are here to remind the president and the Congress of the promise that was made to us to work to make a reality of comprehensive immigration reform,” Tirso Moreno, general coordinator for the Farmworker Association of Florida, said in a press conference.

Moreno and another 10 activists left 18 days ago from Florida and along the way picked up another two militants who, in two SUVs and a car and with a tight budget that allowed $5.00 per meal, they traveled through various states making contact with groups of migrant workers.

The activists have now met with Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, and have asked for a meeting with Republican Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida. Tuesday afternoon, they said, they will have meetings with White House staff.

Hispanics are the new blacks of this country, Daniel Barajas, representative of the Forward With Your Promise coalition, which makes its own use of Obama’s “Forward” electoral campaign slogan, said.

“Politicians sit there and they preach and talk ... about family values, and how (for) a society to succeed, it needs great family values…But they just sit there on the side, twiddling their thumbs, while families are being ripped apart daily (by deportations),” Barajas said.

In the four years of Obama’s first term in office, U.S. authorities deported almost 1.6 million people, an average of 32,800 a month, compared with a monthly average of 20,900 during the two terms of President George W. Bush, and a monthly average of 9,100 during the eight years when Bill Clinton was in the White House.

In August 2012, the Obama administration launched its so-called “deferred action,” which suspends the deportation of undocumented young people who were brought to the United States when they were children, on a number of conditions such as attending school and having no criminal record.

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LATINO BLOTTER: Male Nurse Arrested for Sex Act with Corpse

LATINO BLOTTER: Male Nurse Arrested for Sex Act with Corpse

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A male nurse in Los Angeles allegedly committed a sex act on a female corpse at Sherman Oaks Hospital.

Alejandro Razo, 61, was arrested on Sunday on a state health code violation and is charged with necrophilia. Security guards called the LAPD who said there was an “indication that a deceased patient had somehow been violated by an employee of the hospital.”

Razo was released on $20,000 bail and faces up t three years in prison.

The details of the alleged sex act have not been revealed, nor have the details regarding how Razo was discovered.

The LAPD has said the incident is still under investigation.

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LATINO BLOTTER:  22-Year-Old New Mexico Man Pleads Guilty to Armed Robbery Spree Targeting Cricket

LATINO BLOTTER:  22-Year-Old New Mexico Man Pleads Guilty to Armed Robbery Spree Targeting Cricket

Photo: Cricket Robber Pleads Guilty

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Oscar Marquez, 22, of Albuquerque, New Mexico, pled guilty to four counts of robbery and one count of using a firearm during a crime of violence and admitted robbing four Albuquerque-area businesses at gunpoint during a two-week period.

The indictment, which was filed in October 2012, also charged co-defendant, Rebecca Aguilar, 25, of Albuquerque, with aiding and abetting one of the robberies.

The indictment charged Marquez with robbing a local restaurant, two Cricket Wireless stores, and a King Wireless store.  Marquez used a firearm in all four robberies and discharged his firearm during three of the robberies.

Marquez has been in federal custody since October 17, 2012, and uder the terms of his plea agreement, Marquez will be sentenced to 20 years in prison.

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Latin America News: Peru Peasants Protest Canadian Mining Project

Latin America News: Peru Peasants Protest Canadian Mining Project

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More than 200 peasants staged a protest against Canadian mining firm Candente Copper and blocked roadways in Cañaris, a district in northern Peru, to demand that the company cease activities in the zone, police said.

A group of residents of Cañaris on Monday blocked the access road to the Cañariaco camp, where Candente Copper is making surveys to determine the copper and gold reserves in the area, while another group marched to the company’s facilities to hold a protest vigil.

Officials sent 300 police officers to Cañaris to prevent disorder in the vicinity of the mining camp, the head of the Territorial Police Directorate for the Lambayeque region, Jorge Linares, told the official Andina news agency.

Candente Copper is scheduled to invest $1.5 billion in the development of the Cañarico mine to produce 262 million pounds of copper annually, as well as smaller quantities of gold and silver, over a period of 22 years.

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Latin America News: Millions in Chile Left Without Water After Severe Weather

Latin America News: Millions in Chile Left Without Water After Severe Weather

Photo: Chile's Aguas Andinas Shut Down

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Some 2 million inhabitants of Santiago were without drinking water Tuesday due to the closing down of production plants following a rainstorm and flooding in the Andes east of the Chilean capital, officials said.

The cutoff was expected to last between 8:30 a.m. and midnight, and will affect some 600,000 homes in 22 Santiago municipalities, the Aguas Andinas Company and national emergency management office said.

At first it was announced that the lack of drinking water would affect 320,000 homes in 13 Santiago municipalities, although now the service cutoff not only appears more widespread, but the supply is not likely to be reestablished until after the original estimate of between 4:00 a.m. and 5:00 a.m. Wednesday.

Aguas Andinas, the principal source of water for the city of 6.2 million inhabitants and managed by Spain’s Aguas Barcelona, or Agbar, announced early Tuesday the provision of “an alternative emergency supply, coordinated with the emergency management offices of the affected municipalities.”

The unexpected summer downpour on Monday afternoon at an altitude of 4,500 meters (14,750 feet) in the Andes, together with the high temperatures and snowmelt, caused mudslides in different areas, the worst being in San Jose de Maipo looking toward Santiago, and in parts of the O’Higgins and Maule regions south of the capital.

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Ferrer Beats Fellow Spaniard Almagro to Advance in Australian Open

Ferrer Beats Fellow Spaniard Almagro to Advance in Australian Open

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Spain’s David Ferrer, the No. 4 seed, staged a furious comeback against countryman Nicolas Almagro and walked away with a 4-6, 4-6, 7-5, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2 win in the quarterfinals of the Australian Open on Tuesday.

Ferrer slugged it out for three hours and 44 minutes with Almagro to advance into his 5th semifinal at a Grand Slam event.

“Winning this match was a miracle. Nicolas had many chances to win. This was unbelievable,” Ferrer said.

Ferrer, who played in the Australian Open semis in 2011, has world No. 1 Novak Djokovic up next.

Djokovic beat Czech Tomas Berdych, the No. 5 seed, 6-1, 4-6, 6-1, 6-4.

Almagro, who was trying to make the semifinals at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time, was unable to capitalize on his strong start against Ferrer.

“I took it point by point. I fought for every point. That’s my game,” Ferrer said.

The Australian Open is the first of four Grand Slam events on the tennis calendar.

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National Hispanic University to Offer New Online MBA Degree

National Hispanic University to Offer New Online MBA Degree

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The National Hispanic University (NHU) is introducing an online Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program, offering students a broad base of technical managerial skills and real-world insight into growing businesses and the emerging U.S. Hispanic and diverse global markets.

In NHU’s new online M.B.A. program, students will learn how to evaluate the financial position of organizations, create marketing and communication strategies and analyze trends and research that are driving growth in global and multicultural U.S. markets. The program includes several unique features designed to enhance a student’s learning experience.

For 30 years, The National Hispanic University has provided “Hispanic students and others with access to quality higher education. Located in San Jose, Calif., the university offers a diverse portfolio of online and campus-based undergraduate, graduate and certificate programs in business, teacher education, child development and computer science.”

Students are supported in a multicultural and collaborative learning environment that is based on Familia™, a personalized approach that fosters students’ success through mutual respect and cultura.

Henry Cisneros, former secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and Janet Murguia, President and CEO of National Council of La Raza are advisory board members of NHU.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Extreme Trafficking: Border Protection Seizes Over $500,000 in Coke and Meth

Extreme Trafficking: Border Protection Seizes Over $500,000 in Coke and Meth

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A Mexican man was arrested Monday at the Port of San Luis for attempting to smuggle 45.6 pounds of cocaine into the U.S.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers referred Fernando Rivera Aispuro, 36, from San Luis, Mexico, for a secondary inspection of his 1994 Ford utility truck. After a CBP narcotics detection dog alerted to the presence of drugs in the back of the vehicle, officers located 19 packages of cocaine hidden in tool compartments.

In another incident, officers arrested Laura Ramirez Ivanez, a U.S. citizen, for attempting to smuggle two pounds of methamphetamine into the U.S. through a pedestrian lane. During a secondary inspection, officers found the drugs taped to her midsection.

Aispuro and Ivanez were turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations. The drugs and vehicle were processed for seizure.

 

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Attack on Algerian Gas PLant Leaves 37 Foreigners Dead

Attack on Algerian Gas PLant Leaves 37 Foreigners Dead

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At least 37 foreign workers from eight different countries died in the attack and hostage-taking at the In Amenas gas plant that was brought to a conclusion over the weekend with a military operation, Algerian Prime Minister Abdelamalek Selal said Monday.

One Algerian citizen died and five workers are still missing, he told a press conference in Algiers.

In his first appearance before the media since the crisis broke last Wednesday, the prime minister said that one soldier was wounded in the operation and seven of the 37 hostages who died still have not been identified.

In the rescue operation, Algerian troops killed 29 terrorists and captured three others alive, Selal said.

A total of 792 plant workers were rescued, 107 of them foreigners, during the assault carried out by special forces.

On Wednesday morning, a heavily armed group of terrorists attacked the gas complex at In Amenas, 1,500 kilometers (930 miles) southeast of Algiers, with the aim of taking foreign workers hostage to transport them to Mali.

Claiming responsibility for the attack was Algerian terrorist chief Mokhtar Belmokhtar, who said that it was staged in response to the international intervention to support the Malian government in its armed conflict with radical Islamic groups.

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Tigres del Norte Offspring Work on First Album

Tigres del Norte Offspring Work on First Album

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Raul and Mexia, children of Los Tigres del Norte vocalist and bass player Hernan Hernandez, are preparing the launch of their first album, “Arriba y Lejos” (Up and Away), a disc designed for the new generation of Latinos featuring a fusion of different rhythms.

“This is a very mixed disc, with a little of everything - there are cumbias, a bit of accordion for those who like norteño, some band music, hip-hop and even romantic tunes,” Mexia, a 32-year-old sound engineer, told Efe, referring to the style of her first album, which goes on sale Feb. 19.

She and her brother Raul, 25, started making a name for themselves in 2010 with “Todos Somos Arizona” (We’re All Arizona), a number written and performed in response to the enactment of SB 1070, a law that still harshly attacks undocumented immigrants in that southwestern state.

“We recorded it out of frustration for what was happening in Arizona, because we feel it is our responsibility to help the community,” Raul said.

Arriba y Lejos,” under the Nacional Records label, features a dozen tunes, notably the first single entitled “Las Escondidas” (Hidden Girls), as well as “Solo Para Ti” (Just for You), “Recuerdos” (Memories), “Ay Amor” (Oh Love), “Ella Tiene Pegue” (She Sticks to It), “Sueltalo” (Let Him Go), “Mis Dias sin Ti” (My Days without You) and more.

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Negotiation to Bring Brazil’s Kaka Back to AC Milan from Real Madrid Falls Apart

Negotiation to Bring Brazil’s Kaka Back to AC Milan from Real Madrid Falls Apart

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Negotiations aimed at bringing Brazilian midfielder Kaka back to AC Milan from Real Madrid have ended in failure, the Italian club’s chief executive said Monday.

Despite Kaka’s willingness to take a pay cut, the transfer was not “practicable” because of the vast discrepancies between the Spanish and Italian tax systems, Adriano Galliani told reporters at a publicity event.

“There have been decisive complications,” the Milan director said. “Kaka has made all possible and unimaginable efforts, but the taxation problems have led Real Madrid to end the negotiations.”

Kaka had a stellar six-year run with the Red and Blacks before leaving for Spain in 2009. He helped lead the club to the UEFA Champions League crown in 2007, when he also won the Ballon D’Or, but has not had the same success since joining Real Madrid.

The 30-year-old playmaker, who signed with Real Madrid in June 2009 for a then-record 67 million euros, was sighted last Wednesday in Italy dining with fellow Brazilian international and current AC Milan striker Robinho.

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Justin Bieber Crowned Twitter King

Justin Bieber Crowned Twitter King

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Pop singer Justin Bieber has become the most followed person on Twitter, accumulating 33,326,624 followers on the social-networking site and passing pop queen Lady Gaga, the Twitter Counter Web site said.

The Canadian singer, who made headlines on Monday by posting a photo of his backside on Instagram, plans to release the 11-track album “Believe Acoustic” this year.

Lady Gaga was the first person to pile up more than 25 million followers on Twitter.

The other Twitter phenoms are Katy Perry, who is in third place with 31,484,156 followers, followed by Rihanna, Barack Obama, Britney Spears, Taylor Swift, YouTube, Shakira and Kim Kardashian.

The U.S. president, who has 26,168,542 followers, is the only person outside the world of entertainment who made the Top 10 list on Twitter.

Read more by HS News Staff →

22,000 Mexico City Windshield Cleaners Maybe Out of Work in Near Future

22,000 Mexico City Windshield Cleaners Maybe Out of Work in Near Future

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The tool of their trade is a flannel rag and their office is the street. They are looked upon with distrust by some, though others do not hesitate to leave them all day with the keys to their car. They are the windshield cleaners, and their livelihood is now threatened by parking meters.

More than 4 million vehicles are on the road every day in Mexico City, one of the biggest, most densely populated cities in the world, where finding a parking place can be a daily headache.

Parking is costly and complicated in the Mexican capital, first because of the want of space, and secondly because the streets are “owned” by the windshield cleaners, who charge a voluntary or set fee for parking a car or just for watching to see that nothing happens to it.

“I leave my car at the entrance to my office, he parks it and brings it me when I’m ready to leave, all for 30 pesos ($2.30) a day,” Carlos Perez, a customer of this informal service who doesn’t worry about leaving the keys to his car every day with someone he hardly knows, told Efe.

It’s the price one has to pay to avoid driving around the block a thousand times to find an empty parking place, something almost impossible in certain districts of the Mexican capital taken over by windshield cleaners like Hugo Diaz, 32, who after 10 years in the business says he works “from dawn to dusk” to put food on the table for his family.

He earns some 200 pesos ($15.70) a day for watching cars in his area and he doesn’t know what kind of work he’ll do when the parking meters start functioning that authorities in his area recently had installed.

In Mexico City, according to estimates of the Federal District Labor Secretariat, there are some 22,000 windshield cleaners.

Of those, a total of 6,849 are registered, though not legalized, since they pay no taxes nor do they receive any welfare benefits.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Hispanic Health Study: Latinos in U.S. Regardless of Ailment Live Longer

Hispanic Health Study: Latinos in U.S. Regardless of Ailment Live Longer

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Confirming the existence of the Hispanic Mortality Paradox, a new analysis of health studies, led by a University of North Texas psychologist shows that the Hispanic-American participants’ survival rates from heart disease and other medical conditions were substantially higher than that of the non-Hispanic white and African-American participants.

John Ruiz, assistant professor of psychology, said the existence of the paradox—the finding that Hispanic Americans tend to have health outcomes that are equal or better than those of white Americans, even though Hispanics’ socioeconomic status is, on the average, lower and so associated with worse health—has long been debated.

The participants were followed for the studies for as long as 33 years, but the average time was 6.9 years.

Analysis showed that the Hispanic-American participants in the studies tracking heart disease patients were 25 percent more likely to be living at the conclusion of the studies than the participants in the other groups, while Hispanic-American participants with no health conditions at the start of the studies were 30 percent more likely to be living.

The researchers combined study participants with diabetes, kidney disease, stroke and other health conditions except for HIV/AIDS and cancer into one category. Hispanic-Americans with those health conditions were 16 percent more likely to be living at the end of the studies than those in other races. In addition, Hispanic-Americans with HIV/AIDS and cancer faced the same mortality risk from these diseases as those in the other two ethnic groups, Ruiz said.

Overall, the Hispanic participants in all of the studies had a 17.5 percent lower mortality rate as compared their non-Hispanic white and African-American counterparts, regardless of age, Ruiz concluded. 

Ruiz said cultural differences could play a role in explaining the Hispanic Mortality Paradox.

“Hispanics are very social, and family support is important to them. They also respect their elders and include them in family dynamics. And social support has been shown to contribute to better health,” he said. “Social behaviors and cultural values may buffer against the stress of economic and environmental disadvantages in regard to health.”  In addition, Hispanic-Americans may experience “resilience at several points in the course of disease,” Ruiz said.

Read more at University of North Texas →

Hundreds March in Chicago Demanding End to Deportations

Hundreds March in Chicago Demanding End to Deportations

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Hundreds of people braved Chicago’s cold winter weather Monday to go into the streets to demand of Barack Obama, on the day of the president’s second inauguration, that he immediately decree a moratorium on deportations.

“We also have a dream - that one day there will be no more deportations and all immigrants will be treated with dignity and respect, and that we can all keep our families together,” said Rev. Jose Landaverde, one of the organizers of the march.

The noisy demonstration marched several blocks downtown, from Chicago city hall to Federal Plaza, where they delivered a letter to the district office of Illinois Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin.

The president must act immediately before Congress begins to consider the promised immigration reform, the letter said.

The activists spoke in the missive of an alleged increase in actions taken against the undocumented in the Chicago area.

They mention raids by federal agents in December against a factory and on a streetcorner, where several day laborers were detained for deportation.

After delivering the letter, activist Emma Lozano told the press that “being very optimistic,” Congress could approved immigration reform by August, but it will then take at least 10 months to implement it.

Unless the president acts, at the current rate of more than 1,000 deportations a day “we would have another 500,000 people expelled from the country before the law goes into effect,” she said.

“Our journey is not complete until we find a better way to welcome the striving, hopeful immigrants who still see America as a land of opportunity - until bright young students and engineers are enlisted in our workforce rather than expelled from our country,” Obama said Monday in his second inaugural address.

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Chicago Police Seize Over 400 Guns in First Three Weeks of the Year

Chicago Police Seize Over 400 Guns in First Three Weeks of the Year

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Today, Chicago Police announced nearly 450 deadly firearms have been taken off the streets to date.

“Every day, our law abiding citizens and law enforcement officials are put in harm’s way by the brazen actions of criminals with guns,” said Superintendent Garry F. McCarthy. “The availability of guns for criminals, and their willingness to use them, is an issue we must address head on with common-sense gun legislation,” he added.

More than 180 of the guns seized in 2013 were recovered in Area South, where Calumet (5th) and Englewood (7th) Districts were tied with the most gun recoveries at 54 firearms apiece. Area Central yielded more than 160 firearms this month, with the second and third greatest number of gun recoveries occurring in Chicago Lawn (8th) and Deering (9th) Districts respectively.

Just this Saturday a semi-automatic pistol, a semi-automatic Intratec TEC-DC9 firearm and 136 live rounds of .40 caliber ammunition were recovered from a convicted felon on parole with gang affiliation.

The Chicago Police Department continues to seize more firearms than other large municipalities. To date, the Chicago Police Department has seized approximately four times as many firearms as the New York City Police Department.

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Spanish Chefs Honored as Cultural Ambassadors

Spanish Chefs Honored as Cultural Ambassadors

Photo: Spanish Chefs: Sergio & Javier Torres

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The Spanish Foreign Trade Institute, or ICEX, and the Guarantee of Origin and Quality, or DOC, of Rioja wines paid tribute Tuesday at the Madrid Fusion gastronomic fair to Spanish chefs who have won fame for their culinary achievements outside the country to become “the best ambassadors for Brand Spain.”

ICEX chairman and Secretary of State for Trade Jaime Garcia-Legaz honored Sergi Arola, Juan Mari and Elena Arzak, Martin Berasategui, Ramon Freixa, Dani Garcia, Nacho Manzano, Marcos Moran, Paco Perez, Albert Raurich, Paco Roncero, and the brothers Sergio and Javier Torres at the ceremony.

Their work of promoting Spanish gastronomy around the world through their restaurants, now at the heights of international cuisine, was greatly commended.

The ICEX is committed to “continue supporting these endeavors” because the chefs are “innovative entrepreneurs who symbolize what we want for the country - people who seek new markets with creativity and quality,” Garcia Legaz said.

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Immigration: Issue to Watch

Immigration: Issue to Watch

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Long-bottled-up bills that address state policies on whether to offer in-state tuition to undocumented students could become law this year, because of changes in party control of legislative chambers and changes in federal policy.

President Barack Obama plans to push for an overhaul of the country’s immigration laws in Washington, D.C., but states have limited powers to address the issue. The U.S. Supreme Court drew that line even tighter last summer, when it struck down key parts of Arizona’s ambitious effort to curb illegal immigration. But deciding who can get in-state tuition is clearly within the powers of states, and it has re-emerged as a flash point in state capitols.

Tuition is one of several immigration-related topics likely to crop up in state capitols this year. Lawmakers also will consider granting driving privileges to illegal immigrants, requiring employers to use a federal database to verify the legal status of new hires and changing rules for police who arrest undocumented immigrants.

On tuition, Maryland voters in November upheld in-state tuition rates for undocumented immigrants who grew up in Maryland. At least 12 states offer in-state tuition to illegal immigrants. In other states, the fate of in-state tuition bills is closely tied to the partisan makeup of their legislatures.

Colorado
A bill to lower tuition rates for illegal immigrants stalled last year in the Republican-controlled House, but advocates hope the Democratic takeover of the chamber will clear the way for passage this year. Adding to the urgency is a dispute brewing over a decision by Metro State University of Denver to offer its courses at cost to undocumented students. The attorney general issued a non-binding opinion saying the policy violates state law, which prohibits public benefits for illegal immigrants, but Metro State rolled out the policy anyway. It registered 96 illegal immigrants as students last semester. This year’s legislation could be heard by a Senate committee as early as this week.

Read more at Daniel C. Vock for Pew States →

Spain Did Not Meet 2012 Deficit Goals EC Assumes

Spain Did Not Meet 2012 Deficit Goals EC Assumes

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The European Commission said in a report issued Tuesday that it was assuming that Spain did not achieve the goal of reducing its public-sector deficit to less than 6.3 percent of the gross domestic product in 2012.

“Fiscal consolidation advanced in the third quarter, but the deficit goal for 2012 probably will not be met,” the European Commission said.

This was the European executive body’s second evaluation of Spain’s compliance with the conditions linked to the financial assistance program approved in July 2012.

The deterioration in Spain’s economic situation has made it difficult to reduce the budget deficit from the 8.9 percent of GDP registered in 2011 despite the reforms implemented by the government.

Spain was supposed to achieve deficit targets of 6.3 percent of GDP in 2012 and 4.5 percent of GDP in 2013, allowing the country to get below 3 percent of GDP in 2014 and fulfill the terms of the European Stability Pact.

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TuesdayJanuary 22, 2013