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ThursdayMarch 7, 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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State Dept.: US to Send Two Delegates to Chavez Funeral in Venezuela

State Dept.: US to Send Two Delegates to Chavez Funeral in Venezuela

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The U.S. State Department announced Thursday that two politicians and the U.S. charge d’affaires in Caracas will represent President Barack Obama’s administration at the funeral of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez.

The delegation will be comprised of former Massachusetts Congressman William Delahunt, U.S. Rep. Gregory Meeks of New York and diplomat James Derham, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said at her daily press briefing.

The delegation has quite a low profile compared with those being sent by the majority of countries in the Western Hemisphere.

The U.S. government expressed its condolences to the Venezuelan people over the loss of Chavez, who died Tuesday after a 21-month-long battle with cancer.

Nevertheless, Washington has not hidden its indignation over the expulsion of two U.S. military officers from its embassy in Caracas and on Thursday Nuland once again “categorically” denied that either man had violated Venezuelan law.

“We are obviously disappointed by these false accusations levied against our embassy officials,” Nuland said. “This is part of a tired playbook of alleging foreign interference as a political football in internal Venezuelan politics.”

Caracas accused the U.S. air attache and his aide of seeking to enlist Venezuelan military officers in “destabilization projects.”

The State Department continues to evaluate the possibility of responding to the expulsions with a reciprocal action and still has not made a decision on that matter, Nuland said.

At least 22 heads of state and government, including Spain’s Crown Prince Felipe, and top-level delegations from 54 countries are scheduled to attend the state funeral on Friday in Caracas.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Cervantes Institute Partners with University To Strengthen Masters in Spanish Education

Cervantes Institute Partners with University To Strengthen Masters in Spanish Education

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The Cervantes Institute and the Menendez Pelayo International University are increasing their cooperation in a master’s degree program in teaching Spanish as a foreign language.

Cervantes Institute director Victor Garcia de la Concha and university rector Cesar Nombela met on Thursday in Madrid to sign an agreement that will tighten the links between the two institutions in the Teaching Spanish as a Foreign Language University Master’s Program.

The new accord is designed to update previous agreements and consolidate mutual cooperation in the structure and teaching plan for the master’s degree program, which is offered in July and August for two consecutive years at the university campus in Santander.

Nombela emphasized the importance of the mutual collaboration, which began in January 2005 with the organization of the master’s program, from which - since it began during the 2006-2007 academic year - 300 professors of Spanish have graduated.

“The deficit in well-trained professors is large,” said Garcia de la Concha, while simultaneously emphasizing the importance of contributing to improving higher educational training of Spanish language professors all over the world, especially in the United States, Brazil and China.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Official ‘Dancing with the Stars’ Season 16 Photos Released, Check Out Victor Ortiz

Official ‘Dancing with the Stars’ Season 16 Photos Released, Check Out Victor Ortiz

Photo: Official 'Dancing with the Stars' Season 16 Photos Released, Check Out Victor Ortiz

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ABC has released the official photos of Dancing with the Stars season 16’s competitors.

This season, boxer Victor Ortiz will be dancing with professional Lindsay Arnold.

Image

Victor Ortiz is a living, breathing example of the American dream. From a broken home in a small town in Kansas to the bright lights of the boxing ring, Ortiz has used every obstacle he has encountered along his journey to fuel his strength and attain his dreams.

As former Welterweight Boxing Champion, Ortiz finally found his life’s calling as a world class athlete. The nickname “Vicious” describes Ortiz when he’s in the ring, but his million-dollar smile is a preview to his heart of gold. His ability to connect with people on a human level has kept the spotlight from blinding him. Realizing the importance of hard work, dedication, and family at an early age, Ortiz always finds a way to give back.

Ortiz and Arnold with be competing against:

-Wynonna Judd and Tony Dovolani
- Alexandra Raisman and Mark Ballas
- Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough
- Dorothy Hamill and Tristan Macmanus
- Andy Dick and Sharna Burgess
- Zendaya and Val Chmerkovskiy
- Lisa Vanderpump and Gleb Savchenko
- D.L. Hughley and Cheryl Burke
- Jacoby Jones and Karina Smirnoff
- Ingo Rademacher and Kym Johnson
- Dorothy Hamill and Tristan Macmanus

Read more by HS News Staff →

J Lo and Marc Anthony Twins Applying to Exclusive Private School in California

J Lo and Marc Anthony Twins Applying to Exclusive Private School in California

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TMZ is reporting that super star Jennifer Lopez has put away her glitter cat suits and spiked stilettos to apply to Sherman Oaks prestigious private school to gain a position for her 5-year-old twins Emma and Max.

The Buckley School is highly sought after in California and boosts a prominent alumni.  Therefore it is not known if J Lo and Marc Anthony’s off spring are a shoe in.

According to reports J Lo dressed demurely for the admissions interview and left her 25-year-old lover, Casper Smart, at home.  We assume that Anthony also left his 21-year-old new love interest, Chloe Green, at home if he was attending.

Tuition and fees for Buckley range from $30,000 to $36,000 depending on the age of the child.  Michael Jackson’s daughter Paris’ was spotting this week cheerleading for the school.

Notable alumni include Roy Disney, Laura Dern, Natalie Cole and the Hilton and Kardashian siblings.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexico Looking to Expand Tourism Markets

Mexico Looking to Expand Tourism Markets

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Mexican officials said at ITB Berlin, the world’s largest tourism fair, that their strategy was to expand tourist markets and increase spending by visitors.

“We want to focus on getting the average spending by tourists coming from different international markets to be the highest possible,” Mexican Tourism Marketing Council, or CPTM, director Rodolfo Lopez Negrete said.

The German market has a “very long” average stay of 19 nights and spending per stay of $2,160, excluding air fare, a figure that is nearly triple the $750 spent by a traditional tourist, Lopez Negrete said.

Mexico’s strategy, moreover, calls for concentrating on just a few markets, especially the United States and Canada, and limited destinations, the tourism official said.

“The vast majority of the tourists welcomed by the country are concentrated in Mexico City, Cancun and Baja California Sur,” Lopez Negrete said.

Mexico would also like to tap into more foreign markets outside the United States, the CPTM director said.

The goal is to reduce dependence on the North American market from 66 percent in 2007 to 55 percent in 2012 and 50 percent in coming years, the tourism official said.

Markets such as Brazil, Argentina, Colombia and Peru grew during the same period, Lopez Negrete said.

“South America has had robust growth toward Mexico,” the CPTM chief said.

Mexican officials are making an effort to keep tourists from becoming victims of violence, Lopez Negrete said.

“This is something that should never have happened, something we condemned strongly,” the CPTM chief said in response to a question about the rapes last month of six Spanish tourists in the Pacific resort city of Acapulco.

Several suspects have been arrested in connection with the rapes, which occurred on Feb. 4.

Mexico expects about 4 million visitors this year, Lopez Negrete said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Elton John Performs for the First Time in Paraguay

Elton John Performs for the First Time in Paraguay

Photo: Elton John in Paraguay (ABC Color)

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As promised, British music icon Sir Elton John served up an intimate performance for his first-ever concert in Paraguay.

John gave his band the night off, appearing alone on stage with his piano before some 5,000 fans gathered in a courtyard at the Yacht y Golf Club Paraguayo, just outside Asuncion.

“Hello, Paraguay. I’m very happy to be in this beautiful country,” he told the crowd before launching into “The One,” followed by a score of hits such as “Tiny Dancer,” “Candle in the Wind” and “Rocket Man.”

Tickets for the show went for prices ranging from $99 and $734.

The 65-year-old artist’s Latin American tour includes Chile, Argentina, Uruguay and Brazil.

John has sold more than 250 million albums worldwide in a career now in its fifth decade.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican President Unveils Official Photograph – The Most Expensive in Country’s History

Mexican President Unveils Official Photograph – The Most Expensive in Country’s History

Photo: Mexico's Official Presidential Photographer

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Mexico’s new President Enrique Peña Neito has unveiled his new presidential photograph by Hector Armando Herrera Peralta.  Also unveiled, in this new era of Mexican governmental transparency, was its hefty price tag of $29,000, making it the most expensive in the country’s history.

The photographic portrait was unveiled on the government’s official website this week. 

The 376,420 peso price tag is hefty when considering that 51.3% of the Mexican population lives below the poverty line.  While, Mexico’s minimum wage was increased in 2012 to 62.33 pesos per day and now stands at 60 cents an hour.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Venezuela-US Relations Unlikely to Change After Chavez(VIDEO)

Venezuela-US Relations Unlikely to Change After Chavez(VIDEO)

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The death of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez is raising questions about what happens next in Venezuela, both internally and with its relations to other nations, including the United States.  Analysts do not expect the tense relationship between Washington and Caracas to change soon.

The death of President Chavez is being mourned by his supporters, while many inside and outside Venezuela wonder what the future holds. 

A commanding and charismatic figure in life, Chavez played an outsized role on the world stage - largely by challenging the United States and what he saw as Washington’s economic and political dominance of Latin America. 

“He was a guy about power, you can’t really understand Chavez, the way he operated, what he did, what he couldn’t do, unless you understand his tremendous appetite for power,” explained Michael Shifter, head of the Inter-American Dialogue in Washington. “And that meant power within Venezuela, power within Latin America and that meant challenging and defying the superpower.”

He repeatedly accused the United States of undermining his socialist revolution.  A failed coup attempt in 2002 tacitly supported by the Bush administration further antagonized the Venezuelan leader and his supporters.

This antagonism is unlikely to change soon. 

At a meeting convened the day Chavez died, Vice President Nicolas Maduro accused Washington of plotting to undermine Venezuela and announced the expulsion of two American diplomats. 

That does not bode well for future relations, says Carl Meacham of the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

“It is sort of sticking to the playbook that Chavismo has used in the past: always blame the United States or blame some foreign entity to distract them from problems that they have going on in Venezuela,” he said.

Despite this, Venezuela is a major supplier of petroleum to the United States - and even provides free heating oil to poor Americans through a non-profit group.

American University professor Philip Brenner says this shows that relations between the two countries would be better if Washington recognizes certain realities.

“I think the important thing to remember about Venezuela is that they have never even threatened to cut off our oil.  Venezuela has done nothing to actually harm U.S. interests except to challenge U.S. dominance,” Brenner noted.

Vice President Maduro, a former foreign minister and union leader, is expected to govern Venezuela for now and could be more pragmatic in his dealings with Washington, according to Michael Shifter.

“I think what we can expect from Maduro is a very tough stand, ideological stand, confrontational stand in public but behind the scenes I would imagine he would try to work things out, try to at least establish channels of communication at least, including with the United States,” added Shifter.

Meanwhile, Maduro’s accusations have been rejected by U.S. officials who have limited their comments to possible areas of cooperation such as counternarcotics and energy in the post-Chavez era.

Read more at voice of america →

Tecate Leaves Mexican Ad Agency for U.S. – Better Translation Services Cited

Tecate Leaves Mexican Ad Agency for U.S. – Better Translation Services Cited

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Mexican beer Tecate, distributed exclusively by Heineken USA, has announced it is leaving its Mexican ad agency for an American choice so that it can receive a better translated product.  In 2011 the Mexican beer maker started advertising in English for the first time, in a new marketing effort to reach all Hispanics not just Mexican immigrants in the U.S.

Tecate officials said that its Mexican agency Olabuenaga will continue to do its Spanish-language ads and Inspire Dallas will do their English-language, U.S. advertising.

“We realized that when a Mexican agency tries to develop English creative, it feels translated.” “So in all honesty, we were not comfortable with the delivery,” said Tecate’s VP of Marketing Felix Palau in speaking to Ad Age.

Heineken USA is the exclusive U.S. importer for the Tecate, Tecate Light, Dos Equis, Sol, Indio, Carta Blanca and Bohemia brands from Mexico.  Tecate sales in the U.S. has close to a 20% share of the U.S. Latino beer market and is the No. 1 imported beer amongst Hispanics.

Read more by HS News Staff →

AMERICAN IDOL 2013: Lazaro Arbos, Devin Velez, Elijah Liu Impress, Will They Make the Top 10?

AMERICAN IDOL 2013: Lazaro Arbos, Devin Velez, Elijah Liu Impress, Will They Make the Top 10?

Photo: Lazaro Arbos, Devin Velez, Elijah Liu Impress, Will They Make the Top 10?

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On Wednesday, the top 10 guys on American Idol sang to stay in the game and make it to the top 10 overall, where they will go head to head with the ladies.

Lazara Arbos, Devin Velez, and Elijah Liu impressed the judges.

Judge Mariah Carey has big fan of Lazaro, who struggles with a stutter when he speaks, but not when he sings. She was once again happy to hear him perform, saying, “It impresses me how you just throw yourself into whatever song you’re doing.” She added, “Whatever adversity you’ve had to overcome, you put in your music.”

Watch him sing “Feeling Good” below.


Lazaro Arbos, Top 10 Male Perform ~ American… by HumanSlinky

Devin Velez, who has remained memorable as the guy who mixes it up and sings in both English and Spanish, did so again Wednesday night when he sang “Somos Novios” and began in English then Spanish.

“When I start singing in Spanish, I feel like I go back to my roots…I feel like it’s authentic.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Barcelona Celebrates Picasso Museum’s 50th Anniversary

Barcelona Celebrates Picasso Museum’s 50th Anniversary

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Barcelona’s Picasso Museum is celebrating its 50th anniversary with an exhibition of the Spanish master’s work and documents belonging to Jaume Sabartes, personal secretary and friend to the artist, and the moving force behind the museum.

The museum was founded thanks to the efforts of Sabartes, the artist’s wife, Jacqueline, the people of Barcelona and the northeastern Spanish city’s government, exhibition curator Silvia Domenech said.

The work of all these people made possible Picasso’s dream of having “a monographic museum in the city that he loved so much” and played a role in his formative years, Domenech said.

The exhibition, which runs from March 9 to June 9, includes drawings, etchings and documents that show “Picasso’s links to Barcelona, the story of how the museum was created and the museum’s layout,” Domenech said.

Pablo Picasso, who was born in Malaga on Oct. 25, 1881, and died in Notre-Dame-de-Vie, France, on April 8, 1973, had a long relationship with Barcelona, where his family moved in 1895 and he lived until 1904, creating an art circle and establishing friendships that lasted until the end of his life.

He met Sabartes in 1899 and hired him as his personal secretary on his return from a trip to the Americas in 1935.

The museum’s construction, which was supervised by Picasso himself from France, was costly and long.

The Picasso Museum finally opened its doors on March 9, 1963, with the collection that Sabartes donated to the city of Barcelona.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Artist Leo Villareal Helps Create San Francisco’s ‘The Bay Lights’ Project

Artist Leo Villareal Helps Create San Francisco’s ‘The Bay Lights’ Project

Photo: Artist Leo Villareal Helps Create San Francisco's 'The Bay Lights' Project

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Being called the “world’s largest LED light sculpture,” the new Bay Bridge light display has turned the Golden Gate Bridge’s older sister into a massive work of art.

For the project, chairman of the nonprofit group Illuminate the Arts, Ben Davis, enlisted the help of artist Leo Villareal, who is known for his large-scale light structures.

While many agree “The Bay Lights” are beautiful, others wonder whether the millions it cost could have been better spent.

It should be noted that the estimated $8 million needed for the project are being raised through private donations. Currently, about $6 million has been raised.

Davis told the Los Angeles Times, “I think it’s what art does well: It reminds us of what’s already there,” he said. “When a community comes together for a shared belief, anything is possible.”

The project, which involved about 25,00 LED lights, was “turned on"on Tuesday and Villareal has a two-year permit to operate the art installation.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Death of Chavez: Cardinal Urosa Savino Will Celebrate Mass for the Repose in Rome

Death of Chavez: Cardinal Urosa Savino Will Celebrate Mass for the Repose in Rome

Photo: Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino and Pres. Chavez

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Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, Archbishop of Caracas, will celebrate a “Mass” in honor of the late President of Venezuela Hugo Rafael Chavez Frias in Rome, where he is to attend the conclave that will elect a new pope.

In a statement sent to Fides, “Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino, Archbishop of Caracas, will celebrate a Mass for the funeral in Rome, in a place and date to be announced, and calls on all Venezuelans who want to participate in a religious ceremony to pray for President Chavez,” who died yesterday, March 5 at the military hospital in Caracas.

The Archbishop expressed his “condolences” to the family of the late President, and urged the authorities “to apply the mechanisms provided for by the Constitution” and all sectors of society to promote “calm and harmony of the people.” “In particular, it is necessary to exclude all forms of violence,” he added.

In another note sent to Fides on the situation in Caracas, it states that the Cardinal’s request, unfortunately, has not yet been heard by the “Chavistas”: in fact, around the military hospital some journalists of a multimedia Colombian group were attacked, beaten and threatened between screams and shots.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican Police Detain 37 Central American Migrants in Oaxaca

Mexican Police Detain 37 Central American Migrants in Oaxaca

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The Federal Police detained 37 Honduran and Salvadoran migrants in the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca, the National Security Council said.

The migrants were found during an operation at kilometer 235 of the Mexico City-Ciudad Cuauhtemoc highway, the council, a Government Secretariat agency, said.

Officers checking immigration documents found the 35 Hondurans and two Salvadorans on a bus that was coming from the southern state of Chiapas.

Six children were in the group, which could not show that it was in the country legally, the council said.

Bus driver Jose Alejandro Perez, 45, and his assistant, Francisco Noe Lopez, 49, were arrested by Federal Police officers, the council said in a statement.

The suspected people traffickers were handed over to federal prosecutors, “who will determine their roles and legal situation,” the council said.

The migrants were taken to a National Migration Institute, or INM, facility, “where they were treated by doctors and their immigration status will be reviewed,” the council said.

Earlier this week, the Rev. Alejandro Solalinde, who is known for his work with Central American migrants, said during a conference in Mexico City that he was concerned about the government’s increasing emphasis on policing in its immigration policy.

The Catholic priest, who founded the Hermanos del Camino shelter in Oaxaca, was forced to leave Mexico for a short time last year after receiving threats.

“Sometimes there are few migrants and up to 80 armed (Federal Police) officers, who get involved in everything” at the INM station in Acayucan, Veracruz, the priest said.

An estimated 300,000 Central Americans undertake the hazardous journey across Mexico each year on their way to the United States.

The trek is a dangerous one, with criminals and corrupt Mexican officials preying on the migrants.

Gangs kidnap, exploit and murder migrants, who are often targeted in extortion schemes, Mexican officials say.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Motivational Guru Tony Robbins to Bring His Message in Spanish

Motivational Guru Tony Robbins to Bring His Message in Spanish

Photo: Tony Robbins in Spanish

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This month motivational guru Anthony ‘Tony’ Robbins will be bringing his message of “power from within” for the first time in Spanish.  We aren’t sure if that is good news or bad. 

What do you think?

Robbins will be in Los Angeles from March 21-24, 2013 to bring his message and program called ‘While Unleash the Power Within’ which will be translated to Spanish as it’s presented.

For every ticket sold to the event Robbins organization donates 60 meals to local needy families in L.A.  Tickets are pricey ranging from $795 to $2095 for the four-day event.

Last year Robbins promised Spanish-language translations for his message but only for the first 150 requestors in Miami.

Robbins promises that this weekend ‘can change everything’ and it will be:

“The breakthrough that transforms everything—from your finances, to your relationships, to your health—is closer than you think. All you need is within you now. Connect with the people, the passion and the environment that will make it happen!”

HSN is not sure what kind of market if any there is for expensive messages of hope in Spanish or English for that matter.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Pew Study: Closing the Digital Divide: Latinos and Technology Adoption

Pew Study: Closing the Digital Divide: Latinos and Technology Adoption

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Latinos own smartphones, go online from a mobile device and use social networking sites at similar, and sometimes higher, rates than do other groups of Americans, according to a new analysis of three Pew Research Center surveys.

The analysis also finds that when it comes to using the internet, the digital divide between Latinos and whites is smaller than what it had been just a few years ago. Between 2009 and 2012, the share of Latino adults who say they go online at least occasionally increased from 64% to 78%. Among whites, internet use rates also increased, but only by half as much (80% in 2009 to 87% in 2012).

Over the same period, the gap in cellphone ownership between Latinos and other groups either diminished or disappeared. In 2012, 86% of Latinos said they owned a cellphone, up from 76% in 2009.

Among the biggest drivers of these increases are spikes in technology adoption among foreign-born Latinos and Spanish-dominant Latinos. Both groups’ rates of going online and of owning cellphones increased sharply since 2009, helping to reduce the digital divide between Latinos and whites and also reducing gaps within the Latino community itself.

This analysis, based on three national Pew Research Center surveys of more than 7,500 adults combined conducted between May and October of 2012, also finds:

Cellphone Ownership: Fully 86% of Latinos say they own a cellphone, a share similar to that of whites (84%) and blacks (90%). Among Latinos who do not own cellphones, 76% are foreign born and 24% are native born.

Smartphone Ownership: Among adults, Latinos (49%) are just as likely as whites (46%) or blacks (50%) to own a smartphone.

Going Online from a Mobile Device: Latino internet users are more likely than white internet users to say they go online using a mobile device (76% versus 60%). Black internet users are equally as likely as Latinos to access the internet from a mobile device.

Social Networking: Among internet users, similar shares of Latinos (68%), whites (66%) and blacks (69%) say they use social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook at least occasionally. Among Latinos who use social networking sites, 60% say they do so mostly or only in English, 29% say they do so mostly or only in Spanish and 11% say they use English and Spanish equally.

Computer Ownership: Some 72% of Latinos say they own a desktop or laptop computer, compared with 83% of whites. Among blacks, 70% are computer owners. Half of Hispanic computer owners are foreign born. By comparison, 73% of Hispanics who do not own a computer are foreign born.

Internet Use: Nearly eight-in-ten (78%) Latino adults go online at least occasionally, compared with 87% of whites and 78% of blacks. Half (50%) of Hispanic internet users are native born and half are foreign born.

The report, “Closing the Digital Divide: Latinos and Technology Adoption,” was written by Mark Hugo Lopez, associate director of the Pew Hispanic Center; Ana Gonzalez-Barrera, research associate with the Pew Hispanic Center; and Eileen Patten, research assistant with the Pew Research Center’s Social & Demographic Trends Project. It is available at the Pew Research Center’s website, www.pewresearch.org.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Murderer of Orginal ‘50 Cent’ Kills Pregnant Woman, Husband in Crash

Murderer of Orginal ‘50 Cent’ Kills Pregnant Woman, Husband in Crash

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The man jailed for killing the original “50 Cent” is believed to be the same man who killed a pregnant woman and her husband in New York over the weekend.

In 1987, famed criminal Kelvin “50 Cent” Martin was gunned down. Martin was known as “50 Cent” because it was said he would rob anyone for any amount of money, even $.50. Julio “Wemo” Acevedo was convicted of Martin’s murder and spent most of the 1990s in prison.

On Sunday, Acevedo, 44, was reportedly behind the wheel of a BMW when he slammed into a livery cab carrying 21-year-olds Nachman and Raizy Galuber in the Bronx.

ImageThe couple, who were part of the city’s ultra-Orthodox Jewish community, were on their way to the hospital because Raizy, who was 7 months pregnant, was experiencing labor pains.

Sadly, the couple died. Their baby was delivered by emergency c-section, but died the next with doctors citing extreme prematurity as the cause. He weighed just 4 pounds.

After the crash, Acevedo was on the run, but turned himself in on Wednesday in Pennsylvania. Police say he surrendered himself to officers outside a convenience store in Bethlehem, Pa. He has been charged with leaving the scene of an accident.

Acevedo is also being held without bail on a charge of being a fugitive from justice. He has since claimed he was fleeing a gunman when he crashed into the young couple, though police say there are no reports of shots fired in the area at that time. In February he was charged with driving while under the influence. That case is pending.

The rapper Curtis “50 Cent” Jackson has stated he took his stage name from the original 50 Cent as
he is “the kind of person 50 Cent was,” because he provides for himself “by any means.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

Fossil Suggests Dogs were Domesticated 33,000 Years Ago

Fossil Suggests Dogs were Domesticated 33,000 Years Ago

Photo: Altai canine (PLOS ONE)

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Analysis of a canine fossil discovered in Siberia’s Altai Mountains reveals an animal more like a modern dog than a wolf, according to an article in the science journal PLOS ONE.

Though dogs were part of human society by around 10,000 years ago, exactly when wild canines began living with people is a matter of dispute.

Anna Druzhkova and her colleagues from the Russian Federation’s Institute of Molecular and Cellular Biology extracted DNA from the Altai fossil and compared it with samples from modern dogs, wolves and coyotes and with genetic material recovered from prehistoric canines in the Americas.

The Altai canine was more closely related to modern dogs than to modern wolves, the researchers found.

The only other known specimen of an early dog is the 36,000-year-old Goyet dog, discovered in Belgium.

Prevailing wisdom has been that dogs were first domesticated in the Middle East or East Asia, but the Altai dog, if truly a domestic animal, points to wider possibilities.

“Additional discoveries of ancient doglike remains are essential for further narrowing the time and region of origin for the domestic dog,” the Russian researchers said.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Latino Priest Arrested for Vandalizing Property of Local Residents

Photo: Father Martinez at Holy Family Catholic Church

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Father Eusebio Martinez has been arrested in Texas for vandalizing the property of a local resident family, the Villanuevas. 

Father Martinez is Pastor of the Holy Family Catholic Church in the border town of Edinburg, Texas which has a predominantly Latino population. He was allegedly caught on camera drilling holes in the tires of the family’s car according to Valley Central.  It is not known if the priest was wearing his official garb when he was filmed. 

Local police began investigating Father Martinez back in January when the family submitted video evidence of the vandalism.  He was arrested this morning and is out of jail on a personal recognizance bond.Image

The Holy Family Catholic Church was in the news recently with its outreach to the only Catholic Church in Newton, Connecticut, St. Rose of Lima Church during the deadly shooting rampage.  Father Martinez was returning the favor to St. Rose of Lima which raised 11,000 to help build the new education center and parish hall.

The Catholic Diocese of Brownsville, Texas has placed the pastor on leave until further notice. 

The motive for the alleged vandalism has not been made public.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Atlas, Atlante and Chiapas Head to Copa MX Quarterfinals

Atlas, currently in second place in Mexico’s Liga MX Clausura, booked a place in the quarterfinals of the Copa MX tournament with a 3-1 win over Cruz Azul in its sixth and final match of the group phase, while Atlante and Jaguares de Chiapas also qualified for the knockout stage with victories.

Pachuca, Puebla and Cruz Azul, meanwhile, advanced Wednesday to the last eight despite losses in their final-round matches.

Carlos Gutierrez scored in the 20th minute of Wednesday’s contest for Atlas, which also got goals from Matias Vuoso and Jair Barraza in the 33rd and 53rd minutes, respectively.

Atlas cruised to the win even though Cruz Azul striker Javier Orozco opened the scoring with a goal in the seventh minute.

Despite the loss, Cruz Azul finished on top of Group 3 with 15 points, one ahead of Atlas.

In Group 6, Atlante edged Pachuca 1-0 thanks to a goal by Francisco Fonseca in the 10th minute. Despite the result, Pachuca finished first in the group due to a better overall goal differential.

Jaguares de Chiapas, meanwhile, got a goal from Colombian Jhon Cordoba for a 1-0 win over San Luis and finished first in Group 5.

In Group 4, Puebla lost 3-0 to Pumas UNAM, which got goals from Alan Mendoza, Spain’s Luis Garcia Sanz and Paraguayan Robin Ramirez, but still finished in first place in their group. Pumas took the second spot but was eliminated from the competition.

America advanced to the quarterfinals out of Group 1 despite losing its final round-robin match Tuesday against Nexa.

Estudiantes Tecos, meanwhile, advanced to the Copa MX knockout stage out of Group 2, becoming the only second-division club to reach the quarterfinals.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Spanish Foreign Minister Will Not Visit Gibraltar Until Spanish Flag Waves

Spanish Foreign Minister Will Not Visit Gibraltar Until Spanish Flag Waves

Photo: Spanish Foreign Minister Will Not Visit Gibraltar Until Spanish Flag Waves

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Spain’s foreign minister said that he had never set foot in Gibraltar, the British Crown Colony at the southern tip of the Iberian peninsula, and he guaranteed that he never will do so “as long as there’s no Spanish flag” flying over the territory.

Jose Manuel Garcia-Margallo made these remarks at the presentation of the book by Spanish journalist Jose Maria Carrascal, “La batalla de Gibraltar.”

The aim of Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy’s administration in regard to Gibraltar is to “end the joke of earlier years” and undertake a “radically different” policy, the foreign minister said.

Spain wants to once again bring up the matter of sovereignty over the Rock, but - as Rajoy said before the U.N. General Assembly - the actors in those negotiations must be Madrid and London, and Britain cannot give Gibraltarian authorities the right to veto those talks.

As long as the situation does not change, Garcia-Margallo acknowledged, the cooperation must continue between Spain and Britain and between Gibraltar and the authorities in the Spanish zone adjacent to the Rock.

He criticized the tripartite Forum formula designed by the 2004-2011 Socialist government of Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, which gave a voice to Gibraltar on an equal footing with Madrid and London, as being “really perverse.”

Gibraltar Chief Minister Fabian Picardo decided last August to abrogate an accord that allowed Spanish fishing boats to operate in waters near the colony.

Spain refuses to recognize the Gibraltarian government’s authority beyond the bounds set forth in the Treaty of Utrecht, the 1713 accord that is the basis for Britain’s claim to sovereignty over the Rock.

The pact limits British maritime control to the port of Gibraltar, Madrid says.

Gibraltar is a territory of 5.5 square kilometers (2.1 square miles) at the entrance to the Mediterranean Sea. It has been held by Britain since 1704.

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Spanish Artist Domingo Zapata Takes Payment in Form of Pizza for the Poor

Spanish Artist Domingo Zapata Takes Payment in Form of Pizza for the Poor

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Spanish artist and Hollywood darling Domingo Zapata sold several of his paintings for ‘dough’ as in pizza dough.

The contemporary artist who at times is referred to as the next ‘Andy Warhol’ lives and works in NYC and is currently preparing a commemorative work for the lobby of Freedom Tower.  In 2011 he was named ‘Artist to Watch’ by Whitehall.

Page Six is reporting Zapata sold $100,000 worth of paintings to pizza entrepreneur and owner of Garlic Pizza, Sasha Berg.  Instead of opting for payment he asked for free pizza for families in need in the Bowery Mission, to the tune of $100,000. 

The mission has been around in New York since 1879 and helps the homeless and hungry.  Gracias –Domingo!

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Spain’s King Receives Numerous Visits Following Surgery

Spain’s King Receives Numerous Visits Following Surgery

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Queen Sofia, the crown prince with his wife and children, and several politicians on Wednesday visited Spain’s King Juan Carlos in the Madrid hospital where he is recovering from surgery to repair a slipped disc.

From the hospital, the king on Wednesday sent a telegram to the vice president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro, with a message of condolence to the South American nation over the death on Tuesday of President Hugo Chavez, officials with the Royal Palace said.

In the message, the king recalled the “resolve and dedication” Chavez had shown for Venezuela and for Ibero-America as a whole.

Upon leaving the hospital accompanied by Crown Prince Felipe and his family on Wednesday evening, Queen Sofia remarked that Juan Carlos was doing “very well,” corroborating what the medical report released at midday had said.

The king is performing the rehabilitation exercises ordered by the medical team “perfectly normally,” according to the medical report.

Among the other visitors the king received on Wednesday was the leader of the main opposition Socialists, Alfredo Perez Rubalcaba, who upon leaving the hospital said that he had noted that the king’s “pains have disappeared” in the wake of the surgery.

The speaker of the lower house of Parliament, Jesus Posada, also visited the monarch, along with judiciary chief Gonzalo Moliner, Senate president Pio Garcia Escudero and national ombud Soledad Becerril, all of whom agreed in their assessments that the patient was doing very well.

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Venezuelans Adopt The Color Red While Mourning Chavez

Venezuelans Adopt The Color Red While Mourning Chavez

Photo: Mourners in Caracas

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The streets of Caracas are bathed in red in honor of late President Hugo Chavez, who made the color the symbol of his Bolivarian Revolution.

Chavez will lie in state in the chapel of the Military Academy until his funeral and burial on Friday.

The 58-year-old president died Tuesday after a two-year battle with cancer.

Thousands of Venezuelans clothed in red lined the streets of Caracas on Wednesday as Chavez’s coffin was carried from the Military Hospital to the Military Academy.

Red banners, Venezuelan flags, photographs of Chavez and posters honoring the leader of the Bolivarian Revolution have filled the streets of the capital.

The armed forces fired a 21-gun salute to Chavez at 8:00 a.m. Wednesday and announced that a cannon would be fired once an hour until the late president was buried on Friday.

Chavez’s death was announced Tuesday by a tearful Vice President Nicolas Maduro, who will serve as interim president.

Chavez had undergone four operations, as well as courses of chemotherapy and radiation treatment, since first being diagnosed with cancer in June 2011.

The leftist president spent more than two months in Cuba due to complications that followed his Dec. 11 cancer surgery in Havana.

Elections will be held within 30 days and Maduro is expected to be the candidate of the governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela.

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Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s New Comedy Adds Edward Norton to Its Star Cast

Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu’s New Comedy Adds Edward Norton to Its Star Cast

Photo: Edward Norton joins Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu's Movie

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The dark comedy film, ‘Birdman’, written, produced and directed by Mexican filmmaker Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu has added actor Edward Norton to its ensemble.

This will be Inarritu’s first dip into the comedic field, he is better known for his dark dramas like ‘Babel’, ‘Biutiful’ and ’21 Grams’.

The ‘Birdman’ cast also includes Emma Stone, Naomi Watts, Michael Keaton and Zach Galifianakis.  The comedic film centers on the story of an actor who once played a famous superhero and is now faced with a wounded ego at the loss of fame and fortune.

Production is due to start in early April.  This will be reunion for Inarritu and Watts who worked together on his 2003 film ’21 Grams’.

Inarritu is the first Mexican director to be nominated for an Osacar for Best Director for ‘Babel’, a film that garnered 7 Academy Award nominations including Best Picture.

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NCLR Launches Latino Advocacy Days with 400 Leaders in Attendance

NCLR Launches Latino Advocacy Days with 400 Leaders in Attendance

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More than 400 Latino leaders, representing 31 states, have gathered in Washington for National Council of La Raza’s (NCLR) annual Latino advocacy days. 

The focus of the gathering will be to push for comprehensive immigration reform legislation that includes a roadmap to citizenship.

NCLR is the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the U.S., its Advocacy Days brings together hundreds of leaders from Hispanic nonprofit and civic organizations throughout the United States. Many of these advocates are members of NCLR’s Affiliate Network, a group of community-based organizations partnering with NCLR to improve opportunities for the Latino community.

 

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Paleontologists Discover Fossilized Remains of Giant Arctic Camel

Paleontologists Discover Fossilized Remains of Giant Arctic Camel

Photo: Paleontologists Discover Fossilized Remains of Giant Arctic Camel

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Canadian paleontologists have discovered the fossilized remains of a giant camel that lived in the Arctic some 3.5 million years ago, when the area was a boreal forest during an epoch of global warming.

The 30 fragments of a tibia found on Ellesmere Island in the autonomous territory of Nunavut represent the northernmost fossils ever found of primitive camels, which first appeared in North America some 45 million years ago, said experts who made a study for the Canadian Museum of Nature that was published Tuesday in Nature Communications.

This is an important discovery because it provides the first evidence of camels in Canada’s High Arctic and extends the range of camels in North America 1,200 kilometers (745 miles) to the north, according to the leader of the study, Natalia Rybczynski.

“This is a completely new way of thinking about the traits that we see in camels today,” Rybczynski said.

And that is because, she believes, some specializations seen in modern camels, such as their wide flat feet, large eyes and humps for fat may show they may once have been “northern forest specialists,” with these adaptations derived from living in a polar environment.

The fossils were found during field work in the summers of 2006, 2008 and 2010 in a mound on the site of Fyles Leaf Bed, a sandy deposit near Strathcona Fiord on Ellesmere Island, where plant fossils had been found before but never a mammal.

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Paulina Rubio, Ex-husband Reach Divorce Agreement

Paulina Rubio, Ex-husband Reach Divorce Agreement

Photo: Paulina Rubio and Nicolas "Colate" Vallejo Najera

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Mexican singer Paulina Rubio and her ex-husband Nicolas “Colate” Vallejo Najera have arrived at an agreement that will put an end to the legal battle over their divorce and the custody of their child, Andrea Nicolas, People en Español reported Wednesday on its Web page.

The magazine also said that the former couple agreed to share custody of their son and that Colate agreed to pay Rubio $243,000 over three years instead of the $1 million she had been demanding as alimony.

Colate’s lawyers had recommended to him that he accept the singer’s proposal to pay her $6,750 per month, the magazine said, adding that the agreement is said to have been reached on Monday after more than a year of wrangling in Miami-Dade County’s Family Court.

In mid-February, the Spanish businessman denied media reports that he had asked the singer for $5 million in exchange for giving up custody of his son.

“I didn’t ask Paulina for five million. My son doesn’t have a price and is not a bargaining chip,” Colate told the Spanish magazine Vanitatis, People en Español said.

The magazine emphasized on its Web site that Rubio did not want to make any statement about the divorce proceedings during a recent event in Mexico.

The singer’s response when asked about the subject was that time “is the only thing that has to pass (for you) to realize your projects, your relationships, and I think that we women are much better than (men) are because we’re more loyal; we have the virtue of seeing things with greater clarity than they do.”

Rubio and Colate married on April 30, 2007, in Mexico.

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CHAMPIONS LEAGUE 2013: Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain Survive Knockout Round

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE 2013: Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain Survive Knockout Round

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Valencia gave Paris Saint-Germain a scare here Wednesday in the second leg of their Champions League round of 16 clash, but the home side answered with a tying goal and advanced to the quarterfinals 3-2 on aggregate.

The Spanish club, which came into the contest trailing after a 2-1 home loss in the first leg, dared to hope for a miracle after taking a 1-0 lead with Jonas’ goal in the 55th minute.

But the challenge of winning by at least a two-goal margin against a PSG squad that was unbeaten in 22 consecutive home matches proved to be too great and Lavezzi closed the door when he notched the equalizer at the 66-minute mark.

Juventus, meanwhile, had no trouble dispatching Celtic on Wednesday.

The Italian club won 2-0 at home on tallies by Matri and Quagliarella, after dominating the Scottish club 3-0 in the first leg at Glasgow.

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Mexico Gives $1.2 Billion Lifeline To Struggling Homebuilding Industry

Mexico Gives $1.2 Billion Lifeline To Struggling Homebuilding Industry

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The Mexican government has announced that it will be covering up to 30% of bad bank loans taken out by homebuilders and guarantee up to 50% of loans taken out by “healthy” homebuilders, in essence throwing them a $1.2 billion lifeline.

This move will help reduce worries about access to credit for the struggling homebuilding industry and helps builders most hurt by the governments move away from promoting single home construction. 

Since the government started subsidizing multiple unit housing construction the industry has taken a hard hit.  Construction company stocks rose upon the governments announcement.

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Media Outlets in Juarez, Mexico Targeted by Gunmen

Media Outlets in Juarez, Mexico Targeted by Gunmen

Photo: Attacks on Mexican Journalists

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Gunmen opened fire early Wednesday on two media outlets in Ciudad Juarez, a border city in northern Mexico, but no one was injured, police said.

There were “separate reports of armed attacks on two media outlets and officers were sent to secure the area,” a police spokesman told Efe.

The offices of Diario de Ciudad Juarez, the border city’s largest newspaper, were hit by at least seven shots, the daily said in a story posted on its Web site.

Channel 44 television said its facility was damaged by “at least 10 shots that hit the windows of the guard booth, as well as a gate that protects the property” in Ciudad Juarez, located across the Rio Grande from El Paso, Texas.

These are just the latest attacks on the Mexican media in recent weeks.

Jaime Guadalupe Gonzalez, editor of an online news site, was killed Sunday afternoon by gunmen in Ojinaga, a border city in the northern state of Chihuahua.

Unidentified individuals attacked the offices of the El Siglo newspaper in Torreon, a city in the northern Mexican state of Coahuila, three times last week, killing one person and wounding two others.

Amnesty International, for its part, called on the Mexican government on Tuesday to do more to protect journalists in the wake of Gonzalez’s murder.

“The repeated killing of journalists in recent years, which can only have been encouraged by the prevailing impunity for such crimes, has had a direct impact on reporting in Mexico,” the human rights group said.

Gonzalez was the first journalist murdered since President Enrique Peña Nieto took office last December.

A total of 14 journalists were murdered during the 2006-2012 administration of President Felipe Calderon, the Committee to Protect Journalists, or CPJ, said.

A total of 82 journalists have been murdered and 18 others have been reported missing since 2005 in Mexico, the Mexican National Human Rights Commission, or CNDH, said in a report released in December.

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Law Students Give Up Spring Break to Assist Immigrations Applying for Deportation Relief

Law Students Give Up Spring Break to Assist Immigrations Applying for Deportation Relief

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Students from two Miami-area law schools will devote their spring break vacations to helping young undocumented immigrants who want to avoid deportation through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.

Around 20 participants from the University of Miami and Florida International University law schools will travel around the state next week offering free legal advice to DACA applicants, organizer and FIU law student Jose Diaz told Efe Wednesday.

The tour will make stops in Naples, Orlando, Gainesville and Plant City, east of Tampa.

“These are areas with a great need for legal services on immigration. They are areas different from Miami, given that the majority of the ‘DREAMers’ are the children of farm workers and have less access to information and lawyers,” Diaz said.

The DACA program was designed for the people who stand to benefit from the DREAM Act, long stalled in Congress.

The students are to be supervised by experienced immigration lawyers, who will take note of how these workshops go to apply the model on the national level.

In addition, they will take advantage of the chance to get to know firsthand the immigration situation of the parents of DACA applicants who approach them during their tour, Diaz said.

At the workshops, the students, with the help of the attorneys, will make a “complete legal examination” of the DREAMers’ documents so that they can apply for DACA, he said.

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U.S. May Retaliate Against Venezuela for Expulsion of Diplomatic Personnel

U.S. May Retaliate Against Venezuela for Expulsion of Diplomatic Personnel

Photo: U.S. Venezuelan Relations

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The United States is not ruling out the possibility of retaliating with a reciprocal action to Venezuela’s expulsion of the air attache at the U.S. Embassy in Caracas, a high-ranking Obama administration official said Wednesday.

“We’re not ruling anything out at this point,” the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said in a conference call with reporters.

The Venezuelan government announced Tuesday that the U.S. air attache and his aide had been given 24 hours to leave the country.

The officers were expelled for trying to recruit members of the Venezuelan armed forces for “destabilizing projects,” Vice President Nicolas Maduro said just hours before the country’s president, Hugo Chavez, died after a long battle with cancer.

The Obama administration official gave no further details regarding the type of action Washington might be considering, but he said that the accusations made on Tuesday by Maduro were “outrageous” adding that he regretted the fact that they had come at a time when the United States is trying to build a positive relationship with Venezuela.

Besides the expulsions, Maduro suggested that foul play had been involved in Chavez’s illness and pointed the finger at Venezuela’s “historic enemies,” which many interpreted as an allusion to Washington.

There have been no high-level contacts between the U.S. State Department and Venezuela since late November 2011, when the assistant secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs, Roberta Jacobson, spoke by telephone with Maduro, the senior official said Wednesday.

The contacts are aimed at finding a way to normalize diplomatic relations, which have stagnated due to the two countries’ mutual withdrawal of their ambassadors from each other’s capitals in 2010.

“I do expect that there will be a delegation,” the official said, responding to a question about U.S. representation at Chavez’s funeral, set for Friday.

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Nobel Laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez Celebrates 86th Birthday

Nobel Laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez Celebrates 86th Birthday

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Colombian novelist Gabriel Garcia Marquez described himself as “very happy” on his 86th birthday, which he celebrated Wednesday at his home in this capital in the company of family and friends.

A smiling Gabo, dressed in a gray Oxford suit, striped tie and pink shirt, stepped outside the entrance of his residence in the upscale neighborhood of Pedregal de San Angel around noon to receive a bouquet of yellow roses, his favorite color.

The recipient of the 1982 Nobel Prize in Literature greeted the reporters who had arrived at his residence early Wednesday to cover his birthday.

“Why so much commotion?” the novelist said in jest. Immediately, the journalists and Garcia Marquez’s assistant, Genovevo Quiros, began singing the traditional “Happy Birthday” song.

After giving his well-wishers a lengthy smile and thanking them for their gesture, the author of “One Hundred Years of Solitude” and “Love in the Time of Cholera” went back inside.

The novelist arrived in Mexico in 1961 at the encouragement of fellow Colombian author Alvaro Mutis and initially planned to stay just a few weeks.

But he liked it so much that he decided to extend his stay in the country and it was there that he wrote his masterpiece, “One Hundred Years of Solitude,” which was inspired by Mexican author Juan Rulfo’s classic short novel “Pedro Paramo.”

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ThursdayMarch 7, 2013