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The week at a glance ... Americas

Americas

Aguascalientes, Mexico
Spanish bullfighter gored: Spain’s most famous matador was badly gored during a bullfight in Mexico, leaving him hospitalized in serious condition. The bull pierced José Tomás Román Martín, 34, in the upper thigh and tossed him several feet into the air. The wound spewed so much blood that authorities in the bullring immediately called for spectators to donate blood. After undergoing three hours of surgery, he is expected to survive. The incident was the 15th goring for the bullfighter, who’s known for his fearlessness and his ability to stay perfectly still while a charging bull misses him by millimeters. José Tomás retired in 2002, saying he’d had enough, but made a surprise return five years later. “To live without fighting bulls,” he said, “is not to live at all.”

Mexico City
Protesting Arizona law: Mexico has lodged an official protest against the new Arizona law that allows police to detain anyone suspected of being an illegal immigrant. “This law opens the doors to unacceptable racial discrimination,” said President Felipe Calderón. “Mexico’s government will use everything in its power to defend the rights of Mexicans who are affected by this legislation.” He said his government would have to reconsider agreements and cooperation with Arizona, and the Foreign Ministry warned Mexican citizens to be vigilant when traveling to the state. “It should be assumed that any Mexican citizen could be bothered and questioned for no other reason at any moment,” said Foreign Minister Patricia Espinosa.

Caracas, Venezuela
Iranian influence? President Hugo Chávez this week angrily denounced as “absolutely false” a U.S. claim that an Iranian special forces group has established itself in his nation. The Pentagon report, which was issued to Congress, said the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps’ elite Qods force had a growing Latin American presence, “particularly in Venezuela.” In denying that assertion, Chávez warned that the United States could be looking for an excuse to attack his country. “These are the things they raise and repeat in reports to later justify anything,” he said. Chávez and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, both stridently anti-American, have fostered closer political and business ties between their OPEC member nations. The Pentagon report said the Revolutionary Guard wants forces in place around the world to widen Iran’s options for retaliation, should the U.S. attack Iran.

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