About 70 people were injured in Argentina on Christmas Day, when a swarm of carnivorous fish attacked at a beach near the city of Rosario, on the Parana River.
Argentina state-run Telam news agency described the fish as a relative of the piranha.
No one was killed, but swimmers suffered various injuries, including a 7-year-old girl who lost a part of one of her pinky fingers, Telam reported.
About 70 people were injured in Argentina on Christmas Day, when a swarm of carnivorous fish attacked at a beach near the city of Rosario, on the Parana River
Ricardo Biasatti, sub secretary of Natural Resources for the province of Santa Fe, described the incident to the agency as “isolated and insignificant,” when the size of the river is taken into consideration.
Julian Aguilar, president of a local fisherman’s group, also downplayed it, saying the likelihood of such an event happening again was low, as attacks by this type of fish on humans are “occasional.”
The area is a popular swimming spot this time of year in Argentina, where it is summer.
Argentina has been ordered again to pay back more than $1.3 billion to a group of American investors – 11 years after its record debt default.
A New York appeals court unanimously rejected every Argentine argument against the payout.
The decision is the latest twist in the long-running legal saga.
Argentina refuses to pay anything to investors who declined to participate in a previous debt reduction deal involving most of the nation’s lenders.
“What the consequences predicted by Argentina have in common is that they are speculative, hyperbolic and almost entirely of the Republic’s own making,” the judges said in their decision.
Argentina refuses to pay anything to investors who declined to participate in a previous debt reduction deal involving most of the nation’s lenders
But the appeals court held off forcing Argentina to pay pending an appeal to the US Supreme Court – which is considered unlikely to hear the case, but puts off any decision to 2014, well after Argentina’s congressional elections in October.
The appeal came after a Manhattan court ruled last February that Argentina had violated its contractual obligation to treat all creditors equally. That meant the country would have to pay the bondholders, led by NML Capital and Aurelius Capital Management.
Argentina defaulted on some $100 billion of debts in 2002, and has since restructured its debt twice, cancelling around 75% of the nominal value of the bonds.
Almost 92% of the country’s bondholders agreed to write off most of the amount owed to them.
NML Capital and Aurelius are demanding 100% repayment of the $1.3 billion, plus interest.
The investors were so determined to get their money that they went to court to have an Argentinean ship, the Libertad, impounded in Ghana last year. After several weeks, the ship returned home.
The Italian Football Federation has announced they will play Argentina in a friendly match to honor the soccer-loving Argentinean Pope Francis.
The match will be held August 14 in Rome’s Stadio Olimpico.
Pope Francis will watch the match not far away from the Vatican with audiences from both sides, according to the Associated Press.
It’s a long-awaited announcement for Italian manager Cesare Prandelli. The 55-year-old stated outwardly back in March that he would be ecstatic over a matchup of these two countries for the pope.
The Italian Football Federation has announced they will play Argentina in a friendly match to honor the soccer-loving Argentinean Pope Francis
“We’ve played friendlies with all the best national teams, only Argentina is missing,” Cesare Prandelli said back on March 27 following a World Cup qualifier with Malta.
“If we could arrange it, it would be nice to have an audience with the pope, who comes from Buenos Aires and loves football, and then go all together with both squads on one bus to the stadium. I couldn’t dream of anything better.”
The matchup has plenty of meaning for the religious Cesare Prandelli. He brought his whole coaching staff out on a trio of half-hour long nighttime trips to a Polish monastery during the European championships last year.
It’s been a while since these two sides met. Their last meeting was in 2001, also a friendly where Argentina came out on top 2-1. Prior to that, Argentina knocked out Italy in the semifinals of the 1990 World Cup on penalties, led by Diego Maradona.
Argentina has made an official protest after Uruguay’s President Jose Mujica was caught on microphone apparently referring to President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner as an “old hag”.
President Jose Mujica was overheard saying: “This old hag is even worse than the one-eyed man.” (Esta vieja es peor que el tuerto.)
A Uruguayan newspaper has posted audio of Jose Mujica’s comments on its website.
It has claimed that Jose Mujica was referring to Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and her late husband, who she succeeded as president.
Cristina Fernandez’s husband, Nestor Kirchner, had a lazy eye. He died suddenly of a heart attack in 2010.
Uruguayan President Jose Mujica was caught on microphone apparently referring to Argentina’s President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner as an old hag
President Jose Mujica has denied that he had been talking about the Kirchners, but has so far failed to explain who else he was referring to.
Jose Mujica made the comments at the start of a news conference while speaking quietly with another official.
El Observador newspaper posted the audio on its website, claiming that the president did not realize that the microphones were on.
The newspaper said that its website has crashed because of historically high levels of traffic generated by its coverage of the incident which has also gained the attention of social media.
Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman summoned the Uruguayan ambassador in Buenos Aires, Guillermo Pomi, to protest about the comments.
“It is unacceptable that derogatory comments that offend the memory… of a deceased person, who cannot defend himself, have been made, particularly by someone to whom Nestor Kirchner considered his friend,” a statement issued by the foreign ministry said.
Correspondents say that President Jose Mujica, 77, a former guerrilla leader who took office in 2010, has clashed in the past both with Cristina Fernandez and Nestor Kirchner.
Relations between Uruguay and Argentina have recently been strained because of concern in Montevideo over what it sees as protectionist measures enforced by Buenos Aires.
Nestor Kirchner was Argentina’s president from 2003 to 2007. Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner succeeded him and won re-election in 2011.
HSBC, which was hit with a $1.9 billion US fine for money laundering last year, is facing fresh accusations of illegal activity in Argentina.
Argentina has alleged that HSBC used “fake receipts” to facilitate money laundering and tax evasion, and launder 392 million pesos ($77 million).
The country’s tax authority said it had filed criminal charges against HSBC.
HSBC said that it would cooperate with the investigation, adding that the allegations were “of great concern”.
“We are committed to working cooperatively with authorities to ensure a thorough review and appropriate resolution of the matter,” said Lyssette Bravo, a spokeswoman for HSBC.
Last year, HSBC agreed to pay US authorities $1.9 billion in a settlement over money laundering, the largest paid in such a case.
Argentina laid out its case against HSBC late on Monday.
“On the basis of what’s been investigated so far, in six months we’ve recorded 392 million pesos in fraudulent transactions, generated by evasion and money laundering,” said Ricardo Echegaray, head of Argentina’s tax agency.
Ricardo Echegaray added that HSBC also helped clients evade taxes on an additional 224 million pesos.
“We hope to recover what is due and see the courts apply an appropriate penalty,” he said.
HSBC is facing fresh accusations of illegal activity in Argentina
Money laundering is the process of disguising the proceeds of crime so that the money cannot be linked to the wrongdoing.HSBC, which has previously admitted to having poor money laundering controls, has been taking steps to tighten its operations.
Last year, the banking giant said that it had spent $290 million on improving its systems to prevent money laundering.
At the same time, HSBC also appointed a former US official, Bob Werner, to work as its head of financial crime compliance, a new position the bank has created.
The bank said that he will be responsible for beefing up its anti-money laundering and sanctions compliance systems.
Bob Werner was previously the head of the US Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control, the agency responsible for enforcing the US sanctions on countries, including Iran.
The Vatican has denied that Pope Francis I failed to speak out against human rights abuses during military rule in his native Argentina.
“There has never been a credible, concrete accusation against him,” said Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi, adding the Pope had never been charged.
Federico Lombardi blamed the accusations on “anti-clerical left-wing elements that are used to attack the Church”.
Former Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now Pope Francis I, led Argentina’s Jesuits under the junta.
Correspondents say that like other Latin American churchmen of the time, Jorge Mario Bergoglio had to contend, on the one hand, with a repressive right-wing regime and, on the other, a wing of his Church leaning towards political activism on the left.
One allegation concerns the abduction in 1976 of two Jesuits by the Argentina’s military government, suspicious of their work among slum-dwellers.
As the priests’ provincial superior at the time, Jorge Mario Bergoglio was accused by some of having failed to shield them from arrest – a charge his office flatly denied.
The Vatican has denied that Pope Francis I failed to speak out against human rights abuses during military rule in his native Argentina
Judges investigating the arrest and torture of the two men – who were freed after five months – questioned Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio as a witness in 2010.The new Pope’s official biographer, Sergio Rubin, argues that the Jesuit leader “took extraordinary, behind-the-scenes action to save them”.
Another accusation leveled against Pope Francis I from the Dirty War era is that he failed to follow up a request to help find the baby of a woman kidnapped when five months pregnant and who was killed in 1977. It is believed the baby was illegally adopted.
Jorge Mario Begoglio testified in 2010 that he had not known about baby thefts until well after the junta fell – a claim relatives dispute.
The Falkland Islands voters are going to the polls on Sunday and Monday in a referendum on whether to remain a British Overseas Territory.
Argentina has constantly reiterated its claims to sovereignty over the islands.
This is the case more than 30 years after Argentina invaded the Falklands and its troops were ousted by a British Task Force in a 74-day conflict.
Relations between Buenos Aires and the Falkland Islands are at one of their lowest ebbs since the war.
The islanders decided to hold the referendum in response to Argentine statements about the islands and economic measures taken against the Falklands.
Argentina has continued to insist on its sovereignty over the South Atlantic islands, and the government of Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has said the inhabitants’ wishes do not count.
Falkland Islanders will have their voices heard in the referendum, with 1,672 people eligible to vote out of the islands’ total population of about 2,900.
While the result is in little doubt, there are worries that the bad weather could hamper the return of ballot boxes from some remoter places.
The hope was that Argentina and other nations would listen to the islanders’ wishes for the future – but few on the islands believed that this Argentine government was in any mood to listen.
The Falkland Islands voters are going to the polls on Sunday and Monday in a referendum on whether to remain a British Overseas Territory
International observers will oversee the vote.
There are mobile polling stations, some of which will have to be flown out to and from the outer islands, hence the voting being held over two days.
Those who cannot vote include those aged under 18 and people who are not Falkland islanders.
Some Argentines living on the islands have “Falklands status” which makes them eligible to vote.
A “yes” vote would back the status of the islands remaining as it is.
Argentina has long laid claim to the islands, which it calls Las Malvinas.
Argentine forces invaded the Falkland Islands on April 2, 1982, entering the capital Port Stanley early in the morning.
The garrison of Royal Marines was overwhelmed and other British South Atlantic territories including South Georgia were also seized.
In two months of fighting 255 British and about 650 Argentine servicemen were killed, along with three Falklands civilians, before Argentina surrendered.