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Latin America market round up: Hugo Chávez watch

The US government has in recent weeks intensified its pressure on the international community to enforce sanctions against Iran in response to its continuing programme of uranium enrichment. It seems, however, that Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez will be among those world leaders who ignore the proposed boycott. "The only country that has developed atomic bombs and dropped them on entire peoples is the North American empire... they don’t have the morality to be giving anybody lessons," he said on his television programme Hello President.

Morality has been on Chávez’s mind recently: Venezuelans were dismayed to discover that he was imposing a 10-day alcohol ban over the Easter holiday. The understandably disappointed residents of Margarita Island were reported to have painted "no to the dry law" on the windscreens of their cars in protest.

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