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Mexico Seeks Explanation of Venezuelan President's Remarks


Mexico has criticized Venezuela's explanation of comments by President Hugo Chavez, who accused his Mexican counterpart, Vicente Fox, of acting like a puppy of the United States at the recent Summit of the Americas.

Mexico Thursday summoned Venezuelan Ambassador Vladimir Villegas to explain Mr. Chavez's remarks, made Wednesday. Mr. Villegas says the situation does not endanger bilateral relations. But Mexico still says his explanations are unsatisfactory.

Leaders from 34 Western Hemisphere nations attended the summit in Argentina to discuss issues that included a proposed Free Trade Area of the Americas. Mexico is one of 29 countries that support the U.S.- sponsored trade zone, while Venezuela and Argentina are among five countries against the plan.

During the summit, President Chavez told a mass rally he planned to bury hopes for the trade zone.

The Mexico - Venezuela disagreement came after Mr. Fox and Argentine President Nestor Kirchner exchanged heated words over the summit's outcome. But Mexico and Argentina say bilateral relations remain excellent.

Some information for this report provided by AFP, AP, Bloomberg and Reuters.

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