Messi mania grips Argentina in 1st match as World Cup champs
Messi mania gripped Buenos Aires as the Argentina national team led by Lionel Messi beat Panama 2-0 on Thursday in a friendly match that was essentially a celebration of their World Cup victory last December. Although the world champions dominated the game, they didn’t get a goal until the 78th minute when Thiago Almada scored after a free kick by Messi hit the goal post. Ten minutes later, it was Messi’s turn and he scored the 800th goal of his professional career with a perfectly executed free kick. He is now one short of the 100-goal mark for the national squad. After the match, the celebrations got into full swing and Messi took center stage, smiling from ear to ear as he received awards and accolades. “I want to thank you for all the love we've been receiving . . . We told you we were going to do everything possible to win this,” a visibly emotional Messi said as he was handed the microphone. “Let’s enjoy this because we went a long time without winning it, and we don’t know when we’ll win it again.” When it was coach Lionel Scaloni’s turn to speak, the first thing he did was lead the packed stadium on a chant praising Messi. “Eternally grateful to this group of players,” Scaloni said as tears streamed down his face and he thanked fans for their support. The players’ families later joined them in the pitch and each of the players proceeded to lift a replica of the World Cup trophy in celebration. The players then walked around the pitch waving to fans as fireworks lit the night sky. Earlier in the day, news channels carried live images of the players traveling to the stadium with a police escort as excited fans waited to see the team's first game since it beat France in a thrilling final in Qatar. Outside the Monumental Stadium there was a party-like atmosphere from early in the afternoon as somebody impersonating Pope Francis blessed a World Cup replica, children almost universally donned Messi’s No. 10 jersey and street sellers hawked Messi dolls. Amid the celebrations there were also recriminations as many fans lamented they'd bought tickets for several times their face value from resellers that ended up being fake. The frustration led to scuffles with law enforcement officials who fired tear gas to disperse the angry fans. “This World Cup was a miracle,” Marcelo Saracho, 49, said while dressed up like the pope, an Argentine, but with his cheeks painted in the light blue and white colors of the national flag. Messi, the Paris Saint-Germain star who only last week was whistled by a group of fans of the French club that had been knocked out of the Champions League, received a massive ovation when he and his Argentina teammates entered the stadium filled with 83,000 fans. When the anthem played the cameras zoomed in on Messi, who looked to be holding back tears as fans sang along triumphantly. “I can’t believe I’m here,” Sofía Clavero, 12, said as her eyes welled up with tears while describing how she was eager to see her “idol” for the first time on the field. The match culminated a week in which Messi, 35, was widely celebrated as a hero after helping Argentina win its third World Cup title, a marked change for the player who once suffered the indifference and even apathy from many Argentina fans who blamed him for the team’s failings in previous championships. Read more: FIFA World Cup 2022: Messi’s Records, Argentina’s Road to Victory It all started Monday night when hundreds of fans mobbed a steakhouse in the Buenos Aires neighborhood of Palermo when word spread that Messi was inside having dinner. He needed a police escort to leave but was all smiles as people shouted “Messi I love you” and “Thank you, Leo.” The next day, a group of fans realized the car next to them on the highway was carrying the man who is often described as the world’s best soccer player. They immediately started shouting, “I love you, Messi!” and “Let’s go, Messi!” That’s when Messi proceeded to roll down his window and wave. The brief video of the encounter quickly went viral. On Wednesday, the hosts of a morning network TV show went wild when they received an audio message from Messi. “Good morning everyone,” Messi said in the message that the hosts huddled to hear. “I’m happy to be here, to enjoy everything we keep experiencing after what happened in December, and excited to enjoy tomorrow’s game.” To avoid any issues, the players were taken to the stadium six hours before the start of the match flanked by a security operation that involved dozens of law enforcement officers. Plans for the transfer had been kept under wraps to avoid a repeat of what happened in December when a celebratory open-top bus throughout the capital had to be cut short when millions of fans made it impossible for the vehicle to advance. Tickets to Thursday’s match sold out quickly but the game was just one chapter of the celebration that included local musicians and a trailer of a documentary about the World Cup-winning squad. The fan who wrote “Muchachos,” which became the unofficial anthem for the Argentina squad in Qatar, was also present. The party continues next Tuesday when the team will play another friendly match against Curaçao in Argentina’s central Santiago del Estero province.
Bangabandhu Int'l Kabaddi: Bangladesh earn 2nd consecutive win outplaying Argentina 72-23
Defending champions and host Bangladesh earned 2nd consecutive victory in the 12-nation Bangabandhu Cup International Kabaddi Tournament' 2023 beating football world champions Argentina by 72-23 points in their 2nd match at the Shaheed Nur Hossain Volleyball Stadium here on Tuesday. Bangladesh, which earned six creditable "lona" (all out) in the match against their Latin American rivals, clearly dominated the first half by 44-8 points. Mizanur Rahman of Bangladesh was adjudged the man of the match to receive prize money of BDT 10,000. Also Read: Bangabandhu Cup Int'l Kabaddi: Bangladesh make flying start beating Poland in opener Two South East Asian countries--Thailand and Indonesia also made a good start after winning their opening matches on the 2nd day of the Tournament at the same venue on Tuesday. Thailand beat last times semi-finalists Sri Lanka by 36-32 points in a hard-fought day's 2nd match after leading the first half by 20-16 points. Earlier in the day's first between two neighbor, Indonesia defeated Malaysia by 36-23 points. A record 12 twelve countries --England and Poland from Europe, Argentina from Latin America, Kenya from Africa, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Chinese Taipei from South East Asia, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Bangladesh from South Asia and Iraq from Middle East of Asia--are taking part in the eight-day Participating teams are: Group A- Bangladesh, Iraq, Nepal, England, Argentina and Poland Group B- Kenya, Sri Lanka, Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand and Chinese Taipei.
Half of Argentina faces blackout as fire knocks out power grid: BBC report
More than half of Argentina was left without power on Wednesday (March 01, 2023) after a fire broke out at the national electricity grid. Buenos Aires and other major cities of the South American country are wholly or partly affected, reports BBC. Read More: Reopening embassy will boost trade between Argentina, Bangladesh: Visiting minister hopes According to reports, the fire began in open fields and spread to coastal areas, where it damaged vital power lines and shut down a nuclear power plant. Argentina is experiencing both a heat wave and a drought. An estimated 150,000 people are still without power in the Buenos Aires Metropolitan Area, the BBC report said. Read More: Woman burned to death in Chattogram fire
Reopening embassy will boost trade between Argentina, Bangladesh: Visiting minister hopes
Argentina’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship Santiago Andrés Cafiero today (February 28, 2023) hoped that the economic, trade and business collaboration between his country and Bangladesh will get a boost following the reopening of the Argentine embassy in Dhaka. He expressed the optimism while paying a courtesy call on Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina at the latter’s official residence Ganabhaban this morning. PM’s speechwriter Md Nazrul Islam briefed reporters after the meeting. “Argentina is happy to reopen its embassy in Dhaka,” the visiting foreign minister was quoted as saying while extending thanks to Sheikh Hasina for giving the opportunity to reopen the mission in such a short time. Read More: Bangladesh should go for PTA with Mercosur instead of FTA: Argentine minister He hoped that economic, trade and business collaboration between the two countries will be enhanced, as well as friendship will be strengthened further with reopening the embassy. “There is enough scope to enhance cooperation between our two countries,” Cafiero was quoted as saying. Argentina first opened its embassy in Dhaka in 1974 but it was closed in 1978 by the military junta that ruled the South American country at the time. The Argentina embassy was reopened in Dhaka’s Banani area yesterday. Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said that Bangladesh is very keen to enhance relations with Argentina. Read: All roads in haor areas will be elevated for unobstructed water flow: PM “There is huge scope to enhance trade and tourism between Bangladesh and Argentina,” she was quoted. Argentina can import garments and pharmaceutical items, jute and related products, and leather goods from Bangladesh, she said. Bangladesh mainly imports edible oil, particularly soybean oil, animal and vegetable fats, seeds, fruits, grains, dairy products, eggs and natural honey. “We can also collaborate in the fields of sports, education and culture,” she said, seeking cooperation from Argentina for the development of Bangladesh football. Read More: Latin America-Bangladesh Chamber president meets Argentine business delegate in Dhaka Sheikh Hasina said the whole world is going through turmoil caused by the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic, Russia-Ukraine war, economic sanctions and counter-sanctions. Not only Bangladesh, but many developed countries are being impacted as prices of food items and inflation have gone up significantly around the world, she said. In this context, she said that public suffering can be eased through enhancing cooperation and relations among friendly countries. The PM said Bangladesh has put emphasis on raising food production and setting up 100 special economic zones to generate employment, developing infrastructures and connectivity with neighbouring countries. Now Bangladesh is a marketing hub in South Asia, she added. Read: President at Mithamain to welcome PM The visiting Argentine minister said the people of his country are also bearing the brunt of high inflation induced by the Russia-Ukraine war and the Covid-19 pandemic. Talking about climate change, he said relations among the member states of the global south forum can be strengthened to fight the impact. He praised Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina’s leadership in fighting climate change. Appreciating the development of Bangladesh, he said, “We are highly impressed with the socio-economic development of Bangladesh.” Read More: Bangladesh attractive destination for business, investment: Momen tells Argentine delegation Noting that this is his first visit here, the Argentine foreign minister said he did not imagine that Bangladesh would be so beautiful. PMO Secretary Mohammad Salahuddin, Secretary (West) at the Foreign Ministry Shabbir Ahmad Chowdhury and non-resident Ambassador of Argentina to Bangladesh Hugo Gobbi were present. On Monday, Argentine Foreign Minister Cafiero arrived in Dhaka to inaugurate his country’s new embassy here and deepen trade and cultural relations. Diplomatic operations, such as visas in order to travel, were handled by the Argentine embassy in India until now. Read More: Argentine FM to hold bilateral talks with Momen in Dhaka Monday
Argentina extends Scaloni’s contract to 2026 World Cup
World Cup winner Lionel Scaloni will remain as coach of Argentina to the end of the 2026 World Cup. The Argentine Football Association and Scaloni confirmed the deal on Monday. They didn’t elaborate. The 44-year-old Scaloni and AFA president Claudio Tapia met in Paris before the FIFA awards late Monday, when Scaloni was named men’s world coach of the year. “When trust is high, communication is clear and effective,” Tapia said on Twitter in a post with himself and Scaloni smiling and drinking tea in the French capital. “We continue to trust our project of national teams to Lionel Scaloni, the World Cup winning coach.” Read: Messi voted best player at FIFA awards again Scaloni’s contract expired after Argentina won the World Cup in Qatar on Dec. 18. Long negotiations followed. Scaloni took over at the end of 2018 as a temporary measure, and received waves of criticism for his lack of experience. He had never coached a professional team. One year later, the job was his permanently. He guided Argentina to the 2021 Copa America title, the team’s first in 28 years. Captain Lionel Messi and other key players repeatedly said they wanted Scaloni to remain on the job for the 2026 World Cup. At the awards in Paris, Scaloni said, “The most beautiful thing is making your country happy, your people happy.” Argentina’s first match since Qatar — and another celebration of the world champion — will be a March 23 friendly against Panama at Estadio Monumental in Buenos Aires.
Bangladesh should go for PTA with Mercosur instead of FTA: Argentine minister
Foreign Minister AK Abdul Momen has hoped that Argentina would support Bangladesh's initiative to sign a free trade agreement (FTA) with the South American regional economic organisation Mercosur during its current presidency. In response, Argentine Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship Santiago Andres Cafiero suggested that Bangladesh pursue a preferential trade agreement (PTA) instead of FTA. Momen also requested Santiago to consider lowering the existing 35 percent duty imposed by Argentina on readymade garments (RMG) products and withdrawing $0.16 per kg anti-dumping duty on jute bags and sacks from Bangladesh to have greater market access. A 34-member high-level Argentine delegation, led by the Argentine minister, is paying a two-day state-level visit to Dhaka. Read more: Bangladesh attractive destination for business, investment: Momen tells Argentine delegation The non-resident Argentine ambassador to Bangladesh, undersecretary of trade and chief of cabinet to the Argentine foreign minister, are also accompanying the minister. Momen received his Argentine counterpart this morning at Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport. Later, Santiago led a delegation to the Brac Foundation. The purpose was to learn from the Brac development programmes and success stories focusing on women's empowerment and rural women's financial inclusion. Both sides agreed to collaborate to share knowledge on how to bring about financial inclusion in a responsible manner to pull millions of vulnerable women in rural and urban areas of Argentina out of poverty. Read More: Reopening embassy in Dhaka a stepping stone to build better ties with Bangladesh: Argentina Santiago had a meeting with Momen at state guest house Jamuna this evening. Momen expressed gratitude to the Argentine government for reopening its diplomatic mission in Dhaka. The foreign minister showed interest in wider cooperation between Bangladesh and Argentina in agriculture, agro-processing, cattle and poultry industries, biotechnology, pharmaceuticals, the ICT sector, heavy and light machinery and equipment. Santiago and Momen emphasised the importance of enhancing close collaboration to increase bilateral trade and investment. Read More: Argentina’s foreign minister in Dhaka to reopen embassy, deepen ties.
Latin America-Bangladesh Chamber president meets Argentine business delegate in Dhaka
Md Anwar Shawkat Afser, president of the Latin America-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, met Franco Agustín Senilliani Melchior, head of the Economic and Trade Section of the Embassy of Argentine in India, at a Dhaka hotel Monday. Latin America-Bangladesh Chamber board of directors also met the Argentine business delegate. Afser highlighted trade and commerce between Bangladesh and Argentina as well as Latin America. He also mentioned that a high-profile business delegation from Latin America-Bangladesh Chamber will visit Argentina and Brazil from May 12 to 17. Read more: Bangladesh attractive destination for business, investment: Momen tells Argentine delegation The Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) and Latin America-Bangladesh Chamber will organise the visit. Prime Minister's Private Industry and Investment Adviser Salman Fazlur Rahman will lead the delegation. The executive chairman of the Bangladesh Investment Development Authority (BIDA) and Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA) will also be part of the team. Afser, Latin America-Bangladesh Chamber Senior Vice-President Md Shahid Alam, Joint Secretary General and Director Md Sayem Faroky; directors Md Shakawat Hossain Mamun, Jobayer Ahmed, Razeeb Haider, Noafel Bin Reza, Md Kawser Hossain; Coordinator Biswajit Roy, Administrative Officer Nazrul Islam Chowdhury, and Assistant Secretary Mohammad Emdadur Rahman were present at today's meeting.
Argentina’s foreign minister in Dhaka to reopen embassy, deepen ties
Argentina’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Worship Santiago Andrés Cafiero arrived in Dhaka this morning to inaugurate the South American country’s new embassy here and deepen trade and cultural relations. Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen received him at the VIP Lounge of Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport upon his arrival in Dhaka. Argentina is reopening its embassy here after 45 years. State Minister for Foreign Affairs Md Shahriar Alam will join with the Argentine foreign minister to inaugurate the Embassy of the Argentine Republic in Banani this afternoon.
Pregnant Russians flock to Argentina seeking new passports
Shortly after Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine, Alla Prigolovkina and her husband, Andrei Ushakov, decided they had to flee their Sochi, Russia, home. Ushakov had been detained for holding up a sign that read “Peace,” and Prigolovkina, a pregnant ski instructor, feared he would soon be drafted and potentially killed, leaving their baby fatherless. The original plan was to stay in Europe, but anti-Russian sentiment discouraged them. “We chose Argentina because it has everything we needed: Fantastic nature, a large country, beautiful mountains,” Prigolovkina, 34, told The Associated Press inside the home her family is renting in Argentina’s western Mendoza province. “We felt it would be ideal for us.” They were hardly alone. Over the past year, Argentine immigration authorities have noticed flights packed with dozens of pregnant Russians. But whereas Prigolovkina said her family intends to build a life here at the foot of the Andes mountains, local officials believe many of the other recent Russian visitors are singularly focused on receiving one of Argentina’s passports. Also Read: Europe bans Russian diesel, other oil products over Ukraine All children born in Argentina automatically receive citizenship and having an Argentine child speeds up the process for the parents to obtain residency permits and, after a couple of years, their own passports. Crucially, the navy blue booklets allow entry to 171 countries without a visa, a backup plan that Russians believe could come in handy in the ever-uncertain future. Due to sanctions, Russians have also had trouble opening bank accounts in foreign countries, something an Argentine passport could solve. According to official figures, some 22,200 Russians entered Argentina over the last year, including 10,777 women — many of whom were in the advanced stages of pregnancy. In January, 4,523 Russians entered Argentina, more than four times the 1,037 that arrived in the same month last year. After an investigation, Argentine officials concluded that Russian women, generally from affluent backgrounds, were entering the country as tourists with the plan to give birth, obtain their documentation and leave. More than half of the Russians who entered the country in the last year, 13,134, already left, including 6,400 women. “We detected that they don’t come to do tourism, they come to have children,” Florencia Carignano, the national director for migration, said during a meeting with international media. Although Argentina generally has a relatively permissive immigration process, the recent arrest of two alleged Russian spies who had Argentine passports in Slovenia raised alarms in the South American country, where officials reinforced immigration controls. “We canceled residencies of Russians who spent more time outside than in,” Carignano said, expressing concern the Argentine “passport will cease to have the trust it enjoys in all countries.” Immigration authorities have also called on the justice system to investigate agencies that allegedly offer assistance to Russian women who want to give birth in Argentina. It’s unclear how many women have left Russia to give birth in the last year, but the issue is big enough that lawmakers in Moscow this month raised the question of whether those who choose to give birth abroad should be stripped of the so-called maternity fund that all Russian mothers receive — a financial benefit of almost $8,000 for the first child and about $10,500 for the second. There is no discussion on whether to cut off access to the maternity fund for Russian mothers who give birth abroad, Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said. The phenomenon also is not entirely new. Prior to the Russia-Ukraine war, Russian women were part of a wave of “birth tourists” in the U.S. and many paid brokers tens of thousands of dollars to arrange their travel documents, accommodations and hospital stays, often in Florida. Embarking on a long journey during an advanced pregnancy can be particularly perilous, and Russians in Argentina insist that their decision to leave their homes goes beyond a new passport. Despite the government’s claims, some at least seem eager to make Argentina their new home. In spite of the language barrier and the unfamiliar, stifling summer heat, Prigolovkina and Ushakov have quickly adopted Argentine customs since their July move. Prigolovkina said they especially enjoy spending time in the park with their dogs. And while the family may not have been interested in soccer in Russia, they happily cheered when their newly adopted country won the World Cup late last year. Still, she also concedes that obtaining a passport for their newborn son, Lev Andrés, was a motivating factor for the move: “We wanted our baby to have the chance to not just be Russian and have a single passport.” Some experts say a country in which migrants once made up as much as 30% of the population should be particularly sensitive to the plight of Russians trying to start a new life. The South American country was transformed in the late 19th and early 20th century by the influx of millions of European migrants, including many from Italy and Spain. “Given our history of migration, a country like ours should empathize more with the humanitarian dimension” of these recent immigrants, Natalia Debandi, a social scientist and migrations expert who is a researcher at the publicly funded CONICET institute, said. “They are not terrorists, they are people.” A study by immigration agents based on interviews with 350 newly arrived Russians concluded that most are married and largely well-off professionals who have remote jobs in finance and digital design or live off savings. Days before giving birth to a boy named Leo, 30-year-old Russian psychologist Ekaterina Gordienko lauded her experience in Argentina, saying “the health care system is very good, and people are very kind. My only problem is Spanish. If the doctor doesn’t speak English, I use the (Google) translator.” Gordienko arrived in the nation's capital of Buenos Aires in December with her 38-year-old husband, Maxim Levoshin. “The first thing we want is for Leo to live in a safe country, without a war in his future,” Levoshin said. In Mendoza, Prigolovkina is excited for her family’s new life in Argentina and optimistic they will be able to give back to the country that has welcomed them. “We have left everything behind to live in peace. I hope that Argentines understand that Russians can be very useful in different areas of life, in business, the economy, in science,” she said. “They can help make Argentina better.”
Dhaka eyes deeper relations with Latin American countries; Argentine FM due Feb 27
Bangladesh sees scopes to work closely with the Latin American countries on multiple fronts including trade and investment; and Argentine Foreign Minister Santiago Andrés Cafiero’s impending visit is part of Dhaka’s efforts to diversify and deepen the relations. “You are aware that a new dimension has recently been added in terms of Bangladesh’s diplomatic relations with the Latin American countries,” spokesperson at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Seheli Sabrin told reports at a weekly briefing on Thursday, hoping that the Argentine Foreign Minister will visit Bangladesh on February 27. The Argentine Foreign Minister will meet Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, Foreign Minister Dr AK Abdul Momen and the leaders of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industries during his stay in Bangladesh. The two countries are likely to sign one or more MoUs during the Foreign Office Consultations (FOC). A formal announcement regarding the opening of Argentina’s Mission in Dhaka is likely to come during the Argentine Foreign Minister’s visit, Sabrin said. Also Read: World champions Argentina likely to visit Dhaka in next June She said it is a lengthy process to open a mission in any country and recalled that a fact-finding mission worked back in 2009 to explore opportunities in Latin American countries. On January 30, Foreign Minister Momen said his Argentine counterpart Santiago Andrés Cafiero will be in Dhaka on a two-day official visit in February – as the two sides want to strengthen ties in the coming days. “I have invited him. He (Argentine foreign minister) will come. I told him to bring Lionel Messi with him,” Momen told reporters at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, adding that it will be a plus for Bangladesh if Argentina opens a mission in Bangladesh. Asked whether Messi is coming, the MoFA spokesperson said there is no such confirmation yet. “We will let you know if we get any confirmation through the relevant ministry.” Argentina “in principle agreed” to open its mission or consulate in Dhaka and the government of Bangladesh also has a plan to open a mission in Argentina. Bangladesh has already opened a mission in Brazil. “We hope we will open a Bangladesh mission in Argentina in future,” Foreign Minister Momen said, adding that Bangladesh considers three things – size of Bangladeshi community there, importance of the host country, and flow of remittance into Bangladesh – before opening any mission abroad. Momen said Argentina is a good friend of Bangladesh and always remains supportive. “We have a very good relationship with Argentina.”