Latin America is looking to US President-elect Barack Obama to end the embargo on Cuba and show respect for the area’s growing independence, regional leaders said at a heads-of-state meeting in Brazil. Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said he’s hopeful Obama can restore ties frayed under President George W. Bush. Brazil’s President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, citing Obama’s African heritage as a sign of change, called on him to end the five- decade US “blockade” of Cuba. Bolivian President Evo Morales said Latin American countries should set a “deadline” for Obama to lift the trade embargo on Cuba. “If they don’t lift the trade embargo, we should expel their ambassadors,” he said. (Bloomberg)

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