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Calle 13's Rene Perez And Willie Colon Squabble Over Hugo Chavez On Twitter

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Social networks erupted in controversy in recent days after a cyber dispute broke out between René Pérez, vocalist of the urban band Calle 13, and legendary salsa star Willie Colón over the health of Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez and the Cuban government.

"God bless Venezuela now that it has two presidents ... one ripe and the other rotten," said Colón in Twitter on January 16.

Willie Colón
Dios bendiga a Venezuela que tiene ahora dos presidentes... uno maduro y el otro podrido..

The tweet referred to Venezuela's vice president Nicolas Maduro (whose last name in Spanish translates to "mature" or "ripe"), who is in charge of the country while Chávez is recovering from a major surgery to control his cancer.

Three days later Pérez used the same platform to criticize Colón's comments, calling him a “poor old man,” and expressed solidarity with the Venezuelan president.

"One thing is to defend a political ideal and another is to mock a cancer patient. Colón’s comments were wildly insensitive," said Perez in a Tweet. "It reminded me of the Marines urinating Taliban corpses."

Even days after the statements were made, they continued generating a broad discussion on Twitter, partly because both artists keep sending heated messages concerning the issue from time to time.

Chávez supporters and opponents have also taken the opportunity produced by the dispute to speak for or against the current Venezuelan government.

While some fans expressed their concerns and assured are praying and wishing a full recovery for the leader who hasn’t appeared in any official event for several weeks, others seem to rejoice in the poor health of the dignitary, who the Venezuelan government says is resting and recovering in Cuba.

"All the people in this government deserve a slow and painful death not only Chávez," said a Twitter follower.

More recently, as if Calle 13's vocal leader was looking to put and end to the controversy, he asked his followers for peace and to stop sending hate messages to Colón.

"Please do not keep bothering W.Colón, the guy is wrong. You don’t wish cancer even to your worst enemy. Stop the gossip, celebrate music!"

Residente C13/ RC13
Por favor no sigan molestando a W.Colón,el tipo se equivoco. Ni a tu peor enemigo le celebras un cancer.Dejen la farandula,q viva la música!

Following the feud, the salsa singer, producer and musician published a message defending his position and making clear he won't back out.

I’ve never wished Chávez to die or have cancer because that brings bad luck: I just wonder, how many more months the world will accept his disappearance?”

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