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Ricky Martin on Wednesday defended Madonna's adoption of a 1-year-old Malawian boy, calling her an ''exemplary'' mother, and said he too would like to adopt. ''I know Madonna as a mother, and she's exemplary,'' the Puerto Rican star told the Associated Press in a phone interview from Miami. ''The love she gives her kids is a dream, and I know that her heart is big enough to adopt not just one child but to adopt 20.''
Martin, who in recent years has defended the rights of children through his foundation and as an ambassador for UNICEF, said he was not aware of the challenges to the adoption by human rights groups that allege the pop diva flouted the African country's adoption laws.
Madonna, in an interview scheduled to air Wednesday on The Oprah Winfrey Show, blamed the media for the controversy sparked by the adoption. ''I feel the media is doing a great disservice to all the orphans of Africa, period, not just the orphans of Malawi,'' she said.
Madonna and her husband, director Guy Ritchie, were awarded temporary custody of the boy, David Banda, earlier this month.
Martin, when asked if he would like to adopt a child someday, said, ''Totally. I don't know when, but right now I am sponsoring three children in India, and we have a very beautiful connection.'' (AP)