Uruguay President Jose Mujica says Liverpool striker Luis Suarez is no racist, and the player is still popular at home.

Mujica defended Suarez in a radio interview on Thursday.

The Uruguay international player was banned for eight matches for racially abusing Manchester United player Patrice Evra. He was widely criticized last weekend when he refused to shake Evra's hand in their first meeting since the suspension. Evra is black.

Suarez later apologized for the snub under pressure from team management and the main sponsor of the famous English club.