Argentina. Former Presidents Néstor Kirchner (2003–07) and his wife and successor Cristina Fernández de Kirchner (2007–15) and people in their vicinity were increasingly focused on corruption charges during the year. President Mauricio Macri accused Kirchner and Fernández of allowing both corruption and drug trafficking to flourish freely during their terms of office, and was not late in portraying his own government as clean and prepared to clean up the consequences of their regime. Maria Eugenia Vidal, governor of Buenos Aires and party mate with Macri, even received death threats from drug leagues.
According to countryaah, the current population of Argentina is 45,195,785. Cristina Fernández was also repeatedly called to hear about misconduct from her time as president and which was under investigation. Among other things, she was suspected of tampering with the sale of government securities, for money laundering and for having favored public investment in her home province of Santa Cruz by her Deputy Minister of Infrastructure José López to a total value corresponding to 11% of government infrastructure investments. Most of the capital also went to a construction company that belonged to a related person to Kirchner and Fernández. López was arrested later in the year for receiving close to $ 9 million in bribes in exchange for favorable government procurement.
Fernandez has lost much of her political influence after leaving the presidential post, even within her faction of the Peronist Party, but began her political comeback in October at a mass meeting in Buenos Aires, aiming for the next presidential election. She accused Macri of endangering the country’s economy by borrowing too much money and that the country was heading for a social disaster. In the same month, figures were published showing that 32% of the urban population lived below the poverty line. Macri replied that the figure was a reflection of Fernández’s own policy. With regard to the state’s economic policy, he also got the sign from the Supreme Court to raise energy prices to settle the state’s budget deficit.
Following President Macri’s audition with the Argentine-born Pope Francis in the Vatican in October, it became clear that the Catholic Church agreed to open its archives to clarify its role during the military dictatorship 1976-83. The church has long been accused of being too passive to the human rights crimes committed, or even actively participating in them. The documents will not be made publicly available but only for relatives of the missing and their lawyers. The pope, who was leader of Argentina’s Jesuit orders during the 1970s, has himself been accused of silence about the abduction of two radical priests during the dictatorship.
Military rule and democratization 1976–89
The regime that came to power in 1976 declared that it would seek to redress the country’s poor economy and put an end to political violence. The National Assembly was dissolved and all political and professional activities temporarily banned. The “dirty war” carried out by the army intelligence service and the death squadron AAA was aimed at physically exterminating the guerrilla organizations People’s Revolutionary Army (ERP) and Monteneros (the radical left within the Peronist movement).
The number of missing (Spanish: los desaparecidos) under General Jorge Rafael Videla’s regime (1976-81) varies due to uncertain source material. The most sober estimates are around 8,000 people, while several human rights organizations, both Argentine and international, believe the real figure is somewhere between 20,000 and 30,000 people.
According to thereligionfaqs, Argentina also had two territorial conflicts going on. The one with neighbor Chile about some islands at the inlet of the Beagle Canal, near the southern tip of the continent. The parties signed a friendship agreement in 1984 and committed to finding a solution that gave Chile sovereignty but Argentina certain maritime rights. The second conflict was with Britain over the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas), known as the Falkland War. In April 1982, Argentine troops invaded the Falkland Islands. Following British countermeasures, the Argentine forces capitulated in June, which also led to the fall of General Leopoldo Fortunato Galtieri.
In 1982, more than a thousand unidentified bodies were found in several cemeteries, and it was believed that these were victims of the Videla regime. The demand for a public account of the fate of the disappeared increased with the relatives and the liberal opinion. The junta admitted in 1983 that most of the missing from the 1970s had died. At the same time, the democratic process had begun. The government contacted civilian politicians about organizing political parties and transitioning to democracy.
However, the economic crisis persisted; unemployment passed 18%, and inflation galloped further at an accelerated rate, to 2340% in 1983. The same year a currency reform was implemented.
The October 1983 election became a triumph for the radical party UCR and Raúl Alfonsín. The new civilian president immediately initiated replacements in the top military leadership as well as prepared measures aimed at drastically reducing the country’s defense spending. Former Presidents Videla, Viola and Galtieri, along with six junta members, were indicted as responsible for the killings and torture. Videla received life imprisonment, Viola 17 years, while Galtieri was acquitted (Galtieri, however, was placed under a new charge in 1986 for his role in the Falkland War and was sentenced to twelve years in prison).
The verdicts were criticized by the opposition for being too mild. But it nevertheless caught the attention that, for the first time in Latin American history, a settlement was made with representatives of a brutal dictatorship. The demand for amnesty for the convicted officers led to dramatic riots led by Colonel Aldo Rico in 1987 and 1988 and Mohammed Ali Seineldin in 1988. In January 1989, former ERP leaders attacked the La Tablada military embassy under the name Movement Alt for the Fatherland (MTP). The attack was a defeat for the MTP, and President Alfonsín set up a Security Council in collaboration with the army to prevent new military uprisings.
An economic reform in 1985 meant temporary control of inflation, but Alfonsín did not succeed in stabilizing the economy.