Argentina's Congress to Discuss Texts Rejecting Coup in Bolivia

Lawmakers want President Macri to break his silence and demand the restitution of democracy in Bolivia.

Argentina's Chamber of Deputies and Senate on Wednesday will hold sessions in which lawmakers will urge President Mauricio Macri to reject the coup against Evo Morales, demand the restitution of the constitutional order, condemn human rights violations and provide asylum to deposed officials.

RELATED: Massive Mobilization in Buenos Aires Against Coup in Bolivia

“As Argentinians who have a deep tradition of peace and respect for the people's will, we urge the executive power to speak out against the civic-military coup which has interrupted the democratic and constitutional order,” says the draft text that will be discussed.

On Tuesday, lawmakers from Victory Front (FPV), Renovator Front (FR), Network for Argentina, Evita Movement, We Are (Somos), Left and Workers Front (FIT), and Republican Proposal (PRO) presented five draft texts related to the political situation in Bolivia.

Among these are pronouncements to halt the coup and the interference of the army, appeal to the restoration of democracy, and reject systematic human rights violations. 

The calls in both houses of the Parliament were motivated by the silence that the Macri administration has maintained so far with regard to the Bolivian events, which Argentinian lawmakers have described as "intolerable facts which cannot be accepted under any circumstances or with any excuse."

@zoolooy Another right-wing Millionaire backed a fascist coup funded by USA/CIA disposes a leftist government, this time a blonde #Racist is put in charge who swore herself in on a "Bible" as "President" + declared: she dreams of #Bolivia "free of indigenous satanic rites." #BoliviaGolpe

The meme reads, “I dream of Bolivia free from indigenous satanic rites. The city is not for indigenous persons. They should go to either the high-elevation plateau (Altiplano) or the lowland plain (Chaco)!!"

Meanwhile, the right-wing, religious fundamentalist senator Jeanine Añez, who proclaimed herself as Bolivas's interim president and received her command from the army, will face her first serious political challenge.

The deadline given by the Bolivian Workers Central (COB) to restore democracy expires on Wednesday, amidst a presidential succession that cannot be easily consolidated because it was carried out by breaking several legal procedures.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

For instance, with the intention of legitimizing an act of succession that occurred without the legally required quorum, Añez cited article 170 of the Bolivian Constitution according to which the President can be dismissed from his duties in case of death, resignation, absence or definitive impediment.​​​​​​​

​​​​​​​If this politically-driven interpretation of the constitutional text does not achieve greater support among citizens, however, the COB could initiate an indefinite strike.

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Newly Argentine President-elect with team ready for transition

Buenos Aires, Oct 29 (Prensa Latina) Amid the speculation of the political dossiers that will join the list of his possible cabinet, newly Argentine president-elect Alberto Fernandez already has his team for the government transition.

With a previous meeting held on Monday with outgoing President Mauricio Macri, in which both leaders, on their side, ratified the wish for an orderly transfer of power, it was reported that Frente de Todos or Front for All campaign chief Santiago Cafiero, who is rumored to be the next General Secretary of the Presidency, is among those who will participate in this phase of change.

Forty-three days after Fernandez takes office, he will also be accompanied in this process of change, according to several media, by current lawmaker Eduardo 'Wado' De Pedro, former Senator Vilma Ibarra and former Justice Minister Gustavo Beliz.

According to Diario Popular website, those chosen by the new president to carry out the transition in regards to the economy would be Matias Kulfas, former director of the National Bank, and Cecilia Todesca.

About 40 people will work on the transfer of one management to the other with an eye on the most sensitive issue, the economy, from which the pending debt of US$57 billion with the International Monetary Fund will not exempt.

On the part of the official Government, President Mauricio Macri ordered that Chief of Staff Marcos Peña, Minister of the Treasury Hernan Lacunza and Minister of Interior Rogelio Frigerio will be in charge of this task.

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Early results in Argentinean elections give easy win to Alberto Fernandez

Preliminary results in Argentina's presidential elections gives an easy victory to candidates Alberto Fernandez and Cristina Fernandez, for president and vice president, respectively.

According to a survey from the Projeccion Management and Consultoria, one hour after the polls closed in Argentina:

Alberto Fernandez -- 52.7
Mauricio Marcri -- 34.7

Around the country, in an overcast Buenos Aires, amid the Pampas farmlands and the vineyards of Mendoza, polling stations opened their doors at 8 a.m. local time.  Voting ended at 6 p.m. and local media said first official results were expected by 9:00 p.m. local time.

The ballot is effectively a referendum between Macri's austerity and the "social contract" of the left-leaning opposition, who have attracted voters hurt badly by the Macri's neoliberal model that led to the most severe economic crisis in decades.

Argentina's choice could have far-reaching implications: it is one the world's top grain exporters, is stirring the energy world with its huge Vaca Muerta shale field and is on the cusp of restructuring talks with creditors over $100 billion U$D in debt.

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Trump support Brazil's Bolsonaro for OECD membership, but after Argentina's Macri

Washington, October 11 (RHC)-- U.S. President Donald Trump and his top diplomat said on Thursday they supported Brazil's taking steps toward joining the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), although it is first backing accession by Argentina.

Trump said in a Twitter post that a joint statement he released with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro in March "makes absolutely clear that I support Brazil beginning the process for full OECD membership."

"The United States stands by that statement and stands by @jairbolsonaro," he said.  In a letter to OECD Secretary-General Angel Gurria in late August, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo backed the bids by Argentina and Romania but made no mention of Brazil, despite Trump's endorsement in March.  Pompeo said in a statement earlier on Thursday: "The leaked letter does not accurately represent the United States’ position with respect to OECD enlargement."

"We are enthusiastic supporters of Brazil’s entry into this important institution and the United States will make a strong effort to support Brazil's accession," Pompeo said.  Bolsonaro, who has held Trump up as a role model, has touted U.S. support for Brazil's OECD bid as one of the achievements of his nine-month-old government.

Standing next to Bolsonaro outside the White House on March 19, Trump announced his support for Brazil to become a full member of the OECD, a forum of three dozen democratic nations with solid market economies.

Bolsonaro played down the U.S. support for Argentina on Thursday, saying OECD accession was a drawn-out process and it could take Brazil up to a year and a half to become a member.

"We're almost there, but there were two countries in front of us, Argentina and Romania," he said in a Facebook live webcast to supporters.  In Latin America, only Chile and Mexico are in the club, while Colombia is on track to join soon.

Edited by Ed Newman
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Cristina, one way or the other

If a tsunami of electoral fraud does not prevent it, Mauricio Macri will receive the final stab to make him leave Argentina’s presidency next October 27, thus giving way to Alberto Fernandez, whose running mate for the office is Cristina Fernandez, a former head of state everlastingly slandered, persecuted by those who hate the Latin American left and that, repeatedly brings Eva Duarte de Peron back.

Cristina has said: “I’m not to blame for being born rich”, but in her task of two presidential tenures, within her possibilities, she tried to do the best for her people.

Involved in six trials of false charges brought by the “justice” of the current regime to hinder her nomination, she has already dismantled five of them, as the hatred campaign launched by Latin America’s mainstream press strengthens.

The former leader has responded to this state of affairs:

“Do you know what? We’ll leave hatred, grievance, calumny and slander for them; we’ll keep the Universal Child Allowance, retirement pensions, egalitarian marriage, expansion of rights, collective labor agreements, the best adjustable living minimum wage in history, the national industry, infrastructure investments, education, universities, scientists, schools, children”.

A system, which it’s not very well known why nobody calls it regime, is falling. Media, judges, intelligence services and friends of power mounted a sinister plot that made persecution a policy; slander a tool; lies an electoral ingredient; contempt for the people an ideology. This too, or mainly this, is what comes to an end.

What Macri was hiding has been exposed. The vices of his existential routine have come to light.

Everything indicates that next October 27 a horrible political, social and cultural experiment will come to an end. There was a “crack” these years, in this time of popular suffering.

There was such a crack because Kirchnerism, with all legitimacy, hinted at touching the nodal points of real power in Argentina. But it was not Macrism what defeated Kirchnerism that unlucky 2015, but certain inconsistency of Kirchnerism that allowed the victory of Macrism and its national deployment as a political option.

Meanwhile, the political strength of Cristina Kirchner is still the hard fact of Argentine politics. There’s hope, although hard times will come. If everything goes well, as I believe, there will a better future for the people of this South American nation.

Translated by Jorge Mesa Benjamin / CubaSi Translation Staff

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Argentina: 'No Reason to Fear Fernandez', Weisbrot Says

Last week, the international capital markets responded negatively to an economic crisis which Mauricio Macri has been blamed for. 

The Center for Economic and Policy Research (CEPR) codirector Mark Weisbrot stated on Monday that there are no real reasons to fear the rise of Alberto Fernandez and Cristina Fernandez in Argentina.

RELATED:  Argentina's Energy Sector Rejects Macri Emergency Measures

"From an economist or social scientist’s perspective, it is not clear why Kirchnerism should inspire fear. Looking at the most important economic and social indicators, the governments of the Kirchner presidencies were among the most successful in the Western Hemisphere," he said.

The U.S. economist also recalled that the Argentinian economy grew substantially and poverty was significantly reduced during the time in which Nestor Kirchner and then Cristina Fernandez held office (2003-2015).

“Independent estimates show a decline of 71 percent in poverty and an 81 percent decline in extreme poverty... According to the International Monetary Fund (IMF), gross domestic product per person grew by 42 percent... Unemployment fell by more than half, and income inequality also fell considerably. The 12 years the Kirchners held office resulted in large increases in living standards for a vast majority of Argentines."

After losing by more than 15 percentage points in the primary elections held on August 11, Argentina's President Mauricio Macri tried to blame former president Cristina Fernandez for the ongoing economic crisis, which was expressed by a further devaluation of the Argentinian currency last week.

This South American country's conservative media echoed his words in an attempt to halt the electoral advance of the opposition candidates, who are the favorites to win the election on October 27.

Nevertheless, Weisbrot, who is also the Just Foreign Policy president, explained that recent movements of the international financial markets are most probably related to the failure of the Macri administration.

"In the case of last week’s news, we have electoral losses by a government whose economic policies have clearly failed."

Similar opinions were held by Joseph Stiglitz, the 2001 Nobel Prize in Economics, who attributed the current Argentine economic crisis to austerity policies implemented by the right-wing government.

"The problem was that the policies to which the Government committed were not conducive to economic growth," Stiglitz said and added that "austerity and tight budgets lead to low growth and that makes debt less sustainable."​​​​​​​

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Brazil, Argentina leaders step up pressure on Venezuela's Maduro

BRASILIA (Reuters) - Brazil’s far-right President Jair Bolsonaro and Argentina’s President Mauricio Macri said after their first meeting on Wednesday that they agreed on their opposition to Venezuela’s authoritarian government, with Macri calling Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro a “dictator.”

“Our cooperation with Argentina on the Venezuelan question it the clearest example of a convergence of positions and shared values,” Bolsonaro said. Since taking office on Jan. 1, Bolsonaro has adopted a tougher stance on Venezuela and a closer alignment with the United States than previous Brazilian governments.

Reporting by Anthony Boadle; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama

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Argentina's Largest Labor Union Begins 36-Hour Strike Against Macri’s Austerity

Argentina’s largest labor union, which boasts membership from 20 percent of the country’s workforce, strikes against Macri’s austerity measures, bringing Buenos Aires to a standstill.

Argentina’s largest labor union, the CGT organized a 36-hour strike across the country starting Monday, the second strike Argentina has faced within a month. Previously, on Sept.12, public sector employees and employees from educational institutions walked out of their jobs to protest the austerity measures of the Mauricio Macri government.

RELATED: Macri: We're Telling Everyone About Argentina's Great Future

The strike began with an event at the Pueyrredón Bridge, which will be headed by Barrios de Pie, the Clasista y Combativa Current (CCC), and the Confederation of Workers of the Popular Economy (CTEP), in addition to the CTA Perón (Workers' Central).

Social organizations will then join the mobilization that will end with an act at the capital's Plaza de Mayo. They, together with a fraction of the Autonomous CTA, will cut the entrance to the city of Buenos Aires from Avellaneda, which will bring the city to a standstill.

"The message to the government is to listen to the voice of the people. On Tuesday, there will be a forceful stoppage for the government to change economic policy. In the speeches, they say that we are doing well, but proof that this is not the case is visible to everyone, "said Carlos Acuña, one of the three general secretaries of the CGT.

President Mauricio Macri signed a US$50 billion deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) that is supposed to reduce Argentina’s debt. But since the announcement of the deal in June, the Argentine peso has devalued 30 percent against the US dollar.

Macri claimed that austerity policies will help the fiscal condition of the country but workers have experienced 34 percent inflation since last year without any wage increase.

CGT warned that if labor strikes do not sway the government, it can expect growing protests in the next months. If that also doesn’t work, the CGT will call for an indefinite strike to force Macri to negotiate with workers.

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