En the day after the attempted assassination of Argentine Vice President Cristina Kirchner, thousands of her supporters took to the streets in solidarity with the former head of state. Members of left-wing parties, trade unions and social movements gathered for the rally on the Plaza de Mayo in front of the seat of government in Buenos Aires. President Alberto Fernández had previously visited the Vice President at home.
“In the face of the attempted assassination of the country’s most important politician, no one who defends the republic can remain silent or put their ideological differences above unanimous rejection,” said a joint statement read by the President of the Actors’ Association, Alejandra Darín. “For years, a small circle of politicians and the media have repeated a discourse of hatred, slander, stigmatization and criminalization of any grassroots politician or supporter of Peronism.”
Kirchner narrowly escapes assassination attempt
The previous evening, the former head of state had narrowly escaped an assassination attempt, according to government sources. As Kirchner greeted her supporters in front of her apartment in the elegant Recoleta district of Buenos Aires, a man pointed a gun at her from point-blank range. According to witnesses, he pulled the trigger at least once but did not fire a shot. He was then struck down by Kirchner’s supporters and arrested by the police. President Alberto Fernández spoke of the most serious political incident since the end of the military dictatorship (1976-1983) in Argentina.
Vice-President Kirchner is considered to be the real string puller in the Argentine government. Numerous ministers belong to their camp within the coalition. The 69-year-old is worshiped almost religiously by her supporters and hated by her opponents. In a corruption case, the public prosecutor recently demanded twelve years in prison for Kirchner. Her followers then occupied the street in front of her apartment and got into arguments with the police.