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Looting spreads in Argentina's third largest city as police go on strike

Wednesday, December 4th 2013 - 05:48 UTC
Full article 130 comments
Scenes of the looting were aired by local channels Scenes of the looting were aired by local channels
Governor De la Sota is flying back from Panama to face the situation  Governor De la Sota is flying back from Panama to face the situation

Looting and robbing spread to several areas of the Argentine city of Cordoba on Tuesday evening and night following a walkout from the police in the midst of a conflict over pay and other benefits.

 The Supermarkets association has anticipated its members will not open their stores on Wednesday unless police forces are back patrolling the streets of Argentina's third largest city which is also an important manufacturing pole.

Television film showed mostly youngsters breaking into supermarkets and robbing food, drinks and electronics, while the stores were defenseless. Women could also be seen.

Public transport has warned that without law enforcements officers back on the beat they will not be operating on Wednesday since some of their units and passengers have been mugged.

The conflict started after negotiations for salary increases with the provincial government broke down and the police force decided to go on strike.

When the news broke out and most of the forces were in an assembly to decide how to continue the conflict, looters appeared in the streets and targeted mostly supermarkets. Small stores and shops rapidly shut down for the day.

Governor Manuel de la Sota who was on an official mission to Panama, is flying back to Cordoba and the province's Home secretary has called on Buenos Aires to send the Gendarmerie to help keep law and order.

Cordoba City, one of the oldest of the country, has a population of 1.5 million and the province is rich not only with manufacturing but also agriculture. However Governor de la Sota and President Cristina Fernandez are not friends and have squabbled for years, and as a consequence the federal government has systematically delayed delivering federal checks.
Short of funds, Governor de la Sota has faced continuous social and political unrest plus financial challenges.

De la Sota has (had) presidential aspirations and when Argentina's 2001/2002 massive default and chaos then caretaker president Eduardo Duhalde started looking for a successor and the current Cordoba governor was first choice. But somehow he never managed to take off and then Duhalde offered the opportunity to Nestor Kirchner. The rest of the story is well known.

Categories: Politics, Argentina.

Top Comments

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  • LEPRecon

    Well well!

    It looks like CFK has been a naughty girl, and a petty one at that. Denying Federal cheques! If I was Governor de la Sota, I'd've refused to let any of the goods out of my province until the cheques turned up. No wheat or bread for Buenos Aires.

    It also didn't take long for the people to take advantage of the fact that there was no police. Robbing and looting.

    But desperate people, who can see another default is imminent, will do anything to try and and have some sort of insurance against the coming storm.

    This is all the fault of Cristina's attempt to become a complete dictator.

    The people of Cordoba should be marching on Buenos Aires and demanding their rights, as guaranteed (supposedly), under the constitution.

    Dec 04th, 2013 - 06:42 am 0
  • Zaphod102

    Since Cordoba was the starting point of (ultimately effective) popular uprisings against the government in 1955 and 1969 could history be repeating itself again?

    Dec 04th, 2013 - 07:10 am 0
  • DanyBerger

    Where is Cabeza Dura?????

    Ah! Yeap!

    He was busy emptying supermarkets in his home town.

    Pretty strange that Cordoba the province that according with Cabeza Dura leads the growth and feed all us in Buenos Aires thanks to the “El Campo” production cannot feed her own people that are starving.

    I know... I can hear Cabeza Dura explanation telling as that this is another plot from “El Peronismo”...

    Oh! wait a minute de La Sota is not a Peronist???


    I cannot wait to see cabeza Dura post with his explanation meanwhile I will go to the Chinese Super market to buy some Pop corn before some Cordobes pelotudo starts to loot over it...

    Dec 04th, 2013 - 08:41 am 0
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