The Argentine Catholic Church has stood out strongly on the controversy that has followed President Cristina Fernandez statement before the FAO assembly in Rome arguing that poverty in Argentina is below 5%, which was later made superlative by her spokesperson and cabinet chief Anibal Fernandez arguing that poverty in Argentina was less than in Germany or Denmark.
Argentine President Cristina Fernández sparked controversy on Sunday when in a speech before the FAO conference in Rome, she endorsed widely disputed government figures on poverty, saying the rate was “below five percent,” adding that destitution in the country stood at 1.27%. If this was correct Argentina's poverty rate is below that of OECD rich league members.
Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro announced he had canceled a planned trip to Rome and Vatican during which he was due to meet Pope Francis, because he is sick with flu. Analysts believe the 'diplomatic' flu spell could be linked to protests in Rome and the Vatican bringing up the issue of political prisoners, following on several letters sent to the Holy See.
Argentine President Cristina Fernandez was received on Sunday in the Vatican by Pope Francis for an encounter that lasted almost two hours, in the fifth meeting between the pontiff and head of state since the ex-Buenos Aires archbishop was elected to the Holy See. The meeting however was not without criticism from Buenos Aires.
Some 130 ministers, 12 heads of state or government, including presidents from Argentina and Chile, Cristina Fernandez and Michelle Bachelet, plus numerous other high-level government representatives will be converging on Rome this week for the 39th session of FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization) governing Conference (6-13 June).