Argentina Congress Passes Pension Reform Despite Protests

Demonstrators shout slogans at the Olivos Presidential Residence as lawmakers debate a pension reform measure at the Argentine Congress, in Buenos Aires, Argentina, December 19, 2017/Photo: Reuters - Martin Acosta
Argentina Congress Passes Pension Reform Despite Protests

The reform to the country’s pension program caused protests resulting in violent clashes between protesters and members of the security forces.

After more than 16 hours of in-session deliberations, the Argentine Congress decided to go ahead with the controversial pension reform, with 128 in favor, 116 against and two absent votes recorded.

The reform to the country’s pension program, which reduces the social benefit by $4 million caused protests across the South American nation, resulting in violent clashes between protesters and members of the security forces.

“The rush to vote on this law overnight” is a disservice to retirees, Frente de Izquierda’s Nathalia Gonzalez stated, adding that the Argentine government is of the rich and only wants to benefit the rich.

Gonzalez further explained that the reform, prompted by President Mauricio Macri, would shortchange retirees of billions to pay off the foreign debt.

In a release, the Opposition said the “package of adjustments” was likely an instructive order, issued to the Government of Argentina, by the International Monetary Fund.

On Monday, Argentine soccer superstar Diego Maradona also chimed in to express his disappointment regarding the treatment meted out to demonstrators by the Argentine security forces.

“I want to see the people of my country like the day we brought the [World] Cup in 1986.” #FuerzaArgentina!

Citizens, with kitchen instruments in hand, occupied the streets of Buenos Aires to demonstrate against what is viewed as an oppressive, unreasonable and immoral amendment to the existing program.


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