Hours of Buenos Aires | What We Learned This Week: November 27 – December 4


There were a total of 116,639 deaths and 5,334,692 confirmed cases of coronavirus contagion at press time yesterday compared to 116,505 deaths and 5,324,039 confirmed cases the previous Friday – cases are on the rise over the years. last two weeks compared to the previous one but are not yet at worrying levels. Earlier this week, as the Omicron variant of Covid-19 began to turn its predecessor Delta into old news around the world (with its first appearance still expected here), the government began the week by ordering 10 days of quarantine obligatory for all those who fly. from the African continent (where it was first identified) or other affected areas. Argentina has ordered more than 300 passengers aboard the cruiser Hamburg, sailing from Cape Verde to Ushuaia under the flag of the Bahamas, in isolation while in Argentine waters off Samborombón after a case of the new variant was reported in a crew nurse during an antigen test on Tuesday, although claims that it was a false positive were confirmed by the Malbrán Institute following a PCR the next day. The cruiser docked in Buenos Aires before last weekend, but was subsequently banned from any other Argentine port until cleared.


MP-elect Ricardo López Murphy on Tuesday accused judges Adrián Grünberg and Daniel Obligado of embezzlement for canceling the trial of Vice-President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and her two children for money laundering via the Hotel chain Hotesur Patagonian de his family. News of the decision (dated November 26), delivered with “unusual speed” according to López Murphy, broke last weekend, sparking major political and public outcry with a circulating petition. The former president’s judicial luck was not shared by her 2019 running mate – on Wednesday San Isidro Federal Judge Lino Mirabelli rejected President Alberto Fernández’s request to close the party case first lady’s birthday last year, for quarantine violation during its strictest phase, on the grounds that no contagion resulted, noting in his 21-page judgment that the president was violating the standards he had itself imposed.


Dolores Martín Bava’s substitute federal judge on Wednesday tried ex-President Mauricio Macri for unlawful spying on the families of the submarine’s crew ARA San Juan (sunk in 2017), imposing a lien of 100 million pesos on his assets and forbidding him to leave the country but not placing him in pre-trial detention. Bava’s 171-page decision implied that Macri’s spying extended far beyond these families to include political parties, unions, social organizations, and legal associations of all types. Macri was thus charged with “abuse of power”, believing that as president of the time, he could not ignore the offenses of which he is accused. Macri’s defense lawyer Pablo Lanusse now has 10 days from the indictment to appeal to the Federal Court of Appeal in Mar del Plata. Besides the former president, there are 12 other defendants.


Cristina Fernández de Kirchner broke a six-week letter-writing silence last weekend to draft an open letter agreeing to seek an agreement with the International Monetary Fund, while reserving the right to revise it and insisting on his support by an opposition who had borrowed the stand-by loan in the first place, by throwing the responsibility on them and also reminding President Alberto Fernández of the words of a speech given on Independence Day: “Don’t expect never that I sign anything that ruins the lives of the Argentinian people, never, ever. ”


Former Industry Minister Débora Giorgi resigned from his post as number two to Internal Trade Secretary Roberto Feletti on Thursday following tensions with the nominal superior of the two, Productive Development Minister Matías Kulfas. Appointed seven weeks ago, Giorgi’s appointment was never made official by an appearance in the Official Gazette because President Alberto Fernández reportedly refused to sign it at Kulfas’ insistence. Giorgi was one of more than 2,000 Frente de Todos leaders to sign a manifesto last May calling for the suspension of all debt payments.


Last Thursday, Jorge Macri left his post as mayor Vicente López a little earlier to become the new minister of the government (interior) of the town hall under the leadership of mayor Horacio Rodríguez Larreta. This has been widely seen as the price of a deal struck between the two leaders last July, whereby Macri gave up running for Congress in midterm last month in favor of then deputy mayor Diego. Santilli. The new minister’s dossier will extend beyond city limits to cover “metropolitan issues”, including relations with greater Buenos Aires. According to PRO sources, Rodríguez Larreta’s cabinet reshuffle also includes Agustín Forchieri as the new secretary for urban development, while various outgoing city lawmakers and national MP Carmen Polledo will also be found. In other local news, the town hall managed to pass its controversial urban development project for Costa Salguero, Punta Carrasco and Costanera Sur through legislation by 36 votes to 22 on Thursday despite opposition from neighborhood groups and many residents from the city.


The parallel “blue” dollar lost a cent during the week to close yesterday at 200.50 pesos as the official exchange rate moved in the opposite direction from 105.75 to 106.25 pesos, according to Banco Nación , or a “tourist dollar” of 175.94. pesos with the addition of 65 percent surcharges for buyers. The other parallel tariffs – CCL (contado con liquidation) and MPE (mercado electronic de pago) – compared to the previous Friday from 213.42 to 219.71 pesos and from 200.17 to 204.21 pesos respectively. Country risk remained fairly static, closing yesterday at 1,827 points against 1,821 points the previous Friday.


‘Vulture fund’ Aurelius Capital Management demands in Manhattan courtroom that INDEC’s statistics office reveal its calculation methods in 2013, claiming it was bypassed to the tune of $ 159 million on its bonds linked to growth. The 2013 growth rate was initially 4.9%, but was later brought down to 2.9% by a change in methodology, saving billions of dollars in debt repayments.


Argentina scored below the regional average in an education survey of 16 Latin American countries on writing, math and science tests of primary school students, according to the pre- UNESCO pandemic (Estudio Regional Comparativo y Explicativo) 2019, with regression in all aspects since the last such assessment, TERCE 2013. Only literacy skills met the regional average standard. The government was quick to blame the Mauricio Macri administration for the decline. Across the region, Uruguay, Costa Rica, Peru and Cuba performed best, while girls are said to be particularly penalized by lower educational standards. ERCE 2019 interviewed 160,000 primary school children in 16 countries (not counting Bolivia, Chile or Venezuela in South America), of which Argentina contributed 10,073. No one doubts that the Covid-19 pandemic caused a further decline as time is running out to meet the goals of the 2030 Agenda as the region shrinks ever further.


The horrific fate of five-year-old Lucio Dupuy at the hands of his mother Magdalena Esposito Valenti and lover Abigail Páez has shocked the whole country. The child died at Evita Hospital in the provincial capital of La Pampa, Santa Rosa, on November 26, but the sickening details of his abrupt end were only revealed within the last week. Juan Carlos Toulouse, the forensic expert in charge of the autopsy, said he “had never seen anything like it” in the 27 years of his career after examining the bruised, burned, beaten body and bit the little boy with bleeding internal lesions, adding that he couldn’t understand such anger against a five-year-old boy. Both women claimed Luico suffered an accidental fall during an attempted break-in of their home, but both were arrested shortly after the boy’s death. Lucio’s grandmother, Silvia Gómez, said the child had previously complained about being beaten and said her ex-daughter-in-law was expressing her hatred of her ex-husband over the child (including the parents had separated before he was two years old). Neighbors said they had alerted the police and judicial authorities, criticizing them for their indifference, as did the father of the boy Cristian Dupuy, who regretted having arrived too late: “They [the courts] said he was better off with his mother and now we are paying the consequences. Lucio Dupuy entered medical centers with injuries at least five times last summer, implicating medical authorities for not sounding the alarm. Lucio’s mother was originally happy that he lived with his grandparents, but then decided to fight for his custody, getting it 15 months ago. The two women were beaten by other inmates shortly after entering San Luis Penitentiary last Wednesday and had to be jailed separately for their own safety.


The trial of famous actor Juan Darthes for rape presented by actress Thelma Fardín began Tuesday afternoon in Brazil with the alleged victim testifying in virtual format before judge Ali Mazloum. Although Darthes now lives in Brazil (where he has been since Fardín first filed a complaint in 2018 as the only country from which he cannot be extradited to Nicaragua, the site of the alleged crime in 2009, where he faces similar charges), he will not be required to appear at the Sao Paulo courthouse, nor will the 11 other witnesses. The virtual procedure will not be made public and a verdict is expected early next year.

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