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2023 Jujuy protests

2023 Jujuy protests
Protests in Jujuy, Argentina
Date16 June 2023 - 10 December 2023
Location
Caused byAmendment to the Constitution of Jujuy
MethodsPiqueterism, Political demonstration, Property damage
StatusRoadblocks lifted, Constitutional amendment approved by the Supreme Court
Parties
Protesters
Lead figures

Gerardo Morales
Guillermo Corro

Non-centralized leadership

A series of protests against the government of the Jujuy Province in Argentina started in June 2023, sparked by the amendment of the constitution of Jujuy. The demonstrators temporarily stormed into the Jujuy legislature and burned part of it.

Context

The events took place a few months before the 2023 Argentine general election and a short time after the local elections in Jujuy. Governor Gerardo Morales, unable to run for a new term, was still popular and the election was won by his minister Carlos Sadir.[1] The elections also voted in a constituent assembly to amend the constitution of Jujuy. Two articles proved controversial: one article forbids traffic obstruction, and the second regulates the rights of indigenous peoples.[2] Eight elected legislators resigned from the assembly, two Peronists and six from left-wing parties. The remaining members, "Frente Cambia" and "Frente Justicialista", both voted for the changes. There were demonstrations by unions, indigenous groups, and political organizations.[3]

Protests

On 17 June, the intersection of roads 9 and 52 was blocked by piqueteros. The demonstrators erected walls of stones over the roads to strengthen the block, and intended to stay the whole night despite the cold climate. The police tried to disperse the demonstration at 19:00 with a vehicle to remove the rocks from the road. This led to a clash, with the police firing rubber bullets and the demonstrators throwing rocks. The clash ended with several injured on both sides and nearly 40 prisoners.[4][5]

Morales liberated the detained people and canceled the amendment of two articles related to indigenous rights, trying to negotiate with the demonstrators. He said that the amendments actually increase their rights and that protesters are being lied to.[6]

On 20 June, the day of the promulgation of the new constitution, the protests started at 11:30. The protesters took down the fences around the legislature and threw rocks at the police, who reacted with tear gas and rubber bullets. There was damage to nearby buildings, cars, and the legislature itself. Some protesters even managed to get inside the legislature and set parts of the building on fire. However, the ceremony was completed, and Morales and other politicians left afterwards.[7] The protests ended with 70 demonstrators and 42 police injured and 58 people detained. Three cars were burned and eight buildings were vandalized.[8][9] Roadblocks were set up along the province for several months. Amnesty International[10] and the IACHR[11] issued warnings against the excessive violence used by the police.

On July 9, a tourist, Virginia Flores Gómez, died after being stranded in a bus in a roadblock on Route 9 near the town of Abra Pampa. The government initiated criminal proceedings against 23 protesters for manslaughter.[12]

At the end of July a group of opponents of the reform marched from Jujuy to Buenos Aires to demonstrate in front of the National Congress, in the self-proclaimed "Third Malón de la Paz" (after similar initiatives in 1946 and 2006).[13] They camped in Plaza Lavalle from August 1st to December 16th. The day after starting to break camp, they were evicted.[14]

The roadblocks in Abra Pampa and La Quiaca were maintained until October 17.[15] On December 22, after a change of government, the Supreme Court approved the constitutional reform.[16]

Reactions

President Alberto Fernández makes a speech about the protests in Jujuy.

National minister Gabriel Katopodis wrote on Twitter that the national government deplores the repression against peaceful demonstrators. Morales mocked the term "peaceful" and detailed the criminal records of a number of detained demonstrators, as well as posting a video of them throwing rocks at the police. Their criminal record included theft, threats, and injuries to other people and others.[17] As the protests got worse, Morales blamed president Alberto Fernández and vice president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, who both replied that Morales was the one to blame.[18] Presidential candidate Javier Milei opined instead that Morales had been too permissive and that the actions of the protests should have been halted long before they turned into vandalism.[19]

Morales said that the protests were encouraged by the national government to distract from the scandal over the murder of Cecilia Strzyzowski in Chaco. He said that La Cámpora had brought two hundred protesters from other provinces and that the president had sided in the past with Milagro Sala.[20] National minister of security Aníbal Fernández said that it was a lie and refused to send the national police to the conflict because the provincial police would already be dealing with it.[21] This became part of a judiciary case against the detained protesters for assault, resistance to authority, injuring, aggravated damage, fire, and the attack to the legislature. Some of those protesters were from Buenos Aires, and the investigation of their cell phones confirmed that they were paid $5,000 to take part in the protest and that they were instructed to use hoods and surgical masks to conceal their identities.[22] A pair of protesters carried Arg$1,000,000 in banknotes, stored in a backpack, and some of them were identified as members of HIJOS and work unions.[23]

Kirchnerite diplomats negotiated a swift reaction of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), who described abuses and urged to respect the freedom of speech, the standards in the use of the force, and political dialogue that respects union rights and indigenous groups.[24] The statement was critizised by diplomats from Juntos por el Cambio who said that it was based on biased and unchecked sources and that the IACHR has not been present in Jujuy during the events. Diplomat Brian Schapira pointed out that the text cites sources such as the "Consejo Federal de Mecanismos Locales para la Prevención de la Tortura", the "Defensoría de los Derechos de las Niñas, Niños y Adolescentes" and a news article from Telam. According to Schapira, all those organizations and news agencies are blatantly not neutral and biased towards the government.[25]

National deputy Gisela Marziotta, from the Frente de Todos proposed a bill to declare the federal intervention of Jujuy, which would remove the authorities from the three local powers and replace them with people sent by the national government to restore order. This was immediately rejected by politicians from Juntos por el Cambio.[26] The president gave a conference and announced that he had instructed Martín Soria, minister of justice, to denounce the amendment to the constitution of Jujuy as unconstitutional.[27]

References

  1. ^ "Quién ganó en las elecciones 2023 en Jujuy" [Who won the 2023 elections in Jujuy] (in Spanish). La Nación. 8 May 2023. Archived from the original on 22 June 2023. Retrieved 22 June 2023.
  2. ^ Criales, José Pablo (20 June 2023). "La reforma exprés de una Constitución provincial activa las protestas en el norte de Argentina". El País Argentina (in Spanish). Archived from the original on 10 August 2023. Retrieved 9 August 2023.
  3. ^ "Jujuy: la Convención Constituyente aprobó la reforma impulsada por Gerardo Morales" [Jujuy: The constituent assembly sanctioned the amendment proposed by Gerardo Morales] (in Spanish). La Nación. 16 June 2023. Archived from the original on 21 June 2023. Retrieved 22 June 2023.
  4. ^ "Jujuy: heridos y detenidos tras los violentos enfrentamientos entre la Policía y disidentes de la reforma constitucional" [Jujuy: injured and detained people after the violent clashes between the police and constitutional amendment dissenters] (in Spanish). La Nación. 18 June 2023. Archived from the original on 21 June 2023. Retrieved 22 June 2023.
  5. ^ "Jujuy: protesta, desalojo y detenidos en medio del rechazo a la reforma Constitucional" [Jujuy: Protests, dispersions and detainees amid the rejection to the constitutional amendment] (in Spanish). Clarín. 18 June 2023. Archived from the original on 23 June 2023. Retrieved 5 August 2023.
  6. ^ Javier Fuego Simondet (20 June 2023). "Agitación política en Jujuy: Gerardo Morales bajó dos artículos de la nueva Constitución y denunció "infiltrados"" [Political unrest in Jujuy: Gerardo Morales turned down two articles of the new constitution and denounced infiltrations] (in Spanish). La Nación. Archived from the original on 21 June 2023. Retrieved 22 June 2023.
  7. ^ "Jujuy: así fueron los violentos incidentes tras la aprobación de la reforma de la Constitución provincial" [Jujuy: Thus were the violent incidents after the sanction of the amendment of the provincial constitution] (in Spanish). La Nación. 20 June 2023. Archived from the original on 4 July 2023. Retrieved 4 July 2023.
  8. ^ "Reforma constitucional: 70 personas con heridas, 58 detenidos y destrozos, el saldo de la jornada de violencia en Jujuy" [Constitutional amendment: 70 injured people, 58 detained and vandalism, the outcome of the violent day in Jujuy] (in Spanish). La Nación. 21 June 2023. Archived from the original on 18 July 2023. Retrieved 17 July 2023.
  9. ^ "Violentos incidentes en Jujuy: manifestantes intentaron incendiar y tomar la Legislatura mientras avanzaban con la nueva Constitución" [Violent incidents in Jujuy: protesters tried to burn and seize the legislature while the new Constitution was being promulgated] (in Spanish). Clarín. 21 June 2023. Archived from the original on 10 August 2023. Retrieved 5 August 2023.
  10. ^ "Argentina: Violent repression and criminalization in response to protests in Jujuy". Retrieved 23 February 2024.
  11. ^ "CIDH: Argentina debe respetar estándares de uso de la fuerza provincial durante las protestas en Jujuy". Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos (CIDH) (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 February 2024.
  12. ^ "Comunidades jujeñas enfrentan nueva causa penal y advierten: 'No tenemos miedo'" (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 February 2024.
  13. ^ Lambertucci, Constanza (2 August 2023). "Hundreds of people cross Argentina against the express reform of a provincial Constitution". El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 February 2024.
  14. ^ "Desalojaron al Malón de la Paz en Plaza Lavalle". Página/12 (in Spanish). 16 December 2023. Retrieved 23 February 2024.
  15. ^ "Punto final a los cortes de ruta en Jujuy: se levantaron definitivamente los 2 últimos". El Tribuno (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 February 2024.
  16. ^ Santoro, Daniel (22 December 2023). "La Corte Suprema de la Nación convalidó la reforma de la Constitución de Jujuy, pese a las protestas". Clarín (in Spanish). Retrieved 23 February 2024.
  17. ^ "La Casa Rosada y Gerardo Morales se trenzan en una pelea por las protestas en Jujuy" [The Casa Rosada and Gerardo Morales fight over the protests in Jujuy] (in Spanish). La Nación. 18 June 2023. Archived from the original on 21 June 2023. Retrieved 22 June 2023.
  18. ^ "Morales se cruzó con Alberto Fernández y Cristina por la violencia en Jujuy: "Hágase cargo y pare con la locura represiva"" [Morales discussed with Alberto Fernández and Cristina over the violence in Jujuy: "Deal with it and stop the repressive madness"] (in Spanish). La Nación. 20 June 2023. Archived from the original on 7 July 2023. Retrieved 4 July 2023.
  19. ^ "Protestas en Jujuy: Milei criticó a Morales y dijo que actuó "con tibieza"" [Protests in Jujuy: Milei criticized Morales and said that he acted "softly"] (in Spanish). La Nación. 21 June 2023. Archived from the original on 27 July 2023. Retrieved 29 July 2023.
  20. ^ "Gerardo Morales aseguró que el Gobierno provocó los incidentes en Jujuy para "tapar" el conflicto en Chaco" [Gerardo Morales said that the government started the incidents in Jujuy to "conceal" the conflict in Chaco] (in Spanish). La Nación. 21 June 2023. Archived from the original on 31 July 2023. Retrieved 29 July 2023.
  21. ^ "Tensión en Jujuy: Aníbal Fernández le pidió a Morales que muestre las pruebas de las acusaciones" [Conflict in Jujuy: Aníbal Fernández asked Morales to show the proof of his accusations] (in Spanish). La Nación. 21 June 2023. Archived from the original on 31 July 2023. Retrieved 29 July 2023.
  22. ^ "Investigan si grupos de Buenos Aires pagaron para que piqueteros se manifestaran contra Morales en Jujuy" [It is investigated if groups from Buenos Aires paid piqueteros to protest against Morales in Jujuy] (in Spanish). La Nación. 21 June 2023. Archived from the original on 1 August 2023. Retrieved 29 July 2023.
  23. ^ Hernán Cappiello (21 June 2023). "Tensión en Jujuy: dos de los manifestantes llevaban $1.000.000 en efectivo y analizan mensajes de 40 teléfonos" [Conflict in Jujuy: two protesters carried $1000000 in cash and 48 cell phones are under investigation] (in Spanish). La Nación. Archived from the original on 1 August 2023. Retrieved 29 July 2023.
  24. ^ "El Gobierno se movió ante la Comisión Interamericana de Derechos Humanos y logró un fuerte pronunciamiento por la crisis en Jujuy" [The government operated at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and got a strong statement over the crisis in Jujuy] (in Spanish). 20 June 2023. Archived from the original on 10 August 2023. Retrieved 5 August 2023.
  25. ^ Daniel Santoro (21 June 2023). "Polémica por la posición de la CIDH frente a la violenta protesta en Jujuy" [Controversy over the position of the IACHR towards the violent protest in Jujuy] (in Spanish). Clarín. Archived from the original on 10 August 2023. Retrieved 5 August 2023.
  26. ^ "Violencia en Jujuy: el kirchnerismo presentó un proyecto en Diputados para que haya una intervención federal" [Violence in Jujuy: Kirchnerism proposed a bill for federal intervention] (in Spanish). La Nación. 21 June 2023. Archived from the original on 1 August 2023. Retrieved 29 July 2023.
  27. ^ Cecilia Devanna (21 June 2023). "Fernández pidió frenar la violencia en Jujuy y que Morales dé marcha atrás con los artículos cuestionados de la reforma" [Fernández asked to stop the violence in Jujuy and that Morales steps back with the controversial articles of the amendment] (in Spanish). La Nación. Archived from the original on 26 July 2023. Retrieved 29 July 2023.
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2023 Jujuy protests
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