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Denialism, rights and security among topics for debate in Argentina

Buenos Aires, Nov 9 (Prensa Latina) The candidates for vice president of Argentina from Unión por la Patria (UP), Agustín Rossi, and La Libertad Avanza (LLA), Victoria Villarruel, held a TV debate on Wednesday about economy, labor, security, defense, education, social policies, justice, rights humans and transparency.

Rossi accused his opponent of denying the crimes against humanity perpetrated during the last civil-military dictatorship in Argentina (1976-1983), ignoring the existence of 30,000 detainees and missing people, participating in marches for the freedom of genocidaires and breaking the democratic pact established 40 years ago.

“(The dictatorship) carried out a plan of mass extermination using state terrorism. It was not a war nor were there excesses. The policy of memory, truth and justice is a collective construction that is based on the struggle of the Grandmothers and Mothers of Plaza de Mayo and other organizations that defend human rights,” he stated, and highlighted the role of former presidents Raúl Alfonsín and Néstor Kirchner in the prosecution of those responsible for those crimes.

Moreover, he pointed out that values will be at stake in the second round of the general elections, on November 19, and citizens will have to choose between two models of society. He urged voters to support UP in order to guarantee the continuity of public health and education.

Villarruel, in turn, insisted on attacking Kirchnerism (followers of Nestor Kirchner and Cristina Fernández), maintained a denialist position about the crimes committed by the dictatorship, and assured that an LLA government will not comply with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. She also promised to end inflation immediately, although she did not specify how, and assured that there will be a drastic reduction in public spending.

She repeated her intentions to prevent social mobilizations, attacked the unions, insulted the former president of the Mothers of Plaza de Mayo, Hebe de Bonafini, and noted that they will not allow alleged interference in Argentina from China, the Sao Paulo Forum and Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva.

On several occasions she repeated the phrase: “It is either continuity or change,” a slogan defended by Justice for Change (JxC). “We are the freedom that advances and together we are going to change Argentina forever,” she concluded, in clear reference to the pact with JxC, especially with former presidential candidate Patricia Bullrich and former President Mauricio Macri.