WOLA: Advocacy for Human Rights in the Americas

Santiago Maldonado: Argentina’s Human Rights Challenges Under Macri

Thursday, 26 October 2017
1666 Connecticut Ave N.W., Suite 400, Washington D.C., 2009

AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko

Santiago Maldonado: Argentina’s Human Rights Challenges Under Macri


Gimena Sanchez-Garzoli,
Senior Associate for the Andes, WOLA

Thursday, October 26, 12:30 p.m. – 1:30 p.m.
The Washington Office on Latin America (WOLA)
1666 Connecticut Ave NW, Suite 400
Washington D.C., 20009

Argentina’s upcoming congressional elections on October 22 are taking place amidst a significant political shift inside the country. President Mauricio Macri’s domestic and international policies are markedly different than those employed by the Kirchner administrations during their 12 years in power. Macri is closer to Washington in terms of security, human rights, migration policies, Venezuela, and Iran. In another contrast to the Kirchners, Macri’s government is also seeking to reintegrate Argentina into the global financial market.

In the midst of this, the case of disappeared indigenous rights activist Santiago Maldonado has shaken the country and overshadowed the congressional race. Maldonado was last seen at a Mapuche tribal rights protest on August 1. He disappeared soon after the Argentine gendarmerie forcibly dislodged protestors from the area. Since then, mass protests have taken place throughout the country and Argentines have taken to social media demanding to know Maldonado’s whereabouts. While the protests have focused on Maldonado’s specific case, they are also a reflection of greater political polarization that continues to divide Argentina.

On October 17, a body was recovered in the Chubut River, near the site where Maldonado was last seen. Several congressional candidates have temporarily suspended their campaigns as they wait for a formal identification and an autopsy at the request of the Maldonado family.

Join us to hear WOLA Senior Associate for the Andes Gimena Sanchez analyze the current context for human rights under the Macri presidency, in light of the country’s renewed relationship with the United States and other ongoing policy shifts. Sanchez recently returned from a sabbatical at the Center for Social and Political Studies (CELS) in Buenos Aires.