BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: World: Americas
Front Page 
World 
Africa 
Americas 
Asia-Pacific 
Europe 
Middle East 
South Asia 
-------------
From Our Own Correspondent 
-------------
Letter From America 
UK 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 
Sunday, 14 May, 2000, 01:42 GMT 02:42 UK
Deal ends Argentina protest
Destruction in General Mosconi
Buildings were set alight in General Mosconi town
Protesters who have been blocking a major road in the northern Argentinean province of Salta have ended their action after reaching an agreement with the government.

The government has promised food aid and extra money to help create more jobs in the province - which has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country.


Rioters and the Argentinian police
Protesters clashed with police on Friday
The protest erupted in violence Friday when the demonstrators clashed with military police units sent to unblock strategic Route 34, linking northern Argentina with Bolivia.

One person died and at least 12 were injured during clashes between police and demonstrators at the highway.

Demonstrators then converged on the town of General Mosconi, where they set the town hall on fire, looted buildings and smashed phones, computers and furniture.

Negotiations

The conflict was resolved during eight hours of negotiations between government minister Walter Ceballos and protest leaders.



We're normally peaceful people but with the amount of hunger and joblessness we have, it just couldn't last.

Protestor leader
But the protesters have promised to resume their road block if the government fails to fulfil its pledges under the agreement.

According to intelligence reports from the national police, demonstrations and other signs of social unrest over unemployment and rising small-business bankruptcies were erupting in several other provinces, including Catamarca, Jujuy, Tucuman, Neuquen, Entre Rios, Chaco, Santa Fe, Misiones and Rio Negro.

'Peaceful people'

"We're normally peaceful people but with the amount of hunger and joblessness we have, it just couldn't last," one local protestor leader told national television following.

Tensions between workers and local governments, usually the biggest employers in the region, have risen since President Fernando de la Rua took power in December.

His government has cut funds to job programmes as part of an effort to reduce a high budget deficit and meet International Monetary Fund targets.

However, a spokesman for president De la Rua says that former president, Carlos Menem, is to blame for many of the social problems faced by the people in the Salta region.

Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
Americas Contents

Country profiles
See also:

10 Dec 99 | Americas
Argentinian president sworn in
25 Oct 99 | Americas
Tough challenges for new president
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Americas stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Americas stories