November 9, 2012
Demonstrators concentrated in urban centers like Rome, Paris, Barcelona, Sydney and Rio de Janeiro, among others
After Australia came before all the demonstrations of the so-called 8N, groups of Argentine residents in different cities started their pot-banging protest against the government of Cristina Kirchner.
In Spain, Italy, France, Great Britain and Austria, among other countries, they made their protests felt and put up images and messages on social media.
"Out with them! Out with them"; "Jerk! Jerk!” “Argentina! Argentina!” “Freedom! Freedom!” “Argentines united will never be defeated!” “We are not afraid!” “Enough corruption!”
These slogans were shouted, in front of the Argentine consulate in Rome, on the legendary Vía Véneto, by some 150 Argentines starting at 7:00pm local time (3:00pm in Argentina) and when until 8:00, to the sound of banging pots joining in solidarity with the 8N protest.
With Argentine flags and signs against the government of Cristina Kirchner -"Enough underestimating the Argentine people”, said one – at the demonstration Argentines of all ages participated, both residents of Rome and those visiting..
"We arrived this morning in Rome, we came for four days, but we came prepared to come demonstrate,” said Evangelina Christian, of Buenos Aires, to LA NACION. "Justice is a disaster, we live in fear, inflation is tremendous, but they deny it and we couldn’t not come,” said Ricardo Auman, her husband. "Even our grandchildren told us that we had to go,” he added.
"We are not gorillas, but we’re against this mine", said some, while others passed out white cards that said “Basta K” to Roman pedestrians, many of whom were alien to the protest.
"I came two and a half years ago, I wanted to return to Argentina, but as things are now, I can’t go back: there isn’t freedom of the press and they don’t respect the rights of anyone,” said Elizabeth Valeriani, one of the most active ladies with a pot, from Haedo. “We want to return, but not like this. We just came here so there will be no re-re-election in Argentina and for the constitution to be respected,” added her friend Teresa Dodero, born in Lomas de Zamora but a resident of Italy for 20 years.
The pot-banging protest went from the Italian capital to Paris. “We will protest in 2 hours. We have added a lot of people, because we’ve also asked that they drop the camembert ” tweeted a student from the French capital.
Among the demonstrators, which in two opportunities sang the national anthem and were mentioning all of the provinces – “Cordoba! Mendoza! Neuquen!” successively – gave loud applause to Argentine actor Jorge Mercala, who has lived here for 8 years, and who imitated the President. “It seemed gracious to me to do it, because this women is so intelligent that she managed to turn Argentines against themselves,” he explained. “But I have a question for her: she treated the boys very badly at Harvard, saying that she was a successful lawyer, but how did she work in Argentina to get all that she has in Calafate and more?” he asked.
Also joining the protest were some Italian bondholders, harmed by the default of 2001. They carried an immense cardboard rat, bejeweled and labeled, “Cristina”, which debuted last year when the President traveled to Italy for the 150th anniversary of the unity of the peninsula, when they protested outside her hotel. “I’m surprised by the amount of people. Evidently they also banged pots because they want to defend their interests. The Argentine middle class has reasons to be furious, of course! Argentina has to respect international rules,” said Orlando Masiero, who traveled from Venice to be present. “We are also anti-K, because it is the K-government, of Nestor Kirchner, that ruined us, with Minister Lavagna,” shouted Giancarlo Lucifora, another defiant bondholder.
In London, the demonstration was at the Argentine embassy and in Madrid and Barcelona, at the consulate.
In Milan, there was also a demonstration which, however, seems to have lasted a short time. “A friend sent me a message that the anti-terrorist police wouldn’t let us demonstrate,” said María Eugenia, another Argentine that lives in Rome because her husband works here, who participated with a fork and pot in the protest.
The protest in Rio
In Rio de Janeiro, 50 Argentines and a dozen Brazilians met to protest in front of the Argentine consulate, in the Botafogo neighborhood, with pots, Argentine flags and signs in which they wrote: “No to reform of the Constitution,” “Not gorillas nor coup-leaders: Argentines!” “Enough Korruption” and “Moreno is shameful”.
"I’m here because I’m against a lot of the policies of the Argentine government, which only serves the interest of corrupt officials. Every day they are limiting our freedoms and adding an arbitrary nature behind it,” complained Pamela Dahl, 50, housewife living in Rio since February for her husband’s work.
After having made a lot of noise with their pots, the group, which had people of all ages and families with children, sang the national anthem to then join together with strong applause to shout: “Argentina! Argentina!”
"The situation that the country is living thorugh is totally opposite to what the irresponsible people that govern us say; we are getting worse in inflation, crime, intolerance, and lack of respect for democratic institutions,” said Roberto Zotter, 59, employee of a company in the optical sector, who has lived for three years in Brazil.
With a pot in hand, carioca publicist Maria Inez Nery, 56, joined the group, in which her husband also joined. “I feel that the Argentine people are suffering with this government. There is more and more poverty, insecurity and inflation, people are complaining all the time. Something isn’t right,” she said, and took the chance to complain about the constant price increases on her regular trips to Buenos Aires.
For his part, engineer Rubén Salomé, 29, who has lived in the "cidade maravilhosa" for two years, said that Argentina is running the risk of becoming the new Venezuela if it reforms the Constitution. “I hope that the opposition unites and faces off with those attempts,” said his friend Juan Pablo López, 36.
"What all of the people coming out to protest today are doing is, in some way, to draw a line for the government, let them know that there are things we are not in agreement with and that we will not tolerate,” he said.
Other points in the world joining 8N were Austria, the Canary Islands, Azerbaijan and Canada, On those places, while they were not large protests, different people with Argentine flags showed their support for the initiative and uploaded images to social media.