Six days after the failed attempt to assassinate his vice-president, Alberto Fernández returned to his extramural agenda as from 11am on Wednesday in San Martín where he handed over notebooks within the Conectar Igualdad programme amid tighter presidential security, breaking with previous patterns.
The visit to San Martín was his first activity in Greater Buenos Aires since Fernando Sabag Montiel tried to kill Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, an attack placing the presidential bodyguard under review. The president has long resisted being surrounded by security men but Fernández has now accepted their reinforcement while asking that they observe “a logical distance.”
The head of state likes to greet the neighbours awaiting him on every visit. A few hours beforehand an advance guard arrives to check the installations for possible hotspots. This time more men showed up. According to Casa Rosada sources, some 20 percent of the presidential military staff are assigned to bodyguard duties.
This is the first time that president has accepted a bigger bodyguard despite having previously suffered attacks such as in Chubut when a group of demonstrators opposing mega-mining jostled with the presidential entourage before surrounding and stoning the van transferring Alberto Fernández.
A fortnight ago the president revealed that he had received threats.
“It’s all crazy. There are some very wacky people. We all receive threats, me too, and nor does it bother me much. I cannot tell more because I’m afraid of interfering with the investigation, on which the Federal Police is working. It’s not the first time either. They have threatened me more than once with their libertarian logic,” said the Peronist leader.
In recent days Cristina Fernández de Kirchner’s bodyguard has also been tightened – not only the agents accompanying her but also at the Senate where she has already been holding some political meetings.