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ARGENTINA | 25-06-2024 21:24

Amnesty International slams Argentina's ‘regressive’ turn on gender, environmental issues

Global rights watchdog Amnesty International expresses dissatisfaction at Milei government’s shift on longstanding “historic consensus on gender, environment and human rights defenders” at Organisation of American States.

Amnesty International (AI) on Tuesday expressed concern over Argentina’s “regressive” objections to gender and environmental projects at a top multilateral forum.

The global rights watchdog’s local chapter delivered the warning in a statement issued one day before the Organisation of American States (OAS) meets for its General Assembly in Asunción, Paraguay. 

"Amnesty International is concerned about the regressive position taken by the Argentine state at the Organisation of American States on historical consensus on gender, environment and human rights defenders," Amnesty International Argentina wrote in a statement.

The statement was issued on the eve of the 54th General Assembly of the OAS, which is due to take place June 26 to 28. Final approval and funding for many projects will be agreed during the forum.

While Argentina has historically supported such projects, under President Javier Milei’s government, the nation has shifted its traditional stance. 

At an ordinary meeting of the Permanent Council of the OAS last Tuesday in Washington, Argentina’s representative to the OAS, Sonia Cavallo, objected to draft resolutions on subjects including democracy, human rights, the environment and the need to include a gender and ethnic perspective in the issues dealt with by the multilateral body.

"It is urgent that Argentina reconsiders this position, which overturns basic agreements reached over the last few years, such as the absolute rejection of gender-based violence," said Mariela Belski, Amnesty International Argentina’s executive director.

The meeting of foreign ministers and representatives of member countries – the last with Luis Almagro as OAS secretary general – will take place at the headquarters of the CONMEBOL football federation and will focus on four areas: the defence of democracy, human rights, security and development.

Belski said that Argentina's position was proof of "a worrying step backwards in national foreign policy" and that "this background is added to the Foreign Ministry's announcement to suspend participation in events linked to the UN's 2030 Agenda, a consensus to strengthen peace and justice signed by all its member states in 2015.”

The UN’s 2030 Agenda has as its goals the end of poverty, gender equality, education, food security, inclusive economic growth, and the urgent fight against climate change and its effects, among other issues.

President Milei is a firm detractor of the UN goals. 

"We are not going to adhere to the 2030 Agenda, we do not adhere to cultural Marxism, to decadence," he declared before being elected president last year.


– TIMES/AFP

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