Argentina’s Cristina Fernandez President Insults 1.3 Billion People
ARGENTINA’S President Cristina Fernandez has been slammed for tweeting a racist joke about Chinese people while in the country for trade talks.
After holding bilateral talks with Chinese President Xi Jinping to gain investment for her embattled economy, Mrs Fernandez sent a tweet in Spanish to her 3.5 million followers where she switched the letter ‘r’ with ‘l’ to say: “Did they only come for lice and petloleum”.
A few minutes later, she added: “Sorry, the levels of ridiculousness and absurdity are so high they can only be digested with humour.”
China is yet to respond to the comments, which came after she met with Chinese President Xi Jinping. But that didn’t stop the Twitterverse from exploding with criticism of what many considered a racist statement.
The latest controversy comes as Fernandez struggles to distance herself from the mysterious death of prosecutor Alberto Nisman, who was found dead in his bathroom January 18, hours before he was to elaborate on allegations that Fernandez helped shield Iranians connected to the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community centre that killed 85.
Fernandez has vehemently denied the accusations, saying Argentina had nothing to gain from such a deal. She has suggested that rogue elements in the intelligence services ordered Nisman’s hit, but has not elaborated.
Earlier this week, just as her visit to China was getting underway, investigators looking into Nisman’s death said they had found a of an arrest warrant for Fernandez that Nisman had written up. While he never presented it, the revelations brought Fernandez back to the centre of the case.
On Wednesday, relatives of victims of the bombing marched with family members of the victims of Argentina’s military dictatorship and other national tragedies to demand an end to impunity and the truth about what happened to Nisman.
Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in front of Congress in Buenos Aires with the march ending in the famed Plaza de Mayo.
“The demand for truth and justice that relatives of the AMIA (Jewish centre) victims are making is the same as what we want for the 30,000 people who disappeared” during the dictatorship, said Nora Cortinas, who co-founded the Mothers of the Plaza de Mayo human rights group.