Civil Unrest and Protests in Argentina: How to Stay Safe

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Conflict still occasionally occurs in Argentina, so here's what you need to know if you get caught up in a commotion while traveling.


A protest meeting against Argentina government with placards at Buenos Aires Photo © iStock/1001nights

Argentina is politically stable, but the country has experienced some periods of civil unrest, occasionally simmering into serious violence.

Political Unrest in Argentina

Approximately 35% of Argentinians are living below the poverty line. Occasionally, there are outbreaks of social unrest and demonstrations, which sometimes turn violent. In Buenos Aires, the Plaza de Mayo and Congreso areas are often the focal points for such protests, so take care in this area.

Take note that during demonstrations, streets may be blockaded and public transport disrupted. While travelers are unlikely to be affected by protests it's worthwhile remembering that terrorism and political unrest can happen anywhere, anytime. Follow instructions from the authorities, and keep updated with local news in areas affected by political unrest.

Should you be stuck in an area with civil unrest occurring, make contact with your country's embassy, as well as your family, so your last known location is recorded should communications break down.

Terrorism Risk in Argentina

Terrorism has occurred sporadically in Argentina since the 1970s' so-called Dirty War.  Two major events in the 1990s in Buenos Aires resulted in the deaths of more than 100 people and injuries to more than 500.

Since 2004, there have been small explosions in Buenos Aires carried out by local protest groups, mainly targeting banking institutions.

Overall, the risk is low however it has been reported that there are terrorist groups which operate on the borders between Argentina, Brazil, and Paraguay. It still pays to take general safety precautions and check government travel advice.

Here are 15 things I wish I knew before going to Argentina.

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