Democracy in Argentina: Thirty Years After the Transition
December 10 is a significant day for democracy and human rights in Latin America. On that day in 1983, the first president democratically elected after Argentina’s transition from military rule, Raúl Alfonsín, was sworn into office, inaugurating the longest cycle of democratic rule the country has ever enjoyed. Since then, democratic institutions in Argentina have endured military coup attempts, cycles of hyperinflation, sustained economic stagnation, and the 2001 financial crisis.
December 10 is also International Human Rights Day, and Argentina has been a pioneer on issues of transitional justice. President Alfonsín established the first-ever “truth commission”—the “Nunca Más” (Never Again) report—which opened the way to domestic trials of military junta members for human rights violations (1976–83). Since then, Argentina’s human rights politics and policies have been part of the worldwide debate on transitional justice.
This roundtable will celebrate Argentina’s thirty years of uninterrupted democratic rule. It will also debate the country’s achievements and still pending tasks in relation to the quality of political institutions and human development, which remain challenges despite steady economic growth.