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"If the dictator Videla feared anything, it was 'thought'," President Alberto Fernandez said.
On Thursday, Argentine President Alberto Fernandez led a tribute in memory of scientists Alicia Cardoso, Dante Guede, Roberto Lopez, Liliana Galletti, Mario Galuppo, Federico Lüdden, Manuel Saavedra, and Martin Toursarkissian, who disappeared during Jorge Videla’s dictatorship (1976-1981).
"If the dictator Videla feared anything, it was 'thought'," Fernandez said while delivering documents with detailed information about the eight researchers to the audience.
"Regardless of their political affiliation, all Argentinians must unite to condemn the dictatorship's brutality," he stressed, adding that those who do not so are denying the greatest tragedy in Argentine history.
The tribute was possible thanks to the investigations carried out by Memory Commission of the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research (CONICET), which listed the researchers who disappeared during the dictatorship.
On Thursday, Argentina celebrates the National Remembrance Day for Truth and Justice to recall the March 24, 1976 coup d'état, which overthrew the government of Maria Martinez de Peron.
According to human rights organizations, some 30,000 people —including political and social activists, trade unionists, university students, and artists— disappeared, were kidnapped, tortured, or murdered by the military.
During the dictatorship, Argentine public debt also increased to US$40 billion, and several financial institutions went bankrupt due to the implementation of an economic plan based on unrestricted external trade and capital opening.