Experiments with Truth: News

Argentina truckers launch strike against government, taxes

BUENOS AIRES–Argentina’s largest truckers’ union called a 24-hour strike Monday to protest taxes and posing a challenge to President Cristina Kirchner who faces flagging support in the run-up to October congressional elections.

Union leader Hugo Moyano called the strike to demand income-tax relief and social programs for workers struggling to protect their purchasing power from double-digit inflation. The union plans a large rally in the emblematic Plaza de Mayo later in the day for members to vent their frustration.

Mr. Moyano, once a close ally, has emerged as one of Mrs. Kirchner’s staunchest foes since the start of her second term. He is a powerful figure due to his control over the unions in the trucking industry. Most goods in Argentina are shipped by road due to the decrepit state of the country’s once-vast rail system.

Mr. Moyano was a stalwart supporter of Mrs. Kirchner and her husband, former President Nestor Kirchner. But that relationship quickly soured after Mr. Kirchner died of a heart attack in late 2010 and the president largely ignored Mr. Moyano’s demands for higher salaries and greater union representation in Congress.

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