Irate Argentines attack minister on TV
BUENOS AIRES: Argentines exasperated over their soaring electricity bills barged into a TV station and attacked a minister who was being interviewed about the increases, which reach as high as 700 percent.
Video of the incident showed Adolfo Safran, the finance minister for the northeastern province of Misiones, answering a question on the rate hikes when a group of some 150 protesters barged in shouting “End the robbery!”
One protester hit the minister from behind before the TV crew managed to usher him to safety.
“Let’s take a commercial break,” said the presenter, as the scene descended into chaos Tuesday night at Channel 12 in the city of Posadas.
“I nearly pushed the minister to get him out of there, but at that moment one of the protesters hit him from behind. We finally managed to get him to safety,” the presenter, Gustavo Anibarro, told news station TN.
Conservative President Mauricio Macri’s government has sharply increased electricity rates since taking power in February, arguing that subsidies under his leftist predecessor were distorting the flagging economy.