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  • The government of President Mauricio Macri faces strong criticism.

    The government of President Mauricio Macri faces strong criticism. | Photo: Reuters

Published 25 November 2017

Relatives of Santiago Maldonado and the families of those inside of the lost submarine don't believe government explanations.

President Mauricio Macri and his government are under strong criticism for the way they handled two cases that shook Argentina: the disappearance of a submarine and activist Santiago Maldonado. 

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After more than a week of searching for the ARA San Juan submarine, the Navy said that there was an explosion in the area where it was last seen on Nov. 15.

Relatives of the officers have strongly criticized the actions of the government, saying delays and slow protocol hindered the search. Relatives also stood outside of Navy headquarters, chanting "you lied to us."

Navy spokesman Enrique Balbi said that this would explain why the crew hasn't used any of the emergency mechanisms, detected four hours after the last contact was made with the submarine, which already had an electric fault.

He said it could have experienced an implosion, explaining why they haven't found any pieces of the submarine in the sea. Macri said people shouldn't seek to blame authorities until the investigation has ended and that the search will continue.

"We should not venture into looking for people to blame," Macri said. "This will require a serious, deep investigation that reveals certainties about why we are witnessing what happened. My commitment is with the truth."

Also on Friday, authorities announced the result of the autopsy of the body of missing activist Santiago Maldonado, saying the cause of his death was "drowning" and "hypothermia."

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Argentinian Artist Santiago Maldonado 'Drowned’: Officials

Authorities said he drowned in the waters of the southern Chubut River country after surrendering to authorities at a Mapuche demonstration on Aug. 1 in Pu Lof. Maldonado's body was found on Oct. 19, caught in the branches of willow trees. 

Roughly 28 experts were in charge of the 28-year-old's autopsy and said the tattoo artist had "remained underwater."

The relatives say Maldonado was arrested and taken away by police during a demonstration in support of the Indigenous community. His family said Maldonado couldn't swim and the river was very shallow at the time when he disappeared.

"I have more doubts than before, what I do know is that he didn't die for being a tourist, he was in an illegal repression of the police," Sergio Maldonado, Santiago's brother said.


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