Argentina suspends all soccer games after assassination attempt on vice president

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·2 min read

Argentina suspended all football matches in the country on Friday as a result of the assassination attempt on Vice President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner on Thursday night.

Three games in the country’s first division were called off, as were several in lower tiers, the reserve league and the women’s championship game.

“The Argentinian Football Association expresses its strongest repudiation of what happened with the Vice President of the country, Dr. Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner,” it said in a statement. “And we make a call to society as a whole warning that violence of any order is never the way.

“All meetings scheduled for today are suspended.”

Kirchner had returned home to a large crowd on Thursday night around 9 p.m. A man approached Kirchner and was seen on video pointing a gun just inches from her face and appeared to pull the trigger — though the gun did not fire, according to The New York Times.

Kirchner was unharmed. A man has been arrested in connection with the attack.

“Cristina is still alive because, for reasons that have not been confirmed technically, the weapon, which was loaded with five bullets, did not fire,” President Alberto Fernández said late Thursday in an address to the nation, via The New York Times. “This is the most serious event since we recovered our democracy.”

Kirchner, 69, served as Argentina’s president from 2007-2015. Her husband, Nestor Kirchner, was also elected president from 2003-2007.

Fernandez also declared Friday a national holiday in Argentina to allow citizens to “defend life and democracy in solidarity with our vice president.”

Argentina
Vice President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner was unharmed after an apparent assassination attempt failed on Thursday night. (Reuters/Augustin Marcarian)