Tags: argentina | journalist | travel

Argentine Government Under Fire for Revealing Journalist Travel

Monday, 26 Jan 2015 12:37 PM

Argentina’s government faced criticism after publishing the travel details of a journalist who said he fled the country in fear of his life after breaking the news of the death of a prosecutor in a politically charged case.

The official Twitter account of the presidential palace published Jan. 24 Damian Pachter’s voucher for a flight to Uruguay, highlighting that he was due to return to Argentina on Feb. 2. Pachter, a journalist for the Buenos Aires Herald, was first to report the death of Alberto Nisman, who had accused President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner of graft.

While the government denied any malign intent, a lawmaker filed an accusation for publishing “confidential and private details” of an Argentine citizen. Revealing private information such as someone’s address violates Twitter rules, according to guidelines published on the social media company’s website.

A presidential official, Secretary General Anibal Fernandez, said the government was merely trying to reassure the public.

“We were explaining that the well-founded fear that something could happen to him was resolved because he had left,” Fernandez told reporters in Buenos Aires. “There were valid reasons” for publishing the information “because of public concern and we had to explain the situation.”

In an article published in La Nacion today, Pachter said that he fled to Israel via Uruguay and Spain after he was followed by a man he believed to be an Argentine intelligence officer.

Privacy Rules

“We do not comment on individual accounts, for privacy and security reasons,” Nu Wexler, a Twitter spokesman, said by e- mail when asked if the Argentine government account breached the platform’s terms of use.

Pachter said he received a tip-off from a source on Jan. 18 that Nisman, who accused Fernandez of trying to absolve Iranian officials from their alleged involvement in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, was dead. Nisman died the day before he was due to appear in Congress to present evidence for his claims.

In response to Nisman’s death, President Fernandez on Jan. 22 wrote a public letter in which she speculated Nisman was fed false information to accuse her and then killed in order to incriminate the government.

“They used him while alive and then needed him dead,” Fernandez wrote.

She identified former intelligence agent Antonio Stiusso as one of the people who may have fed Nisman the false information.

Stiusso, who until December was the the third highest ranking spy within the Intelligence Secretariat, has sought asylum in Uruguay, Madrid-based El Mundo reported yesterday without saying how it obtained the information.


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Argentina's government faced criticism after publishing the travel details of a journalist who said he fled the country in fear of his life after breaking the news of the death of a prosecutor in a politically charged case.The official Twitter account of the presidential...
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2015-37-26
Monday, 26 Jan 2015 12:37 PM
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