President Alberto Fernández has re-entered the debate about whether so-called "political prisoners" exist in Argentina.
Asked on Tuesday for his take on the issue, with speculation over whether potential judicial reform is on the cards, the Peronist leader declared that "nunca más" ("Never again") will there be a "Justice that decides and pursues [who it likes] according to the political winds."
Echoing terminology introduced by other Latin American leaders who have found themselves in trouble with the courts, Fernández warned that "in recent years, 'Lawfare' has been installed in Argentina.”
"In recent years, 'lawfare' has been established in Argentina. Then I question the judicial and media complacency with the political power that made possible the persecution and arbitrary detention of opponents,” he added.
The phrase, lawfare, is a nod to language used by former president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, who faces a string of allegations related to corruption against her in the courts. Fernández de Kirchner, who today serves as Alberto Fernández's vice-president, has repeatedly claimed she is the victim of "political persecution," pointing the finger clearly at former president Mauricio Macri.
In recent weeks, the debate over 'political prisoners' has escalated among the Frente de Todos ruling coalition, with a string of Kirchnerite officials accused of graft proclaiming their innocence and demanding support from the government.
In his video broadcast via Twitter, President Fernández said that "Argentina has arbitrary detentions," adding that they should not "continue to occur."
“Never again to a Judiciary that decides and pursues according to the political winds,” the president declared.
“Many of these people have been unnecessarily imprisoned for years because procedural law would allow them to endure such trials in freedom.”
In addition, he also claimed in the video that his predecessor's term in office was marked by "serious human rights violations."
"The rule of law was systematically violated through the regional application of 'lawfare' persecution tactics," he added.