The official vehicle of the Cabinet chief for Chubut Province government, Federico Massoni, was fired on at least six times over the weekend, while another official received death threats amidst an escalating conflict with state workers and the provincial government.
The white Nissan used by the official was found six bullet holes in the passenger's side, according to a complaint presented on Monday night to a police station in Trelew.
Massoni was not in the vehicle at the time of the attack and he, as well as driver, said they did not know the moment when someone fired on the car.
Chubut Police Chief Miguel Gómez told a local radio station the “minister had received threats” of late and indicated that the police are trying to determine those responsible. Gómez added that police were reviewing security camera footage and that it was probable Massoni and his driver had used the vehicle “without knowing the right lateral doors… had been shot.”
The threats to the government chief occur in the middle of a profound crisis underway in the province, with an ongoing general strike by public employees over lack of pay.
Public workers in Chubut have said that they were only paid up to July’s third payment and that the province had cut social work funding, which subsequently triggered a general strike and daily road blockades.
On Tuesday, the Chubut Education Minister, Leonardo de Bella, revealed he had received death threats on Monday night during a protest in front of his house.
Govenor Mariano Arcioni left the province on Tuesday for Buenos Aires, where he will meet with Interior Minister Rogelio Frigerio, Energy Secretary Gustavo Lopetegui and officials from other provinces that host hydrocarbon and oil businesses.