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President Kirchner Opens New Lecture Series on Argentina

September 26, 2012 – President of Argentina Cristina Fernández de Kirchner delivered an address on the relationship between Argentina and the United States during the inaugural event of a new lecture series, the Cátedra Argentina, today at Georgetown.

Kirchner’s appearance at Georgetown comes a day after she addressed the United Nations General Assembly in New York. As part of her visit to the United States, she also will speak at Harvard University.

Kirchner expressed her gratitude to Georgetown for starting the lecture series and its interest in exploring relationships in Latin and South America and, in particular, Argentina’s role within the region.

“In order to understand Argentina, one needs to consider the differences and not only the similarities, especially vis-à-vis the United States,” she said, highlighting Argentina’s use of the U.S. constitution for a framework for its government and the fact both countries were once colonies and declared independence in the same period.

Kirchner also discussed a number of events from Argentina’s at-times tumultuous history, including the rise of Peronism, the Dirty War and the economic struggles in the late 20th and early 21th centuries.

“There was this loss of hope that everything outside was better, and we’re good for nothing,” she said of Argentina’s economic crisis and debt default in December 2001.

Sponsored by the Center for Latin American Studies, Cátedra Argentina is a new forum at Georgetown consisting of lectures and conferences on Argentina given by visiting Argentine government and political officials, businesses and representatives of civil society as well as U.S. experts.

The forum is an extension of Georgetown’s work studying the South American country, which includes MBA Global Residency modules in Argentina; the Council on International Education Exchange-sponsored study broad programs at three Buenos Aires universities; and two summer programs studying Latin American Politics and Economic Development and translational health science.

Carol Lancaster, dean of the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, welcomed Kirchner and thanked Argentine Ambassador to the United States, Jorge Aguello, for his role in Georgetown’s new Argentine forum.

“We hope that this is the first of many opportunities we have to foster a dialogue about your country and among academicians and policy makers,” she said.