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Argentina: Human rights defender detained for protesting

Alberto Nallar, human rights lawyer was detained on July 13, and charged with the crime of sedition. He played a very active role in the protests in the Jujuy Province that began on June 15. Since July 14, Alberto Nallar has been under house arrest. Amnesty International has received reports of arrest warrants against at least seven other lawyers who allegedly supported the protesters.

Here’s what you can do:

Write to the Attorney General of Jujuy Province’s Public Prosecutor’s Office urging him to:

  • Drop the charges against Alberto Nallar, which could result in an unequivocal restriction on the right to social protest, and to ensure his immediate release.

Write to:

Attorney General of Jujuy Province’s Public Prosecutor’s Office

Dr. Sergio Lello Sánchez

Email: slello@mpajujuy.gob.ar

Salutation: Dear Attorney General,

And copy:

Her Excellency Maria Josefina MARTINEZ GRAMUGLIA

Ambassador, Embassy of the Argentine Republic

81 Metcalfe Street, 7th Floor

Ottawa, ON K1P 6K7

Tel: (613) 236-2351 Fax: (613) 235-2659

Email: ecana@cancilleria.gov.ar


On June 15, 2023, the Constitutional Convention of Jujuy Province (Argentina) approved a constitutional reform that many believe was carried out in a precipitate manner. There are concerns it was approved without public participation or publicity, and that it could pose a threat to the collective rights and worldview of Indigenous peoples.

The adoption of the partial reform of the provincial Constitution was followed by protests which were reportedly met with violent police repression in the Jujuy Province. For instance, there were reports of irregularities and serious instances of excessive use of force by state officials.

The response of the Jujuy Province security forces to the demonstrations was a serious violation of the rights to life and physical integrity, which are recognized and protected by local regulations and international law.

Ongoing protests

Protests by communities and civil society and human rights organizations are continuing in Jujuy Province as the Constitutional Convention has not withdrawn the recent constitutional reform.

Between July 12 and 13, arrest warrants were issued and arbitrary raids began against teachers, academics and human rights defenders. Since the protests began, at least 130 people have been detained, including human rights defenders.

Human rights defenders under attack

Alberto Nallar is a lawyer and human rights defender; he unfailingly supported the popular mobilization against the constitutional reform. He provided support and legal assistance to people detained during the mobilizations and their families.

The crime of sedition of which he is accused is a criminal provision frequently used in the country to criminalize people who exercise the right to social protest, along with obstructing public roads, incitement to commit crimes or resisting authority, among other actions.