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Montag, 30. September 2013

La Nacion: “The U.S. Supreme Court begins to take up the Argentine case and the government seeks to gain time”

Lead Articles:
La Nacion: “The U.S. Supreme Court begins to take up the Argentine case and the government seeks to gain time”
Ambito Financiero: “Vulture saga: the U.S. Supreme Court takes up lawsuit today”
Infobae: “Case of the holdouts in the U.S.: the government seeks to reach the end of 2014 without a sentence”
Telam: “U.S. Supreme Court decides if it takes the appeal against Judge Griesa’s ruling”
La Nacion: “The debt, in a debate of economists and candidates”
·         The first part of another one-on-one interview with Cristina aired yesterday, this time with pro-Massa journalist Jorge Rial.  In it, she told of Nestor’s last night alive with her in Santa Cruz, where they saw a TV program about her possible campaign for re-election in 2011, and Nestor said “Even if you’re polling at 80%, I’m still running,” noting he was to be the candidate that year.  She also said they differed over presidential candidates in 1991 – she was for Menem, he was for his rival.  She also denied there is a currency clamp on Argentines wanting dollars to travel abroad, noting: “You have no idea how many Argentines I just saw in New York.”
·         The major news story this morning is that Ricardo Echegaray, the head of AFIP, said in an interview yesterday that Guillermo Moreno’s capital amnesty program – which expires today – “did not have the expected results” and that he and his agency recommended to Cristina that it not be extended.  Cristina must decide today whether to extend it.  AF reports that Moreno, with Axel Kicilof’s backing, told Cristina on Friday that the Cedin in particular is not a failure, deserves another chance, and wants a post-election re-launch of the instrument “with massive official propagandistic support” in order to reach US$1 billion for the program by December.”  He argues it will pick up “after the noise dies down” from the election, and is an effective tool to contain the “blue” dollar rate.
·         Telam reports on an event in Buenos Aires marking the 95th anniversary of the AmCham there, where the U.S. Embassy’s business attache, Kevin Sullivan, highlighted the “very strong commitment from the U.S. private sector with Argentina” on trade, pointing out the Chevron deal with YPF, and saying that American companies “see a good future and are here to stay.”
·         AF reports that Argentine companies want to “copy” YPF’s recent debt bond issuance on the international markets, which was guaranteed by an offshore trust generated from export revenues, supported by a new BCRA rule allowing such operations.  The scheme, designed by HSBC an Citibank, has attracted some local companies and even some provinces who want to access the international markets “without risk.”  The YPF operation brought an 8% interest rate (7.5% plus Libor), and brought in US$150 million.
·         La Nacion reports that public employment in Argentina has grown 30% since Cristina took office.
·         No political topics are trending this morning.

La Nacion
The U.S. Supreme Court begins to take up the Argentine case and the government seeks to gain time
Monday, September 30, 2013

By Martin Kanenguiser
The U.S. Supreme Court will begin to take up the case that Argentina lost in two lower courts against a group of holdouts, with low chances that it will be immediately decided, by which the government could gain time while the ruling is not executed.
The plaintiffs, the vulture funds NML and Aurelius and 13 Argentine retail investors, believe that, sooner or later, the high court will dismiss Argentina’s appeal over the forcefulness of the previous rulings on the issue of pari passu.
However, they admit that, with the different appeals and likely intervention of the American government, Argentina could gain up to a year.   For this reason, they remain open to listening to an intermediate offer between the swap offered by the government and the 100% that the court ordered to be paid to them, but that they cannot collect over the difficulties in attaching sovereign assets.
The attitude of listening, according to what LA NACION could learn, includes the possibility of reaching an agreement through a third party, like Gramercy or Fintech, who buy the debt from them at a “reasonable” price, in exchange for some additional favor from the government, like was led to be understood a few days ago by the owner of the latter fund, David Martinez.  
For the vulture funds, the government will have to take advantage of this temporary window to negotiation until the U.S. Supreme Court decides to take the case or not, because they believe – like the majority of the attorneys that follow the case – that it will end up upholding the ruling against the country.  If it waits until that time, it will have to pay the 100%, as Griesa ordered and the Court of Appeals upheld, they say.  LA NACION wanted to know the position of the Economy Ministry about this question, but got no response.
Attorney Marco Schnabl, partner at the firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom, said from New York that today’s process “will be a bureaucratic anecdote, because Argentina explicitly asked that they do nothing until the rest of the case arrives,” which remains still in the Court of Appeals.  This body must decide on the petition for review from Argentina; it will possibly reject it and from that time the country has 90 days to appeal to the Supreme Court.  “If the policy is to stretch out the timing to leave the issue for the next government, they will be able to do it, because the case will then be deicided in 2015,” Schabl said.  The Argentine attorney said that it’s unlikely that the Court will reject taking the case in a blunt manner today.  
"The most significant variable to know the Court’s strategy is if they ask for the Solicitor General’s opinion, and he has 6 months to reply.  The high court asks for it in very few occasions,” he argued.
As such, Marcelo Etchebarne, partner at Cabanellas, Etchebarne, Kelly & Dell Oro Maini, also said that surely today “nothing will happen” and confirmed that “it’s highly unlikely that the case will be rapidly rejected.”
"It’s possible that the Court of Appeals will reject the en banc at the end of the year; in March the government will appeal again to the Supreme Court and in September that body will decide if it will analyze the case or not,” he explained.
The attorney said that, in order to recover from the previous judicial blows and get the Supreme Court to take the case and, also, have a chance at winning, the government will have to play the OAS card to show that “there is a federal case.”  He recalled that for now for the U.S. courts, it isn’t a federal case – and as such the Supreme Court shouldn’t intervene – because the issue of pari passu is an issue of New York state law.  Both Schnabl and Etchebarne said that surely Argentina will not carry out its threat to change the place of payment on the bonds, because that would mean the certain possibility of the stay being lifted.
Ambito Financiero
Vulture saga: the U.S. Supreme Court takes up lawsuit today
• The high court must decide if it accepts or rejects the Argentine appeal  
Monday, September 30, 2013
The U.S. Supreme Court begins today with a process of hearings where it will review a list of cases among which is found the Argentine case against the vulture funds.  The debate is based on the recourse by which the government appealed the first ruling from New York Judge Thomas Griesa who found that Argentina violated equal treatment for the creditors.
The highest U.S. court could let its decision be known around accepting or rejecting the case today or over the course of a week.  It could also issue no opinion around the case that Argentina faces against the vulture funds, and pronounce later on, waiting for the advance of the judicial process for the second negative ruling against Argentina that upheld a payment method that would affect the bondholders that already entered the previous swaps and are collecting.  Another alternative decision that the Supreme Court could take is to ask for the opinion of the U.S. government, which has no deadline for filing its brief.
Basically, what happens today is that the Supreme Court will resume its ordinary activity after the summer recess and will hold its first hearing of many in the coming days, where it will hold closed door sessions to analyze more than 100 cases.  On the Argentine issue the Court put only one aspect of the litigation between Argentina and the vulture funds on the agenda, reflected in the ruling of October 26, 2012, which argues that the government violated the equal treatment (pari passu) clause between the bondholders that accepted the debt swap and those who didn’t.
They estimate in the government that there will be no decisions on this lawsuit in 2013, while still seeing the scenario that the Supreme Court will reject Argentina’s first appeal, with the second appeal in course which is precisely the one that has a stay in place against the execution of the measure against Argentina, until the high court makes a final determination.
In parallel, the government will continue running through all legal recourses on the ruling of August 23, in which the payment method was expressed for the plaintiffs and ordered the country to pay them 100% under the Griesa formula.  This is in course of the appeals process before the same Court of Appeals.  The Griesa formula orders Argentina to not pay the exchange bondholders who entered in 2005 and 2010 if it does not pay 100% of the nominal debt in default to the vulture funds.
Thus, it’s up to the Appeals court to rule on this Argentine appeal, with a high probability that it will be rejected, after which the government will ask for an “en banc” review.  That would be a review of a plenary of the 13 judges that if it is also rejected, will again go to the highest court.
Case of the holdouts in the U.S.: the government seeks to reach the end of 2014 without a sentence
The U.S. Supreme Court could decide this week if it takes the Argentine appeal or not.  It is believe it will reject it.  The state is preparing another recourse that could prolong the outcome another year.  Attorneys abroad believe that there is no risk of default and that the stay that affects the debt payments will be maintained.  
Monday, September 30, 2013
by: Leandro Gabin
The decision stage is beginning in the lawsuit that Argentina maintains with the so-called vulture funds.  Starting now, everything depends on what the U.S. Supreme Court does or doesn’t do.  The scenarios are varied and the government expects that the procedural timing will stretch out the underlying decision.  Obtaining a favorable judgment is ruled out, whereupon the official strategy is to make legal filings to not undermine the payment of debt for the rest of the year and most of 2014.  To drag out the execution of the sentence as much as possible is the official premise.  
Today the Supreme Court resumes its ordinary activity after the summer recess.  It’s the first conference of many that will be held in which it will analyze more than 100 cases.  Those conference are not public hearings, but internal meetings of all the judges of the Court, similar to the mechanics of agreements from our own courts.  These meetings allow debate of all the cases among the different judges of the Supreme Court.
In this framework, the Supreme Court will begin to analyze the cases that are ready for sentence ("fully briefed"). Among them is the certiorari filed by Argentina against the ruling of October 26, 2012, in which it was decided that Argentina violated the pari passu clause by continuing to pay the bonds issued in the swaps and not paying the vultures.   As this case is taken up with many others, it could be that a decision won’t come on the same day but will take time, even up to next week.
The Supreme Court could make different decisions regarding the "certiorari" or petition raised by Argentina.  Some possible decisions are that the Court simply would reject it, accept taking it and decide it, or say nothing – for example, because it decides, as Argentina has proposed to it, to take it up together with the certiorari that eventually will be filed after a possible rejection of the petition for review (before all the judges of the Court of Appeals and not just the three who ruled) from the decision of August 23 – and asks the opinion of the U.S. government.  In this latter case the Obama government has no deadline for giving its opinion.
Whatever happens, is not expected that the decision of the Court will be known publicly on the same day but that it will take time. In any case, the Argentine government highlights that at this stage there will be no decisions that will set off or can set off a default on the debt, since its been said that the government is holding an additional appeal to the highest court. This is no small detail as there are dollar bond maturities under law New York (those affected in this judgment) over the coming months. There are Global 17 maturities on December 2 for US$47 million and on December 31 are will be payments on the Discount for another 157 million dollars. There will be no risk that such payments will end up being involved in the litigation.
Simultaneously, but in London, it will be interesting to know the thoughts of the main law firms who are following the Argentine case, who will hold an event on that day about the lawsuit what is coming from the Court.  Expected to be present are Yannis Manuelides (from Allen & Overy), Steven Froot (Boies, Schiller and Flexner), Casey Reckman (Credit Suisse), Julian Ku (Maurice A. Deane School of Law, Hofstra University) and Antonia Stolper (Shearman & Sterling).
There is unanimity among the major law firms abroad that this legal process will continue for quite some time, and that the final decision of the Court (taking the next appeal that the country will file) would delay a final decision until the next session of October 2014. " Argentina has the motivation to delay the appeals process, provided it is possible and it is not likely to submit a second petition for review to the Supreme Court until the second Court of Appeals decides on its en banc application," explain the attorneys abroad.
Another not-so-minor issue is what will happen with the "suspended judgment" or "stay" in the midst of all this.  The lawyers say that there is no chance that they stay will be lifted by the Supreme Court. The vulture funds, against what transpired to date, are not asking for the stay to be lifted but are seeking assets of the country abroad to pay (the process called discovery). Lawyers say that it could only be lifted when the Court takes up the second ruling against the government, i.e. the one from August 23, which will be appealed, on the formula of payment. This is part of the plan to stretch out the final ruling on the matter.  At the Economy Ministry, they believe it will take a while.
U.S. Supreme Court decides if it takes the appeal against Judge Griesa’s ruling
The highest court will start today with the process of hearings, among which they will analyze the Argentine government’s appeal against the first ruling of Thomas Griesa, who found Argentina violated equal treatment to the creditors.
Monday, September 30, 2013
The highest court could let it be known today if it accepts or rejects the case, or within a week, or could end up issuing no opinion around the lawsuit that Argentina faces against the vulture funds, and could come out later on, awaiting for the judicial process to move forward for the second negative ruling against Argentina, which upheld a payment method that is affecting the bondholders from the exchange and which involves intermediary financial entities.
It could also decide to ask for the opinion of the U.S. government, where the government of Barack Obama has no deadline for filing its brief.
Strictly speaking, the Supreme Court will resume its ordinary activity after the summer recess and will hold the first hearing of many that will be held in the coming days, where more than 100 cases will be analyzed behind closed doors.
On the Argentine issue the Court put only one aspect of the litigation between Argentina and the vulture funds on the agenda, reflected in the ruling of October 26, 2012, which argues that the government violated the equal treatment (pari passu) clause between the bondholders that accepted the debt swap and those who didn’t.
The consensus is that there will be no decisions on this lawsuit in 2013, and that the scenario will still play out where the Supreme Court will reject Argentina’s first appeal, leaving the second appeal in course.
In effect, the second appeal is the one that has the “stay” in force, which impedes execution of the measure against Argentina until the highest court rules.
For that reason, market analysts believe that Argentina will not enter into any kind of non-compliance.
In parallel, the government will continue running through all legal recourses on the ruling of August 23, in which the payment method was expressed for the plaintiffs and ordered the country to pay them 100% under the Griesa formula. 
This formula orders Argentina to not pay the exchange bondholders who entered in 2005 and 2010 if it does not pay 100% of the nominal debt in default to the vulture funds.
With these time frames, it is up to the Court of Appeals to rule on Argentina’s appeal before that same court of three judges, which has a high likelihood of being rejected.
After which, then the Argentine government will turn to the “en banc” petition, which is that the plenary of all 13 judges review it, and if they also reject it, it will go again to the highest court.
Within this framework, the government will move ahead with Swap III on the debt, for those who didn’t enter the previous restructurings and dropped their lawsuits, which will be open in October.
Last week, President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner called for “the need for a global market regulation for global governance,” during her speech before the 68th United Nations General Assembly.
In fact, the vulture funds are threatening Argentina in the courts of New York for 10 years, and Argentina cannot put a final point on the debt swaps due to the international legal hole for solutions for countries in bankruptcy.
"In these blessed self-regulated markets,” who get to collect sentences with 1300% gains, “where will we find businessmen that are dedicated to generating jobs or innovation, when someone buys for 40 million dollars and then gets a court ruling for US$1.7 billion?” she asked the auditorium and the Secretary General of the United Nations.
Thus, the foreign minister of developing countries in the G-77 issued a statement against the “vulture funds paralyzing debt restructurings.”
Lastly, Argentina and Ghana agreed to put an end to the arbitral process set off by the attachment of the Frigate – the lawsuit that the country won in the Hamburg tribunals – and agreed on joint initiatives to share their experiences on the threat of the vulture funds.
[NOTE: The following article was a “fact checking” piece on a debate yesterday between House candidates running in Buenos Aires city, focusing on three “facts” mentioned in the debate.  The first was on debt, the other two were on unrelated local issues: sanitation and poverty rates.  The debt section is excerpted below.]
La Nacion
The debt, in a debate of economists and candidates (Excerpt)
Verifying political messages this week  
Monday, September 30, 2013
By Laura Zommer and the team at  | Para LA NACION
In a debate on TN, three economists running for the House from the City of Buenos Aires - -Carlos Heller (Frente para la Victoria), Martín Lousteau (UNEN) and Federico Sturzenegger (PRO)- defended or criticizes the country’s course.  Here, a review of three statements they made.
    "Between 2003 and 2012, Argentina achieved a 73% reduction in public debt (as a percentage of GDP)” (Carlos Heller, candidate for the FPV)
When speaking on debt, what must be observed is the capacity of the debtor to pay.  In that case of a country, this is measured with the stock of public debt as a percentage of its GDP, argued professor at Torcuato Di Tella University, Eduardo Levy Yeyati, on his blog.
"In debt reduction, different from the debt itself, one must always measure not in absolute, but in relative terms,” he explained.
Between 2002 and 2012, the debt burden in GDP went from 166.4% to 45%, according to the last report from the Finance Secretariat at the Economy Ministry.  This data includes the debt of the national state with national agencies, international organizations, or foreign governments, and with the private sector (resident or non-resident).  And the whole series comes from official debt reports.
That means that the reduction in stock of public debt as a percentage of GDP went from 121.4 points between 2002 and 2012 to 73% of the debt there was in 2002, the amount mentioned by the Deputy.
However, the statement by the candidate omits the context of this data, which compares the current percentage with the worse moment in the series (2002), the year that the government of Eduardo Duhalde overturned the Law of Convertibility and the devaluation came.  
Levy Yeyati explains it this way: “It doesn’t make much sense to measure from 2002 because the number of the debt is inflated by the real over-depreciation of the exchange rate.  It doesn’t make sense to compare to before and after the swap because the haircut on the debt was from the default, and is a mechanism that is not attributable to debt reduction, unless, of course, a default is defended as a voluntary economic policy.  As such, the more reasonable thing would be to continue with the lowering of the debt starting with the end of 2005.”
In 2005, Néstor Kirchner paid off the debt with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).  If one observes the evolution of this indicator starting that year, the debt burden on GDP went from 74% to 45%, meaning the drop that came (30 points) represents 40% of the debt there was in 2005.

If the court decides against hearing the case, that would be made public on October 7, the first day of the court's new term

If the court decides against hearing the case, that would be made public on October 7, the first day of the court's new term

U.S. Supreme Court meets to consider hearing Argentina bonds case

If the court decides against hearing the case, that would be made public on October 7, the first day of the court's new term

WASHINGTON | Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:10am EDT
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court was scheduled to meet behind closed doors on Monday to decide whether to hear a high-profile appeal by Argentina over its battle with hedge funds that refused to take part in two debt restructurings that sprang from the country's 2002 default.
Argentina has appealed an October 2012 ruling by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York in which the court said the government had broken a contractual obligation to treat bondholders equally.
In two restructurings, in 2005 and 2010, creditors holding about 93 percent of Argentina's debt agreed to participate in debt swaps that gave them 25 cents to 29 cents on the dollar.
But bondholders led by hedge funds NML Capital Ltd, a unit of Paul Singer's Elliott Management Corp, and Aurelius Capital Management went to court, seeking payment in full.
If the justices on the nine-member court agree to hear the case, the court would likely make an announcement on Tuesday. The court would schedule oral arguments and the case would be decided sometime before the next term ends in late June 2014.
The court's online docket said the case was up for discussion on Monday. If the court decides against hearing the case, that would be made public on October 7, the first day of the court's new term.
The court could also ask the Obama administration to weigh in on whether it thinks the case merits the justices' attention, which would delay any further action. The court has one other option, which is to take no action on the petition and delay making a decision until a later date.
The litigation is still ongoing in the appeals court in New York. In August, that court issued another ruling, upholding a lower court's order that Argentina pay the bondholders $1.33 billion. The court stayed its decision pending Supreme Court review. Argentina also has asked the appeals court to reconsider its decision.
The case before the Supreme Court is Argentina v. NML Capital, 12-1494.
(Reporting by Lawrence Hurley; Editing by Howard Goller and Stacey Joyce)


Case Page: Republic of Argentina v. NML Capital

Case Page: BG Group PLC v. Republic of Argentina

Case Page: EM Ltd. v. Republic of Argentina

No. 12-842 Title: Republic of Argentina, Petitioner v. NML Capital, Ltd.

No. 12-842
Republic of Argentina, Petitioner
NML Capital, Ltd.
Docketed:January 9, 2013
Lower Ct:United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
  Case Nos.:(11-4065, 11-4077, 11-4082, 10-4100, 11-4102, 11-4117, 11-4118, 11-4133, 11-4153, 11-4165, 11-4182)
  Decision Date:August 20, 2012
  Rehearing Denied:October 10, 2012

~~~Date~~~ ~~~~~~~Proceedings  and  Orders~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Jan 7 2013Petition for a writ of certiorari filed. (Response due February 8, 2013)
Feb 1 2013Order extending time to file response to petition to and including March 11, 2013.
Mar 11 2013Brief of respondent NML Capital, Ltd. in opposition filed.
Mar 26 2013Reply of petitioner Republic of Argentina filed.
Mar 27 2013DISTRIBUTED for Conference of April 12, 2013.
Apr 15 2013The Solicitor General is invited to file a brief in this case expressing the views of the United States.

~~Name~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~   ~~~~~~~Address~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~  ~~Phone~~~
Attorneys for Petitioner:
Jonathan I. BlackmanCleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP(212) 225-2000
    Counsel of RecordOne Liberty Plaza
New York, NY  10006
Party name: Republic of Argentina
Attorneys for Respondent:
Theodore B. OlsonGibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP(202) 955-8500
    Counsel of Record1050 Connecticut Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC  20036
Party name: NML Capital, Ltd.

Sonntag, 29. September 2013

Words of the President of the Nation Cristina Fernández de Kirchner at the 68º United Nations General Assembly, in New York, United States of North America.


68º United Nations General Assembly: Words of the President of the Nation

Words of the President of the Nation Cristina Fernández de Kirchner at the 68º United Nations General Assembly, in New York, United States of North America.

Good evening everyone; Mr. President of the United Nations General Assembly, a special congratulation, in representation of Antigua and Barbuda, member of the RULAC (The Rule of Law in Armed Conflict Project) and of the CELAC (Community of Latin American and Caribbean States), a honor for all the Latin Americans, your presidency, in this 68º  United Nations meeting.

First of all, our solidarity with the victims of terrorist attacks in Kenya, Pakistan, in general, of all the victims of the terrorist attacks that take place today, in different parts of the world. Ours is not a solidarity, or protocol mention. In our country, Argentina, next to the United States of North America, is the unique two countries of the American continent that have gone through terrorist attacks. In our case, two times: in 1992, with the explosion of the Israel Embassy, in the City of Buenos Aires, and two years later, the explosion of the AMIA, the Jewish community centre in Argentina. Some of their relatives-as always-are here with us and I can see them from here.

Therefore, it is clear that we are before real victims because they are neither combatants, not soldiers, but people that got on a bus, into a bar, into their work places and were surprised by a lethal device, they had not decided to participate in any war, they were not combatant, they were not soldiers, they had not chosen to go fighting. I believe, then, that mainly to those victims and their relatives is with whom we should express our solidarity and our strongest condemnation to all kind of terrorism.

It cannot be avoided in this 68º Assembly, the issue of Syria, almost like a premonition I was here some time ago, at the United Nations, presiding over the session of the Security Council. Argentina is a non-permanent member, during the years 13 and 14 and that August 6, less than a month and half, we proposed the much-needed reform of the Security Council because we upheld that its functioning, its logic dated back to the post-war, dated from the Cold War where the fear to the nuclear holocaust had created that organism made up by the powers that had beaten the Nazi Germany and that then, produced the bipolar world and the Cold War, in views of the fear of a nuclear holocaust that functioning emerged, with the veto power, in order that nobody could press a button and the world blows up in pieces.

That instrument that run since 1945 today has been proved to be absolutely non-functional and obsolete not only before the Syria case, but also before other fronts against the peace and against the world insecurity.

I have heard and I thank, also, the fact that for the first time we can speak in a session so advancely, because there was a little break in the logic and the inertia of what these meetings used to be, where each one comes with a speech format, almost a monologue that prevents to interact, or maybe, to argue or to counter- argue against other speeches and other talks that have taken place here.

I have listened to many attentively, almost all the speeches that have been pronounced, today, on this date. Obviously I have paid much attention to those that have an impact in the global system of decisions, and also-of course-I have paid a lot of attention because I am a strong defender of the multilateralism to the first speech, that of Mr. General Secretary of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon. In many of them, I have heard that as on August 21st, we had spoken on August 6th of the need to reform that Security Council, that the veto right no longer existed, and was adopted-for example-the system that we have in the regional organisms of America, as the UNASUR, as the CELAC, as the MERCOSUR, where the decisions are taken by consensus. Why? Because contrary to an organism of government's administration, where the veto right is necessary to be able to rule, when it comes to conflict management, if one of the parts in conflict, or with interests in the conflict, is entitled the veto power, this right to veto becomes an obstacle to solving the problem. We didn't know what was going to happen 15 or 16 days after. And many mentioned, here that on August 21st the crisis of Syria came out.

In fact, it is quite incomprehensible that they became aware that there was a crisis going on in Syria only on August 21st, when the scandal of the chemical weapons broke out. Syria faces a confrontation since two and a half years ago, more than 150 thousand people have died, and 99. 99 percent of those people have died by means of conventional weapons, not chemical ones. I remember that in the last G-20 Meeting, when  the Syria issue was approached and discussed I set out : “What is the difference  between a  person killed by a machine gun, by an anti-personal land mine, by a missile, by a hand-grenade or by a chemical weapon?”. Maybe I caused some impression, more or less, neither is the first time that the chemical weapons issue is addressed, as if we were for the first time before a phenomenon of chemical weapons or massive devastation weapons.

I remember a leader that participated in that date, in the gas chambers of the Nazi, terrible, the trenches, and also chemical weapons on other places. I also remember,  because I was told so and because I read it, because I had not been born yet, about the nuclear holocaust in Nagasaki and Hiroshima and the consequences of those weapons use during many generations of Japanese people. When already much younger- as the president of Uruguay recalled, when I was young-I was also young, I remember when I was less than 20 years old and many of you may also remember the use of napalm or phosphorous, at the Vietnam War that immortalized those photos receiving the Pulitzer Prize and there were small naked children, a naked girl-I remember it as if it were today-running through a road and having been target of a napalm bombing. I also remember-to be fair-the pain of the North American society seeing at the opening of their airplanes, to disembark, in black bags, the corpses of their soldiers that have left to fight. I imagine each mother's pain, each girlfriend, each sister, each wife, each daughter of each one of those soldiers that died, who knows why, many without knowing why, thousands and thousands of kilometers from their country. How much irrationality, how much injustice. There are not fair wars, there are not fair wars, only the peace is fair.

And we said that on August 6, when we approached the concept of how to deal with the peace and the security and I said that the peace and the security are not military concepts, but political concepts. Today I had a great satisfaction, when listening to the General Secretary of the United Nations, he mentioned this concept that we had given at the Security Council: The peace and the security are not military concepts, but political concepts.

That is why we welcome the fact that an agreement has been reached in the Syria issue. We condemned the direct intervention, the bombing. It was simple: the argument that to avoid deaths we will cause more deaths was groundless from any argumentative and rational point of view. But, besides we didn't speak from any place, we spoke from a very respectful country of those written norms of the international right. My country is signatory of the Non Nuclear Proliferation Treaty, being Argentina one the countries with the most nuclear development of Latin America. Nuclear development that we carry out for peaceful and scientific purposes, we sell nuclear generators to Egypt, to Algeria, to Australia. We also have the nuclear energy intended for medicinal aims, so we do not go around condemning the use of nuclear energy with military ends, and at the same time send out nuclear submarines, as it happens to us Argentines, where the United Kingdom have militarized the South Atlantic and sends nuclear submarines. That is to say we do not take a stance of hypocrisy or double standards. We are not only signatory of the Non-Nuclear Proliferation Treaty, we are also members of the Penal Court, of Rome, also mentioned in his speech by the General Secretary of the United Nations, so when we speak of the condemnation to dictators we speak that we are part of that tribunal and therefore we can be subjected to that tribunal.

We are also part of the Inter-American Commission of Human Rights, with headquarters in Washington; what is curious is that much of those who talk about human rights, about respect to the institutions and to the international right, and to the Penal Court of Rome and to any wandering around speech on human rights, have not signed any of these treaties. And what to speak about the human rights, the Argentine Republic, we have been founding members and prime movers, first, of the creation of the Human Rights Secretariat, in the scope of the United Nations and, then, the Forced Disappearance of People Treaty.

Today, I am also accompanied by the head of the Grandmothers of Plaza de Mayo, who was also with me in Paris to sign that treaty, in which we are also founders. I make mention of the human rights issue because I don’t want to make a mistake, today it was said: “If that is the world in which people want to live”, it was referred to those countries where we really believe that a cultural diversity exists, and that there are values that perhaps, seem to be absolute to us, and relative to others, and vice versa, I have heard speaking about tolerance. I don't like the word tolerance, the word tolerance always implies: “I tolerate you because I don’t have other choice”. I like the word acceptance, to accept the other, to accept that the other is different and that the other accepts that I am different. It was said, here, today, that “if that is the world in which people want to live they should say it and count on the cold logic of the common graves”. Argentina can also speak about common graves, yet-in the middle of XXI century-we are finding out graves with the remains of the thousands of detainees and missing people, during the genocide dictatorship, on March 24 of 1976, similar to the one installed on September 11 of 1973, in the sister Republic of Chile, overthrowing Salvador Allende’s democratic government.

How much we would have liked that so many speeches condemning genocide dictators had existed at that time, how much we had liked that they come to help the Argentine and Chilean nations and many others of the American continent that amid the Cold War, we were the favorable victims of dictators and murderers. But it was also said here, that even if the human rights were respected, it could be the case of somebody that if coincident with the interests of some power, other treatment will be applied. We speak about these aspects, this double standard, the need to end up with this double standard,   and that the resolutions, the decisions of this multilateral organism, like the United Nations, are abided by the weak and the strong ones, by the big and the small ones. We are waiting for it, for example, since 1965, when the plenary of the resolution and many other resolutions after this Assembly and the Decolonization Committee had approved numerous resolutions calling for the two countries to solve the issue through dialogue.  Dialogue, another word that I have heard recurrently in all the speeches, to dialogue because there is a sovereignty controversy on Malvinas territory.  However, regrettably, the United Kingdom had been disregarding those calls and we go on with the double standard, which some people don't like they are mentioned, for the hypocrisies, but that are like the witches, you may not believe in them but there are witches indeed.

I have also heard and I should say with pleasure, I will not only say the things that seem to be double standard, but also with those we agree, that has been recognized at last, the need like essential ground to be able to undo that Gordian knot the Middle East question represents, the need to recognize the Palestine State and the right of the Israel State too, to live within its frontiers safe. Even more, I believe it has been said very accurately, that it is impossible to achieve security for the State of Israel if it is not recognized as well the existence of the Palestinian State. We fully coincide with this characterization.

I have also listened to the new President of the Islamic Republic of Iran and I have listened to the comments that the major powers have made about this government's change. I seem to understand, if I didn’t hear wrong, that there is a sort of new expectation of change in view of the reshuffle of the authorities of the Islamic Republic of Iran that, as you know, we have a difference, since the AMIA case and the Argentine Justice have formally accused 5 Iranian citizens of having had participation in the explosion of the AMIA.

Ten years have gone by since for the first time, who was president of Argentina as from May 25 of 2003, President Néstor Kirchner, requested in this very place, cooperation on part of the Islamic Republic of Iran for investigating the facts.

Year after year, Néstor until year 2007, and since year 2007, who is now speaking, have been calling on cooperation…even more, a year ago, we received a response of the then Iranian official to engage in talks to seek a solution.

Why? Due to a very simple reason: because the lawsuit is deadlocked since 19 years ago, it is not treated and there are 5 Iranian accused, with the only ones that I can and I have to speak so the judge can take a statement to these 5 citizens is, obviously, with the Republic of Iran. It seems too obvious, but many times in this world so peculiar and in my country is peculiar too, it is necessary to explain the obvious stuff.

I also heard today to speak about imperfect elections. I liked the term that a president used, “imperfect elections”. I believe that when Argentina called on cooperation during 10 years and suddenly somebody that has been calling on cooperation says “Well, we will talk, we will cooperate”; it seems to me that there was not other choice but to sit down. This was used domestically in our country to attack us politically.

And also here in the United States for the vulture funds to place us against the American Congress and to say that we were making an agreement with Iran. Yes, right, a treaty with Iran but on what grounds? On nuclear weapons? No. On a strategic alliance to attack the Western? No. On an agreement to convert us to the Islam? Absolutely not.

The agreement was only to unlock the procedural question and to be able to take a statement to those accused by the Argentine Justice and, at the same time, the guarantee of the due process with a commission of international jurist, who were neither Iranian nor Argentineans, that guaranteed, being non-binding, the due process.

In my country, that treaty was already approved 9 months ago, I can almost say that the baby is to be born, if I take it to biological terms and childbirth terms. It was approved by all the corresponding organisms, the Parliament, was published in the Official Gazette, the world knows that Argentina has fulfilled this treaty, to those that used to say that it was highly convenient for Iran, we would say that after 9 years without news neither notification nor approval on part of the authorities, I allow myself to doubt if we were not on the right path when we signed it and said that it was an instrument to unlock the question.

What is true is that there is a new government; and we expect that this new government, to whom I also listened to attentively in the speech and I also read declarations of the current President of the Islamic Republic of Iran, who said that in no way the Holocaust is refused,  I believe it is something very important, at least for me and I think that it is for many global citizens, world citizens that today, even in his speech expressed that the Iranian society had given proofs through this election, removing who had stances, that we all have heard, it is not worthwhile to repeat them, by choosing more moderate stances, a vocation, at least what it was said here, in this very place, with these very microphones, a will of agreeing, speaking, being open, being a democratic society, of peace and of good will.

Well, the President of France mentioned the nuclear file as the important issue of Iran. I want to mention the file AMIA like the other major issue.

They said that they will give proofs opening up to a negotiation in the non use of weapons for military aims, that is to say that they will join -at least I understood so - what we support, the non proliferation. Now we wait they tell us if the agreement has been approved, when it will be approved if negative and if we can have a date of a line-up of the commission, a date so the Argentine judge can travel to Teheran, yes, to Teheran, we are not afraid, we will go to Teheran, we are not afraid. Because we also believe in the goodwill of others and in their wish for peace, we don't have reason not to believe so. All those present here, said that they want peace, that they loved each other. So, we believe them all, but we expect from all of you, coincident opinions between what it was said and what is to be done.

So, I lay out this issue specifically, that I don't have doubts, if being true the words   pronounced here, we will have positive response.

I say this so in order that our deep conviction is neither mistaken with the norms of the International Right, nor mistaken our patience with ingenuousness or stupidity. We want answers; I believe that more than prudential time has gone by. The victims deserve it and I believe that very Islamic Republic of Iran deserves a chance to show the world that it would be different and that there are different actions. I have confidence that it be; I don't have reasons not to do it.

With regard to other questions that I would also be interested to lay out, these would be…I said that we are serial trustworthy of the norms of the International Right and we are also serial victims of other non- written norms, non- written rules but that today,  have a great importance in the economy and the finances world, norms not written by the huge financial centers, by the risk rating agencies, but for those who speculate like the vultures funds with those countries that like Argentina defaulted its debt in the year 2001...

It was also addressed in this place the poverty issue, the need that the boys and the girls have education.

I want to read 2 paragraphs of the General Secretary of the United Nations speech: one that refers to the weapons, where the poverty is addressed and remarks that “meanwhile in moments of urgent human needs, the expenditure in weapons keeps being absurdly high, let´s correct our priorities, let us invest on people instead of wasting thousands of millions in lethal weapons”. Argentina, I´m clear, does neither produce chemical weapons nor even sells conventional weapons.

It would be interesting to know who supply weapons to the groups, I said this at the G-20, to the rebel groups fighting the government of Syria, because, well, it's logical that the government of Syria has the weapons that the State has, we would like to know who provide the weapons of those who face the Syrian government. And this does not mean at all to take part by anyone, it's just to set out things very logical and that today are a real business like the arm business. My God, why we had to wait that 1.000 people have died with chemical weapons to find out that 150.000 had died? Why it was not decreed the arms embargo two years ago to prevent many people died? Well, it should be answered by those who sell weapons, we don't sell them, so we don't have any answer in this scope, although we can imagine it.

I want to read also a very important part where the UN General Secretary was talking about the economic situation. Because, even though in all this Assembly the Syrian issue was addressed, it's clear that the economic crisis that started here in the United States with the fall of Lehman Brothers in 2008 and despite of the speeches and despite of the things, it still producing a volatile situation, fragile, as it was said... Fragile is a term that it was used very much, not here but in the G-20, fragile, we see million of unemployed in the world, a similar situation to the one that Argentina went through in the year 2001, with the default of the debt.

And this is what I was about to say, we are serial victims of those unwritten rules of the lobbyists, the rating agencies, the financial derivatives that keep speculating as vultures on countries that fall into default, buy bunds at very low price and then they seek to collect millionaire amounts. This is the story of Argentina, but it could be the story of any other country very soon.

Argentina, since the administration of President Kirchner, on May 25, 2003, started to analyze how we could get out of the debt that represented 160 percent of the Gross Domestic Product of our country; 25 percent of unemployment; 54 percent of poverty; more than 30 percent of indigence. Many countries today could also be reflected on them.

In 2005, it was produced the first restructuring of the debt: a 76 percent of the creditors joined. During my administration, in the year 2010, the debt swap was reopened and we reached a 93 percent of the debt creditors. You have to take into account that in any country that has a bankruptcy law when the companies go bankrupt, it's required to reach an agreement, at least in Argentina, that 66 percent of the creditors reach an agreement for the bankruptcy judge obliges the rest of the creditors to accept that agreement.

Here in the United States I think it is the same figure, 66 percent. Even more, here in the United States the municipalities can also go bankruptcy and a judge can determine if it is necessary the sustainability of the municipality, there can be less than 66 percent.

The truth is that Argentina in 2010 had reached and has reached an agreement with 93 percent of its creditors. And since then, since the year 2005 up to now, it has paid on time and rigorously each debt maturities. Up to the point of making its last payment a few days ago, it was a bond with local laws, with Argentine laws, payable in Buenos Aires, US$ 2.070 million were paid and from that 160 percent of the Gross Domestic Product, today we are at 45 percent, a little less, of the debt GDP, from which a very great part is within the public sector and foreign currency.

Argentina owes only 8.7 percent of its GDP, both domestic and foreign private holders. But I repeat: we keep fulfilling foursquare.

In the year 2008, seven years after Argentina has defaulted its debt, vulture funds, as they are called, I say that this is a UN encounter between the debt vultures and the war hawks, worst than the birds of Hitchcock; at least Hitchcock was a good director.

But the truth is that they buy for US$ 40 million bonds that today they seek to buy out of the creditor’s agreement that agreed removals, deadlines, periods of time, as every group of creditors that agreed has, and so they established removals and payment terms, they want to received the full amount at face value of the bond, without any deadline, neither removal nor delay. In other words, of the US$ 40 million that they bought in this blessed self-regulating markets, they want to receive today US$ 1.700 million or more.  A dollar yield since year 2008 up to now that exceeds 1,300 percent.

I ask myself and the Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, where are we going to find businessmen dedicated to create jobs, to innovate, to invest in production, in generating jobs when actually, thanks to a sort of economics of casino gambling, someone buys 40 million dollars in defaulted bonds and then get a Court ruling that tells them that they are able to collect 1.3, 1.7 billion dollars.

This is not a problem of Argentina; this is a World’s problem. That is why we also thank the Republic of France for having appeared before the Supreme Court of the United States as “amicus curiae” (friend of the court). We also thank the former chairman of the (International) Monetary Fund, Anne Krueger, who is not particularly a friend of Argentina, who did the same.

And we also remember the US Treasury Secretary, Paul O’Neil, who, when they decided to leave Argentina on its own, in the year 2001, undergoing a social and institutional crisis and with more than 30 deaths due to the repression in the streets, said that American or North American plumbers did not have to pay for the Argentines’ party.

I say today that the million of Argentines who have recovered their jobs, the million of Argentines who are hopeful and able to dream again, the scientists who have returned to the country, the children who have education again, do neither have to pay for the lobbyists’ party, who take part in political campaigns and finance the campaigns of the politicians here, have the sufficient lobby power to make the international financial system to stagger.

Unbelievable! And look, little time has gone since Paul O’Neill statement and my words today. And we are not asking for anything, we are just asking them to let us pay.

Unbelievable! If we had not defaulted our debt, today they do not let us to pay the debt. It is almost absurd in a world that is debated in debt restructuring, in millions of men and women, even here in the United States, one can see men a women who have no job, who have lost their homes, who have seen their employment diminished, not to mention in a devastated Europe.

Obviously, Argentina and many that are sitting here are not lucky enough to be countries that issue reserve currency. But the truth is that we have proved our will to pay, which I believe should be acknowledged unless, well, that actually a doctrine to punish Argentina wants to be set up because Argentina was able to climb out of the hole, it was able create jobs, generate growth, to pay to its creditors without the recipes that from the International Monetary Fund wanted to impose.

By the way, also the need to define a global law, a global regulation of markets and an intervention. Because there have been fantastic statements at the G-20, regarding the tax havens, the risk rating agencies, the capital transfers. But the truth is that the world requires a global regulation for global governance, the same way that the respect to the resolutions of the Security Council, of United Nations' Assembly is asked, we ask also for regulations and the respect to the countries' sovereignty, mainly to the countries that want to honor their commitments.

At last, I want to address you all in this special day when the war, the violations to human rights or other violations, maybe more subtle such as losing the job, losing the rights, losing your home, losing the hope, are mixed together.

I believe that, definitively, our obligation as global leaders is to build a really different history. Many of those who have come here had a little bit ambiguous speeches, between hopeful and disappointed because they had not been able to do what they wanted, as if suddenly, it would have been a sort of caprice, as wanting to do something, they were not allowed to and they got upset.

I believe that the only thing that one cannot do when has the responsibility to lead a country and, most of all, when you have the possibility to lead a powerful country; it is getting angry and much less making mistakes. This is the only thing that we cannot do: make mistakes. Because mistakes are not paid by the leaders that make the decisions or make the imperfect choices, the mistakes are paid with human lives, in a war, but also with human lives if they are of the economy, with unemployment, lack of healthcare, lack of education, lack of dwellings, lack of security, and cheap labor for the drug trafficking that we firmly decide fighting.

One of the keys to fight drug trafficking is to end cheap labor in emerging and underdeveloped countries and also putting an end to the money laundering coming from the drug trafficking in the central countries. Because the truth is that the drug trafficking money, it’s not laundered within the countries that produce the raw material. The drug trafficking money is laundered in the central countries. It is also good to mention it, given that much has been said about drug trafficking and many other things.

I will finish with a phrase that the Secretary General of United Nations has said, I liked it very much, it seemed very appropriate to me the call he made and that was, precisely, a call to turn hope into action through hard work, commitment, the ability and the integrity, and he finished by saying: “With passion but most of all with compassion,” - and I am a person with so much passion, sometimes they say I  go too far with passion and that I am a bit strong in my speeches, but well – “we can build the future our people want – and that our world needs.”

Compassion, it is not the first time I hear that word, I must confess that I have heard it many years ago and very often in my country. Perhaps, at that moment I understood this passion thing, didn't I? An Argentine Cardinal that today is the Pope pronounced that word and still pronounces it, who I also thank as a Christian for the fundamental intervention he did in the Syrian situation. Compassion, passion for hope, passion for the future and compassion towards those in need, those more vulnerable, the ones that wait for everything, the ones that have done nothing to deserve the extreme poverty and to be far from God’s reach. With compassion for all those who are victims of war, of unemployment, of extreme poverty, of our own failures as global leaders.

Thank you very much and good evening everyone

*NOTE: This is a translation of a transcript.