About a thousand people attended a memorial mass in Buenos Aires on Thursday (1 July) for the late President Juan Peron who died tow years ago.
About a thousand people attended a memorial mass in Buenos Aires on Thursday (1 July) for the late President Juan Peron who died tow years ago. General Peron, who spent 18 years in exile after being ousted by a military coup in 1955, returned to Argentina three years ago and emerged triumphant in the following presidential elections.
SYNOPSIS: After his death, General Peron was succeeded by his widow, Maria Estela Peron, who herself was deposed in March this year by the military.
The 40-minute memorial mass was hold in the church of San Francisco in Buenos Aires' San Felmo district. Top ranking members of the late President's government were among the congregation. They included the former Economic Minister, Alfredo Gomez Morales.
Also among the worshippers was the former Speaker of the Senate, Italo Luder. He was interim President during Senora Poron's illness last year.
Although the church was filled to overflowing, there was no evidence of official security. Most of the congregation were old guard Peronists, but there was no sign of the late General's widow. Senora Peron has been under house arrest since the military took over from her four months ago. The day after the mass, at least 25 police were killed in a bomb attack, said to be the work of the left wing Montonero guerrillas, who claim to be the true followers of Peron.
Peronism still enjoys a wide popular following among the working classes of Argentina. Traditional supporters of Peron are generally conservative in their politics, having little in common with left-wing guerrilla groups. They do, however, have two things in common ... their opposition to the military government and a desire for return to civilian rule.