Video: Argentina poverty questioned

Government accused of massaging data to give false impression on number of poor.

    Latin America, like many parts of the world, is continuing to struggle with the global recession.

    The United Nations estimates poverty is increasing as countries report rising unemployment figures.

    But there are growing concerns in Argentina that the government is manipulating the official statistics on poverty.

    Many people there say the actual numbers are far higher than the government is willing to admit.

    Many middle-class Argentines have lost their jobs amid the recession, and have turned to soup kitchens to get food.

    'Embarassing' facts

    Fifteen percent of the population is poor, according to govenrment data, but people working in soup kitchens say that more and more people are coming for free food.
     
    The national rate of poverty across the country is nearer 40 per cent, the Catholic University in Argentina has concluded after its own independent study.

    Many Argentines say that President Cristina Kirchner is manipulating the data on poverty due to embarassment over the fact that inflation and poverty have increased.

    They also say that it is in the government's interest to issue more postive data on poverty because 30 per cent of the Argentine debt is tied to inflation, and that lower poverty figures mean the government can save billion of dollars on payments.

    Teresa Bo reports from a soup kitchen in Buenos Aires, the Argentine capital.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    How Moscow lost Riyadh in 1938

    Russian-Saudi relations could be very different today, if Stalin hadn't killed the Soviet ambassador to Saudi Arabia.

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    The War in October: What Happened in 1973?

    Al Jazeera examines three weeks of war from which both Arabs and Israelis claimed to emerge victorious.