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MENDOZA.- Despite the agreement between Argentina and Chile over the truck conflict on the border, which began two weeks ago due to an outbreak of coronavirus infections in trans-Andean customs personnel, which left stranded more than 3000 trucks on this side of the Andes Mountains, Argentine drivers rejected the flexibilizations provided for in the agreement, so the blockade in the international corridor is maintained.

According to the Mendoza Truck Owners Association (Aprocam), the drivers are opposed to testing 70% of the workers, so they ask that they be totally random again, as was the case before the unilateral measure of swabbing 100% of the carriers ordered since January 15. They also took a dim view of the new requirement to have, as of February 2, a negative PCR test of less than 48 hours which must be uploaded to the Integrated System of Argentine Health Information (Sisa) or have the verification QR code. This, to avoid the delivery of apocryphal certificates since Chile denounced on several occasions the appearance of documentation of dubious origin.

Thus the things, as he could know THE NATION, yesterday the forceful measure of the truckers of not continuing through Chile and preventing them from entering Argentina was maintained, after knowing on Friday the pact signed by the ambassadors of both countries. In fact, the drivers, along with businessmen and diplomatic authorities, debated and negotiated alternatives to unblock the inconvenience that causes more delays and millionaire losses.

Carriers reject health controls for Covid at Chilean customs at the border crossing in Mendoza
Carriers reject health controls for Covid at Chilean customs at the border crossing in MendozaMarcelo Aguilar – THE NATION

“There is discomfort about the new flexibilizations, since they did not satisfy the carriers, who demand that the tests be done at random, and that they only require the PCR test 72 hours in advance, as was happening,” sources from the sector told this diary.

In the latest attention measures and requirements agreed by protocol between both countries, the Minister of the Interior of Chile, Rodrigo Delgado, the Argentine ambassador in Chile, Rafael Bielsa, and Nicolás Monckeberg, his counterpart in Argentina, who were in permanent contact with President Alberto Fernández and the head of the Truckers union, Pablo Moyano. Likewise, it was decided to increase the sanitary control points for trucks from 7 to 14.

More than 150 trucks marched through downtown Mendoza;  they passed through the Government House of Mendoza and the Chilean Consulate in that city
More than 150 trucks marched through downtown Mendoza; they passed through the Government House of Mendoza and the Chilean Consulate in that cityMarcelo Aguilar – THE NATION

In the case of those drivers whose antigen test yielded a positive result, they must complete their period of strict isolation under the conditions and in the place established by the health authorities of the respective countries. Likewise, carriers who do not have a negative PCR in a certified laboratory will undergo mandatory testing with antigen.


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