Between April 1997 and March 1998, at the urging of the Carter Center's Council of Presidents and Prime Ministers of the Americas, 28 current heads of government and 14 former heads of government signed a written pledge to accept a moratorium of two years on purchasing sophisticated weapons. Argentina's President Raúl Alfonsín was among them.
Carter Center representatives met with officials in Argentina as part of a fact-finding tour in January 1997 to prepare for the April consultation "Agenda for the Americas for the 21st Century." The delegation included former U.S. President Jimmy Carter; Rosalynn Carter; the late Dr. Robert Pastor, then director of the Center's Americas Program; and Dr. Jennifer McCoy of the Americas Program. Meetings were held with Argentina President Carlos Menem and other government officials. The mission, which included stops in Brazil, Chile, and Jamaica, helped to set the agenda for discussions at the April 1997 consultation.
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Size: 2,780,400 square kilometers
Population below poverty line: 30 percent
Life expectancy: 77 years
Ethnic groups: white (mostly Spanish and Italian), mestizo; Amerindian; other nonwhite groups
Religions: nominally Roman Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, others
Languages: Spanish (official), English, Italian, German, French, indigenous (Mapudungun, Quechua)
Source: U.S. Central Intelligence Agency World Factbook 2015