‘They don’t think we’re human’: Buenos Aires marketplace traders fight eviction
A recent protest by street vendors was met with a violent crackdown but was their eviction required in order to order the citys public space?
An unsettling quiet has fallen over a stretch of the usually noisy Feria de San Telmo Sunday market. Artisans should be lining these cobbled streets selling intricate macrame jewellery and Argentinian leather purses to crowds of tourists from all over the world. Deafening percussion bands, accompanied by dancers, and street vendors selling empanadas and arepas should be making their route up the road.
The market is one of the largest handicrafts and antiques carnivals in Buenos Aires, popular with tourists and locals alike, and runs the length of Defensa, the main thoroughfare in the barrio of San Telmo.
But now the kerbs at this end of the fair are empty. The city government is evicting dealers in the name of “ordering” the space. Some had worked here for as many as 12 years.
Since vendors received the news in January that the authority had passed the reorganisation plan, they have held regular protest marches along the blocks where they used to work.
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