Isabel de Peron, president of Argentina, making her first speech to the public since returning as president after a month's rest, from the balcony of Government House, Buenos Aires in 1974.First female president for Argentina Maria Estela Isabel Martinez de Peron has been sworn in as interim leader of the Argentine Republic.

During her term in office the country was racked by labour strikes and political violence including hundreds of political murders.Isabelita failed to win the hearts of the Argentine public. She lived in the shadow of Eva Peron, Juan Peron's second wife.'Evita' was adored by a majority of Argentines but she never became president and died of cancer in 1952.

Maria Isabel Martinez de Peron (also known as Isabel Martinez de Peron), from La Rioja, Argentina, The third wife of Argentinean deceased president Juan Domingo Peron, was both vice-president and first lady of Argentina. Following her husband dead in office in 1974, she served as president of Argentina until she was overthrown in 1976 by a military junta that began a bloody military dictatorship.1974: First female president for Argentina.Maria Estela Isabel Martinez de Peron has been sworn in as interim leader of the Argentine Republic.Her husband President Juan Peron delegated responsibility after doctors said he required 24-hour medical attention and rest.Mrs Peron, a former cabaret dancer, is now Argentina's first female president and at 43 the youngest Latin American head of state.Her 78-year-old husband has not been seen in public for two weeks and is reported to be seriously ill with bronchitis and influenza.In a state broadcast, Mrs Peron said her husband was "conscious that his state of health prevents him from directly attending to government affairs until his recovery".Mrs Peron, known to the Argentine public as 'Isabelita', is Juan Peron's third wife and became vice-president after his return to power in September 1973.The couple met in a night club in Panama during Juan Peron's years of exile after being ousted from power in a military coup in 1955.Argentina's main power groups, including the armed forces and labour unions, are understood to have pledged Mrs Peron their support.But regional experts say Isabelita will be inheriting a weak economy in a country suffering from political violence and civil unrest.Her regime inherited problems of inflation, labour unrest, and political violence. She attempted to solve the problems by appointing new Cabinet ministers, printing money to pay foreign debts, and imposing a state of siege in November 1974 as the country was on the brink of anarchy. The controversy surrounding her social-welfare minister López Rega, who was forced into exile for graft and terrorist activities, did not help her situation. Moderate military officers urged her to resign, but she stubbornly refused; the economic and political situation continued to worsen, and on March 24, 1976, she was seized by air force officers and held under house arrest for five years. In 1981 she was convicted of corrupt practices, but she was paroled in the summer of that year and went into exile in Spain. Pardoned in late 1983, she submitted her resignation as head of the Partido Justicialista, the Peronist party, from her home in Madrid in 1985. In 2007 an Argentine judge issued a warrant for her arrest on charges of allowing the armed forces to commit human rights abuses during her presidency.

Argentinian president Isabel de Peron, nee Maria Estela Martinez, at the oath taking ceremony for the new cabinet in Buenos Aires, Argentina. WIth her are economy minister Doctor Emilio Mondelli, interior minister Doctor Ares (in glasses) and foreign minister Doctor Quijano (far right)

Although Juan Perón was not allowed to return to Argentina, he retained control of the Peronist movement. It remained a strong political force in the country despite being suppressed under the provisional military government of General Pedro Aramburu. With a return to civilian rule following the election of Arturo Frondizi in 1958, the Peronists were again permitted to participate in politics, and they showed surprising strength in the 1962 election. The military intervened, however, to annul the results and depose Frondizi.During the new military regime of President José María Guido a conflict over control of the government took place between two factions within the military: the Reds, who favored a hard line against the Peronists, and the Blues, who favored a more moderate constitutional line. The Blues gained ascendancy, and in July 1963 new elections were held in which Arturo Illia won the presidency. Illia took a conciliatory approach toward the Peronists, permitting them to put up candidates in the congressional elections scheduled for March 1965.It was during this period that Isabel Perón received her political baptism, travelling to Argentina as Perón's emissary to promote those candidates endorsed by him and to try to build support among the new generation of Peronist leaders who favored Peronism without Perón.The Peronists not only made significant gains in the congressional elections, but won two important by-elections in April and May of the following year, which foreshadowed a possible Peronist victory in the crucial presidential election in 1969. In June, alarmed by the success of the Peronists, the military ousted President Illia and installed General Juan Carlos Onganía as president.Rejecting the transitional role of the prior military regimes, the Onganía government suppressed not only Peronism, but all conventional political activity and announced its intention to remain in power for an indefinite period of time. By 1969, however, Argentina's growing economic distress had contributed to the outbreak of political violence, which culminated in the kidnaping and murder of former president Aramburu, by a group of left-wing Peronists called the Montoneros. Increasing concern among top military leaders about the ability of Onganía to control the growing wave of guerrilla attacks led to his replacement by General Roberto Levinston. Political unrest continued to grow, however, and in March 1971 General Alejandro Lanusse, who was known to favor a return to democracy, assumed the presidency.

Argentinian acting president, Isabel de Peron arriving in Madrid to attend to President Juan Peron during a period of illness.When Peron died a year after his triumphant return to political office in 1973, Isabelita remained Vice-President.

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