The protests of the Peruvian people staged against the dictatorial government of Dina Boluarte have been taking place for more than a month and, in recent days; have taken on more intensive and generalised form. Road blocks and important demonstrations in several regions of the country have been routine, like in Puno, Arequipa, Junín, Cusco and Apurímac.
The unanimous cry of the people raised in protest is to demand the resignation of Boluarte, the closure of Congress, the immediate call for elections and the freedom of Pedro Castillo. If these demands are rejected, the protests will intensify, in a more resilient manner. For their part, representatives of the government have not been able to hide a series of highly repressive measures, which seek to manipulate the circumstances and control the crisis created by the ruling classes of the neighbouring country.
Since the ouster and imprisonment of democratically elected President Pedro Castillo in Peru political crisis is prolonging in the country as people’s revolt against the rightist government is spreading across the country, and the government is increasing repressive measures instead of taking measure for a democratic approach. Daily protesters around Peru have blocked highways with trees, boulders and tires, taken over regional airports and burned buildings, impacting goods transport, business and the operation of some key mines in the world’s No. 2 copper producer.
Demonstrators are demanding the dissolution of Congress, a new constitution, and the resignation of Boluarte, who as vice president took over with Castillo was ousted.
National strike in Cusco. Photo: Wilson Chilo / Wayka
Tens of thousands of Peruvians from across the country arrived in the capital Lima to take part in a national strike called for today, January 19, to reject the legislative coup against former president Pedro Castillo and demand the immediate resignation of the de-facto president Dina Boluarte.
Peasant and Indigenous communities together with members of numerous social organizations and trade unions from all regions of Peru traveled in caravans to reach Lima. The caravans were organized as a part of the second ‘Marcha de los Cuatro Suyos’ or ‘March from the Four Corners’ to bring the voices of the excluded masses of deep Peru to the seat of power.
The organizations have called to hold marches from different parts of Lima to the center of the city against the Boluarte government under the banner of ‘Toma de Lima’ or ‘Taking of Lima.’ The marches are especially organized to condemn the brutal police and military repression the de-facto government has unleashed against peaceful protests as well as to demand justice for the victims.
People are protesting Rightist government moves ousting President Pedro Castillo.
Tweeting from jail on Tuesday, Castillo said history will remember Peruvians “murdered for defending the country from the coup dictatorship,” and that “terror is the last bullet of a regime cornered by the people.”
At least 47 people have died in connection with the protests, according to official government figures published on Tuesday. This includes 39 protesters, as well as seven civilians who perished in “traffic accidents linked to protest roadblocks,” and a police officer.
Media reports said:
Protesters in the southern city of Juliaca ambushed a patrol car after 17 local civilians were killed the day prior, in a confrontation with police.
At least 14 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have condemned the coup in Peru, backing President Pedro Castillo. The unelected regime, which has killed dozens of protesters, has the staunch support of the US and the region’s right wing.
More than a dozen countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have condemned the coup in Peru and backed democratically elected President Pedro Castillo.
Meanwhile, the US government has staunchly supported the coup regime, which has suspended civil liberties, imprisoned Castillo for 18 months without trial, and unleashed extreme violence on Peruvian protesters, killing dozens and wounding hundreds.
The US ambassador in Peru, Lisa Kenna, worked for the CIA for 9 years, as well as the Pentagon. One day before the coup against elected left-wing President Pedro Castillo, Kenna met with Peru’s defense minister, who then ordered the military to turn against Castillo.
The US ambassador in Peru, a veteran CIA agent named Lisa Kenna, met with the country’s defense minister just one day before democratically elected left-wing President Pedro Castillo was overthrown in a coup d’etat and imprisoned without trial.
Peru’s defense minister, a retired brigadier general, ordered the military to turn against Castillo.
Early elections, vacancy motion or dissolution of the Congress are some of the possible solutions to the political crisis in Peru, none of them flattering for Pedro Castillo, who recently arrived to his first year in power.
However, these options do not represent an escape from the deep and profound instability this nation has been experiencing for a long time; only that the 52-year-old rural teacher is now the one on the spotlight.
Castillo’s first year in office has been stormy, characterized by multiple and continuous obstacles to the point several experts have agreed he would not be able to serve the five years for which he was elected. Apparently, in that country, each new appointment seems like deja vu, as the same thing has happened with the few last heads of state.
US policy towards Latin America and the Caribbean continued in a seamless transition from Trump to Biden, but the terrain over which it operated shifted left. The balance between the US drive to dominate its “backyard” and its counterpart, the Bolivarian cause of regional independence and integration, continued to tip portside in 2021 with major popular electoral victories in Chile, Honduras, and Peru. These follow the previous year’s reversal of the coup in Bolivia.
Central has been the struggle of the ALBA (Bolivarian Alliance for the Peoples of our America) countries – particularly Venezuela, Cuba, and Nicaragua – against the asphyxiating US blockade and other regime-change measures. Presidential candidate Biden pledged to review Trump’s policy of US sanctions against a third of humanity. The presumptive intention of the review was to ameliorate the human suffering caused by these unilateral coercive measures, considered illegal under international law. Following the review, Biden has instead tightened the screws, more effectively weaponizing the COVID crisis.
This last week was one of the tensest since Pedro Castillo became Peru’s president last May. The Congress, with a right-wing member’s majority, is eager to disarm the executive branch, so they can technically annul Castillo’s electoral triumph over the extreme right candidate Keiko Fujimori.
For those who do not follow the South American country’s internal policies, this may seem like a last-minute move from the right sectors, but it is not. The coup was immediately set into motion once Castillo won the presidential runoff early this year.
The first step was to cast doubts over his electoral victory, and clearly and strongly divide the country over this issue. To do so, Keiko Fujimori spread accusations of systematic fraud in the polling stations where Castillo won, and fill the media with this argument to poison the public opinion against the leftist candidate. At the same time, she filed appeals to throw out 200,000 votes, mainly in impoverished rural areas, before the National Office of Electoral Processes (ONPE) to delay as much as possible Castillo’s legal victory. However, they could not succeed, which must not be interpreted as they did not cause damage to the reputation of the recently elected president in the process.