The prosecutor general’s office in Peru, the Fiscalía, opened a preliminary investigation into President Dina Boluarte and five of her current and fomer cabinet members for possible acts of “genocide” in the repression of the mass protests sparked by the ouster of president Pedro Castillo last month. The announcement came a day after 17 were killed, including two teenagers, as protesters attempted to occupy the local airport in Juliaca, Puno region. The total death toll in the unrest since Castillo’s ouster now stands at 47. Peru’s southern regions of Puno, Cuzco, Arequipa and Madre de Dios have been almost entirely cut off by roadblocks since the protests remobilized with the new year. The giant Antapaccay copper mine in Cuzco region, operated by the Swiss multinational Glencore, is also under occupation by protesters, who set company vehicles on fire and clashed with police sent to remove them. (Photo: Max Nina/Pachamama Radio via Wayka)
After a pause for the holidays, protests over the ouster of president Pedro Castillo remobilized in Peru. Roadblocks and barricades have halted traffic on major arteries through the southern regions of Arequipa, Apurímac, Puno and Cuzco, while in the city of Cuzco public transportation and the markets have all been shut down. The new protests have been strongest in the south of the country. A year-end summit of Defense Fronts of the Southern Macro-Region was held in the city of Arequipa, where a call was issued for an “indefinite” nationwide general strike. (Photo: Malú Ramahí/Wayku via Twitter)
Amid ongoing protests over the removal from power of president Pedro Castillo, Peru’s Anti-Terrorist Directorate (DIRCOTE) raided the Lima offices of the country’s main union of peasants and rural workers. Dozens on the premises were held there and interrogated, without access to legal counsel, for 16 hours. Rural leaders from across the country were gathered at the national headquarters of the Campesino Confederation of Peru (CCP) at the time of the raid to discuss coordination of protest actions. In the days immediately before and after the raid, government offices were burned by protesters in Arequipa, in Huancavelica, and in Ayacucho. (Photo: Wayka)
Thousands have filled the streets of cities and towns across Peru since the ousting and detention of president Pedro Castillo. Protesters occupied the airport in the southern city of Arequipa, while mass mobilizations and road blockades also continue in Cuzco and Trujillo. Protests turned violent in Andahuaylas province, where a National Police station was overrun in the town of Chincheros. At least seven are dead in the protests by official figures—six in Andahuaylas, and five under age 18. Defense Minister Alberto Otárola announced that a state of emergency has been instated nationwide. The Defense Ministry tweeted an announcement that the armed forces will take control of strategic points including airports and hydroelectric plants in the affected areas. Alarmingly, neither announcement even mentioned Peru’s new president, Dina Boluarte, who was sworn in by Congress hours after lawmakers voted to remove Castillo last week. (Photo via KawsachunNews)
Under the slogans “Fujimori nunca más” and “Keiko No Va,” many thousands of Peruvians filled the streets of Lima and cities across the country to repudiate the presidential candidacy of Keiko Fujimori, contender of the far-right Fuerza Popular party and daughter of imprisoned ex-dictator Alberto Fujimori. The lead contingent in the rally that filled downtown Lima’s Plaza San Martín was composed of survivors of the reign of terror during the 1992-2000 Fujimori dictatorship. Large mobilizations were also held in Arequipa, Cuzco, Huancayo, Ayacucho, Huánuco, Tacna, and other cities. Two weeks ahead of a run-off vote, despite far greater campaign and media resources, Fujimori is trailing her rival Pedro Castillo of Perú Libre, a left-populist former teacher and union leader from a rural area of northern Cajamarca region—far from the center of power in Lima. (Photo via Twitter)
Peru’s Ministry of Energy & Mines (MINEM) officially suspended the license of the giant copper mine planned for Tia Maria, in the agricultural Tambo Valley of Arequipa region. The project had been the focus of years of protest mobilizations by local residents, and a new general strike had been declared after MINEM finally issued a construction permit to the project’s developer, Southern Copper Corporation, in July. In revoking the permit, MINEM implicitly invoked the protests, saying the “spaces for dialogue had not been generated” before the license was granted. (Photo: Diario Uno)
Potato farmers across Peru's sierras blocked roads with their tractors and trucks for weeks, demanding a subsidized distribution system for the staple crop in the face of plummeting prices. The National Commission of Potato Producers (Conapropa) struck a deal with the government, but wildcat protests continued in Huancavelica, Huánuco, Junín, Ayacucho and Arequipa regions. Finally, farmers advanced on Lima in a cross-country motorcade. This forced Conapropa leader Fernando Gutiérrez back to the table, meeting with Agriculture Minister José Arista to strike a better deal. Huancavelica regional governor Glodoaldo Álvarez denied government claims of over-production by farmers, and pointed to massive imports since the 2009 Free Trade Agreement with the US. Farmers at the roadblocks carried banners with slogans such as "¡Abajo el TLC!" (Down with the FTA!). (Photo: La República)
Protests are breaking out across Peru following the Christmas eve "humanitarian pardon" of imprisoned ex-dictator Alberto Fujimori by President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (PPK). The pardon came three days after PPK survived a congressional vote on removing him from office over his embroilment in the Odebrecht scandal. A right-wing bloc led by the dictator's son Kenji Fujimori abstained from the vote, allowing PPK to survive in office—and raising obvious accusations of a quid pro quo. (Photo: Tomate Colectivo)
Peruvian campesina Maxima Acuña de Chaupe and her family are suing Newmont Mining in US federal court, claiming the company used violence and threats to try to evict them from their home to make way for the controversial Conga open-pit gold project. The lawsuit charges Newmont with "instructing, authorizing, aiding and abetting, conspiring in and/or ratifying a violent harassment campaign" against Acuña's family.
Some 70,000 are displaced and at least 70 dead as Peru's heaviest rains in two decades—linked to an "abnormal" El Niño—unleashed flash-floods and landslides across the country.
Opponents of the disputed Tia Maria mega-mine held a dissident contingent at the parade marking the 475th anniversary of the founding of Arequipa, Peru.
Peru's government declared a two-month period of martial law in the southern region of Arequipa where residents are protesting the construction of a copper mine.