March 30, 2023

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Protests continue in Peru after another death

Protests against President Dina Boluarte and parliament were set to continue in Peru on Monday, and on Saturday, for the first time in Lima, one person died during demonstrations that turned violent.

With this, the number of victims has increased to 48 since December 7. “The mobilizations will continue as there is no sign of the administrator (Dina Poluarte) resigning,” Jeronimo Lopez of the General Confederation of Workers of Peru (CGTP), who called for a nationwide rally on Tuesday afternoon, told AFP. Under the slogan “Dina Quit Now”.

“People are sure that unless he resigns, they will not stop their struggle,” adds the trade unionist, adding that there is no way out of the crisis.

Demonstrators are demanding the resignation of President Tina Polwart, the dissolution of parliament and a constituent assembly.

The unrest began after the impeachment and arrest of leftist President Pedro Castillo on December 7, accused of attempting a coup by seeking to dissolve parliament, which was preparing to oust him from power.

The crisis is also a reflection of the great divide between the capital and the impoverished provinces, which supported Native American President Castillo and saw him elected as revenge for Lima’s humiliation.

In Lima, the “National Tina Resign Now March” will begin Tuesday afternoon at 2 de Mayo Square.

It comes after Victor Sandistepan, 55, died on Saturday of a fractured skull during protests in the Peruvian capital.

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“We want justice to be done,” the deceased’s sister, Elizabeth Sandistephan, told reporters.

This was the first death during the protests in Lima.

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According to the ombudsman’s office, seven people are still hospitalized after the protests in Lima, including one in critical condition. According to the same source, 28 police officers were injured during these clashes.

Last week, Ms Boluarte told foreign reporters that the groups behind the violent protests were “trying to kill someone in Lima”.

“They say a death in Lima is worth a hundred in the province,” he lamented.

Anger grew when parliament on Saturday rejected Ms Boluarte’s proposal to bring the elections back to this year in an attempt to quell the protests.

On Monday, the Peruvian parliament will vote again on a proposal to bring forward general elections to 2023 at a meeting from 10am local (3pm GMT), but many observers are skeptical, while most representatives have already rejected the proposal on Saturday morning.

“I regret that the parliament did not reach an agreement and I ask them to put the interests of the country before the interests of the parties,” Ms Poluarte said in an interview with the Trome newspaper on Sunday.

A proposal by pro-Fujimori MP Hernando Guerra Garcia of the right-wing Fuerza Popular (FP) was rejected by 65 to 45 votes. On Saturday, the Left urged the Constituent Assembly to introduce an amendment to hold a referendum. Contributes to the bill’s failure.

The new proposal calls for elections to be held in October.

“The truth is that they (representatives) are playing with fire. Their vision is a complete denial of reality. They want to stay (the end of their mandate) until 2026”, assesses sociologist Giovanna Penaflor de Imasen. and the Institute for Political Research.

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“The situation is going to get worse. There is a significant number of deaths in politics today and it cannot continue like this,” he said.

According to a survey conducted by the Institute of Peruvian Studies (IEP), 73% of Peruvians call for elections this year. 89% disapprove of Parliament’s approach, already discredited in public opinion for months.