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Demonstrations and blockages resumed in around 30 provinces of Peru on Wednesday to demand the resignation of President Dina Boluarte, who succeeded the deposed Pedro Castillo in December.
Demonstrations demanding the resignation of the President of Peru Dina Boluarte, who succeeded Pedro Castillo in December deposed by Parliament, resumed on Wednesday January 4 in several regions of the country after a break during the end-of-year holidays, announced the government.
Clashes with the security forces, particularly in the center and south of the country where the ousted president enjoys support, have so far left 22 dead and more than 600 injured.
“There are ten blocking points, notably in Puno”, in the south-east of the country, Prime Minister Alberto Otarola told the press, after the establishment of a crisis management center in Lima. According to the ombudsman, 30 of the country’s 195 provinces are affected.
>> To read also: “How Peru entered a zone of political turbulence”
In the capital Lima, the police dispersed with tear gas a crowd of dozens of demonstrators who had left Plaza Dos de Mayo and were trying to reach the Congress. In Arequipa (south), the police were trying to unblock roads using the same method, according to an AFP correspondent. Some traffic lanes are also blocked in the regions of Junin (center), Cusco and Apurimac (southeast), according to AFP and the local press.
The rail link between Cusco and the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu, Peru’s tourist jewel, was suspended on Wednesday as a precaution and for an indefinite period to ensure the safety of tourists, PeruRail said in a statement. On Tuesday, 2,000 tourists were evacuated from the site, police said. The Ministry of Culture clarified that access to the citadel and the archaeological parks took place normally on Wednesday, despite the demonstrations.
In December, thousands of visitors were stranded at Machu Picchu and Cusco as train service was disrupted and the airport closed following an attempted takeover by protesters.
In regions where demonstrations resumed on Wednesday, public buildings and airports are guarded by the police and the army, the military being authorized to maintain order after the proclamation of the state of emergency in mid- December.
call for calm
In Lima, Dina Boluarte called for an end to the demonstrations, “for peace, calm and unity to promote the development of the country”. On Wednesday, Peru’s president asked former Bolivian leader Evo Morales not to interfere in Peru’s internal affairs and said she was “considering” blocking his access to the country.
Marches were organized throughout the country, mainly by right-wing and center-right movements, to demand “peace and an end to violence”.
The Peruvian Parliament voted on December 20 to advance the general elections from 2026 to April 2024, in an attempt to stem the crisis and put an end to the protests triggered by the dismissal, on December 7, of Pedro Castillo and his placement in detention.