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Parliament of Peru advances elections for April 2024 in search of a way out of the crisis

In the plenary session, the proposal reached 93 votes in favor, 30 against and 1 abstention. The reform required the support of 87 legislators, and also contemplates that the current ruler, Dina Boluarte, hand over the mandate to the winner of the new elections in July 2024.

The president of Congress, José Williams, explained at the end of the session that for this reform to come into effect, it must be ratified in a new vote in the coming months.

The left-wing benches, which support Castillo, had asked to include the call for a referendum for a Constituent Assembly in the vote, but the request did not prosper.

Boluarte, whose resignation is also being demanded by the protesters, assures that she is willing to leave within the new deadlines.

According to surveys, 83% of citizens are in favor of bringing the elections forward to resolve the crisis.

This Tuesday, a delegation from the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), led by its secretary Tania Reneaum, arrived in Lima to meet with authorities “to receive information on the institutional crisis and protests.”

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The IACHR met with Boluarte at the Government Palace and plans to visit some cities in the country.

-Asylum in Mexico-

According to a latest report from the Ombudsman’s Office, since it began on December 7, the protests have left 21 dead and more than 650 injured due to clashes between protesters and security forces.

Castillo lost power that day after attempting to shut down Congress, intervene in the judicial system, rule by decree, and call a Constituent Assembly.

His request did not have institutional support, so he was arrested on charges of rebellion, when he tried to reach the Mexican embassy to request asylum, which sparked a diplomatic crisis.

The Peruvian government granted this Tuesday the safe-conduct (permit) so that the family of ousted President Pedro Castillo can leave the country, in compliance with international diplomatic conventions.

The president’s wife and children have been at the Mexican embassy in Lima since Tuesday morning and were granted asylum, as confirmed earlier by Mexican Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard.

The Peruvian government, which has considered Andrés Manuel López Obrador’s support for Castillo as “interference” in the country’s internal affairs, declared the ambassador of that country in Lima, Pablo Monroy, persona non grata on Tuesday and gave him “72 hours to leave” the country.

Peruvian Foreign Minister Ana Cecilia Gervasi recalled that Castillo’s wife, Lilia Paredes, is being investigated by the Peruvian Prosecutor’s Office as a possible coordinator of an alleged criminal organization that her husband allegedly led.

Also read: Pedro Castillo’s lawyers give up their defense without explaining the reasons

He assured that the Peruvian government reserves the right to request his extradition if the local justice system requires it at any time.

– Will recompose cabinet –

Boluarte, with only thirteen days in office, will reform his cabinet, as announced, including the change of prime minister, to favor the appointment of officials with more political experience to find solutions to the crisis.

The education and culture ministers resigned last week in rejection of the deaths in the violent protests.

The Transport portfolio specified that this Tuesday operations were restarted at the Inca Manco Cápac airport in Juliaca, in the Puno region (south), after six days of closure due to protests.

Visits to the Inca citadel of Machu Picchu have been suspended since December 14, to safeguard the safety of tourists due to the protests. Other air terminals that remained closed are also already operational.

Some demonstrations were still active this Tuesday in the south of the country.

In the Plaza de Armas of the city of Cusco (southeast) hundreds of people, mostly women in colorful typical costumes, held a protest march with a cardboard coffin bearing the image of Dina Boluarte, which was later set on fire. .

“We want urgent elections. Let Dina resign. This Congress is an abusive one that makes and undoes laws in its favor, while the people starve without medicine, without education,” businesswoman Gricelda Cosi Quispe told AFP.

As part of the protests, in Ayacucho, eight demonstrators died last week in a clash with the military, during the attempt to take over an airport. The Ombudsman requested a criminal investigation, because several deaths occurred from shots to the body.

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