Boluarte is not resolving the political crisis in Peru, while the Celac and the OAS show their positions

The Boluarte regime also faces diplomatic disputes with five Latin American countries: Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Honduras and Mexico
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The tense political, social and institutional crisis faced by the Government of Dina Boluarte in Peru since the removal of former President Pedro Castillo last December, has generated different reactions in the countries of the region, which reveal the ‘crack’ in Latin America over the conflict.

The criticized Boluarte administration not only faces the discontent of the Peruvian population that demands her resignation, the dissolution of the Congress that ousted Castillo and general elections; now, she adds new diplomatic controversies with five countries: Bolivia, Chile, Honduras, Mexico and Colombia.

At the VII Presidential Summit of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (Celac), held last week in Argentina, several heads of State expressed their concern over the events in Peru, which after almost two months of anti-government demonstrations that have put at risk the economic activity of the country, accumulate at least 58 deaths, some 1,200 people injured and millionaire material damages.

On the other hand, the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS), a body pointed out by several Latin American governments as acting with «servility» to US interests, summoned Boluarte, via teleconference from Lima, to talk about the crisis and give her a boost, expressing their «full support» despite the massive protests, reports RT.Chile calls for «a change of direction»

The complaints of the leaders in the Celac focused on requests for the release of Castillo —accused of rebellion and conspiracy—, early elections and complaints against the massacres and the repression carried out by the Police and the Army.

One of the voices was that of the President of Chile, Gabriel Boric: «We cannot be indifferent when today in our sister Republic of Peru, with the government under the command of Dina Boluarte, people who go out to march, to demand what they consider fair, end up shot by those who should defend them».

Boric added that the murders of more than fifty Peruvians «should shock» the region and he advocated for «the urgent need for a change of direction in Peru». In addition, he considered the repression and violence seen in that country «unacceptable», which in his opinion emulates the crimes committed by the military dictatorships that were installed decades ago in the Southern Cone.Mexico says «No to authoritarianism»

Criticism also came from the president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who, despite not personally attending the summit, sent a video in which he asked the members of Celac to include in their final document the request for Castillo’s release, as he considers his dismissal and arrest «an infamy». In addition, he warned that more coups d’état cannot be tolerated in the region, «neither military nor technical».

«We must not leave our brother people of Peru alone. It was an infamy what they did with Pedro Castillo and the way in which they are repressing the people. We must jointly sign a statement to demand that the repression cease, that dialogue be opened, that it be the people who decide in democracy. No to authoritarianism and freedom for Pedro Castillo, because he is unjustly imprisoned», said the Mexican head of State.

Colombia rejects parliamentary coups

The Colombian president, Gustavo Petro, who spoke of the political situation in Peru without expressly mentioning it, questioned that the popular mandate expressed in elections is not respected in the region and denounced the execution of parliamentary coups.

«Why do there have to be parliamentary and violent coups? Why are popularly elected presidents in prison today? «, questioned Petro, after urging the different political forces in the region to establish a democratic agreement.

«It is time for the inter-American system, placed in order for the 21st century, to allow here and now. a democratic pact where the right and the left do not believe that when they come to power it is to physically eliminate their opponent», he said, adding that in Latin America «there does not have to be a single political prisoner».Honduras recognizes Castillo as «legitimate president»

The Honduran head of State, Xiomara Castro, also condemned «the coup in Peru» and the «aggression to which the Peruvian people are subjected tp». In addition, she expressed her «solidarity» with Castillo – whom she still considers the «legitimate and elected president» -, for which she demanded his «immediate release».

For Castro, «in the face of the failure of the OAS [Organization of American States]», today Celac «is more necessary than ever» and that only the union of all will be able to shield all the countries when they face «the ferocious attacks of neo-fascism».
Tensions with Bolivia

The Peruvian crisis has also caused serious tensions between Lima and La Paz, due to Boluarte’s accusations of alleged interference by Bolivia.

The controversy began after the Bolivian president, Luis Arce, highlighted «the struggle of the Peruvian people» to «recover (their) democracy», which generated a «strong protest» by the Boluarte administration.

In response, the Bolivian Foreign Ministry clarified that it respected «international law and the principle of non-intervention». However, Boluarte fueled the controversy after pointing out – citing “unofficial information” – that from Bolivia, ‘dum dum’ bullets have been ‘sent’ to Peru, ammunition that the police do not use and that fragment when they impact a body, which presumably would have killed several protesters.

Boluarte’s claims are directed against «Los Ponchos Rojos», an indigenous militant group that supports the policies of former President Evo Morales, who was prohibited from entering the country by the Peruvian authorities. In addition, the Peruvian Congress has declared the ex-president persona non grata.

Peru’s accusation was refuted by the Bolivian Foreign Ministry, which indicated that the president’s complaint «has no technical-scientific support». In addition, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stressed that there is no immigration report that evidences the entry of weapons or ammunition from Bolivian territory to Peruvian territory.

“In the framework of the principles of the United Nations Charter, Bolivia is respectful of international law and we do not interfere in the internal affairs of other countries. Obviously we respect sovereignty, but given the circumstances, in Celac, many presidents have expressed their concern regarding human rights and it has been public knowledge», said Bolivian Vice Foreign Minister Freddy Mamani.

Meanwhile, the Bolivian Minister of Government, Eduardo del Castillo, said that Boluarte’s statement «is not true» and described it as «a smoke screen» to avoid talking about what is happening in Peru, immersed in repression, deaths and protests that are happening everyday throughout the country.

OAS and the US support Boluarte

After the session that the OAS Permanent Council held last week to listen to Boluarte, who promised to ensure «free, democratic elections and with all the guarantees, with the observation of the OAS», the organization yielded to the government discourse, by rejecting the «vandalism» and «violence» attributed to the protesters, and called an extraordinary session for this Monday in Washington, which will try to consider «recent events in the Republic of Peru».

Boluarte, who considers that «the only possible way out of the crisis (elections) that is peaceful, constitutional, and consistent with the OAS tradition», obtained the support of the US representation, which through its ambassador, Francisco Mora said that his country is «committed to supporting the Peruvian government».

For her part, the Peruvian Foreign Minister, Ana Cecilia Gervasi, will develop her agenda in Washington to begin «a working visit», which according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, «will allow us to strengthen the bilateral relationship» with the US «and the promotion of investments».

Ella Gervasi will hold meetings «with senior representatives of the US Government», the Senate, the Lower House, civil society organizations, the US private sector and Peruvian businessmen residing in that country.

In mid-January, the OAS Secretary General, Luis Almagro, said that the organization could «help» solve the «worrying crisis» that Peru is experiencing and solve the problems that increase «violence and intolerance».Castillo asks to reject «the military dictatorship» of Boluarte

From the Barbadillo prison, where he has been deprived of liberty since December 7, 2022, former President Castillo asked the CELAC countries to reject Boluarte’s «military dictatorship» and prevent the bloc from sharing space with an «undemocratic» regime, that «usurps the power» in Peru.

«I pray that you raise your voice in all international forums, and do not allow a genuine space for Latin American integration to coexist with the current anti-democratic political regime that is usurping power in Peru today», said the former president, who denounced that he is in an «arbitrary captivity, subjected by the dictatorship of Dina Boluarte, through a legally flawed judicial process».

The former president also thanked the «solidarity» of the heads of State who spoke at the Celac, as well as that of Evo Morales, whom he considers «politically persecuted by the Boluarte dictatorship» for denouncing the events in Peru.
Boluarte refuses to resign

For her part, Boluarte, who has militarized the country to try to eradicate the protests, insists that her country will come out ahead against the attacks of «authoritarian groups that want to impose a way out (of the crisis)» and that, according to her, are not part of the constitutional order. and «of the democratic tradition» in Peru.

In her statement before the OAS, Boluarte announced that despite the protests she is not going to give up. In addition, she blamed Castillo for causing the political crisis and destabilization. when he tried to generate a «coup» by trying to dissolve Congress via a presidential decree.

The president also reacted to the pronouncements of the Celac leaders, a summit to which she did not attend. Along these lines, Boluarte asked: «What solution are they proposing in the face of the crisis in Peru? The way of violence or the way with peace and democracy?»

Boluarte, who until recently claimed that she could not meet the protesters’ demands and alleged that she had already complied with the request to advance the elections to April 2024, radically changed her speech on Sunday, when she announced that she would send two urgent projects to the Congress to advance the elections to October 2023.

The president’s announcement came after last Friday the majority of parliament rejected the bill that sought to advance the elections for the Presidency of the Republic and Congress to 2023. However, the initiative still needs to be discussed again in plenary.

Meanwhile, the protests in Peru continue and the demands of the demonstrators are clear: the resignation of the president, the closure of Parliament, an early general election, the release of Castillo, the call for a constituent assembly and justice for those who died due to the repression of the security forces.

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