July 2023 | Protesters participate in Lima “takeover” to demand Congressmembers and President to step down
On 19 July, mass protests against the government took place in cities and provinces representing about a third of the country’s territory, according to the country’s national human rights institution (Defensoria del Pueblo). Particularly in Lima, protesters called for a “takeover” to demand Dina Boluarte’s resignation and early general elections, as well as a constitutional assembly. Clashes between protesters and police left at least four injured in Lima and at least ten people were detained by police.
April 2023 | Government establishes a state of emergency to control migration
President Dina Boluarte announced a series of measures to control migration to the country, including the implementation of a state of emergency in the border regions of Tumbes, Piura, Cajamarca, Amazonas, Loreto, Madre de Dios, and Tacna. Other measures will include reforms to migration regulations in order to provide a pathway to regularize undocumented migrants, and legal reform to allow armed forces to permanently support tasks related to migration control. President Boluarte stated that an increase in crime is correlated to increased migration, and she asserted that mainly Venezuelan and some Haitian nationals are those who are “unfortunately committing these acts” of burglary and other crimes. News organizations have pointed to the lack of evidence to support these allegations, and along with organizations such as Amnesty International, have criticized the use of stigmatizing language that portrays irregular migrants as criminals.
March 2023 | Pedro Castillo faces additional preventive detention for corruption-related crimes
A judge ordered former President Pedro Castillo an additional preventive imprisonment of 36 months for corruption-related crimes. Castillo had already been subject to the measure for 18 months for alleged rebellion, following his attempt to dissolve Congress last December. This new preventive measure of detention relates to criminal charges that Castillo is facing regarding an alleged irregular tender for the construction of infrastructure, and corruption in the purchase of fuels in benefit of a business enterprise.
January 2023 | Dina Boluarte faces inquiry over protesters’ deaths
Since former President Pedro Castillo’s impeachment and arrest on 7 December, mass protests to demand his release and early elections have partially paralysed parts of the country, some of them escalating into violent clashes with security forces. President Dina Boluarte faces an inquiry launched by Peru’s top prosecutor related to the excessive use of force and deaths of protesters and Castillo supporters. The inquiry, which focuses on crimes such as qualified homicide and genocide, will also include investigations into top cabinet members.
In the weeks following Castillo’s impeachment, protests had mainly been concentrated in the Andean region. On 9 January, particularly violent clashes with security forces left dozens of deaths in the country’s southeast. On 19 January, thousands of anti-government protestors from all over the country assembled in the capital, Lima, to demand Boluarte’s resignation. On 21 January, authorities raided Lima’s San Marcos University, detaining nearly 200 people for aggravated encroachment, including students, after anti-government protestors had taken shelter in the facilities.
Since Boluarte took office, and up until the end of January, at least 65 people had died in the context of protests. While Boluarte has repeatedly asked Congress to call for early elections, such an initiative has stalled in the legislative branch, and she has refused to resign.