Act in memory of victims of protests in Peru leaves almost 50 injured

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Act in memory of victims of protests in Peru leaves almost 50 injured

Almost 50 people were injured this Thursday (9) in Peru when they clashed with police forces during a demonstration in the city of Juliaca, in the south of the country, about 1,200 km from the capital Lima.

The act was organized by residents in memory of 18 people killed about a month ago in the same city in a protest demanding the resignation of President Dina Boluarte, amid larger demonstrations against the leader and called by supporters of former President Pedro Castillo, removed and imprisoned after a failed coup d’état attempt.

Initially peaceful, this Thursday’s demonstration turned into a confrontation when police began to disperse demonstrators who tried to enter the Inca Manco Cápac airport, the same place where the 18 people were killed on January 9.

Dispersion using tear gas caused injuries, fractures, intoxication and respiratory failure in 23 people, according to an official report. Among the injured are three minors – one of them injured by a firearm, according to the text.

Police said 25 officers were injured. The protest was not the only one of the day. In Lima, around 2,000 trade unionists marched towards Congress, but there was no clash with police.

In Juliaca, relatives and friends of the 18 victims in January mourned the death of their relatives and chanted slogans against Dina, such as “the blood shed will never be forgotten” and “how many dead do you want to resign?”.

“They took my son away from me. You cannot pay for my son’s life,” street vendor Faustina Huanca, 57, told AFP.

On the last day 4, the Peruvian Congress blocked debates on the anticipation of elections in the next five months, a proposal made by the president herself, barring the replacement of Dina and the parliamentarians, the main demand of the protesters.

Before being removed and arrested, Castillo was supposed to serve his term until 2026. Dina was his deputy and took over a country convulsed by constant changes of presidents, who were arrested or lost political power —there were 6 representatives in 6 years before Dina took over—, and a fragile government cornered by repeated demonstrations.

By the end of January, the death toll in the protests had reached almost 60. Most of the acts were concentrated in the south of the country, but some reached the capital in caravans and were dubbed the “takeover of Lima”.

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