On Christmas Eve, Peruvians hit the streets to protest the pardon of former president Alberto Fujimori. Serving as the country’s head of state between July 1990 and November 2000, Fujimori was serving a 25-year jail sentence for human rights abuses. As reported by CNN, the pardon was given for health reasons that include “a progressive, degenerative and incurable disease.” Fujimori was transferred to a hospital in Lima.
For those who were affected by his authoritarian policies and suffered the assassinations of loved ones by death squads authorized by Fujimori, they see the pardon as a betrayal. As such, they have spent two days protesting current President Kuczynski’s highly unpopular decision to let Fujimori go free.
Protests erupted in Lima, Peru after President Pedro Pablo Kuczynsk pardoned ex-leader Alberto Fujimori, citing his poor health.
Fujimori had been jailed for human rights abuses and corruption. pic.twitter.com/IeL4CqkA7m
— AJ+ (@ajplus) December 26, 2017
For a deep dive into the history behind Fujimori’s actions that landed him in jail, we suggest you stream Pamela Yates’ 2005 documentary State of Fear. From the Skylight Pictures website:
“Filmmakers Pamela Yates, Paco de Onís and Peter Kinoy masterfully blend personal testimony, history and archival footage to tell the story of escalating violence in the Andean nation and how fear of terrorism was used to undermine democracy, making Peru a virtual dictatorship where official corruption replaced the rule of law. Terrorist attacks by Shining Path guerrillas provoked a military occupation of the countryside. Military justice replaced civil authority, widespread abuses by the Peruvian army went unpunished, and terrorism continued to spread. Nearly 70,000 civilians eventually died at the hands of the Shining Path and the Peruvian military.”