Peru's Boluarte won't step down despite calls for resignation
President Dina Boluarte ignores the people's demands amid violent protests and refuses to resign.
Peruvian President Dina Boluarte said she will not resign after another day of protests and roadblocks across the country, as well as the arrest of a trade union leader with alleged ties to Maoist rebels.
“Some voices coming from the violent and radical groups demand my resignation, bringing people to chaos, disorder, and destruction. I say to them responsibly that I will not step down,” Boluarte said while speaking to the nation in a late-night broadcast on state TV on Friday.
In response to demands to shut down Congress, she backfired by stating that there are currently no legal grounds to suspend Congress.
“These extremist sector's political platforms also include some demands, such as the Congress shutdown. But they don’t tell the people, to those who deceive and lie to bring them to the marches, that the President of the Republic can’t shut down the Congress unless some conditions are met and that right now, they don’t exist," she said.
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Protests in Peru have turned violent ever since former president Pedro Castillo was ousted and detained in early December.
At least 42 people were killed in clashes with security forces, including a police officer who was burned alive in a vehicle, and hundreds more were injured.
“They demand Pedro Castillo’s release. I can’t set him free; I’m not a judge, neither a prosecutor. Castillo’s case is (under investigation) at court,” Boluarte said while defending the imprisonment of Castillo.
She demanded an investigation to determine whether it was used to kill civilians, while promising national security. “My commitment is with Peru and not with this tiny group that is hurting our homeland.”
Peru's attorney general, Patricia Benavides, has launched 11 investigations to identify those responsible for the deaths of civilians during some of the country's most violent social protests in years, according to her office.
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Human rights organizations accused Peruvian police and soldiers of using excessive force, including live ammunition and helicopter-dropped tear gas, while security forces claim protesters, mostly in Peru's southern Andes, have used homemade weapons and explosives against them.
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