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Ousted Peru leader appears in court to face rebellion charge


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AP

 FRANKLIN BRICEÑO and JOSHUA GOODMAN

Dec. 8 2022

LIMA, Peru (AP) — Peru’s stunning political crisis grinded forward Thursday, as former President Pedro Castillo appeared in court following a failed attempt to close a hostile congress and his successor looked for ways to unite the country behind institutions gutted by endemic corruption and mistrust.

At his initial court appearance, Castillo looked downcast as he gave simple yes or no answers and his attorney argued that he had been arbitrarily ousted from Peru’s presidency on trumped-up charges of rebellion.

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Meanwhile , Castillo’s successor, like many Peruvians, seemed eager to turn the page. In comments to journalists Thursday, Dina Boluarte, who served as Castillo’s vice president, appealed for a “truce” from the political feuding that has paralyzed Peru for years so that she can “reorient” the country. With polls showing Peruvians despising Congress even more than they do Castillo, she suggested that she would consider holding early elections — something that requires approval of a hard-to-muster constitutional amendment.

“I know there are voices indicating early elections and this is democratically respectable,” she said.

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The Progressive View (This will Hurt)

 Dec 8, 2022
Peruvian President Pedro Castillo was ousted from power Wednesday and arrested hours after he moved to dissolve the country's Congress, with Vice President Dina Boluarte sworn in to replace him. Castillo is a left-leaning former teacher and union leader who was in office for less than a year and a half, during which time he faced sustained attacks from his political opponents for corruption. His announcement Wednesday that he would dissolve Congress came as lawmakers were preparing for a third time to impeach him. Peruvian scholar Javier Puente, associate professor and chair of Latin American and Latino studies at Smith College, says this week's dramatic events are just the latest in an "enduring crisis" in Peru that started with dictator Alberto Fujimori in the 1990s. "This is yet another manifestation of the lack of institutional stability that the country has experienced for at least three decades as a result of the legacy of Fujimorismo," says Puente.

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