Peru: Morning News Roundup – Monday March 3

Now, the onus is on Peru to act

The escalation of the ongoing Yale-Peru dispute following the publication of former Peruvian First Lady Elaine Karp de Toledo’s New York Times column last week is yielding no winners. But the transnational friction it generated does present an opportunity for both sides to step up — with the onus on Peru — and finalize a deal before compromise is delayed once more. In her scathing piece last week against Yale and Peru’s current administrations, Karp de Toledo argued that the University is continuing to “den[y]Peru the right to its cultural patrimony.” Tellingly, she wrote, “Fortunately, a final agreement has been delayed.” Fortunately for whom? In short, no one but Karp de Toledo and her husband, former President Alejandro Toledo. When the two raise ruckus — and stories championing their self-proclaimed support of indigenous people flood Peru’s newspapers — their influence increases. (And under Peruvian law, Toledo can run for a second term after sitting out for one.) (Yale Daily News – click here to read complete article)

Peru police arrest seven ahead of global summits

Peruvian police arrested seven leftists accused of plotting to disrupt upcoming international meetings in the South American country, the head of police told state news agency Andina on Saturday. Police chief Gen. Octavio Salazar said authorities arrestedsix women and one man on Friday who belonged to a radicalleftist coalition based in Venezuela known as the BolivarianContinental Coordination group. "Everything indicates that these people were planning someaction against the summits that will take place in ourcountry," Salazar told local media. Peru will host a summit of Latin American and European heads of state in May and is the site of an Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation meeting in November. The seven Peruvians were arrested in northern Peru afterreturning from an international meeting of leftist activists in Ecuador’s capital, Quito, Salazar told the news agency. (Reuters – click here to read complete article)

Peru divers pluck 3 children, woman from beneath hull of capsized ferry

Rescue workers plucked three children and a woman from beneath the overturned hull of a ferry that capsized on a remote river in the Peruvian jungle, killing 15, police said Saturday. The four were kept alive for 20 hours by an air bubble that rose to the top of the hull when the boat flipped on Thursday, local police officer Gabriel Ramos told The Associated Press. Rescue workers heard shouts coming from the hull early Friday morning, but were unable to saw through the ship’s thick metal exterior. At nightfall, navy divers swam through the dark Tapiche River and up into the submerged boat, pulling to safety Karina Vargas Pacaya, 4, Dorita Rojas Pacaya, 10, George Gonzales Pacaya, 12, and Elizabet Pacaya, 39, state Civil Defense official Manuel Pezo told the AP. It is not clear what caused the boat to upend amid heavy rains on an isolated stretch of the Tapiche River, some 528 miles from the Peruvian capital of Lima – although Peru’s Civil Defense agency said it may have been loaded with too many passengers, heavy bricks and cement. (AP – click here to read complete article)

Peru’s Consumer Prices Rise More Than Expected in February

Peru’s consumer prices climbed more than economists estimated last month as foodstuff rose. The inflation rate accelerated 0.9 percent in February after prices rose 0.22 percent in January, the National Statistics Institute said today in an e-mailed statement. Economists had estimated a monthly inflation rate of 0.4 percent in January, the median of nine forecasts compiled by Bloomberg. Inflation was spurred by rising prices for imported commodities such as soybeans, wheat and oil, said Carola Sandy, a Latin America economist at Credit Suisse Group in New York, who forecasts 2.5 percent inflation in 2008. “Food inflation continued to be the main driver of headline inflation in February,” Sandy wrote in a Feb. 28 report. “Although we expect headline inflation to increase in the very near term, we believe that it will fall in the second half of the year.” (Bloomberg – click here to read complete article)

The feather finery of Peru

Stunning ancient Peruvian textiles embellished with brilliantly colored feathers of birds from the Amazon rain forest, many never displayed before, will be in an exhibition, ”Radiance from the Rain Forest: Featherwork in Ancient Peru,” that opened Tuesday at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Feathers were known to be used in rituals in Peru from as early as the third millennium B.C., and served various ceremonial and secular purposes throughout pre-conquest Peruvian history. The exhibit runs through Sept. 1. All Pennsylvania Trail of History sites will be open and free to the public March 9 on Charter Day, in honor of the 327th anniversary of William Penn’s land grant from King Charles II of England. The charter laid the foundation for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. (The Morning Call – click here to read complete article)