After President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski announced he would consider pardoning incarcerated ex-leader Alberto Fujimori, Peruvians took to the streets to protest.
After Peru’s President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (PPK) stated in an interview with The Economist that the time is right to look at a medical pardon for ex-leader Alberto Fujimori, incarcerated for corruption and human rights crimes, many Peruvians rallied on social media to organize a protest.
According to Euronews, thousands attended the march against the former dictator.
Al Jazeera English covered the event, which took place last Friday, interviewing protesters to understand their concerns. To those who took to the streets, a pardon for Fujimori represents a step back for the fight against corruption, which Peruvians now see (according to the national statistics office INEI) as the gravest issue the country faces. Others actually lost family members during the years that Fujimori exercised dictatorial power.
Alberto Fujimori’s party currently holds a majority in Congress after his daughter, Keiko Fujimori, lost to PPK in the closest elections in Peruvian history. It was the 2nd consecutive election lost by Keiko Fujimori.
During the elections, thousands of Peruvians also protested against the candidacy of Keiko, who was considered the favorite. She led the polls nearly the entire election cycle until the final week before voting took place.
There are Peruvians who support Alberto Fujimori and consider what he achieved in fixing the economy as well as eliminating terrorism to be enough reason for the pardon. As the saying goes “roba, pero hace obra.” This essentially translates to “he robs, but he gets things done.”
PPK insists that he is considering a pardon only on medical grounds, not political. Alberto Fujimori has been in and out of intensive medical care several times in the past year and his condition may qualify him for humanitarian pardon.
Check out the video below and let us know what you think here at Living in Peru.
Video Courtesy of Al Jazeera English Youtube Channel