Peruvian Congress approves early presidential elections
The initiative had been rejected last week.
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Given the wave of violent riots in Peru, after the dismissal of Pedro Castillo, the Congress of that country decided, by 93 votes in favor, 30 against, and 1 abstention, to ratify the advancement of these elections to 2024.
The measure, which seeks to appease the spirits of the sectors that oppose Castillo's departure, was considered a partial victory for those who sought the approval of a referendum for a new Constitution and the advancement of the elections for next year.
“They are trying to cheat the people. The people ask for early elections for 2023, resignation of Dina Boluarte, and a New Constitution. Our minority opinion is an advancement of elections for April 2023 and a referendum for a New Constitution,” Guido Bellido Ugarte wrote on his Twitter account.
For his part, Enrique Wong, from Podemos Peru, told CNN:
In Lima and Callao, what they want is peace and freedom to be able to carry out their businesses, so that the entrepreneur can invest, so that big businessmen can do it too President. So let's be more honest.
Riots and low approval rating for Boluarte
Due to the series of protests that were marked, for the most part, by clashes between supporters of Castillo and the security forces of Peru, as well as by protesters seeking a total restart of the country with new general elections and the dissolution of Congress, the Ministry of Health reported last Monday that at least 26 people died due to the violent riots.
Boluarte, who recently announced the formation of her ministerial cabinet, for now has little support, something revealed through a poll by the Institute of Peruvian Studies, in which only 27% of those surveyed approve of her work. Likewise, close to half of those consulted believe that under her government the situation will worsen.
“Peru is today an ungovernable country. People are taking to the streets because they are fed up with the ruling class. And then, unexpectedly, Boluarte arrives as the first woman in the history of Peru with the responsibility of governing, and under extremely difficult conditions. A litmus test that has just begun,” told DW Edward Málaga-Trillo, a neurobiologist who, before entering politics, helped guide Peru during the coronavirus pandemic.
For its part, at the international level, the situation is not getting any easier for Peru. While conservative governments such as those of Ecuador, Uruguay and Costa Rica, and the center-left of Chile have shown their support for Boluarte, the president of Mexico, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, as well as the left-wing governments of Venezuela, Colombia, Honduras, and Bolivia have condemned the departure of Castillo, whose family received political asylum in Mexico after he was sentenced to 18 months in pretrial detention.
“New elections are an agreement born of necessity. People want a quick way out of the crisis, but unfortunately there isn't one. On the one hand, the 2024 elections are too far away, and on the other, this helps us not to rush, because if the elections are too early, we will have the same parties in power as now, because there is no time to register new parties," said Mayte Dongo, a political analyst at the Catholic University of Peru.