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Peru To Withdraw From the US-Controlled Lima Group

teleSUR | August 6, 2021

On Tuesday, Peru’s Foreign Affairs Minister Hector Bejar announced that his country would withdraw from the Lima Group, which supported the Venezuelan opposition to overthrow the Bolivarian Revolution in 2019.

“From a democratic foreign policy, we will contribute to the understanding of the various political tendencies that exist in Venezuela without intervening in its internal affairs,” Bejar stated.

Conservative politicians and former presidents from Peru, Mexico, Bolivia, and Argentina formed the Lima Group, an institution that operates as an instrument of U.S. geopolitics towards Latin America.

In his inaugural address, Bejar also assured that he will work to strengthen cooperation and integration among Latin American countries without making ideological distinctions.

“Under the international law and the Charter of the United Nations, we support the self-determination of all peoples and condemn any unilateral sanctions,” Bejar stated regarding U.S. blockades against Cuba and Venezuela.

On Tuesday, he also announced that Peru will return to the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) and strengthen the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and the Andean Community of Nations (CAN).

“Latin America is the geographical and sociological priority of the Peruvian foreign policy. It is our territorial, economic, and sociocultural environment. It is the space of our history,” Bejar stressed.

August 6, 2021 Posted by | Solidarity and Activism | , , , | Leave a comment

Peruvian president wins impeachment process, but opposition grows

By Lucas Leiroz | September 28, 2020

The political crisis in Peru is far from over. Despite the fact that President Martín Vizcarra won the first stage of his dispute against the Congress mainly formed by Fujimori’s supporters, the expectation is that his opponents will continue to try to overthrow him through an institutional coup that “respects” the limits of “legality” and “democracy”.

In September 2019, Vizcarra resorted to the Constitution to legitimately dissolve the National Congress, after a series of clashes between the Legislative and the Executive, with parliamentarians denying cooperation with the government in a boycott gesture. In response, Congress intensified its opposition to the government and, even though suspended, illegally “deposed” President Vizcarra, recognizing his former vice president, Mercedez Araóz, as the country’s leader. For one day, Peru had two presidents – similar to the Venezuelan case: one legitimate and one artificially chosen by the opposition. However, Araóz resigned the next day.

Martín Vizcarra was elected in 2018 with a speech based on “fighting corruption”, as it could not be otherwise: Peru was one of the countries most affected by the “Operation Car Wash “, which started in Brazil and spread to several countries in Latin America, dismembering billion-dollar corruption schemes between governments and private companies. In Peru, four former presidents were investigated in the Operation and the leader of the largest congressional party, Keiko Fujimori, was arrested. Keiko is the daughter of Alberto Fujimori, a former president who ruled the country for ten years. She, under her father’s command, leads the opposition against Vizcarra and has a majority of supporters in the Congress. In July last year, Vizcarra asked Congress to vote on a legal reform to change the process of choosing judges for the Constitutional Court. But, instead of carrying out the reform, parliamentarians chose the judges themselves, which is why Vizcarra chose to close the Congress.

Thus began the conflict between the Executive and the Legislative, which has remained since then. Opponents recently launched an impeachment process against Vizcarra alleging his “moral inability” to exercise the position of president. The reason for such “moral incapacity” would be an alleged irregular hiring made by the president for the Ministry of Culture, a topic of ​​extremely low political relevance for the country. But the reforms carried out by Vizcarra partially reversed the scenario in Congress after its restoration, increasing the number of parliamentarians who support the President (his supporters are still a minority, though). Thus the impeachment request was rejected this September.

The head of state denounced that the impeachment request is part of a plot against him, planned by sectors of Congress that wish to take control of the country. Such sectors are said to be reminiscent of opponents who led Vizcarra to close Congress last year and have the support of a large political wing outside the legislative branch. The party with the greatest influence in Congress is still the “Fuerza Popular” of Alberto Fujimori and his daughter, who is now back in politics.

Keiko Fujimori is the main name of the opposition at the moment. Prosecuted for integrating the corruption schemes investigated by Operation Car Wash, Keiko has been arrested twice in recent years and is currently under house arrest, which is not preventing her from acting politically. Days ago, the daughter of the former dictator (who is also in prison), announced in her account on a social network that she is back to politics in a “100% active” way and “under her father’s command”. Apparently, Keiko intends to run for the 2021 elections – if she is no longer under judicial penalty – or at least to support some strong opposition candidate. This will inevitably increase internal tensions and the political crisis until next year’s elections, considering that Keiko Fujimori is president of Fuerza Popular, which is the country’s strongest party.

The scenario is worrying for Vizcarra from all points of view. Despite increasing the number of his supporters in Congress, Fujimori’s party is still the strongest one and could mobilize parliamentarians to overthrow him if the reason for the impeachment request was a stronger accusation than mere “moral incapacity”. And, with the recent history of Latin America, we can see that events like this have occurred with great frequency. In 2016, Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff was overthrown in an impeachment process without any material evidence of her crimes being presented. Also, last year Bolivian President Evo Morales was the victim of an explicit coup d’état orchestrated by the opposition, which led to the presidency the then vice-president of the Senate, Jenine Áñez, who still leads the country. In fact, the fragility of the legal and democratic structure of the Latin countries is immense, since these countries are going through a moment of special political crisis, possibly influenced by external factors and agents.

Vizcarra’s victory does not have real political relevance, in practice, as the Peruvian president has not been strengthened with it. Most Likely, there will be more pressure and the opposition trying to get him out of office even though the elections are only six months away.

Lucas Leiroz is a research fellow in international law at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.

September 28, 2020 Posted by | Corruption | , | Leave a comment

Pentagon would be producing biological weapons in the Amazon Rainforest

By Lucas Leiroz | April 29, 2020

The theme of biological warfare has gained increasing prominence in recent times. The global pandemic of the new coronavirus has aroused interest in this matter in particular, and several speculations have arisen by experts from many countries about the possibility of an artificial origin of the virus that currently plagues the planet. In fact, it doesn’t matter if this particular virus was created in laboratory or not, but the use of biological manipulation for military purposes is a complex subject and worthy of careful study. The interest in the issue is absolutely legitimate and allows such a debate to go beyond the sphere of “conspiracy theories” to acquire an academic character.

Recently, some alleged cases of biological weapons operations have received due attention, thanks to the suspicions raised by the pandemic. This is the case for American military laboratories in the Amazon rainforest. Although little is said about this subject, the American armed forces maintain several laboratories for obscure research purposes within the Amazon territory. It is already known that many of these laboratories have or had an active participation in the drug production process by drug trafficking criminal organizations hidden in the Amazon. The most notorious laboratory is the so-called NAMRU-6, which belongs to the American Navy.

The “Observatory for the Closing of the School of the Americas” reported in a note that several bacteriological and tropical diseases researches are being carried out in the Peruvian Amazon by the NAMRU-6 base. “In Peru, the United States has a number of military bases, some allegedly involved in drug trafficking,” said Pablo Ruiz, spokesman for the observatory, emphasizing: “This is a military base that we are monitoring, which belongs to the US Navy. […] (NAMRU) Conducts research on pathological and infectious diseases, and we are very concerned because it is close to the Amazon, and eventually on that military base they could be preparing biological weapons.”

NAMRU-6 (Naval Medical Research Unit Six) is an American Navy biomedical research center based in Lima, Peru. Publicly, Washington states that the interest of the researches carried out by the base is the identification and control of infectious diseases and the development of medications for their control, however there are several suspicions about the real nature of its activities, with the hypothesis of clandestine operations on biological manipulation being highly considered. According to the Observatory (which is a social movement that fights for the end of foreign military bases in Latin America), NAMRU is behind the creation of several biological weapons, many of which have already been used in combat by the USA.

The Observatory spokesman reported that the investigations being carried out on NAMRU suggest that this base is behind the epidemic of hemorrhagic dengue in Cuba in 1981, which caused the death of hundreds of people. The hypothesis gains even more strength now that evidence is found of the use of the mosquito “aedes eagypt” (host of the virus that transmits dengue and other diseases) as a biological weapon by the Pentagon in several regions of the planet, as described in several official documents recently revealed.

Pablo Ruiz argued that the UN bodies responsible for the control of weapons of mass destruction should work more closely with regard to biological weapons and seek greater control over the activities carried out by military laboratories. In his words: “In the situation that humanity is currently experiencing, it would be very good if the UN body that ensures that no country produces weapons of mass destruction could visit this base and see what they are doing there with infectious diseases”.

In fact, too much attention has been paid in recent decades to the danger of nuclear weapons proliferation; however, biological weapons are almost never seriously treated, with almost all complaints on the subject being referred as “conspiratorial”. The reason for this is understandable: when used, biological weapons transmit an atmosphere of “normality”, as they deal with natural phenomena that are artificially manipulated. So, the last thing one could think about an infection is that it is a military weapon rather than a natural phenomenon. But this is exactly where the benefits of using such weapons are: they are almost never noticed and their damage can be greater than that of chemical and nuclear weapons – which clearly identify their launchers. The difficulty in understanding whether or not such weapons were used in a given event was the main reason why some countries chose to go ahead in research to develop such products.

It is increasingly difficult to deny the existence of biological weapons. It is a matter of time before publicly admitting that the biomedical field is a battlefield like any other, just as it happened recently with the cyberspace. However, until it is proved whether or not such weapons are being used, many things continue to happen, such as, for example, top-secret research by the American Navy within the Amazon Rainforest. The location is extremely strategic: far from any rich country, in remote and difficult-to-reach regions, these laboratories remain out of the international media and do not put the populations of western urban centers at risk in the event of accidents or leaks.

Indeed, Washington already has several accusations of using biological weapons. Experts from Russia, China, Iran and several other nationalities raised this hypothesis about the new coronavirus. Now, a new charge comes from South America. Above all, the US owes the world an answer. After all, what is so secret about biomedical research being carried out in military laboratories in remote areas of the globe? International society demands an explanation.

Lucas Leiroz is a research fellow in international law at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro.

April 29, 2020 Posted by | Deception, Militarism | , , | 3 Comments

Dictator who sterilized 300,000 women: ‘I Dream of a Peru Without Resentment’

teleSUR | January 6, 2018

Recently pardoned Peruvian dictator Alberto Fujimori, freshly discharged from hospital and living in a luxury mansion, has shared his aspirations for a “Peru without resentment.”

The controversial figure is linked to commanding death squads that carried out disappearances and extrajudicial killings in the war against insurgent groups Shining Path and the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement, which claimed at least 70,000 lives.

Fujimori, now 79, also directed the forced sterilization of approximately 300,000 mostly Indigenous women between 1996 and 2000.

He was detained in Chile in 2005 and sentenced in 2009 to 25 years in prison for several crimes, including premeditated murder and kidnapping.

Last week he was discharged from the Centenario clinic, where he had been hospitalized since December 23, just 12 days after being pardoned by President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski in a controversial move that prompted several cabinet ministers to resign in protest.

Safely ensconced in a US$5,000-a-month mansion in one of Lima’s most exclusive residential districts, Fujimori – now a free man – took to his Twitter account on Saturday to describe the “new phase” of his life.

“In the first hours of this new phase of my life, I would like to share the dreams that constantly invade me,” he posted. “I dream of a Peru without resentment, with everybody working for a superior objective.”

Responding, Fujimori’s supporters said his critics are “blinded by hate” and should learn to forgive and move forward to build a better country.

But others were less forgiving. “Accept responsibility for your cimes, ask the victims for forgiveness, ask the whole nation for forgiveness for running away like a criminal, return the stolen money and then we could talk about it,” posted one Twitter user.

Fujimori’s pardon is believed to be part of a political agreement between his party Popular Force and current President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.

Protests erupted following Fujimori’s pardon, with widespread calls for it to be rescinded.

Last month a group of 239 renowned Peruvian writers, led by Nobel Prize-winner Mario Vargas Llosa, signed an open letter saying: “Fujimori was convicted of human rights violations and corruption.

“He was responsible for a coup d’état as well as the dismantling of our institutions. His pardon demonstrates the lack of appreciation for the dignity and equality before the law, and the right to memory.”

January 7, 2018 Posted by | Corruption, Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , , | Leave a comment

Activist: Peru’s Ex-Leader Pardoning Won’t Lead to National Reconciliation

Sputnik – December 28, 2017

Former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori, sentenced to 25 years in prison for corruption and crimes against humanity, including ordering massacres by death squads, was pardoned by incumbent President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski on December 24, prompting a heated debate and a wave of dissatisfaction among Peruvians.

“This measure does not solve the [country’s] main problems and does not lead to the national reconciliation the [Peruvian] government is talking about,” Miguel Angel Canales, president of the Association of Relatives of Political Prisoners, of the Missing People and Victims of Genocide of Peru, told Sputnik Mundo. “The amnesty should cover civilians, military and police, not Fujimori supporters alone. Both groups [Fujimori and Kuczynski] are responsible for the implementation of neo-liberal policies in Peru. They have never sought to solve the problems of [common] people.”

Fujimori was granted amnesty after his supporters put forward and then declined the proposal for an impeachment of the incumbent president.

On September 23 Sputnik suggested, citing Alvaro Campana, the general secretary of the Nuevo Peru (“New Peru”) movement, that the impeachment initiative could result in Fujimori’s pardoning.

The bid for impeachment of Kuczynski was put forward over the allegations of corruption and receiving money from the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht when the present Peruvian leader was the minister of former president Alejandro Toledo between 2001 and 2006.

On December 21 the president survived the impeachment vote with 78 representatives supporting the measure and 19 against. The numbers fell short of the necessary 87 votes to impeach Kuczynski.

That became possible after 10 members of the hard-right Popular Force party, led by Fujimori’s daughter Keiko, abstained at the last minute instead of voting in favor of the measure, Simeon Tegel of The Washington Post reported last Friday.

It appeared symbolic that Alberto Fujimori’s son, Kenji, who also abstained from voting, was moved to tears when it became known that Kuchinsky would not be removed from power.

“Finally, Fujimori supporters and the government shake hands,” Campana said, commenting on the matter.

On December 24 Kuczynski announced that he granted amnesty to Fujimori. According to the presidential administration, the former Peruvian leader was released for health reasons. A day earlier, Fujimori was admitted to the intensive care unit at the Centenario Clinic in Lima. After the news, on December 26, the former leader of the Latin American country was transferred to an ordinary chamber.

In a video posted on his Facebook page the former Peruvian leader asked for forgiveness.

“I am aware that the results during my government on one side were well received, but I recognize that I have also disappointed others, and I ask them to forgive me with all my heart,” he said, as quoted by CNN.

Fujimori served as a president of Peru from 1990 to 2000. Between 1980 and 2000 more than 15,000 people had gone missing during an internal armed conflict in Peru. More than 4,000 common graves still remain undiscovered. Apparently therefore, the pardoning of the former leader of the country caused an ambiguous reaction within the Peruvian society and provoked mass protests in Lima and other cities.

On Monday, police fired tear gas to disperse crowds protesting Kuczynski’s decision in downtown Lima, while several members of the president’s party resigned.

In response, Kuczynski addressed the protestors, urging them to “turn the page” and accept Fujimori’s amnesty.

December 28, 2017 Posted by | Corruption | , , | Leave a comment

Peru Forced Sterilizations Victims Oppose Fujimori Pardon

Protests against the Fujimoris.

Protests against the Fujimoris. | Photo: EFE
By Neil Giardino | teleSUR | August 10, 2017

Human rights activists and victims of forced sterilizations in Peru under former president Alberto Fujimori are expressing outrage over the possibility of his pardon by current Peruvian President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.

“They’d be mocking the people and mocking Peru, because (Fujimori) has committed crimes,” said Obdulia Guevara, Director of the Association of Women of Huancabamba, a group representing victims of forced sterilizations.

More than 200,000 mostly poor, Indigenous Quechua-speaking women in Peru are said to have been forcefully sterilized between 1996 and 2000 under Fujimori, who is currently serving a 25-year prison sentence for unrelated human rights violations.

During his 2016 campaign Kuczynski said he would oppose pardoning Fujimori, but in a recent radio interview, he indicated he’s now considering a medical pardon of the 78-year-old ex-president, who led from 1990–2000 and has been in prison since 2009.

Kuczynski’s reversal is widely seen as an attempt to appease the strong opposition party led by Fujimori’s daughter, Keiko Fujimori. Her party, Fuerza Popular, holds a solid majority in congress and lost the 2016 election by a narrow margin.

The political about-face by Kuczynski isn’t sitting well with Guevara and members of her organization representing women claiming to have been sterilized without consent in the late 90s.

“He isn’t representing Fujimori. He’s representing the Peruvian people, including these sterilized women,” said Guevara.

Kuczynski wouldn’t be the first recent Peruvian leader to open a national dialogue on pardoning Fujimori; his two predecessors also weighed the option.

“Every time they raise the issue of a pardon, it re-victimizes, because once again they publically debate the possibility of liberating someone responsible for such serious crimes,” said human rights activist Francisco Soberon, whose NGO Asociación Pro Derechos Humanos (APRODEH) has advocated for victims of state violence in Peru since the 90s.

While Fujimori’s critics label him a dictator, supporters say his policies stabilized a reeling economy and helped put down a violent terror campaign that nearly brought the country to its knees in the 90s.

The sterilizations were part of a national reproductive health and family planning program meant to reduce rural poverty. But testimonies by victims said the sterilizations were performed under verbal and sometimes physical threat. At least 18 are said to have died as a result of the tubular litigation surgeries, many of which were performed in rustic clinics lacking proper medical equipment.

Fujimori has maintained the surgeries were voluntary.

But government documents unearthed in 2015 suggest the sterilizations were ordered to be carried out, that doctors were made to keep sterilization quotas, and that Fujimori himself was briefed monthly on the progress of the program.

Investigations into the sterilizations have been opened several times since 2003, but were each rejected by the courts, which decided the sterilizations were not performed under official state policy or carried out in a systematic fashion.

The government has not issued an official apology or offered reparations to victims.

For now, Guevara said her organization of victims of forced sterilizations are waiting for the current president to keep a promise he made during his campaign.

“He’s not shouldering his role as president. He’s looking for consensus, and consensus for what?” she said.

A July 2017 poll suggested that 60 percent of Peruvians support a pardon of Fujimori.

August 11, 2017 Posted by | Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism, Timeless or most popular | , , | Leave a comment

Historic: Peru Jails 10 Military Men for Brutal State Massacre

Claudia Pomacongo holds a card detailing the case of her husband, who was murdered in the Accomarca massacre.

Claudia Pomacongo holds a card detailing the case of her husband, who was murdered in the Accomarca massacre. | Photo: AFP
teleSUR – September 1, 2016

Among the military officials sentenced for the 1985 rape massacre of civilians was the Peruvian general nicknamed the “Butcher of the Andes.”

A Peruvian court Thursday sentenced 10 former military officials and soldiers to between 10 and 25 years in prison for the 1985 massacre of 69 civilians, mostly women and children, in the town of Accomarca, in one of the most iconic cases from the South American country’s so-called “war on terror.”

Three high-ranking military men, then-Lieutenants Telmo Hurtado and Juan Rivera Rondon and then-general Wilfredo Mori, were sentenced to 23, 24, and 25 years in jail as the masterminds behind the massacre. Judges singled out Hurtado — infamously known as the “Butcher of the Andes” — and Rivera Rondon as those principally responsible for carrying out the violence as the leaders of the patrols, while Mori was held responsible by giving the orders as the highest in the chain of the command.

Two other accused received 25 years in jail each, and another five were sentenced to 10 years each, all for carrying out the violent tragedy. Six were acquitted, including then-general Jose Williams Zapata. Sentences were not handed down for 11 others accused in the case, because one died before the trial was completed and 10 others are fugitives.

People gathered outside the National Criminal Court in Lima to await the results of the sentencing trial, which was delayed more than eight hours. Families of the victims and other Accomarca community members prepared food to share with those waiting to hear the announcement outside the court.

The outcome of the six-year-old case establishes a precedent for prosecuting similar crimes against humanity at the hands of the state in the guise of cracking down on left-wing insurgency in the 1980s and 1990s.

The Accomarca massacre trial is also groundbreaking because it is the only such case in Peru—aside from prosecutions of members of the military death squad known as Grupo Colina—that brings charges against the military’s entire chain of high command, according to local media.

On Aug. 14, 1985, at the height of the government’s conflict with the notorious Shining Path rebel army, the Peruvian military massacred at least 69 unarmed victims—30 children, 27 women, and 12 men—in Accomarca, located in Peru’s southern department of Ayacucho. Troops raped the women, then herded all the men, women, and children into houses before launching hand grenades at them. They finally burned the houses to kill every last victim.

The National Human Rights Coordinator and the Washington Office on Latin American had stressed in a joint statement leading up the the hearing the importance of the trial and the “need for a sentence that imparts real justice for one of the most heinous crimes and reminders of the internal armed conflict” in Peru from 1980 to 2000.

“Peruvian justice has an enormous debt with the victims in the Accomarca case,” said Jorge Bracamonte, executive secretary of Peru’s National Human Rights Coordinator, in a statement, stressing that the massacre has gone unpunished for too long. “We not only hope for an exemplary sentence, but we also hope that the court will order the collective return of the bodies of the Accomarca victims so that the families can bury their dead and close their grief.”

Human rights organizations have called for comprehensive reparations for victims as part of the process of seeking justice for acts of state terror.

“Justice not only seeks the punishment of those responsible, it also seeks to dignify the victims who, for so many years, have been sidelined and forgotten,” said WOLA’s Jo-Marie Burt in a statement.

In the sentencing hearing, judges also ordered reparations of US$44,000 be paid to the family of each of the victims of Accomarca.

The massacre took place under the state guise of Peru’s counterinsurgency strategy aimed at wiping out left-wing armed groups that challenged the state. But the Peruvian army killed scores of unarmed rural civilians accused of collaborating with guerrilla groups as part of the bloody conflict that claimed a total of 70,000 lives from 1980 to 2000.

Human rights groups have pointed to the Accomarca case as representative of the reign of state terror inflicted on poor and Indigenous communities.

“It has been shown that the Accomarca massacre was not an excess of the counterinsurgency fight nor an overreaction of soldiers overwhelmed by war,” said Burt, “but the result of a state policy of combating subversion using indiscriminate violence against the civilian population.”

September 1, 2016 Posted by | Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , | Leave a comment

Peru’s Police Force Harbored a Death Squad, Report Reveals

teleSUR | August 23, 2016

Until as recently as last year, Peru’s national police force harbored a “death squad” that is responsible for the extrajudicial killings of at least 20 people over a four-year period – even at times offering sworn officers bounties to kill criminal suspects, according to an official government investigation of systemic police misconduct.

In an executive summary that reads like the script of a Dirty Harry movie, the Interior Ministry’s report found “serious indications” that both high-ranking and low-level officers of the national police force “falsified intelligence information” to misrepresent at least six cases involving some 20 slayings as the justified result of confrontations with armed suspects, when in fact they were summary executions carried out by police, according to a summary of the report Monday by Vice Minister of Internal Order Ruben Vargas.

The report did not disclose the identities of the officers suspected of participating in the death squad, but Vargas did reveal that the operation was headed by a police colonel who was subsequently promoted to general.

Local media revealed the scandal over three weeks ago after department whistleblowers brought the allegations to light, prompting an investigation. The new report will now be handed over to prosecutors specialized in organized crime to open a case.

Minister of Interior Carlos Basombrio, newly-appointed under President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski and inaugurated at the end of July, claimed that the evidence suggests that a group of high-ranking police officials who moved between divisions are responsible for running the death squad, and that no single police force unit itself is compromised.

Authorities also revealed that several of the officers involved in the scandal were decorated for their so-called “distinguished” achievements within the force last year. A months-long internal police investigation already found that at least two officers were promoted during the period in which they are suspected of participating in the death squad. The Investigator General intervened in the internal probe and took over the investigation over three weeks ago.

Local media report that the death squad, allegedly made up of nearly 100 officers across four units of the national police force, is suspected of carrying out the murders of 27 Peruvian civilians between 2011 and 2015 in the cities of LIma, Ica, and Chiclayo.

Media previously suggested that the 27 victims were common criminals, but the new report found that 11 victims “didn’t even have a criminal record or a warrant to justify them being identified as targets of police interventions,” according to the Interior Ministry.

The confirmation of the extrajudicial killings by the police recalls a dark history of death squads run by state security forces in the South American country that were aimed at wiping out armed left-wing guerrilla movements particularly under the reign of jailed former dictator Alberto Fujimori.

August 23, 2016 Posted by | Civil Liberties, Corruption, Deception, Subjugation - Torture | , , | 3 Comments

States of hope and states of concern

By Bjorn Hilt | International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War | January 11, 2016

At the UN General assembly last fall there was an essential vote on the future of mankind. Resolution number A/RES/70/33 calling for the international society to take forward multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations had been submitted by Austria, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Georgia, Ghana, Guatemala, Ireland, Kenya, Lichtenstein, Malta, Marshall Islands, Mexico, Nigeria, Panama, Peru, Philippines, South Africa, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay and Venezuela. For that, these countries deserve our deep respect and gratitude. The resolution reminds us that all the peoples of  the world have a vital interest in the success of nuclear disarmament negotiations, that all states have the right to participate in disarmament negotiations, and, at the same time, declares support for the UN Secretary – General’s five-point proposal on nuclear disarmament.

The resolution reiterates the universal objective that remains the achievement and maintenance of a world without nuclear weapons, and emphasizes the importance of addressing issues related to nuclear weapons in a comprehensive, inclusive, interactive and constructive manner, for the advancement of multilateral nuclear disarmament negotiations. The resolution calls on the UN to establish an Open-ended Working Group (OEWG) of willing and responsible states to bring the negotiations on nuclear disarmament forward in this spirit.

When voted upon at the UNGA a month ago, on December 7, 2015, there was a huge majority of states (75 %) that supported the resolution, namely 138 of the 184 member states that were present. Most of them are from the global south, with majorities in Latin-America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and the Pacific. After having shown such courage and wisdom, they all deserve to be named among the states of hope, states that want to sustain mankind on earth.

Only 12 states voted against the resolution. Guess who they are: China, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Hungary, Israel, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Russian Federation, United Kingdom, and the United States. What is wrong with them? Well, they are either nuclear-armed states or among the new NATO member states. They are the states of concern in today’s world. It is hypocritical that states that claim to be the protectors of freedom, democracy, and humanity constitute a small minority that refuse to enter into multilateral, inclusive, interactive and constructive negotiations to free the world from nuclear weapons. Among the three other nuclear-armed states, India and Pakistan had the civility to abstain, while the DPRK was the only one to vote “yes.”

Despite the reactionary, dangerous, and irresponsible position of the 12 states of concern and the tepid attitude of the abstainers, the OEWG was established by an overwhelming majority of the UNGA. The OEWG will convene in Geneva for 15 working days during the first half of 2016. The OEWG has no mandate to negotiate treaties to free the world of the inhuman nuclear weapons, but has clearly been asked to discuss and show how it can be achieved. Surely, the nations of hope that voted in favor of the OEWG will take part in the work. We can hope that at least some of the states of concern and some of the abstainers come to their senses and take part in this essential work for the future of mankind.

Participation in the OEWG is open for everyone and blockable by none. No matter what the states of concern do or don’t do, there is good reason to trust that the vast majority of nations of hope together with civil society from all over in the fall will present an outcome to the UNGA that will turn our common dream of a world free of nuclear weapons into a reality—perhaps sooner that we dare to believe.

January 11, 2016 Posted by | Militarism, Timeless or most popular, War Crimes | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

US Hedge Fund Threatens Peru over Military Regime’s Debt

teleSUR | October 10, 2015

A U.S. hedge fund is threatening to sue Peru for payment of US$5.1 billion in unpaid bonds issued by the country’s former military government.

The fund, Gramercy, purchased the defaulted debt in 2008 for pennies on the dollar and is now demanding full repayment.

The tactic is similar to one employed by another U.S. hedge fund, Elliot Management, which has tried to use the U.S. legal system to compel the government of Argentina to repay the full amount of its own defaulted bonds.

“It’s ironic that this threat is coming amidst global meetings in Peru that continue to try and stop this kind of predatory behavior,” said Jubilee USA executive director Eric LeCompte, referring to the annual meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund currently taking place in Lima.

Firms that try to collect defaulted debt in this manner are disparagingly referred to as “vulture funds.”

Gramercy is specifically threatening to sue Peru through a tribunal system known as the Investor State Dispute Settlement mechanism, or ISDS.

Peru’s finance minister, Alonso Segura, said on Friday that the government would oppose any legal action outside its borders. “That’s not going to happen,” he said. “This issue will be dealt with by Peruvian laws.”

The ISDS is comprised of special legal tribunals, often established through “free trade” agreements, that allow corporations in one country to collect on debts in another. Critics argue the system prevents country’s from overcoming crippling debts—in Peru’s case, debts incurred by an unelected military regime.

An ISDS-style trade tribunal is reportedly part of the recently signed Trans-Pacific Partnership, which includes Peru and 11 other Pacific Rim nations.

​As an alternative to the ISDS, the Union of South American Nations is currently reviewing a proposal to establish a regional Arbitration Center, which would analyze and propose mechanisms to reform arbitration proceedings that could take into account the broader needs of the society and continent as a whole.

October 12, 2015 Posted by | Corruption, Economics | , , , , | 2 Comments