by Karen Faulkner, Worthy News Correspondent
(Worthy News) – At least 17 people have been killed in Peru amid clashes between supporters of former left-wing President Pedro Castillo, who was arrested for sedition and high treason in December, and government security forces backing new president Dina Boularte, BBC News
Dozens of people were injured in outbreaks of violence on Monday in Juliaca in southern Peru, as Castillo supporters continued the protests and road blockades they have been staging for a month, BBC News reports. Protestors want snap elections and are calling for Boularte, who was the First Vice President under Castillo, to resign.
While Peru has struggled with exceptional political instability for years, matters came to a head late last year when Castillo announced he was dissolving Congress and implementing a state of emergency, including a national curfew.
Castillo claimed his action was necessary to draft constitutional reform, but many saw it as a coup attempt – and Congress voted to impeach him. Castillo is currently in prison and is being investigated for rebellion and conspiracy. However, he maintains he is still the country’s legitimate president and denies all wrongdoing.
In a television address to the country on Monday, Peru’s prime minister, Alberto Otárola, defended government forces’ response, saying: “We will not cease in our defense of the rule of law.”
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