Peru engulfed in violence amid government protest

Photo: PAP/EPA/Jhon Reyes

Violence erupted in Peru on Saturday night when demonstrators faced police in riot gear amid the worst wave of protests in at least two decades in the Andean country.

Clashes flared when a group of protesters stormed through a street, and a wall of riot police officers fired teargas canisters to disperse the crowd.

Protesters are demanding the resignation of President Dina Boluarte, the shutdown of Congress, a new constitution, and early elections.

Earlier protests

The protests began in December when former President, Pedro Castillo, was ousted. More than 50 people have been killed as a result of the unrest.

Initially focused in Peru’s rural, mountainous south, the protests have since gained steam in the capital.

Government response

Peruvian Congress has refused to speed up the timeline for a presidential election amid the unrest.

Lawmakers had given an initial green light to move elections from 2026 to 2024, but this week voted down proposals to hold the election this year.

Meanwhile, Boluarte has maintained she will stay on as president until elections are held.