Human rights anniversary

16 December 2014

Thirty years have passed since the massacre of Putis on 13 December 1984, a crime that remains unpunished. On that day, an army detachment moved in on this highland community in the province of Huanta, Ayacucho, suspecting the population of supporting Sendero Luminoso. 123 people were shot by troops having been forced previously to dig their own graves. Many of the women of the community were raped prior to being mown down. So far, the Peruvian army has failed to release the names of those soldiers involved.

The widows and other family members held a commemoration last week to honour the dead in the presence of local authorities, Congresswoman Marisol Pérez Tello, representatives of the Church and from international aid agencies.

On 15 December, sentence was due to be passed on a separate case, concerning the killing of three community leaders and a minor at the town of Chuschi in 1991, also in Ayacucho. APRODEH, the human rights organisation that has been providing legal defence for the relatives of the dead in Chuschi, has called for a tough sentence for those held to be responsible.

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  • PSG Aims

    The Peru Support Group exists to promote social inclusion, sustainable development and the observance of human rights in Peru. To that end the PSG highlights shortcomings in observance of established norms, whether international or local in nature, in its research, advocacy and publications. In so doing, it underscores the relationships that exist within the political system, how institutions work, and the effectiveness of policies that aim to reduce poverty and inequality within the context of sustainable development.

  • Historical Overview

    Over the past century Peru has suffered a series of autocratic governments and a civil war in which nearly 70,000 people died. Many of the country's ongoing political and social problems are a legacy of its somewhat turbulent past. 

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    Human rights violations were widespread during the twenty years after the initiation of armed conflict in 1980. Efforts to convict perpetrators since the war's end have made only limited progress. Today, concerns remain over the treatment of those engaged in social protest, particularly against strategically important investment projects.

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