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31 August 2012
The government proposed new legislation this month which would see the denial of terrorist acts committed in the 1980s and 1990s made into a criminal offence. The draft bill was reportedly inspired by measures in other countries which provide for the punishment of holocaust deniers. The proposal will be debated by Congress in the coming weeks, but is already proving controversial.
29 August 2012
An effort in late August to eradicate coca crops in Huallaga, central Peru, sparked protests in which two peasant farmers died. State officials involved in the operation, which began on 27th August, faced strong resistance from locals opposed to the destruction of the illegal crops. Residents claim that, due to the area's remote location and difficult terrain, coca cultivation represents one of the only viable means of generating income.
15 August 2012
At least two hundred people in the Ancash region needed medical treatment this month after being exposed to harmful substances when a copper pipeline burst. Those affected suffered symptoms including vomiting, headaches and nose bleeds, which were related to the inhalation of toxins in the days after the spill.
01 August 2012
In a bid to boost his waning popularity in late July, President Humala embarked on his second cabinet reshuffle since assuming office. The most high profile casualty was former army officer Oscar Valdés, who was replaced as prime minister by Juan Jiménez, a lawyer and constitutional expert.
25 July 2012
This month Chinese mining company stepped up efforts to restart a controversial copper project at Río Blanco, near Piura in northern Peru. The proposed project has been the source of an acrimonious dispute between the concession operator and local communities for a number of years.
23 July 2012
In a ruling on 20th July the Supreme Court reduced the prison sentences of former spy-chief Vladimiro Montesinos and a number of other high ranking human rights violators. The decision has been widely criticised and will face legal challenge.
05 July 2012
Police in Cajamarca were reported to have beaten a number of prominent figures during demonstrations over the Minas Conga project. The first incident allegedly occurred on 21st June when Genoveva Gómez of the ombudsman’s office and Amparo Abanto of the National Human Rights Coordinator (an umbrella NGO) visited a police station in Cajamarca.
03 July 2012
Clashes between police and locals protesting against the Minas Conga gold mine in Cajamarca, have left three dead and at least twenty injured. The violence occurred after reports emerged that Celendín Mayor Mauro Arteaga had expressed support for the mine, leading approximately 1,000 people to march on municipal buildings.
14 June 2012
A court in Huancabamba has dismissed a wide variety of charges against 107 people involved in the 2005 demonstrations against Minera Majaz, a subsidiary of then British-owned mining firm Monterrico Metals. Those acquitted, including a number of peasant farmers and provincial politicians, had marched with thousands of others to the company’s mine site in Piura, northwest Peru, in August 2005.
31 May 2012
On 29th May the Humala administration declared a state of emergency in Espinar, southern Peru, following violent clashes between police and demonstrators. Protest organisers had hoped to highlight local concerns over the activities of Anglo-Swiss mining firm Xstrata, which is seeking to expand its operations in the region.