Peruvian President Impeached, Arrested After Tiff With Congress
Dina Boluarte became Peru’s first female President on Wednesday, capping off a dramatic day which saw her predecessor arrested for the alleged crime of rebellion and impeached by lawmakers, Claudia Rebaza, Tara John, Stefano Pozzebon and Hande Atay Alam reported for CNN.
Photo Insert: A majority of 101 members in the 130-person legislative body voted to impeach former leader Pedro Castillo.
Boluarte, the country’s former vice president, was sworn into the top job at Congress to become Peru’s sixth President in under five years. The ceremony took place hours after a majority of 101 members in the 130-person legislative body voted to impeach former leader Pedro Castillo.
The tumultuous day began when then-President Castillo announced plans to dissolve Congress and install an emergency government, ahead of a looming impeachment vote by lawmakers, which Peru’s Ombudsman described as an “attempted coup d’état.”
He also called for parliamentary elections to work on a new constitution, CNN’s Shasta Darlington, Michael Conte, Michael Hansler and Marlon Sorto also reported.
The move prompted a string of cabinet resignations, fiery reactions from top officials, and condemnation from regional neighbors – and ultimately failed to prevent his impeachment in Congress.
Peruvian armed forces rejected Castillo’s attempt to sideline lawmakers, calling it an “infringement of the constitution.” And Boluarte herself criticized Castillo’s dissolution plan, describing it on Twitter as “a coup that aggravates the political and institutional crisis that Peruvian society will have to overcome with strict adherence to the law.”
Foreign officials joined the chorus of condemnations of Castillo, with the United States urging the leader to “reverse” the move and “allow Peru’s democratic institutions to function according to the Constitution,” US Ambassador in Peru Lisa Kenna said on Twitter.
“We will continue to stand against and to categorically reject any acts that contradict Peru’s constitution, any act that undermines democracy in that country,” said US State Department spokesperson Ned Price in a statement.
Argentina’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed “deep concern” over Peru’s political crisis in a statement on Twitter, and Brazil’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said in a statement that Castillo’s actions were “incompatible with the constitutional framework of that country, [and] represent a violation of democracy and the rule of law.”
In a stunning turn of events, Castillo was detained by police in the capital city of Lima after lawmakers impeached him in Congress.