Defense minister urges Peruvian Congress to agree on early elections

Demonstrators carry an injured man during protests against the government of Dina Boluarte in Lima, Peru. – Hector Adolfo Quintanar Perez/ZU / DPA

Peru’s Minister of Defense, Jorge Chavez, has again urged Congress to find a solution and agree on a date to call early elections, after President Dina Boluarte proposed October 2023, following previous failed attempts.

«Please listen to the citizenship, we have to get out of this crisis that is taking place and it is in the hands of the Congress to find a solution for the development and well being of our country», Chavez has stressed before the media, as reported by the Andina News Agency.

In this sense, he has stated that although the Congress has a «high responsibility» in relation to this matter, for which it should make an effort to reach an agreement for the good of the country, with its proposal to bring forward the elections to October 8th of this year, the Government has sought to «provide a possible solution».

On the other hand, he also referred to the latest violent events that took place in the demonstrations that have been taking place for weeks in the streets of the main cities of the country and asked for «speed» in the investigations into the death of Víctor Santisteban in the past protests in Lima.

Chavez has mentioned that the images published by some media in which Santisteban can be seen falling after a policeman indiscriminately fired a tear gas projectile against a crowd must be «evaluated» with «celerity» in order to determine responsibilities. The necropsy indicates that the death of this person was caused by the impact of a «blunt element» in the skull. Santisteban is one of the almost 60 fatalities that have been registered in Peru as a consequence of the questioned police repression of the protests, which demand the exit of Boluarte, the release of former president Pedro Castillo and new elections.