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State Repression

‘So They Can See Us’: Peru’s National Protest Advances To Lima

Deadly protests have gripped Peru since Congress expelled the country's first working-class president, Pedro Castillo. Timeline of events since December 7, 2022: Dec 7, 2022: The surprise winner of the July 2021 presidential election, Castillo comes under immediate attack from the right.  On December 7 he attempts to dissolve Congress before it can debate a third impeachment motion against him and says he will form an emergency government and rule by decree. Dec 7: Lawmakers vote overwhelmingly to remove him from office for "moral incapacity" to exercise power. He is arrested for "rebellion". Vice President Dina Boluarte becomes Peru's first woman president. She says she intends to serve out the rest of Castillo's term, until July 2026. The United States pledges to work with Boluarte.

Protests And Repression In Peru’s Capital Intensify

55-year-old Víctor Santisteban Yacsavilca was declared dead on Saturday, January 28, after he was shot in the head with a pellet gun by the National Police of Peru. Yacsavilca is the first protester to die in Peru’s capital Lima since the protests against the coup began in December. Videos of him being shot show him standing with a group of journalists, medical brigade members, and other protesters, and falling to the ground immediately when police begin shooting at the group. Subsequent videos show a large pool of blood on the ground where Yacsavilca fell. His death occurred on one of the bloodiest nights to date in Peru’s capital. January 28 began with a mass march in the center of the city with traditional dances, songs, and chants, but after a couple hours the events turned ugly. Once night fell, police ramped up their repression of the protests by shooting tear gas and pellet guns at protesters, press, human rights defenders, and medical brigades.

Five Suggestions For When State Repression Comes To Town

CLDC has been providing movement aligned legal support to the campaigns and activists in the so called U.S. for over 20 years now.  In that time period, I have personally witnessed numerous waves of state repression targeting the campaigns that were moving the needle on the moral compass—anti-racism, environmental and animal defense, water and food safety, Indigenous sovereignty, LGBTQIA+, and others.  The state, whether government actors or big corporate profiteers, have a limited playbook that they tend to repeat over and over. This is why knowing your movement history is core to building resilience. History has demonstrated that when state repression comes to town it is often because your campaign is winning or demonstrating strength and the state elects to spend vast resources on derailing your momentum. 

Peruvian Police Intervene At San Marcos University In Lima

The Peruvian National Police (PNP) entered this Saturday the Universidad Nacional Mayor de San Marcos in Lima, where Peruvians from different regions who came to Lima to demonstrate against the regime of Dina Boluarte are staying. Elements of the police violently entered and subdued student and social leaders who had organized for the university campus to host the caravans of indigenous communities that arrived in the capital for the massive protests against the Peruvian government. They have also arrested several people, have thrown them to the ground and are stealing donations and their belongings, according to complaints posted on social networks. A person staying at the student residence of the San Marcos University says that there is no prosecutor during the violent operation of eviction of protesters on campus, where they were staying with permission of the university authorities.

South Korea’s Yoon Launches Vicious Attack On Unions, Peace Groups

In scenes reminiscent of South Korea’s authoritarian past, South Korea’s National Intelligence Service – the successor to the once-dreaded KCIA – raided the headquarters of the country’s second-largest and most militant labor federation on Wednesday morning. Korean and foreign press services reported that the NIS and the National Policy Agency stormed the offices of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions (KCTU) and the KCTU-affiliated Korean Health and Medical Workers’ Union in Seoul. They are being charged with violating the anti-communist National Security Law by receiving orders from North Korea, possibly as spies, according to Kiji Noh, a U.S. journalist and peace activist who closely follows South Korean politics. In a related action just south of the Korean mainland, South Korea’s security forces also raided a “peace shelter” on Jeju Island that is dedicated to remembering the *Sewol*, a passenger ferry that capsized off the coast of southern Korea in April 2014 while en route to Jeju.

More Police Repression As Thousands March In Lima

This Wednesday, for the second edition of the historic “March of the Four of Them” that, in 2000, with an unprecedented popular mobilization, demanded the departure of Peruvian president Alberto Fujimori, thousands of demonstrators continued to arrive in Lima, the capital of the country, to demand the resignation of Dina Boluarte, de facto head of state after the overthrow of President Pedro Castillo. Impressive images show the mobilization from the south of the country to the capital on the Pacific coast. The march occurs in the face of militarization country, marked by the attempt of security forces to create a perimeter around Lima, an action that has been denounced by the demonstrators joined by trade unions, campesinos, and social movements. In just six weeks—two of them relatively calm due to a Christmas truce—more than 50 Peruvians have been killed by police and military forces, most of them murdered with live ammunition.

We Will Not Accept Your Laws And We Will Not Comply With Them

The United Kingdom has teetered on the edge of a ‘de facto general strike’ for months as workers protest an intensifying cost-of-living crisis. But rather than meeting the workers’ demands for adequate pay and benefits, the government has simply decided to outlaw the right to strike for hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of workers. The Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Bill, introduced in Parliament on January 10, would affect workers across six sectors of the U.K. economy — health, fire and rescue services, education, transport, nuclear decommissioning, and border security. Under this law, the government could force these workers to cross their own picket lines to provide “minimum levels” of service on strike days. If they fail to comply, workers could be instantly dismissed and their unions slapped with ruinous lawsuits.

Repression Of Dissent Following The Illegal Removal Of President Castillo

Following the illegal removal of Pedro Castillo, the now President of Peru, Mrs. Dina Boluarte, has responded to the popular protests that paralyzed the country as of December 7, 2022 with the suspension of constitutional rights. That means the police can now stop anyone without a warrant; enter any residence and prevent any citizen from traveling freely within or outside of Peru. In addition, gatherings of any kind are prohibited. In areas located in 7 regions of Peru, for several weeks, the population has been prohibited from going out into the street and obligated to stay in their homes day and night. The first protests had the unfortunate consequences of 30 dead and countless wounded and imprisoned. Why? Because the repressive forces have used lethal weapons; they have shot at the body of the protesters, at the head and sometimes from behind.

Peru: Police Brutality Leaves A Minor Dead In Cusco

On Thursday, the Peruvian police used tear gas and firearms to harshly repress the population, leaving a minor dead and more than 50 people injured in the city of Cusco. Peruvians once again took to the streets in Lima and in various departments to demand the resignation of President Dina Boluarte, the holding of early general elections this year, and the release of former President Pedro Castillo. The National Human Rights Coordinator (CNDDHH) of Peru demanded the immediate release of the social leaders detained in Ayacucho during the protests against Boluarte. Hundreds of people gathered in front of the Ayacucho police station to demand the release of the detained citizens, including the president of the Ayacucho People's Defense Front (FDPA).

‘They Shot Them Down Like Animals’: Massacre In Peru’s Ayacucho

On December 15, 2022, while helicopters flew overhead, members of Peru’s national army shot down civilians with live bullets in the outskirts of the city of Ayacucho. This action was in response to a national strike and mobilization to protest the coup d’état that deposed President Pedro Castillo on December 7. On December 15, hundreds of university students, shopkeepers, street vendors, agricultural workers, and activists gathered at the center of Ayacucho to express their discontent over the removal of Castillo and continued their mobilization toward the airport. Similar action was witnessed in several other cities across the southern Andean region of the country. As protesters approached the airport, members of the armed forces opened fire and shot tear gas canisters directly at them.

The FBI Wants To Put Me On Trial For Fighting For Black Freedom

There are strong indications that in early 2023, I, Omali Yeshitela, Chairman of the African People’s Socialist Party (APSP), founder of the Uhuru (“Freedom”) Movement, will be indicted, along with other Uhuru leaders and members, by the federal government of the United States. Using the bogus and slanderous charge that we are “Russian agents,” the U.S. government and its “Department of Justice” will attempt to put us on trial and imprison us for fighting for the liberation of African people in the U.S. and around the world. But they will fail. We will win. I am 81 years old. My political work for the last 60 years or so is influenced by the fact that in my entire life, nearing 100 years, I have not known a single day when my people were not experiencing oppression, exploitation and humiliation. 

Two Barrels Aim At African People’s Socialist Party

With new FBI and Department of “Justice” (DOJ) attacks expected in early January, a defense, mobilization and information session attracted hundreds of allies of the African People's Socialist Party (APSP).  On Friday, December 23 they zoomed into the “Emergency Mass Meeting: Hands Off Uhuru! Hands Off Africa!”  The APSP told its supporters that it expects indictments in early January 2023 and possibly sooner.  Indictments could include many more than the four names listed as “unindicted co-conspirators” during raids of July 29, 2022: Chairman Omali Yeshitela, Party Director of Agitation and Propaganda Akilé Anai, African People’s Solidarity Committee Chair Penny Hess and Uhuru Solidarity Movement Chair Jesse Nevel. 

Perú’s Dictatorship Shows True Colours

This Monday, December 26, the de facto government of Perú, led by Dina Boluarte, annulled the appointment of 312 district sub-alderpeople across 23 regions of the country, in a move that seems to advance the erasure of any traces of opposition to Boluarte’s controversial rule. These sub-alderpeople had been appointed by President Pedro Castillo, in accordance with local legislation, during his mandate by popular election. The de facto ministry of the interior justified their decision on the basis that “these officials, instead of responding to the guidelines established regarding the functions of district sub-alderpeople, instead of representing and defending the state as the law indicates, had various degrees of participation in the popular demonstrations,” the repression of which has resulted in almost 30 deaths in less than three weeks.

Antiwar Activist Faces Repression In Germany

June 22, 2022, was the 81st anniversary of Nazi Germany’s invasion of the Soviet Union, and a prominent German antiwar activist took the occasion to publicly question why the German government is now supporting neo-Nazi organizations in Ukraine. As a result, that activist is now facing the possibility of up to three years in prison. Heinrich Bücker runs Berlin’s popular Coop Antiwar Cafe, which since 2005 has been a gathering space for activists working on a wide range of issues. Since 2019 the cafe has co-organized the weekly event “Frente Unido América Latina” in front of the U.S. Embassy. He’s a member of the “Kommunistische Platform” in the party DIE LINKE; a member of the League of Anti-Fascists; and represents the U.S.-based World Beyond War in Berlin. The cafe also represents the “Aufstehen” Initiative in Berlin Mitte, backing the left politician Sahra Wagenknecht and organizing left events against sanctions and for peace.

No To Restrictions On Freedom Of Expression! 

On the occasion of the attack on the Soviet Union by the fascist German Wehrmacht in June 1941, the Friedenskoordination (Friko) Berlin organized the commemoration event „We will not forget!“ on June 22, 2022 at the Soviet memorial in Treptower Park. Due to my speech, which I gave as part of this commemoration, and a statement on the Russia-Ukraine conflict on my website, investigations have been initiated against me. According to a letter from the Berlin State Criminal Police Office dated October 19, 2022, a Berlin lawyer has accused me of having committed a crime. One refers to the § 140 StGB „Reward and approval of criminal offenses“. This can be punished with imprisonment for up to three years or with a fine.
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