Last Updated: Friday, 15 December 2017, 16:28 GMT

Amnesty International Report 2016/17 - Peru

Publisher Amnesty International
Publication Date 22 February 2017
Cite as Amnesty International, Amnesty International Report 2016/17 - Peru, 22 February 2017, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/58b033c211.html [accessed 16 December 2017]
DisclaimerThis is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.

Republic of Peru
Head of state and government: Pedro Pablo Kuczynski Godard (replaced Ollanta Moisés Humala Tasso in July)

There was a notable increase in violence towards – and lack of protection of – marginalized groups, particularly women and girls, Indigenous Peoples as well as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) people. The government ratified the Arms Trade Treaty.

BACKGROUND

In June, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski Godard was elected President in the second round of elections.

Over 200 cases of social protest were registered, around 70% of which were related to disputes between communities, extractive companies and the government over the ownership, use and enjoyment of natural resources as well as the protection of the environment.

HUMAN RIGHTS DEFENDERS

Human rights defenders continued to be harassed, threatened and attacked in the context of social protests – especially those related to land, territorial and environmental issues. The police used excessive and unnecessary force, including lethal weapons, to repress protests. In October, Quintino Cereceda died of a bullet wound to the head when the police dispersed a protest against the mining project in Las Bambas, Apurímac region.

On two occasions, Máxima Acuña and her family were attacked and intimidated by security personnel from the Yanacocha mining company, who destroyed their crops. The company claimed it was exercising its "possessory right to defence". Máxima Acuña, her family and another 48 activists and peasant farmers from Cajamarca region were beneficiaries of precautionary measures granted in 2014 by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights to guarantee their safety.

INDIGENOUS PEOPLES' RIGHTS

The investigation into the deaths of four Asháninka leaders from Ucayali region who had allegedly been killed in 2014 by illegal loggers had yet to be concluded by the end of the year. The leaders had previously denounced the continuous illegal logging on their territory.

Throughout the year there were 13 oil spills from the Northern Peruvian Pipeline, contaminating water and land belonging to Indigenous Peoples in the Amazon basin. Indigenous organizations in the affected areas went on strike from September, demanding that the government address issues like the population's health and reparations for damage to the environment. In December the Indigenous organizations and the government signed an agreement on the issue.

In September, the Bagua Criminal Court acquitted 53 accused Indigenous people, who had been charged with crimes including killing 12 police officers in clashes with security forces in 2009. At the end of the year no state officials had been prosecuted for their role in escalating the conflict.

IMPUNITY

Some progress was made in the investigation of human rights violations committed during the internal armed conflict (1980-2000).

In June, the Law on the Search of Disappeared Persons was enacted.

In July, the trial began of 11 military personnel accused of sexual violence against rural women between 1984 and 1995 in Manta and Vilca, Huancavelica region.

In August, 10 military personnel were found guilty of the extrajudicial execution of 69 people in Accomarca village in 1985. There were 23 children among the victims.

In September, three high-ranking officials were charged with having forcibly disappeared two students and a teacher in 1993 in basements of the Military Intelligence Service headquarters.

In October, the trial of 35 former marines began for the massacre in El Frontón prison in 1986, when 133 prisoners accused of terrorism were extrajudicially executed.

VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND GIRLS

Violence against women and girls continued; there were reports that 108 women had been killed by their partners as well as reports of 222 cases of attempted murder of women and girls. Most cases were not investigated or resulted in suspended prison sentences.

Trafficking for sexual exploitation

Women made up 80% of human trafficking victims; 56% of the victims were under 18 years of age, with the majority trafficked for sexual exploitation in mining areas.

In September, the Permanent Criminal Chamber of the Supreme Court of Justice ratified a judgment of acquittal in a human trafficking case involving a 15-year-old girl. The Chamber argued that working over 13 hours a day as an "escort" in a bar in an illegal mining operation did not constitute labour exploitation or sexual exploitation, as "the workload did not exhaust the worker".

SEXUAL AND REPRODUCTIVE RIGHTS

The rate of teenage pregnancy increased. In some regions of the Amazon it reached 32.8% of girls and women between 15 and 19 years of age; 60% of pregnancies among girls aged 12-16 resulted from rape.

Forty-three cases of "risk to personal safety" (cases of threats and intimidation) and eight murders of LGBTI people were registered by NGOs. However, a reform to the Criminal Code which would have criminalized discrimination and attacks on the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity failed to pass due to the change of government and of Congress.

In December, a bill that would recognize the gender of transgender people was presented in Parliament.

In July, the Public Prosecutor's Office closed the investigation into the case of over 2,000 Indigenous men and women who were allegedly forcibly sterilized in the 1990s. Only five health personnel were investigated for their role in the forced sterilization.

The registration of victims of forced sterilization was initiated in five regions of the country, and by the end of the year more than 2,000 victims were registered.

In August, a court of first instance in Lima, the capital, ordered the Ministry of Health to distribute emergency oral contraceptives free of charge.

Abortion remained criminalized in almost all cases, leading to clandestine and unsafe abortions. In October, several members of Parliament presented draft legislation to Congress to decriminalize abortion in cases of sexual violence.

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