Peru's Castillo Arrested After Third Impeachment Attempt as Peru Swears In VP as President
19:50 GMT 07.12.2022 (Updated: 21:23 GMT 07.12.2022)
Dina Boluarte, Pedro Castillo's vice president, was sworn in as president of Peru on Wednesday afternoon after Castillo was deposed by the parliament and arrested.
Hours after declaring rule by "decree law" and attempting to abolish the national legislature, Peruvian President Pedro Castillo was taken into custody by police as his base of support evaporated.
Peruvian police said in a statement on Wednesday afternoon that In pursuance of our duties, prescribed in the law on the National Police of Peru, the officers detained the ex-president of Peru, Pedro Castillo."
The announcement came after Castillo declared “an exceptional emergency government” on Wednesday morning and attempted to dissolve the Congress in order to block a planned vote on his removal from office, which in Peruvian politics is called vacating.
Despite Castillo's move, the lawmakers met anyway, and all but six voted to impeach him for "moral incapacity." It was their third attempt in a year's time.
In a statement following his declaration, the Peruvian Armed Forces disavowed his actions, saying that "any act contrary to the established constitutional order constitutes an infringement of the Constitution and generates non-compliance by the Armed Forces and the National Police."
According to Peruvian media reports, Castillo was believed to have attempted to flee the presidential palace, but instead went to the prefecture of police, where he was detained. Video and photos posted on social media showed Castillo in police custody, but not restrained.
Vice President Dina Boluarte was summoned to the Congress on Wednesday afternoon to take the oath and replace Castillo as president. She is the first female Peruvian head of state.
Following the earlier police statement, the US State Department issued a notice acknowledging that "Castillo is now a former president."
Castillo has faced staunch resistance by the right-wing opposition since even before he took office in July 2021, which called him a Marxist and compared him to the late Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez . The political neophyte rose to prominence promising to govern for the country's poor, its peasantry, and its indigenous people. Hailing from the mountainous interior of the country, Castillo was a farmer, a trade union leader, and a schoolteacher before becoming president.