Peru’s Democracy Is Now Teetering on the Edge

Peru’s Democracy Is Now Teetering on the Edge
Anti-government protesters clash with police in Lima, Peru, Jan. 24, 2023 (AP photo by Martin Mejia).

The crisis in Peru shows no sign of easing. With the death toll climbing, protesters have now reached the capital. Meanwhile, political leaders are struggling to come to an agreement about a way out of a violent showdown that is crippling the economy, worsening poverty and threatening the survival of Peru’s democracy.  

The unrest erupted in December, when then-President Pedro Castillo, in an effort to avert impeachment, announced that he was disbanding Congress and would rule by decree. The auto-golpe, or self-coup, failed, and Castillo was promptly imprisoned, bringing an end to his chaotic presidency and elevating his then-vice president, Dina Boluarte, to the top job.

In her first speech as president, Boluarte took a decidedly conciliatory line, calling for unity and a chance to lead the country out of its morass. “I ask for time to rescue our country from corruption and incompetence,” she pleaded. But Castillo’s backers would have none of it. For once one of their own—a poor, mixed-race man from the rural periphery—had been elected president. And now he was in prison.

Keep reading for free!

Get instant access to the rest of this article as well as three free articles per month. You'll also receive our free email newsletter to stay up to date on all our coverage:

Or, Subscribe now to get full access.

Already a subscriber? Log in here .

What you’ll get with an All-Access subscription to World Politics Review:

A WPR subscription is like no other resource — it’s like having your own personal researcher and analyst for news and events around the globe. Subscribe now, and you’ll get:

  • Immediate and instant access to the full searchable library of 15,000+ articles
  • Daily articles with original analysis, written by leading topic experts, delivered to you every weekday
  • Weekly in-depth reports on important issues and countries
  • Daily links to must-read news, analysis, and opinion from top sources around the globe, curated by our keen-eyed team of editors
  • Your choice of weekly region-specific newsletters, delivered to your inbox.
  • Smartphone- and tablet-friendly website.
  • Completely ad-free reading.

And all of this is available to you when you subscribe today.

More World Politics Review