Again 1 protester killed – indignation and solidarity all over Peru
One day after three civilians were killed in the city of Celendín, during a manifestation against the Conga mining project, one protester was assassinated in Bambamarca. Joselito Vásquez Jambo, 28 years of age, died in the local hospital after he was shot in the chest. Bringing the total to 4 deaths.
On the first day of the state of emergency, which was declared in the provinces Celendín, Cajamarca and Hualgayoc-Bambamarca, police occupied the main square in the city of Cajamarca. As people came together at the square, police reacted with tear gas and attacked civilians taking photos. Father Marco Arana, a social leader of the protest against Conga, was brutally attacked by police officers while peacefully sitting on a bench at the square (*). On twitter he said; “They detained me and beat me a lot, inside the police station they beat me again – punches in the face, the kidneys and insults.” He was held in custody for several hours, at the police station he was beaten by police officers and refused communication with his lawyer. Lacking any evidence, his lawyer‘s assistant demanded the immediate release. By doing so, she was also beaten by police officers and held captive.
Police forces also occupied the streets of the cities Celendín and Bambamarca. In both cities people joined at the main square and marched the streets, refusing to abide by the emergency state laws. The Peruvian National Police reacted with great force, in Bambamarca more than 10 citizens were shot, one person died. Later that night people all over the country people marched the streets, expressing their solidarity with the citizens of the Cajamarca region. In Lima, near to the plaza San Martin, tear gas was used against protesters. In Chiclayo police threatened marching citizens “to call the ‘serenazgo’ (police assistance) and to take them to the police station.”
Today, former president Alejandro Toledo criticized current president Ollanta Humala saying “that we cannot follow this road of violence and confrontation. Violence could never substitute dialogue and negotiations.” Toledo said that the Cabinet of Ministers has to be replaced if dialogue with Cajamarcan authorities cannot be organized.
The Regional Council of Cajamarca has announced a month of mourning.
Here, you can find an official list of people injured and killed during the manifestation in Celendín on the third of July: People injured – Celendín – 3/07/2012
* video about the attack on Marco Arana: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w-amfIQn0OU