05 April 2022

Peru imposes curfew to quell protests over rising prices

05 April 2022

Peru’s president has imposed a tight curfew on the capital Lima and the country’s main port in response to sometimes violent protests over rising prices of fuel and food.

Pedro Castillo announced that people must largely stay in their homes all day on Tuesday because of acts of violence, which included four deaths over the past week, the burning of toll stations and small-scale looting.

He said violence and road blockades had caused “worry among workers, mothers and the population in general” and he had imposed the curfew to “re-establish peace and internal order”.

Protests on the outskirts of Lima (Martin Mejia/AP) (AP)

He also extended a state of emergency imposed in early February that restricts some rights to meet and move about.

The decree exempted essential services such as food markets, pharmacies, clinics and waste collection. The measure was similar to the most restrictive lockdowns imposed against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Truckers and other transport workers have been protesting and striking over fuel and food prices, blocking some key highways. In response, the government on Sunday temporarily removed a tax that increased the prices of petrol and diesel by 28% to 30%.

Mr Castillo has acknowledged in recent weeks that the country faces an economic crisis that he blamed on the pandemic and the Russian war with Ukraine.

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