Weekly News Update on the Americas
Issue #941, March 30, 2008

1. Peru: Crackdown on Leftists
2. Argentina: Farmers Strike Continues

*1. Peru: Crackdown on Leftists
As of Mar. 25, the government of Peruvian president Alan García had arrested nine leftist activists in less than month, charging that they were planning terrorist acts or were funded by the government of Venezuelan president Hugo Chávez Frías.

The Antiterrorist Directorate of the National Police of Peru (PNP) arrested seven activists on Feb. 29 as they were trying to return to Peru after attending a Feb. 24-27 conference of the leftist Bolivarian Continental Coordination (CCB) in Quito. The PNP claims the CCB supports two rebel groups, Peru's Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement (MRTA) and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC). According to PNP director general Octavio Salazar, the activists were planning to sabotage two summits to be held in Peru this year: the Latin American-European Union (ALC-UE) in May and the Asian Pacific Cooperation (APEC) in November. One of those arrested, Roque Gonzales La Rosa, served eight years in prison for the kidnapping of a Bolivian politician. The arrests came the day before an attack by the Colombian military on a FARC camp in Ecuadoran territory which set off a brief diplomatic crisis between Colombia and the left-leaning governments of Ecuador and Venezuela [see Updates #937, 939, 940]. [...]

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