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  HOME | Peru

Peru Judge Allows Prosecutions for “Apology for Terrorism”

LIMA – A Peruvian judge will allow the prosecution of four members of the Movement for Amnesty and Fundamental Rights, or Movadef, under a law banning justification for terrorism, prosecutor Milko Ruiz told EFE on Thursday.

Movadef is seen as the political arm of the Shining Path guerrilla group, which was defeated in the early 1990s, though isolated remnants remain active in some parts of Peru.

The four defendants in the case, Alfredo Crespo, Manuel Fajardo, Oswaldo Esquivel, and Alberto Mego, are accused of publishing an article that included praise for jailed Shining Path founder Abimael Guzman.

Judge Angel Mendivil agreed to accept the case after another court threw out the charges.

Ruiz said the indictment is based on a piece that appeared in 2010 in a Movadef-linked publication which described Guzman as the leading Maoist thinker of the present.

The prosecutor insisted that praise for Guzman, who stands convicted of terrorist offenses, is tantamount to praise for terrorism and, as such, subject to prosecution.

Defendant Alfredo Crespo, an attorney who has represented Guzman, told EFE that the charges were absurd and part of a “political persecution” targeting his organization.

Movadef, which has made forays into electoral politics, advocates an amnesty for all those convicted of crimes committed during Peru’s 1980-2000 internal conflict, which caused roughly 69,000 deaths.

Shining Path was responsible for the largest share of those killings, according to the final report of Peru’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

 

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