Reconciliation is not a Valid Argument to Pardon Fujimori, says Human Rights Watch

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Source: La República (Peru) / The Dawn News / October 3, 2017

José Vivanco, Director of Human Rights America, also criticized the performance of Popular Force’s legislators. “They behave in an anti-democratic manner”, he said.

Fujimori. Photo credit: Resumen Latinoamericano

A potential pardon for the convicted former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori continues to generate reactions at an international level. José Miguel Vivanco, director of Human Rights Watch in America, made declarations about the controversial topic.

In an interview with Ideeleradio, he referred to the so-called “reconciliation”—one of the main arguments used to justify the granting of a presidential pardon to the historical leader of Fujimorism, a favor that can only be applied by current president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.  

“The concept of reconciliation, which is very powerful and is important to keep in mind in any democratic society, is not enough to justify a selective or special treatment for somebody that has been sentenced to 25 years for acts of extreme gravity”, he manifested.

Alberto Fujimori was condemned in 2009 for the slaughters in Barrios Altos and La Cantuta. Charges for the kidnappings and murders of dissidents in the basements of the Secret Intelligence headquarters and for corruption were also added.

“Fujimori was not condemned for misdemeanors, he is serving a sentence for his responsibility in crimes against humanity and for other corruption charges. These are perhaps the worst crimes in the last 30 or 40 years in Peru”, added Vivanco.

Current President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski pointed out a few days ago that they are “evaluating” the health of the father of Keiko Fujimori, the current leader of the Popular Force party. Inquired upon the possibility of using the presidential pardon to assist him, he declared that it would be “a humanitarian remission, not a pardon”.

The Human Rights Watch Director for South America added that “politics are exercised by the Parliament with full legitimacy, but once justice pronounces itself after a process that followed all the rules of due process, the verdict must be followed and the sentences must be respected”.


On Popular Force

José Vivanco also criticized the attitude of the legislators of the Popular Force Party, the first majority of  the Congress. He considered that the party shows “anti-democratic” conducts.  

“I see that these legislators are constantly doing everything possible and even the impossible in order to bring down the cabinet and the government, which is trying to comply with a program of modernization and democratic advancement for the country. It is lamentable; it reflects the degradation of the exercise of politics on behalf of the Fujimorism, which has a clearly anti-democratic conduct”, he stated.

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