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Peru: Rebellion in the prisons

25. March 2001

Immediate fulfilment of the demands of the Peruvian political prisoners!

On the 13th of March the political prisoners of the Peruvian revolutionary organisation MRTA (Movimiento Revolucionario Tupac Amaru) launched a rebellion occupying the high security prison of Yanamayo.
Today, the 22nd of March the protest action was ended since the authorities had promised to transmit the prisoners´ demands to the central government.
The political prisoners demand their immediate transportation into another prison and the definite closure of the extermination prisons of Yanamayo and Chayapallca. These high security prisons have been built by the Fujimori dictatorship being directed against the Peruvian revolutionary movement. They are located at an altitude of more then 4,000 meters in the Peruvian Andes. The Peruvian people know them under their “nickname” “graves for human beings”, since prisoners being kept there frequently suffer from torture, low temperatures, hunger, lack of medical treatment, terrible hygienic conditions and permanent isolation. Various Human rights organisations, even the Interamerican Court for Human Rights, have condemned in numerous occasions the barbarism of Fujimori´s penal policy demanding the closure of these extermination prisons.
The political prisoners´ second demand is the investigation of the case involving at least three MRTA militants who participated in the siege of the Japanese embassy. According to witnesses they survived the storming of the embassy by police forces on the 22nd of April 1997, but reappeared later on among the dead. All facts indicate an extra-judicial execution.
When the dictatorship of Fujimori and chief of the secret services Montesinos broke down, under the growing pressure by the popular democratic movement protesting the obvious election fraud integrating even parts of the army, the USA dropped Fujimori, who had guaranteed the dictatorial regime in the last years. Thus, they managed to avoid the escalation of the popular protests which could have become dangerous for them.
Step by step the whole scandal about corruption and illegitimate enriching of the dominant class, the systematic violation of human rights, thousands of illegally imprisoned oppositional activists lacking witnesses and proofs, judged by military judges with hidden faces or even without any judgment as well as the social misery of the big majority of the peoples due to the neo-liberal policy, privatisations and massive closures of factories – all these atrocities came to light.
Despite of the apparently democratic promises of the transitional government, the political prisoners of the guerrilla organisations and many social activists are still kept in these high security prison. This is a worrying sign since it seems already obvious that the future political leaders of Peru intend to reduce the democratic opening turning it into a mere publicity campaign on international scale without introducing any real changes. Thus they are negating the revolutionary opposition, which is continuing to struggle for a real change, for popular power, for a new economic system and against neo-liberal capitalism, any possibility to openly and democratically express themselves.

The Anti-imperialist Camp calls upon all democratic organisations to pressurise internationally to fulfil the demands of the Peruvian political prisoners and to demand their immediate liberation.

Freedom for all Peruvian political prisoners!
Immediate Closure of all high security prisons!
Democracy and peoples´ power!