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Jurists Visit Peru

Peru: Amnesty International And The International Commission Of Jurists Visit Peru

News Release Issued by the International Secretariat of Amnesty International

8 November 2000 AMR 46/035/2000 212/00

Delegates from Amnesty International and the International Commission of Jurists will be visiting Peru from 12 to 17 November 2000.

The purpose of the visit is to highlight the organizations'concerns, and to campaign specifically on breaking the vicious cycle of impunity which has been institutionalised and legalised in Peru over the past two decades.

"Disappearances" and killings were perpetrated systematically and on a large-scale until 1993 by the Peruvian security forces, and torture continues to be widespread. These crimes are not subject to statutes of limitation. Immunity laws, such as the 1995 Amnesty laws, legalised impunity for human rights violations committed in Peru between 1980 and 1995. Both organizations believe that Amnesty or immunity laws cannot and should not be invoked to prevent those responsible of human rights abuses being brought to justice.

Amnesty International and the International Commission of Jurists will also be addressing the serious concerns on:-

the scores of prisoners falsely charged with terrorism-related offences; the widespread use of torture in the country; the absence of an independent and impartial judicial system in Peru; unfair trials harrassment of human rights defenders

The delegates arrive at a critical political moment, marked by the decision of President Fujimori to call for Presidential elections in April. Amnesty International will discuss with human rights groups and members of civil society an urgent human rights plan of action for Peru to eradicate impunity, and to reconstruct the judicial system.

The delegates will meet with members of the government and opposition parties, as well as representatives from civil society, human rights organizations and victims of human rights violations.

To organize media interviews with the delegates from Amnesty International or from the International Commission of Jurists, call Guadalupe Marengo on + 511 444 1414 or +511 444 1416 or Amnesty International's press office on +44 207 413 5562

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