Latin American Weekly Report

19/11/2020 - Peru puts faith in Don Quixote as Merino resigns amid fatal protests

After lurching from one crisis to another, Peru may have found a head of state capable of nursing the country through to presidential and congressional elections in April next year. The septuagenarian Francisco Sagasti, affectionately known as Don Quixote on account of his appearance, was sworn-in as Peru’s third president in the space of one tumultuous week on 16 November. The impeachment of President Martín Vizcarra for ‘moral incapacity’ had ushered in the president of congress, Manuel Merino, whose brief tenure was marked by protests which built in size and volume by the day, undermining his tenuous legitimacy. Merino’s position became untenable after his cabinet resigned en masse in the wake of the heavy-handed police response to the protests, which led to two fatalities.

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