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Peruvian writers denounce ‘shame’ of Fujimori pardon

December 30, 2017

Demonstrators march during a protest against the pardon of former President Alberto Fujimori holding photographs of people who disappeared during his government, in Lima, Peru, Thursday, Dec. 28, 2017. Peru's President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski granted a medical pardon to the former strongman Fujimori who was serving a 25-year sentence for human rights abuses, corruption and the sanctioning of death squads. (AP Photo/Martin Mejia)

LIMA, Peru (AP) — Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa and 238 other Peruvian writers have signed an open letter denouncing a pardon granted to former President Alberto Fujimori, saying it covers their nation “in infamy and shame.”

The letter released Saturday comes in response to President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s pre-Christmas pardon of Fujimori, who had been imprisoned for the killing of 25 Peruvians during his 10-year administration.

The letter says the pardon wasn’t an act of compassion “but of the most crude and cynical political calculus.” Backers of Fujimori last week helped Kuczynski avoid impeachment in Congress.

Fujimori defeated Vargas Llosa for the presidency in 1990. Two years later, he dissolved Congress. He fled the country in 2000.

Many prominent figures signed the letter, including novelists Daniel Alarcon and Alfredo Bryce Echenique.

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