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Peru: Journalist Warns Of Bolivia-Style Coup After The Election

Above Photo: @bamnecessary / Twitter.

A group of retired Peruvian officers has called on the country’s military to refuse to recognize socialist candidate Pedro Castillo’s projected victory in the presidential election unless vote fraud allegations are thoroughly investigated.

Peru’s elitist right-wing forces behind presidential contender Keiko Fujimori are leading a “political propaganda” campaign of fraud allegations against her leftist rival Pedro Castillo and even considering a military coup to block his rise to power, a local journalist has declared.

“What is happening in Peru is that we have this election strategy of fear made by the right-wing forces, the private media, and also by the economic powers supporting Fujimori… claiming that if Castillo wins the election, the country will become a dictatorship like Venezuela,” said Luis Garate in an interview with Press TV.

Warning of a potential coup attempt by Fujimori’s military-backed ultra-right elements, Garate further underlined that the threat posed by these right-wing forces “is that they are trying to impose this alternative reality, the fake news. There is a climate of chaos in confrontation to justify a coup made by the conquered base.”

“They’re making speeches; they are producing these fake news and press notes, by calling for the armed forces in Peru to take a position or not, you know, recognizing the results of the presidential election because of these alleged fraud accusations of irregularities, that’s what is happening right now in Peru.”

The remarks came as a group of retired Peruvian officers called on the military to refuse to recognize socialist candidate Pedro Castillo’s projected victory in the presidential election unless vote fraud allegations are thoroughly investigated. The move appears to be a prelude to a Washington-orchestrated military coup similar to the one in neighboring Bolivia.

The plea was made in a letter that bore the names of at least 80 retired military personnel and arrived at the general headquarters of Peruvian armed forces on Friday. The signatories appealed to military chiefs to “act vigorously” and “remedy” the “demonstrated irregularities” that took place during the vote or risk having an “illegal and illegitimate” commander in chief at the helm of the country.

Dismissing persisting fraud allegations by Castillo’s opponents, Garate further emphasized that international observers supervising the polls and local election authorities have clarified that they have not found any irregularities or fraud. “Even international organizations like [the Washington, DC-based] OAS (Organization of American States), which the U.S. supports, recognize that this was a clean election,” the Peruvian journalist added.

Independent electoral observers have also said the vote was carried out cleanly, and Castillo’s Peru Libre party also stressed there was no evidence of suspicious activity.

The ethics tribunal of the National Jury of Elections (JNE) of Peru, the body charged with overseeing the legality of the electoral process, announced on Thursday that throwing doubt on the results without evidence was “irresponsible.”

Emphasizing that “this right-wing political propaganda” is also portraying Castillo as “a menace to democracy, liberty, and economic growth,” Garate further pointed to the background of Keiko Fujimori, the daughter of former dictator Alberto Fujimori – now in prison on rights abuses and fraud charges – who institutionalized “a strategy of buying the private media with secret funding from intelligence services.”

“We have to wait for the final results after dealing with all the allegations of fraud to say who is going to be the next president of Peru,” added the Peruvian journalist, noting that Castillo maintains a lead of at least 44,000 votes in the nations’ heavily polarized elections.

The school teacher and political novice has rattled the copper-rich Andean nation’s traditionally political and business elite as he has won widespread grassroots backing for pledges to rewrite the constitution and redistribute mining wealth. “The people have awakened,” Castillo told supporters recently, calling on citizens to recover the country for all Peruvians after a divisive election race.

In an address to his supporters from his campaign headquarters in Lima, Castillo called on the election jury to stop prolonging the vote review and announce the final results.

Fujimori is plagued by accusations of accepting illegal campaign contributions when she first ran for the presidency in 2011. She spent over a year in jail pending a trial. The US administrations have a long history of interference in the political and economic affairs of Latin America, which they describe as their own backyard.