The protesters condemned the new president’s decision to appoint hardliner Guido Bellido as prime minister.
A few days after the appointment of a hardliner and a Marxist as prime minister, hundreds of Peruvians held a rally against leftist President Pedro Castillo.
On Saturday night, protesters marched in the Peruvian capital Lima. They held up placards denouncing the newly appointed Prime Minister Guido Bellido as a “terrorist” and sympathizer of Shining Way, a Maoist insurgent organization, in 1980. Attempts to seize power in the 1990s and 1990s.
“Terrorism, never again,” the crowd chanted. Some people also held placards that read “Against Communism.”
Many of those in attendance were allied with Keiko Fujimori’s People’s Power Party, which competed with Castillo in a fiercely contested presidential election in June.
“Guido Bellido is a problematic person and is considered to be misogynistic and homophobic. But most importantly, he speaks very well about the Shining Path,” Al Jazeera’s Mariana Sanchez reported in Lima. “People here say that we don’t want the government to have terrorists. This is an insult to our memory.”
She added that some people who voted for Pedro Castillo also expressed their dissatisfaction on social media, saying that they did not vote for him to allow extremists to enter the cabinet. He had promised to include the moderates in the cabinet, but they said the president had betrayed them. “
Castillo is a political novice who promised to become a champion of the poor in the country. Two weeks after he was declared the winner of the June 6 runoff, he was formally sworn in as president on Wednesday.
On Thursday, he appointed Bellido, a member of his Free Peru Party, as prime minister. The 42-year-old Cusco Andean native defended the members of Shining Path in an interview with local media in April.
According to Reuters, his appointment severely hit the Peruvian currency and bond markets. The Peruvian currency fell to a historical low, the biggest decline in seven years. The local stock index fell nearly 6% at the intraday low, the lowest point. Closed since November.
According to local daily newspapers El Comercio and La Republica, the move also led Castillo’s most famous economic adviser, Pedro Francke, to initially reject the position of the Ministry of Finance. Just a few minutes before the ceremony, someone saw Frank walk out of the ceremony and swear an oath to the newly appointed cabinet members.
But Frank eventually assumed this role and was sworn in as Secretary of the Treasury on Friday night.
Frank, a professor of economics, is a moderate leftist who has tried his best to appease investors who feared Castillo’s presidency.
Bellido expressed his “full support” for Frank on Twitter on Friday, saying that they would “work together for the country.” Earlier on Friday, he also told reporters: “Don’t worry. Everything will be fine.”
Castillo also defended his new government on Twitter on Friday.
“Our cabinet belongs to the people. It answers the people,” he wrote.
“Our commitment is a commitment to Peru. There is no other interest except for our every effort to build a more just, free and dignified country. We will not fail your trust.”
The Prime Minister and other members of the cabinet need to be confirmed by the opposition-led Congress, and Bellido’s left-wing position will face strong resistance. Most congressional votes are held by the center and right-wing parties.