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Peru’s Humala Replaces Cabinet Members; Prime Minister Resigns

December 12, 2011 By Staff

Today in Latin America

Top Story — Peruvian President Ollanta Humala remade his cabinet over the weekend, replacing ten ministers Sunday after Prime Minister Salomón Lerner resigned on Saturday. Many speculate that the government shake-up signals a more hard-line approach toward social protests that have challenged Humala and his government in recent weeks. Only a week ago, former minister Lerner failed to come to an agreement after negotiating with protesters over the controversial $4.8 billion Conga mining project in northern Peru that opponents say would contaminate water supplies in the region. Humala subsequently declared a state of emergency in four northern provinces to control the unrest. Lerner’s replacement, the former interior minister Oscar Valdés Dancuart, taught Humala at a military academy in the 1980s and his background has raised concerns among some critics that civil liberties will be further curtailed. Culture Minister Susana Vaca, Peru’s first Afro-Peruvian government minister, was among the ten ministers to lose their jobs on Sunday.

Read more from the AP and the New York Times.

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Image: Presidencia Perú @ Flickr.

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