Peru in Uproar After Fujimori, a Rights Violator, Gets Medical Pardon

Mr. Fujimori, who is 79, suffers from arrhythmia and tongue cancer, among other medical problems, and was taken from prison to a hospital on Friday after his blood pressure dropped, doctors said.

The pardon is the latest development in Peru’s continuing political crisis.

Mr. Kuczynski granted the pardon just after he narrowly escaped being impeached by Congress over accusations connecting him to a graft scandal extending across Latin America. The impeachment vote failed because a faction of Mr. Fujimori’s party led by his son Kenji abstained, denying Mr. Kuczynski’s opponents the supermajority required to remove him. The pardon was seen by some as a political reward to the son.

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Keiko Fujimori, a daughter of Mr. Fujimori, arriving at the hospital to visit her father after he was pardoned on Sunday.

Credit
Guadalupe Pardo/Reuters

“I think that those of us who are committed to governance need an explanation,” said Congressman Richard Acuña, one of those who abstained.

After the vote, Carlos Basombrío, the interior minister, announced his resignation. Now at least three lawmakers have come forward to say they will resign because they oppose the president’s decision to pardon Mr. Fujimori.

“I do not agree with the decision,” Congressman Vicente Zeballos said. “It does not fit with my political convictions.”

As the democratically elected president of Peru in the 1990s, Mr. Fujimori led the country through a period of economic revival. But he was removed from office in a corruption scandal and later convicted of human rights abuses that the military carried out in his name. If he serves his sentence to the end, he will be in prison for 14 more years, or until he is 93.

Even from prison, Mr. Fujimori has exerted influence on politics, and his supporters, so-called Fujimoristas, dominate the legislature. He also has supporters among Peru’s…

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