Country in South America, on the Pacific, bounded N by Ecuador and Colombia, E by Brazil and Bolivia, and S by Chile.
The 1993 constitution provides for a president, as head of state, elected by universal suffrage for a five-year term and eligible for reelection, and a single-chamber, 120-member national congress, similarly elected by proportional representation from a single national list of candidates. The president appoints a prime minister, as head of government, and a council of ministers.
For early history, see Native American. The Chimu culture flourished from about 1200 and was gradually superseded by the Inca empire, building on 800 years of Andean civilization and covering a large part of South America. Civil war had weakened the Incas when the conquistador Pizarro arrived from Spain 1531 and began raiding, looting, and enslaving the people. He executed the last of the Inca emperors, Atahualpa, 1533. Before Pizarro's assassination 1541, Spanish rule was firmly established.
A native revolt by Túpac Amarú 1780 failed, and during the successful rebellions by the European settlers in other Spanish possessions in South America 1810–22, Peru remained the Spanish government's headquarters; it was the last to achieve independence 1824. It attempted union with Bolivia 1836–39. It fought a naval war against Spain 1864–66, and in the Pacific War against Chile 1879–83 over the nitrate fields of the Atacama Desert, Peru was defeated and lost three provinces (one, Tacna, was returned 1929). Other boundary disputes were settled by arbitration 1902 with Bolivia, 1927 with Colombia, and 1942 with Ecuador. Peru declared war on Germany and Japan Feb 1945.
Peru was ruled by right-wing dictatorships from the mid-1920s until 1945, when free elections returned. Although Peru's oldest political organization, (the American Popular Revolutionary Alliance (APRA)), was the largest party in Congress, it was constantly thwarted by smaller conservative groups, anxious to protect their business interests. APRA was founded in the 1920s to fight imperialism throughout South America, but Peru was the only country where it became established.
In 1948 a group of army officers led by General Manuel Odría ousted the elected government, temporarily banned APRA, and installed a military junta. Odría became president 1950 and remained in power until 1956. In 1963 military rule ended, and Fernando Belaúnde Terry, the joint candidate of the Popular Action (AP) and Christian Democrats (PDC) parties, won the presidency, while APRA took the largest share of the Chamber of Deputies seats.
After economic problems and industrial unrest, Belaúnde was deposed in a bloodless coup 1968, and the army returned to power led by General Velasco Alvarado. Velasco introduced land reform, with private estates being turned into cooperative farms, but he failed to return any land to Indian peasant communities, and the Maoist guerrillas of Sendero Luminoso (“Shining Path”) became increasingly active in the Indian region of S Peru.
economic and social crisis.
Another bloodless coup, 1975, brought in General Morales Bermúdez. He called elections for the presidency and both chambers of Congress 1980, and Belaúnde was reelected. Belaúnde embarked on a program of agrarian and industrial reform, but at the end of his presidency, in 1985, the country was again in a state of economic and social crisis. His constitutionally elected successor was the young Social Democrat, Alan García Pérez, who embarked on a program to cleanse the army and police of the old guard. By 1986 about 1,400 had elected to retire. After trying to expand the economy with price and exchange controls, in 1987 he announced his intention to nationalize the banks and insurance companies but delayed the move, after a vigorous campaign against the proposal.
In 1989 the International Development Bank suspended credit to Peru because it was six months behind in debt payments. The annual inflation rate to April was 4,329%. García Pérez declared his support for the Sandinista government in Nicaragua and criticized US policy throughout Latin America. The party of Pérez, constitutionally barred from seeking reelection, saw its popularity slip in the Nov 1989 municipal elections. Novelist Mario Vargas Llosa, the candidate of the center-right Democratic Front coalition, was long considered the favorite to succeed García Pérez. However, Alberto Fujimori, the son of Japanese immigrants and leader of a new party, Change 90, forced a run-off in April 1990 elections. A political novice, Fujimori won a substantial victory in June. Soon after taking office he instituted a drastic economic adjustment program in an attempt to halt Peru's inflation and to pay foreign debt. In Aug 1990 an attempt to assassinate him failed.
opposition to Fujimori.
With mounting opposition to the government and fears of a military coup, Fujimori allied himself April 1992 with the army, suspended the constitution, and sacked half of the country's top judges, declaring them to be corrupt. The move, which he announced as a crackdown on rebel leaders and drug traffickers, brought international criticism (including a suspension of US humanitarian aid) and a challenge from his deputy, Maximo San Roman, who branded him a dictator. Fujimori said he would return to democratic rule within a year.
rebel leader arrested.
Sendero Luminoso terrorists stepped up their campaign of terror July 1992 in response to a government crackdown. Their leader, Abimael Guzman Reynoso, was arrested in Sept, along with several other high-ranking members of the group. All received life sentences in Oct, and terrorist attacks intensified in response. In July 1994 Fujimori issued an ultimatum to the guerrillas to surrender within four months under a so-called “repentance law”.
Elections to an 80-member Congress, replacing a two-chamber system, were held Nov 1992, 44 seats being won by progovernment parties, and in Jan 1993 the constitution was restored. A new constitution, allowing President Fujimori to seek reelection, was approved by referendum and adopted Dec 1993.
In June 1994 former United Nations secretary-general Javier Perez de Cuellar announced his intention to contest the April 1995 presidential elections. In Feb 1995 a long-standing border dispute with Ecuador, which had earlier erupted into armed military clashes, was resolved when the two countries signed a truce.
1. A republic in western South America; was the heart of the Inca empire from the 12th to 16th centuries.
2. City in Illinois (USA); zip code 61354.
3. City in Indiana (USA); zip code 46970.
4. City in Kansas (USA); zip code 67360.
5. City in Nebraska (USA); zip code 68421.
6. Unincorporated community in New York (USA).
Država u Južnoj Americi.