Saturday, May 01, 2004

Trouble Reading Peruvia? Press 'F11' key near top of your key board twice.

Mayor Lynched, cont.: Agence France Press refers to the lynching in Ilave, the uncertainty in Tilali, the miners strike, and the coca farmers march into Lima. It follows up on the violence in Puno and states that Interior Minister Fernando Rospigliosi said that ''We are faced with a very troubling situation,'' and that the country ''could get out of hand.'' Dow Jones focuses on the pressure to resign and includes the legalities: "If the censure motion is approved by half, plus one, of the members of Congress, then the minister will be forced to resign. There are at present 118 voting members of Congress." A fight between the minister and the APRA party is also noted. Prime Minister Carlos Ferrero comes out for the defense; Congressman Antero Flores Araoz goes out on the offense. This would not the be the first time Rospigliosi had to resign. A slightly different Dow Jones piece quotes Augusto Alvarez Rodrich. NOTE: The AFP piece furthers the misinformation that AToledo has a "doctorate in economics" from Stanford University. As is clear in this Stanford press release (among many others), his PhD is in education.

Cuzco's 12-Cornered Stone Vandalized: Reuters reports that vandals have damaged the famous 12-cornered Inca stone in Cusco by scarring it with "a sharp metal object," according to Ramiro Canal of the National Institute of Culture. The stone is "one of Cusco's best-known tourist sites, was damaged on Thursday night with either a nail, a screwdriver or a chisel" which left "a scar which is 15 centimeters (6 inches) long and 4 centimeters (1.6 inches) wide."

USA Returns Artifacts: CNN, the Los Angeles Times and the Washington Post report on the USA returning "41 pre-Columbian artifacts" worth more than $1 million in a ceremony at the Peruvian Embassy in Washington. On hand were Michael J. Garcia, assistant secretary for U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement of the Department of Homeland Security and Ambassador Eduardo Ferrero. The loot was discovered by undercover agents in California, Colorado and Virginia. Also present: Abelardo Sandoval, an archaeologist with the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History. The WPost offers a photograph as well. CNN adds that the artifacts "come from the Inca, Mochica, Chimu and Chancay cultures."

AFF in a Restuarant: The Financial Times interivews AFujimori in which the disgraced president declares, "I don't have the sensation of being in exile, of isolation or of sadness. Because I am going to return. I am going to return with the support of el pueblo." [Note: Is the FT trying to suggest that the interview was held in English with some added Spanish? Knowing AFF's English, that doesn't seem credible.] Asked to explain his fortune, AFF talks about the "small fortune he made from running a Peruvian Christmas tree farm, before explaining that he has few expenses in Tokyo and a decent income from delivering lectures at $10,000 a time." Also mentioned: his 37-year-old Japanese girlfriend; his weekly radio broadcasts to Peru; and an oblique reference to Augusto B. Leguia. On Montesinos: Fujimori stated, "This was an extremely grave error to have appointed Montesinos," explaining that the intelligence chief had earned his trust by resolving a little tax problem. "After that, he provided me with information, intelligence. Nobody imagined that, behind the scenes, he was working for himself."

Embassy Justice? Reuters reports that a "military court closed the case against a group of commandos accused of killing 14 militants during a dramatic hostage rescue operation at the Japanese ambassador's residence in Lima in 1997 because of a lack of evidence." Gloria Cano, the lawyer representing the families of the 14 MRTA members, Gloria Cano, said "at least eight of the militants were executed with a shot to the head by the commandos after they surrendered at the residence." According to Mario Amoreti, the commando's lawyer: "It was not possible to prove that MRTA members were executed as one Japanese hostage claimed." The piece quotes an eye witness, hostage Hidetaka Ogura who said "he saw three guerrillas alive at the end of the rescue operation." The case may continue in the international courts.

Sendero Suggests Strikes, cont.: The BBC joins the story on the 'Wanted Poster' and the US$50,000 reward for 'Artemio.'

Tensions Over Asparagus, cont: The Associated Press reports on the mechanization of asparagus crops in the state of Washington as a way to compete with the Andean Trade Preference Act. "Industry groups have been working for years to either overturn the act or exempt asparagus." The article ends by comparing the wages of asparagus cutters: "At $7.16 per hour, Washington has the highest minimum wage in the country. Asparagus cutters in Peru earn between $5 and $7 per day."

Why No More Guano: Fisheries Oceanography has published an article on Trends in carbon flux to seabirds in the Peruvian upwelling system. A press release on the article (from the author's University) states that, "the decrease [in the bird population] appears to be due to the depletion of their food by the fishery, which grew to catch about 85 percent of the prey otherwise available to the seabirds. All told, the latter half of the 20th century saw a dramatic decline—from about 20 million seabirds to about five million, according to the paper. Today, many of the so-called bird islands of Peru are largely devoid of seabirds."

More Mining:
- BNAmericas reviews the 'mining royalty' bill which will be debated in Congress next week. Quotes come from Mining and Energy Minister Jaime Quijandría; Vice-minister César Polo. The Peruvian treasury would raise approximately US$70 million a year with "50% channeled to the regions via the mining canon, and 50% for the state treasury." Others cited: Congressman Alejandro Oré who proposes a flat 3% royalty on mineral production. And an anonymous 'mining industry source' who declared, "It is critical that tax regimes remain stable for the life of projects but the introduction of royalties will not radically change the appetite of multinationals coming to Chile."
- Manhattan Minerals Corp. put out a press release to announce the "write-down of the Company's Tambogrande project of $59,294,000, as a result of Centromin Peru's decision on December 10, 2003 that the Company had not met the requirements of the qualifying conditions of the Tambogrande Option Agreement.

Macro/Micro Econ:
- Reuters reviews the "unpopular Peruvian tax on banking transactions [which] raised $38 million for the cash-strapped government in its first month and a half," according the Banking Association said on Friday. [Note: "Unpopular"? To whom?] The tax is a "0.10% levy on financial transactions conducted through banks that was introduced in March will raise some $346 million this year."
- Reuters reports that Luz del Sur's first quarter profit fell 0.6%.

LHorna in the Quarterfinals: Agence France Press and the BBC reports that Luis Horna defeated Radek Stepanek 7-6 (8/6) 7-6 (7/2) and will now face Russian Nikolay Davydenko.

FBryce Honored: Pittsburgh's Carnegie Museum of Art has announced their 2004 Carnegie International, "one of the most prestigious exhibitions in the world, and is one of the most challenging and influential international surveys of contemporary art in North America." The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review announces that Peruvian Fernando Bryce will be among the International Artists in the exhibition, opening in October. ALSO: The Guardian recently said that "Bryce has made scrupulous, elegant pen, brush and ink copies of the Marxist newspaper POUM, dating from the Spanish civil war, as well as of Falangist propaganda, and no less propagandist American material of the time."

Terrorists and Fundamentalists: The New Zealand Herald reviews Michael Cook's 'Brief History of the Human Race' and states: "Describing the Peruvian experience of the Shining Path Maoists and Pentecostal fundamentalists, he says "the terrorists have no religion and the fundamentalists no politics. What is distinctive about the Muslim world is the extent to which the two elements have come together."


Friday, April 30, 2004

Mayor Lynched, cont: The Associated Press and MineWeb update the Ilave/Mayor story, reporting today from Tilali, Puno where "some 800 Indians in this village held five councillors hostage after their mayor [Melecio Larico Quispe] fled [to Juliaca], fearing he also would be lynched." The president of the village council, Ruben Coasaca, stated, "'We have been protesting for 18 days, demanding the resignation and removal of the mayor." On Ilave: "Mayoral duties were handed to [murdered mayor] Robles's deputy, who is under investigation for allegedly inciting the mob that killed him." The article ends with some anthropological musings including quotes from Rodrigo Montoya Rojas and this: "it is not uncommon in isolated Indian communities for residents to mete out vigilante justice against local officials accused of corruption, beating them or parading them naked through the community." MineWeb reports that Daniel Jimemez, president of the Puno Department, told Radioprogramas radio that "the uprising should serve as a wake-up call to the central government in Lima of the dire social and economic problems in the rural Andes." In Spanish: Caretas provides a good wrap-up of three municipalities in Puno.

Saving Water, cont: The New York Times includes a version of yesterday's Reuters story on SEDAPAL's "plans to halt the supply of water to Lima." [NOTE: Only The Miami Herald, among the major USA dailies, has included anything on the lynching of the Ilave mayor in their print editions.]

Terror in Peru: The United States Department of State released their "Patterns of Global Terrorism - 2003" report which suggests that "the total number of international terrorist attacks in 2003 was the lowest since 1969." (See today's Washington Post article for the low-key news coverage.) However, in the section on the Western Hemisphere, Peru was #2 on their list of concerns. "The State Department indicated that on a country-by-country level for the Western Hemisphere, the domestic terrorist threat was particularly serious in Colombia, and to a lesser degree in Peru." More Detail: "The most serious SL event in 2003 was the kidnapping of 68 workers and three police guards in June at a Camisea gas pipeline project in Toccate, Ayacucho Department."

Sendero Suggests Strikes, cont: Reuters reports that the Interior Ministry "offered a $50,000 reward for information leading to the capture of 'Comrade Artemio,' the highest-ranking leader of the Shining Path rebel group still at large." (The Wanted Poster on the Ministry of Interior's website has a toll-free number as well as an email address.) Reuters says that the televised interview from earlier this month was with "a masked man claiming to be Artemio." In that April 18 interview, 'Artemio' gave the government 60 days to come up with a response in the search for a political solution. ARCHIVE: "Sendero Suggests Strikes, cont.' in April 20's and April 19's Peruvia.

Colombia Calling Montesinos: The Miami Herald includes a short piece (not found anywhere else) in their 'America's' column reporting that "Colombia's top prosecutor [Judge Ines Tello] has asked to interview Vladimiro Montesinos."

MPicchu Rails Seem to Be OK: Orient Express put out a press release to announce their "recently launched Hiram Bingham luxury train." For US$2,750, you can puchase a 7-night/8-day package and enjoy a stay at "all of the Orient-Express hotels in Lima, Cusco and Machu Picchu; take a luxury train journey aboard the Hiram Bingham between Cusco and Machu Picchu, including afternoon tea, dinner, water, and coffee and tea, and enjoy a guided tour of the ruins at Machu Picchu." (See 'Mudslides in MPicchu' in April 13's Peruvia.)

Miners Strike, cont: Dow Jones reports that Energy and Mines Minister Jaime Quijandria is downplaying the effect of the strike. "The strike by the federation didn't have an important effect in its first day, as it didn't paralyze activities at the main mines," Quijandria told Congress. Elmer Gallegos (Cuajone mine workers' union) declared, "95% to 100% of workers are supporting the stoppage." This Bloomberg piece from late yesterday re-stated that among other miners, "all 1,300 workers at Southern Peru, the nation's biggest copper miner, and 1,500 employees at Shougang Hierro Peru, the nation's only iron miner, went on strike," according to Guillermo Panca from Southern Peru's Toquepala mine and Julio Ortiz from Shougang Hierro Peru SA. The Numbers: "The mining industry is helping drive Peru's 4 percent economic growth this year and accounts for about 27% of all income tax paid," according to the Energy and Mines Ministry. Also quoted were Pedro Escate (general secretary of the Mining Workers' National Federation); Guillermo Vidalon (Southern Peru); but not Liu Wei (Shougang).

'What the Eye Doesn't See': Francisco Lombardi's 2003 film is playing tonight in Rhode Island and tonight and tomorrow in Washington DC. RIsland's Providence Journal summarizes the movie: "Six stories set during Peru's Watergate-style scandal of 2000, which toppled President Fujimori." (Archive: See this review in the Miami Herald.)

Macro/Micro News:
- Reuters reports that "Peru's consumer prices fell 0.02% in April, helped by lower food and drink, cultural and educational items and services," according to INEI.
- BNAmericas reports that Banco de Crédito, Peru's largest bank, "expects this year to beat the 309mn soles (US$89mn) in net profits recorded in 2003 thanks to reduced costs and greater efficiency," according to investor relations manager José Hung at parent Credicorp.

JBond in Peru: Commander Bond, a James Bond fan-site, reviews the new video game for 'Everything or Nothing' with this: "003 has suddenly gone missing, and has failed to report to Mi6 for several days. 003 was investigating Diavolo in Puerto Viejo, Peru. M ships our 007, a gadget laden Porsche Cayenne Turbo SUV." (See also '007 in Peru?' January 13's Peruvia.

Jockey Winner: The Thoroughbred Times headlines: "Top Peruvian jockey boots in first U.S. winner at Aqueduct." The winner is 22-year-old Victor Fernandez who "scored his first win in the United States on Wednesday after arriving in New York just last week." Fernandez is a three-time leading jockey in Peru.

Rossellini Joins The Goat: Variety reports that Isabella Rossellini "will topline "The Feast of the Goat," Luis Llosa's bigscreen adaptation of the novel by his cousin, Peruvian novelist Mario Vargas Llosa." (For an earlier Variety report, see February 18's Peruvia.)

Criminal Predator: New York's Newsday reports on Dr. Walter Calderon, 34, a Peruvian, who "was taken into custody Wednesday night after being arraigned on charges of molesting two 'vulnerable' female patients."


Thursday, April 29, 2004

Mayor Lynched, cont: Update: Dow Jones is reporting that Lourdes Flores Nano (of the center-right National Unity alliance) said that Interior Minister Fernando Rospigliosi "should resign because the government had failed to control rising tensions in Ilave." She still believes, however, that he is among the best in Toledo's current cabinet. Agence France Press publishes a haunting photograph of "unidentified relatives attend[ing] the funeral of Ilave Mayor Cirilo Robles. MISNA reports that "around a thousand people, for the most part street vendors, took the streets of Chiclayo, in protest against the Mayor Arturo Castillo, who intends to privatise the main market of the city." [NOTE: Peruvia has received emails from Chiclayo questioning the veracity of this account.]

Miners Strike, cont: Reuters reports that workers at eight mines, including Toquepala and Cuajone (two mines owned by Southern Peru Copper Corp.) "heeded a nationwide strike call over contracts and benefits for 60,000 workers who currently lack them," according to union officials. Workers at Antamina and Yanacocha were not expected to join the strike "because their unions are weaker." Quoted is Pedro Escate, general secretary of the Mining Federation. The Miami Herald runs yesterday's Reuters story. A separate Reuters article says that "mining issues on Peru's stock exchange fell sharply for a second day on Thursday over worries a cooling in China's fast-growing economy could hurt demand for metal exports," according to traders. A secondary concern in this article is the "partial strike." Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao on Wednesday told Reuters that China was committed to forceful measures to prevent its red-hot economy from overheating. That could mean less demand for minerals, Peru's largest export."

Newmont Mining and its Critics: Denver's Rocky Mountain News reports on Newmont's shareholders annual meeting in an article titled, "Newmont Loses Glitter." Chairman and Chief Executive Wayne Murdy is quoted saying, "'We are focusing on three of our five core areas: Ghana, Nevada and Yanacocha in Peru." The Denver Business Journal headlines their story "Newmont shareholders face good news and bad" and includes quotes from Father Marco Arana, a resident of Cajamarca and an activist on calling attention to Newmont's mining practices, "Newmont has profited greatly from Yanacocha, but residents still suffer terrible health effects from a mercury spill that occurred four years ago. We are fighting to free our community from poverty and contamination and to affirm our right to development that is based on social equality and environmental protection." As over 1,000 Peruvians are suing Newmont in Denver as a result of the spill, the Business Journal reminds that the mining company "sought help from the state Legislature to avoid being sued in Colorado over matters that happen elsewhere in Newmont's far-flung gold and precious minerals empire. Gov. Bill Owens signed the bill into law on April 8." See "Overseas Lawsuits Would Be Tried Elsewhere," Denver Business Journal. Earthworks, an environmental mining watchdog group, has put out a press release timed for the shareholders meeting and declaring that "Communities Hurt by Newmont Mines Seek Fair Compensation." Father Arana is included in this press release.

More Mining:
- Pan American Silver Corp. put out a press release that quoted Chairman and CEO Ross Beaty saying "We are now almost debt free with $120 million in cash, sufficient to purchase the Morococha mine in Peru ... and complete the expansion of our Huaron mine in Peru."
- Bloomberg reports that Minas Buenaventura "gave up an option to buy a stake in the Yanacocha mine from the International Finance Corp., setting the stage for a public sale of the holding." The IFC (the financing arm of the World Bank) "is seeking to raise at least $75 million from the sale of the 1.25 percent stake in Minera Yanacocha" according to Roque Benavides, Buenaventura's chief executive. Buenaventura and Newmont Mining Corp., which own 43.7 percent and 51.4 percent of Yanacocha respectively, both waived their preferential rights, he said. Newmont hasn't made a final decision on whether to buy the stake.
- Panoro Minerals put out a press release to announce that they have "resumed drilling at Panoro's El Rosal Property in Peru following a number of mechanical problems with equipment of the former drill contractor who has now been replaced."
- The Irish Minmet put out a press release to announce they are merging their Peruvian and Brazilian assets with Brazilian mining company Mineracao Vale dos Reis Limitada to form OuroQuest Americas where Minmet will own 70% of the new company. Minmet owns the El Aguila silver-lead-zinc prospect in Cerro de Pasco.

Saving Water, cont: Dow Jones reports that Lima "will face widespread cuts to water supplies until the end of the year," according to SEDAPAL. "From May 1 until December, water will be restricted in Lima and the port of Callao from five in the afternoon to five in the morning." Quotes come from Sedapal chief Jorge Villacorta. See also 'Saving Water' in March 9's Peruvia.

Peru 1 - Chile 1: Reuters reports that Israel Zuniga scored "a last-minute goal as Peru salvaged a 1-1 draw in their friendly" against Chile, played in Antofagasta. Zuniga, who plays for Universitario, entered the match as a substite. Reuters also provides the details and some photographs of the match. Reuters also offers photographs of Zuniga celebrating his goal.
Meanwhile, Xinhuanet reports that Uruguay announced the squad that is to play Peru on June 1 in a 2006 World Cup qualifier."

Ministers Meet: Pakistan's Daily Times reports on the 17 Latin American government Ministers of social development meeting in Lima May 1 in preparation for the Third Presidential Summit of Latin America and the European Community to be held in Guadalajara in May. President Alejandro Toledo will address the opening session in Lima.

LHorna in Munich:Agence France Press and the Associated Press reports that Luis Horna advanced in the BMW Open. He was leading Taylor Dent 6-4, 3-1 when Dent (of the United States) "retired with a knee injury." Horna will now meet the Czech Radek Stepanek.

Stripped, cont: London's ribald The Sun headlines "Men's UN-derwear protest" on yesterday's PescaPeru protest.


Wednesday, April 28, 2004

Mayor Lynched, cont: Agence France Press, the Associated Press, the BBC, the Independent, the United Press International, and the Voice of America all update the story of Mayor Cirilo Fernando Robles Cayomamani who was lynched by a mob in Puno.
- The Associated Press has the best reporting with Drew Benson filing from Ilave: AToledo sent "a convoy of trucks with more than 200 officers" who eventually "retook control a day after highland Indians beat to death the mayor, accusing him of corruption." Toledo gave a nationally televised address, and called on Ilave to "maintain the climate of tranquility,'' but he also issued a warning. "Democracy means order and discipline." Also quoted was Rosa Carvajal as a women-in-the-street. Added Detail: "During the protest a riot erupted and a mob broke into a house, where Robles was conducting a town council meeting." The mob is numbered at 3,000.
- The Independent reports that an army general was headed to Ilave "to negotiate the release of the hostages and restore calm." Added Detail: "the situation deteriorated, however, after election officials from the Interior Ministry cautioned against forcing Mayor Robles' resignation and said there should be new elections instead." Also cited: the UNDP report on democracy.
- The United Press International based its reporting from El Comerico.
- Photographs: Reuters offers an "undated file picture" of the Ilave Mayor and a photograph of some protestors. The Associated Press also has photos of some more protestors, and of the military detail that arrived in Puno. The AP has a snapshot of Toledo's news conference. In addition, the AP has photographs of Mayor Robles funeral procession. The AP also has a photos of Aymara women and a man in the Plaza de Armas in Ilave. Finally, the AP publishes a grotesque photo of the violence and a depiction of another victim (with no accompanying explanation).
- The Agence France Press piece said that taking back the city was "a process that is going to take some time." People were heard in the main square chanting "Ilave united will never be defeated." Foreign Minister Manuel Rodriguez, "denounced the lynching before the Organization of American States in Washington." AFP is alone in reporting two more incidents as reported by Interior Minister Fernando Rospigliosi: Mayor Oswaldo Peralta Rojas of Cahuapanas "was taken hostage along with two other officials." (Three officials taken hostage in Ilave Monday are still missing.) And "Aguaruna Indians took the mayor of Yurimaguas hostage, along with two other city officials." In Spanish: For the other two cases, see this story in Peru 21 and this piece in El Comercio.

Stripped: Reuters reports that about 50 former PescaPeru employees "have broken into a United Nations compound in Lima and stripped to their underwear to call for benefit payments they say the Peruvian government owes them." They "climbed the fence of the U.N.'s Development Program building on Wednesday and demanded the United Nations pressure the government to award them severance." They were removed after a short protest. Quoted is Benigno Chirinos, secretary-general of the former PescaPeru workers. Reuters offered several photographs of the fishermen, some with only their skivvies on and others with more clothes. Another photograph shows them scaling the walls.

Miners Strike, cont: Bloomberg reports that "about 60,000 Peruvian miners plan a two-day strike tomorrow to seek higher wages, including workers from Southern Peru Copper Corp., Cia. de Minas Buenaventura SA and Shougang Hierro Peru SA, Volcan Cia. Minera SA, Cia. Minera San Ignacio de Morococha SA, Cia. Minera Milpo SA and Cia. de Minas Buenaventura SA's Uchuchacua, according to union officials. Cited were Eleuterio Huamani, (a union leader at Southern Peru), Hugo Sosa, (a union leader at Shougang), and Vicente Sotomayor (Mining Workers' National Federation).

More Mining:
- BNAmericas reports that "a coordinating committee has been set up to follow up the analysis of the pollution problems affecting La Oroya, the home of US metals company Doe Run's polymetallic smelter-refinery." The committee will be led by María Cardieh, director general of mining, and made up of representatives of the Ministry of Energy and Mines, Doe Run, and Centromin. (See 'Doe Run, cont' in April 21's Peruvia.)
- Newmont Mining put out a press release that declared that Yanacocha "sold 410,300 equity ounces in the first quarter at total cash costs of $133 per equity ounce." A related Denver Post article states that "Newmont's financial and operational success has come amid criticism from environmental and political groups that accuse the company of pollution and cultural disruption, particularly in Peru."
- Candente Resource put out a press release to announce "that the Cañariaco Norte leachable copper (chalcocite) zone has been identified over an areal extent more than double than previously known."

Econonic Shifts: Reuters reports that Central Bank President Javier Silva Ruete declared that Peru expects "to sign a new line of credit with the International Monetary Fund in the next few weeks," in a news conference for foreign correspondents. In March, an IMF mission visited Lima "to begin talks on a new credit line, expected to be similar to the $380 million stand-by agreement the global lender approved in 2002, which expired without being used." In a separate Reuters piece, Silva Ruete stated that "Peru expects to raise interest rates if a U.S. recovery pushes up rates in the world's largest economy, but the changes will probably be slight." The central bank's April interest rate is 2.5%. "High world oil and wheat prices will also pressure Peru's inflation rate and consumer prices could rise up to 3.5 percent in 2004," added the Bank President. (See 'Macro/Micro Econ' in yesterdays Peruvia.)

Macro/Micro Econ:
- Dow Jones reports that "Congress' Economics and Financial Intelligence Committee rejected a bill that would have allowed those with accounts in Peru's private pension funds to freely move them to state-owned pensions." Cited is Luis Solari, chairman of the economics committee. "Officials have said the cost of the measure, if approved, could rise to billions of soles a year." (See also 'Macro/Micro Econ' in April 16's Peruvia.)
- Reuters stated that "Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said today that it assigned its 'BB-' foreign currency rating to the Republic of Peru's US$500 million senior unsecured bond issue, which is due in 2016."

Teachers Strike? Dow Jones reports that Juan Contreras of SUTEP, the Union of Education Workers of Peru, had rejected the the government's latest wage increase the government has proposed." On Monday, the Education Minister Javier Sota Nadal offered teachers an increase of 115 soles a month. The piece states that "President Alejandro Toledo took office in mid-2001 promising to double teacher salaries within five years."

Crimean War in Callao: The Russian news agency Novosti reports on the 150th anniversary of the Russian frigate, The Avrora: "During the Crimean War, a war between Russia and an English-French-Turkish coalition, an English and French squadron blocked The Avrora, a 44-cannon frigate, at Port Callao. In the fog, Russian sailors used seven boats to quietly tow the frigate out of the harbor, escaping the British patrol. The frigate then hoisted its sails and sailed away." For the ceremony, the Peruvian Naval Command and Russian Ambassador Anatoly Kuznetsov put a wreath in the water. In conjunction with the celebration, a new photography exhibit opened in Lima: "The Military-Technical Cooperation between Russia and Peru: From the Beginning until the Present."

UNDP Report in Lima, cont:The Christian Science Monitor runs a piece (by Lucien Chauvin) from Peru on the tentative nature of Latin American democracy, pegged to a recent United Nations study that declared that "people here are losing faith in democracy - even as the region's economy grows."
Says Chauvin, "This may explain why Alberto Fujimori, Peru's former hard-line president, is leading polls in a crowded field of potential candidates." [NOTE: Only the IMASEN poll currently has Fujimori in the lead and that poll was restricted to Lima voters.] Cited are report author Dante Caputo and Mark Mallock Brown (UN Development Program Administrator). See: 'UNDP Report in Lima' in April 22 below.

UNICEF Report: Reuters reports that "Armed groups in Latin America are increasingly drafting children due to rising violence and a history of not being punished for recruiting minors," according to the U.N. Children's Fund (UNICEF). In Peru, "children are also drafted into private urban armies that defend drug traffickers. UNICEF estimates that there are 300,000 child soldiers worldwide. " See UNICEF's 'Armed Conflict' page.

Other Reports:
- The American Scientist publishes an article titled "Ethnoclimatology in the Andes," on how indigenous farmers used "simple astronomical observations" to work out their system of forecasting the rains. A vivid photograph of a man and a woman planting potatoes is also included.
- The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition publishes a study whose goal was "to examine whether improvement in maternal gestational zinc status is positively associated with fetal growth as assessed by ultrasonography." They "conducted a double-masked, randomized trial among 242 pregnant Peruvian women in an impoverished shantytown in Lima, Peru."

LHorna in Munich: Sports Ticker reports that Luis Horna beat France's Olivier Mutis, 6-4, 6-1 in a first-round match in the BMW Open in Germany. "Horna will play seventh-seeded American Taylor Dent in the second round."

Chile is Different:
The New York Times publishes an article on how good it is to be Chile in today's Latin America and quoted from a recent essay by Alvaro Vargas LLosa: "The image of Chile for many years has been that of a country that is 'different and solitary.' Curiously, although Chile has undertaken a growing trade with the world and attracted investments, it was perceived as 'isolated' in a space that is psychological more than political or economic."


Tuesday, April 27, 2004

Mayor Lynched: The Associated Press, Agence France Press, the BBC, and Reuters report that Mayor Cirilo Fernando Robles Cayomamani of Ilave, Puno (FREPAP)was, according to Reuters, "kidnapped and killed" after a mob dragged "him through the streets of Ilave accusing him of corruption." The AP story suggests the mob of "mostly Aymara Indians from surrounding villages, had been demanding Robles resignation on the grounds that he was corrupt and had failed to deliver on campaign promises." The AFP reports that "thousands of Ilave residents have been blocking all the roads leading into and out of the city since April 2." The AP cites Interior Minister Fernando Rospigliosi and Congressman Gustavo Pacheco, "who represents the region, [and] said that a total of 19 municipal workers had been kidnapped." Reuters cites Deputy Interior Minister Ricardo Valdes. The Miami Herald runs a short piece (apparently from the AP) and puts the number of the mob at 15,000. The AFP adds that the mob also tried to "free three protest leaders" from the town's jail. The BBC includes a photo near Ilave and the Associated Press shows the mayor "injured." IndyMedia has earlier reports of the confrontation. In Spanish: IndyMedia has startling photos and declarations from Ilave. The Jurado Nacional de Elecciones has issued an edict on the mayoralty vacancy.

Vladi Complains: Reuters reports that Vladimiro Montesinos "accused prosecutors on Monday of trying to break him by subjecting him to unfair prison conditions and long days in court." Montesinos complained of having his phones tapped, that his jail cell conditions were a "flagrant violation of my human rights," and that "obviously I'm physically exhausted." This is the third time the former spy chief, who faces 67 trials, has spoken out in court. Also Cited: Estela Valdivia, his lawyer. The Associated Press offers a photo and quotes Montesinos saying, "of course I'm worn out." See Also: '"Vladi: 'I Am Guilty' " in April 21's Peruvia.

Miners Strike: Reuters reports that "miners in Peru plan a two-day strike on Thursday and Friday to demand that 60,000 workers be hired under contracts, making them eligible for social security benefits," according to Vicente Sotomayor, advisor to Peru's Mining Federation [Federación Minera del Perú]. According to Sotomayor, "many mining companies hire temporary workers for 17 soles (US5) a day, compared with 50 soles (US$14.40) a day for workers on contracts."

More Mining:
- Sulliden Exploration put out a press release to announce that it has "commenced drilling at its Shahuindo gold/silver project in Cajamarca."
- Goldmarca put out a press release to announce "the results of the initial metallurgical test work on San Nicolas sulphide samples." Goldmarca has an agreement with Compania Minera San Nicolas S.A. and Minas del Sinchao S.A. "to earn an 80 percent interest in the San Nicolas gold-silver mine, plant site, and heap leach operation, located 30 kilometers north of Yanacocha."
- GoldHawk Resources put out a press release to announce they had "started working on the Machacala gold-silver property ... [which] covers an area of 4,006 hectares and lies 43 km. east of Trujillo."

FLombardi Retrospective: Rhode Island's Providence Journal reports on the 12th Providence Latin American Film Festival, and Friday's session titled, "Within Sight: The Cinema of Lombardi" which will be "an overview of Peru's most respected filmmaker, Francisco Lombardi, and his work." They will also screen 'What the Eye Doesn't See' and 'Red Ink.'

AFujimori Retrospective: Canada's Center for Public Opinion and Democracy presents some more details on the recent IMASEN polling data which showed Alberto Fujimori leading 2006 presidential candidates in Lima voters with 18.4%. "Interviews to 510 Peruvian adults, conducted from Apr. 3 to Apr. 6, 2004. Margin of error is 4.4 per cent." See Also: 'Imasen Polling' in April 24 below.

AToledo Retrospective: The Associated Press shows a photograph of Alejandro Toledo and Eliane Karp "in the stands at a Peruvian horse show in Mamacona." It also states that they "were jeered several times by the crowd."

JDFlorez Gets The Sun: The Associated Press offers a photograph of Alejandro Toledo with Juan Diego Florez "after awarding him Peru's 'La Orden "El Sol del Perú'." The internationally reknown Peruvian tenor is in a Lima production of Donzetti's 'La Fille du Regiment' singing to "sold out audiences." ARCHIVE: See 'JDF' in February 13's Peruvia.

IDC Opens Lima Office: IDC Latin America, a global market intelligence and advisory firm in the information technology and telecommunications industries, announced they will open up an office in Peru on May 11 at Los Delfines Summit Hotel & Casino.

Macro/Micro Econ:
- Bloomberg and Reuters reports that Peru "sold $500 million of 12-year bonds to help finance its budget deficit, the country's first international debt sale since November." Elsewhere, Bloomberg reports that "Citigroup Inc. and Credit Suisse First Boston were hired to underwrite the sale."
- Reuters reports on U.S. Treasury Undersecretary for International Affairs John Taylor saying that "Latin America should not be blindsided by modest interest-rate rises driven by a pickup in global growth" and that "global growth will be an 'overriding positive' for the region's economies."
- Bloomberg reports that Banco de Credito del Peru "is expected to release its first-quarter net income report." Also, Cia de Minas Buenaventura SA will report "its net income fell 10 percent to $50.1 million from a year ago."
- Reuters reports that Banco Continental's first quarter's net profit was up 40%.

Flying Delta? Delta Air Lines has established new international boarding procedures, using "a new staggered zone boarding procedure." Passengers will be given "a zone number during the check-in process that corresponds to their assigned seat. This zone number will be printed on the customer's boarding card which is presented upon check-in at the airport. Boarding announcements will be made in the gate areas advising customers when their zone is ready to board."


Monday, April 26, 2004

Violence in Pucallpa: The Committee to Protect Journalists, the International Freedom of Expression Exchange, and Reporters without Borders all report on the murder of journalist Alberto Rivera Fernández on April 21 in Pucallpa. "He was gunned down as he was entering his home." Rivera, who is the second journalist to be killed in Peru in 2004, "was president of the Ucayali Journalists Federation and presented a program called 'Transparencia' on Radio Frecuencia Oriental." Rivera was elected as a diputado from Ucayali in 1990 on the Partido Popular Cristiano/FREDEMO list. In Spanish: This piece in 90 Segundos suggests he was an active member of Alberto Borea's Fuerza Democrática. In Spanish: "Journalist Killed" (El Comercio); "Pucallpa Mayor Denies Knowledge of Killing" (El Comercio); and "Ex-Congressman Assassinated" (El Peruano). See also: 'Violence in Yungay' in February 21's in Peruvia.

LHorna Champion!, cont: Bermuda's Royal Gazette headlines Luis Horna's victory as: "Mission accomplished! Horna too hot to handle." The article comes with an action photo of "the shaven-headed number one seed." Adding colour: "the temperamental and entertaining Horna was not to be denied his moment of glory and smashed, snarled, drove and fought his way to a 6-4, 4-6, 6-4 victory."

Navidec Investment: Navidec put out a press release to announce their merger with Lider Group and Bond Energy which, in turn, provides for the acquisition of Livermore Energy Corporation and BPZ Energy, Inc. as wholly owned subsidiaries of Navidec. As a result, Navidec is the new owner "of 2,023,187 acres, and 5% ownership of 739,205 acres in the Lancones, Talara, and Tumbes basins of Northwest Peru and Ecuador. The properties are expected to initially produce 1,100 barrels of oil equivalent per day and have approximately 8,000,000 barrels of oil equivalent in proven and probable reserves."

On Leadership: Connecticut's Norwich Bulletin reports that the town of Norwich's Mayor, Arthur L. Lathrop, is touring the Amazon and met with Alfonso, "head man at the Ouititos [sic; Huitoto?] village near Pavis, Peru ... and found that they have had similar experiences being head man and chief elected official."


Sunday, April 25, 2004

Tensions Over Asparagus, cont: The New York Times, catching up with months of wire stories, pits Peru's asparagus production against USA asparagus growers, with a provacative headline: "War on Peruvian Drugs Takes a Victim: U.S. Asparagus." Farmers in eastern Washington and Michigan argue that their jobs are being lost as a result of the Andean Trade Preference Act. Quoted are Alan Schreiber, (Washington Asparagus Commission); John Bakker, (Michigan Asparagus Advisory Board); an asparagus farmer Ed McKay; and David Murray (White House's drug policy office). The White House suggests that "a thriving asparagus industry in Peru stabilizes the country and provides an incentive to grow something other than coca leaves, the raw material of a drug used regularly by about 2.8 million Americans." According to the Peruvian Asparagus Institute, asparagus in Peru "employed 50,000 people and 40 percent came from coca-producing regions" and explicitly links their work as "another face of the battle against terrorism." The asparagus industry in the USA was valued at $217 million in 2000. Archive: See 'Free Trade or Free Trade?' in yesterday's Peruvia; 'Exports' on April 2; and 'Tensions over Asparagus' on April 1. NOTE: To read archived LATimes articles, Peruvia readers can use 'Peruvia' as both the Username and the Password.

Fair Trade or Fair Trade?, cont: An opinion column in Minnesota's Pioneer Press argues that "excess barbers in Peru do not lower haircut costs in Minnesota even though new copper mines in the same country might reduce the cost of wiring new houses here."

Cipriani Questioned, cont: The Miami Herald uses a dated Associated Press article to run: 'Murder rumors have Peru abuzz' about Cardinal Juan Luis Cipriani's subpoena. See 'Cipriani Questioned' in April 21 below.

War of the Pacific, cont: The Washington Times publishes an editorial on energy politics in Latin America and how they may affect the North American consumer. "Chile's needs could be covered by Bolivia, but that is politically unfeasible. Over the past year, some Bolivian politicians have resuscitated lingering bitterness over a 1879 war with Chile, and have blocked a pipeline project that would connect the neighboring countries. ... If attempts to reroute the project through Peru prove unfeasible, Bolivia will have lost the only foreseeable opportunity for generating significant revenue for social services."

LHorna Champion! Berumuda's Royal Gazette reports that Luis Horna defeated Martin Vassallo Arguello of Italy in the XL Capital Bermuda Open singles final at the Coral Beach Club. "Horna, who swept past Frenchman Stephane Robert in straight sets on Saturday, defeated Arguello in three sets." See: 'LHorna Praised' in April 21 below.

Hiking the Trail: Colorado's Daily Camera does a travel piece on hiking the Inca trail. Cited: Leo Cusi Loaiza, (Wayki Trek); Garcilaso de la Vega (16th-century historian); and Pablo Neruda. Also: "Perhaps the most essential Spanish phrase for Cusco is ya hemos commido [sic], which means "we have already eaten." (Note: All travel was done before the recent mudslides.)

Driving with Bernuy: Florida's Naple News profiles paisano Juan Bernuy, the owner of Bernuy Driving School, who "founded the driving school for Spanish speakers 13 years ago and has schools operating in western Florida." In his native Peru, Bernuy "taught mathematics to aspiring naval officers before fleeing the country's economic chaos in the early 1980s."

What?! The New York Times' ombudsman writes a piece on the how the New York Times has viewed itself as a "newspaper of record" and quotes Bill Borders, a senior editor at the paper who declares, "Long ago, the Times used to feel an obligation to print lots of things that we knew no one much would read - the new members of the Peruvian cabinet, for example - just to get them on the record. Fortunately those days are over."

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