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US-Peru

On 7 December 2005, Peru and the United States signed a bilateral treaty called the Trade Promotion Agreement.

The signing triggered a wave of public demonstrations in 2005. Prominent among the organizers were small farm organizations asserting that they would likely be hit the hardest by the resulting elimination of tariffs and other trade protections. The Peruvian government claimed that it would offer subsidies to reduce the agreement’s impact on small farmers, just as the United States does for its own agricultural sector. When the government failed to live up to this promise, the peasants marched in protest, demanding that the subsidies be released. In the midst of these protests, Peru ratified the FTA in June 2006.

February 2008 saw a new round of protests dubbed the “Paralización Nacional Agrícola” (National Agrarian Shutdown), in which thousands of small farmers participated. The protests, organized by the Comando Nacional Unitario de Lucha de los Campesinos Peruanos, were repressed by the authorities, leaving a total of four dead.

As part of the legislative package required by the FTA prior to its entry into force on 1 January 2009, the Peruvian executive branch – making use of the legislative powers granted by Congress – passed Legislative Decree 1015 on May 20 reducing the percentage of peasant and indigenous community members required to vote in order to sell or give concessions on their land in mountain and jungle areas.

In reaction, indigenous people from the Peruvian Amazon held several weeks of protests in August 2008 calling for the revocation of over 30 FTA-related decrees affecting their land rights. They were successful in getting the Peruvian Congress to revoke Decrees 1015 and 1073.

Also in August 2008, the Andean Community of Nations (CAN) amended Decision 486 regarding intellectual property in order to allow Peru to implement the FTA with the US. The amendment, initially rejected by Bolivia, brought CAN to the brink of dissolution.

The US-Peru FTA took effect on 1 February 2009.

last update: May 2012


Peru to suspend land laws after violence
Peru’s Congress is moving to suspend the passage of laws at the heart of a lands right dispute with Amazonian indigenous tribes that sparked the worst violence the country has seen since the Maoist Shining Path insurgency.
Stop the lethal repression against indigenous Peruvians
Call on the government of Alan Garcia to end the massacre of the indigenous peoples of Peru, and to pay for its crimes.
Massacre in Peru in the name of free trade
We in America need to be aware of the effects our economic imperialism has around the world. Instead of looking to move away from free trade agreements such as the one in Peru, we are working to establish new agreements, such as those in Panama or Colombia. The pork industry, for example, is lobbying very hard for a Panama FTA, so it can open up Panamanian markets to American pork.
Blood at the blockade: Peru’s indigenous uprising
Protestors’ top demand is the repeal of a series of decrees, known collectively as the "Law of the Jungle," signed by García last year using extraordinary powers granted to him by Peru’s Congress to enact legislation required by the 2006 US-Peru Free Trade Agreement. Under the government’s current plan, oil and gas concession blocs alone would cover 72 percent of Peru’s Amazon.
50 days of protest and one massacre in the Peruvian Amazon
Many Indigenous groups, human rights organizations, and environmental groups have called for President Garcia to step down and have issued calls for demonstrations at Peruvian embassies around the world "until the bloodbath is stopped and the legislative decrees for the Free Trade Agreement with the United States are repealed."
Police hostages die in Peru protest
At the heart of the dispute are laws passed last year as Garcia sought to bring Peru’s regulatory framework into compliance with a free-trade agreement with the US. "This has to be seen as one more chapter in the national struggle against the FTA," Mirko Lauer, a political commentator at Peru’s La Republica newspaper, told Al Jazeera.
Fatal clashes erupt in Peru at roadblock
The indigenous groups in Peru have surprised the authorities with their sudden strength and organization and are now threatening to blunt President Alan García’s efforts to lure foreign investment to the region.
Peru: Indigenous protests force government negotiation
Since April 9, indigenous communities have shut down oil fields and gas pipelines, and blocked roads, rivers, airports and other installations. These actions are in protest at government decrees that open access to indigenous people’s lands to facilitate oil, mining, logging and agricultural companies. Garcia decreed the laws under special powers awarded to him by Congress to bring Peruvian law into line with a free trade agreement (FTA) signed with the United States in December 2007.
Amazonian Indigenous protest provokes Peruvian government reprisals
After more than six weeks of protests by Peru’s Amazonian indigenous groups that have included blockades of major roads and waterways and the shutting down an oil pipeline pumping station, the Peruvian government has begun to crack down.
Protests target Peru’s UN Mission in New York: Indigenous rights over US free trade agreement
Indigenous leaders from around the world are joined by supporters in a demonstration today outside the Peru’s Mission to the United Nations, urging the Alan Garcia Government to respect indigenous peoples’ rights and repeal a series of new laws passed under the pretext of implementing the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) with the United States.