The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Peru, Miguel Rodríguez Mackay, presented this Friday to the President, Pedro Castillo, his irrevocable resignation from the position he held since last August 5, after revealing a series of differences with the president, thus opening a new political crisis for Castillo.
“I am writing to you on the occasion of presenting my irrevocable resignation to the position of Minister of State in the Office of Foreign Relations,” Rodríguez Mackay said in the letter sent to Castillo.
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The Peruvian Foreign Ministry looks like a minefield, with a high turnover of its holders. Rodríguez was the fourth foreign minister in 14 months of the Castillo government. The first chancellor was the ex-guerrilla Héctor Béjar, who lasted 19 days in the position.
The foreign minister, who was in charge of this office for just over a month, assured that in that period of time “the objective set was to revitalize Peru’s foreign policy, correcting errors and trying to strengthen the course of international life” of the country. .
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He added that he worked “always from the rigor of the academic and professional and having as a guide the great personalities and referents of Peruvian diplomacy and international law.”
“On the occasion of thanking you for the opportunity you gave me to lead the bicentennial Ministry of Foreign Affairs, from whose administrative quarry I come, I wish you the success that Peru deserves,” he concluded in the letter.
Foreign Minister Miguel Ángel Rodríguez Mackay: Guided by my ways and convictions, and after speaking with SPR Pedro Castillo, upon his arrival in Lima, I inform that I have submitted my irrevocable resignation as Foreign Minister. pic.twitter.com/cb8xGrGI5n
— Peru Chancellery🇵🇪 (@CancilleriaPeru) September 10, 2022
The differences with Castillo
With the resignation of Rodríguez Mackay, Castillo will have to appoint who will be the fifth head of the Foreign Ministry since he assumed power in July of last year.
Rodríguez Mackay resigned after several differences were revealed between his position and that of the president regarding issues such as Peru’s accession to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (Convemar) and the recognition of the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic ( SADR).
In recent days there have also been, according to the press, several disagreements between the president and the foreign minister on environmental issues, such as the Escazú Agreement.
Regarding the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic, Castillo reaffirmed this Friday “the defense” of the “sovereign self-determination” of the SADR, three weeks after the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced the decision to withdraw recognition and break its bilateral relations.
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“One year after establishing diplomatic relations with the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic, we reaffirm ourselves in persisting in the defense of its sovereign self-determination,” said the president on his social networks.
Castillo wrote this message on Twitter, exactly three weeks after the office led by Rodríguez Mackay announced that it was withdrawing official recognition of the SADR and breaking “all relations with this entity.”
This decision was adopted on August 18, after the foreign minister, who had taken office two weeks earlier, spoke by telephone with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, African Cooperation and Moroccan Expatriates of Morocco, Nasser Bourita.
On that occasion, the ministry stated that the Peruvian and Moroccan governments agreed to “strengthen their bilateral relations” and that the Andean country “valued and respected the territorial integrity of the Kingdom of Morocco and its national sovereignty.”
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“Because there is no effective bilateral relationship to date, the Government of the Republic of Peru decides to withdraw recognition of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic and break all relations with this entity,” the ministry said in a statement.
Peru formally began diplomatic relations with the Saharawi Republic in May 1987, but these were suspended in September 1996 under the mandate of former President Alberto Fujimori (1990-2000).
In September 2021, already under the current Castillo government, the Andean country announced the reestablishment of diplomatic relations with the SADR, a decision that, according to the then foreign minister, Óscar Maúrtua, responded to “the historic trajectory” of the Andean country as a nation. “democratic and fully respectful of international law”.
Crisis in Congress
The country is also experiencing a crisis in Congress, which dismissed its president, the right-wing Lady Camones, on Monday, after approving a motion of censure presented after some audios were broadcast where the head of his party asks to prioritize a law to favor his campaign to governor.
Censorship obtained 61 votes in favor, 47 against and 5 abstentions, among the 113 parliamentarians (out of a total of 130) who participated in the session. A simple majority was needed to pass it.
The request was presented by a multi-party bloc of left-wing groups related to the government of President Pedro Castillo and right-wing parties that this time made common cause.
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Camones, from the Alliance for Progress (APP) opposition party, had been elected to the post six weeks ago by a large majority of her caucus colleagues.
The promoters of the censorship reached a consensus to point out that Congress was being placed at the service of the private interests of the head of the APP party, César Acuña.
The election of a new president of Congress, fragmented among a dozen groups although dominated by the right, must be held within five days, according to the legislative regulations.
*With information from EFE and AFP
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