The interim president of Peru, Francisco Sagasti, this Friday (18) classified as “unacceptable” the letter from a group of retired military officers who asked the high command of the Armed Forces not to recognize the eventual proclamation of Pedro Castillo as president-elect , suggesting a coup d’etat.
In a message aired on national television with Prime Minister Violeta Bermúdez and Defense Minister Nuria Esparch, Sagasti announced that the letter, which was released on Thursday night, had been sent to the Attorney General’s Office. Republic so that they can proceed with the investigations they deem appropriate.
“It is unacceptable for a group of retired members of the Armed Forces to try to incite senior officers to violate the rule of law. I reject such communications that are not only contrary to democratic values and institutions, but also acts against the Constitution and laws ” cried Sagasti.
With 100% of the ballots counted, Castillo won, with 50.125% of the votes, the rightist Keiko Fujimori, who got 49.875%. However, the representative of the Free Peru Party has not yet been proclaimed elected president due to a series of appeals filed by the competitor.
“In a democracy, the Armed Forces are not deliberative, they are absolutely neutral and scrupulously respectful of the Constitution. It has taken us a lot of time and effort to build our democratic institutions throughout our turbulent 200 years of republican life. risk,” stressed the interim president.
“As the supreme head of the Armed Forces and the National Police, I guarantee neutrality and demand that it be respected. I call on citizens to remain calm and serene in these difficult times we are living in a few days before the bicentennial of our independence,” he concluded.
Long list and illegal request for new elections
The retired soldiers’ letter was addressed to the head of the Joint Command of the Armed Forces and the commanding generals of the Army, Navy and Air Force.
According to Sagasti, the document had only one signature, followed by a list of names allegedly supporting the communication, although several of them were former soldiers killed, according to local media.
The letter calls on the military hierarchy not to recognize Pedro Castillo’s electoral victory due to accusations of systematic fraud made by Keiko and his team, although no evidence has been presented.
“We would have an illegal and illegitimately proclaimed president,” says the letter, which also advises that Congress should be called upon “to provide a democratic solution.”
The same thesis is maintained by congressman-elect Jorge Montoya, of the ultra-conservative Renovação Popular party. He is a retired Navy admiral, who suggested this week that the new Congress, which takes office on July 28, should call new elections if a new president has not been proclaimed by that date. The suggestion is illegal and not supported by any law.
If that happened, this retired military officer would at least temporarily assume the role of interim president, as he was the most voted congressman.