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Speeches in press conferences


1. This is an effort of tolerance and of valuing language and dialogue as a way to overcome our past evils. In the circumstances the country is living through now, it is indispensable to say also that recovering honest dialogue and rejecting the use of force are essential to face the immediate present. We wish to voice out our opinion on this because what is happening has a close relationship with central aspects of the history analyzed and of the mandate we have received.

2. Approximately half of the national territory is under the state of emergency today. This is an exception regime mandated by the constitutional government of President Toledo to face the waves of social protest which, to a great extent has had recourse to vandalism and aggression of citizens not related to the facts. Before this, I must say that the Truth and Reconciliation Commission sees what is happening now with a great concern.

3. During our investigations we have become convinced that long exception regimes with suspended citizens’ guarantees, broad prerogatives for the military power, and constant subordination of civil power were critical factors of the tragedy we experienced.

4. We affirm that the country must learn that social peace should not be kept by force because force, as we know, has usually generated numerous and condemnable abuses against the population and, generally, has affected mostly the low income population.

5. The country needs not fall again in the use and abuse of exception regimes. On the contrary, it must purge national legislation inherited from past decades that enshrines a civil-military order which, although under reform, bears aspects that are incompatible with our idea of democracy and Rule of Law.

6. Peru must also learn that it is impossible to make progress towards that democracy without appropriate attention to the still unfulfilled expectations of very broad sectors of the population- teachers, peasants, workers, and unemployed. There is a social debt to honor urgently as a requirement for the peace we all yearn for. Paying that debt must certainly go hand in hand with the respect of the whole population for the laws of the State and the rights of citizens. However, democratic institutions have to forge in the difficult dialogue among all Peruvians with no exclusions.

7. Therefore, we wish to require the president of the Republic, Dr. Alejandro Toledo Manrique to immediately call off the provisions charging the Armed Forces with internal order and to call off the state of emergency in the briefest term possible. We know that president Toledo’s democratic vocation will make him receptive to this request, which has no other aim than contributing to the reinforcement of a democracy built with effort and the restoration of peace in the country after the painful lessons learned from our recent past, experiences that the Commission shall expose before all Peruvians in its final report.