Thousands protest in Peru as president feels heat

Published July 28, 2013
Protesters march during a demonstration against the government in Lima July 27, 2013.  Hundreds of students and workers marched towards Congress in Lima on Saturday to protest reforms that would impose tougher standards on universities and bureaucrats.— Photo by Reuters
Protesters march during a demonstration against the government in Lima July 27, 2013. Hundreds of students and workers marched towards Congress in Lima on Saturday to protest reforms that would impose tougher standards on universities and bureaucrats.— Photo by Reuters

LIMA: Peruvian police used tear gas and water cannon Saturday to drive back thousands of demonstrators protesting against what they said were President Ollanta Humala's unkept promises on schools and jobs.

On the eve of Independence Day celebrations, some 6,000 marchers heeded a call by the country's largest union confederation, CGTP, to turn out in force.

Those taking to the streets included university students, non-governmental activists and human rights groups.

In addition to a national doctors' and nurses strike, Humala now faces unions calling for a rethinking of a new law they fear will force the government to lay off huge numbers of state workers.

Students, meanwhile, are upset about a bill in the legislature that they fear will undercut the autonomy of universities.

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