An official complaint has been filed against ex-President Alberto Fujimori for authorizing thousands of forced sterilizations conducted during his administration from 1990 to 2000.
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After several false starts over the last 14 years, a legal process against the former state head and three of his ministers is being revisited by the Peruvian Prosecutor’s Office in compliance with petitions from the NGO Demus, said Judge Marcelita Gutierrez who formalized the complaint.
Superior Prosecutor Luis Landa says there is a reason to believe that Fujimori allowed the sterilizations without the women’s consent and therefore is accused of premeditating the “presumed commission of an offense against life, body, and health- the context of serious injuries followed by death is a grave violation of human rights.”
Health Ministers Eduardo Yong Motta, Ricardo Luis Costa Bauer, and Alejandro Aguinaga were included in the criminal complaint.
Between 1996 and 2001, 272,028 of Peru’s women and 22,004 men were allegedly forced under the knife during the Fujimori administration, the Ombudsman’s Office reports. However, the true figure is unknown as the majority of surgeries were conducted on impoverished, Quechua-speaking Indigenous people living rural sectors, although, the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR) believes it to be extremely high.
Over 2,160 women have openly denounced the sterilization, saying they were carried out without their consent and without being properly informed as part of the National Program for Reproductive Health and Family Planning which was being introduced at that time.