RIO DE JANEIRO – Peru’s National Assembly on Thursday urged former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori to answer in person or through his lawyer to accusations he was directly involved in a mass killing carried out by a Peruvian military squad in the early 1990s, according to reports from Peru.
The request for testimony is an opportunity for the disgraced former president, now living in Japan, to defend himself, the reports says. The assembly is scheduled to hold a special session on Aug. 27 to decide whether to charge Fujimori with crimes that include murder and forced disappearance in association with the killings.
Earlier this month, Peruvian Foreign Minister Diego Garcia Sayan said Fujimori played a major role in the creation of an army death squad that killed 25 people suspected of cooperating with a leftist guerrilla group in 1991 and 1992.
The assembly, dominated by anti-Fujimori factions, is expected to adopt a resolution to formally charge Fujimori. This will spur prosecutors to take legal action, according to the reports.
Congressional supporters of the deposed president have denounced the actions as a political trial.
Fujimori, who has so far denied any wrongdoing, already faces formal charges of dereliction of duty, a constitutional violation.
The Peruvian Supreme Court earlier this month issued an international arrest warrant for him.
Fujimori has been in Japan since November, when he resigned from his position while in Tokyo after accusations surfaced of government corruption. involving his close aide, Vladimiro Montesinos. Montesinos was captured in Venezuela and arrested in June on suspicion of embezzling public funds.
Fujimori’s resignation was rejected by Peru’s Congress, which instead dismissed him on the grounds he was “morally unfit” to govern.
Japan, which confirmed Fujimori’s right to citizenship in December, has made it clear that Tokyo will not extradite him to Peru. The two countries do not have an extradition treaty.
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