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Garcia Declares 95 Police Arrested for Summary Executions at Lurigancho Prison Peru 1986

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Document Number: 1986LlMA07400

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DIA FOR IR BRANCH
E.O. 12356: DECL: OADR
TAGS: PHUM, PTER, PGOV, PINS, PREL, PE
SUBJECT: GARCIA DECLARES 95 POLICE ARRESTED FOR
SUMMARY EXECUTIONS AT LURIGANCHO PRISON
1.
(U) PRESIDENT GARCIA ADDRESSED THE NATION JUNE 24
TO REPORT THAT THE INITIAL RESULTS OF THE INVESTIGATION
OF LAST WEEK'S PRISON RIOTS REVEALED THAT POLICE
(GUARDIA REPUBLICANA) HAD SUMMARILY EXECUTED AN
ESTIMATED 30 TO 40 PRISONERS WHO HAD SURRENDERED
AT LURIGANCHO PRISON. HE DECLARED THAT 15 POLICE
OFFICERS AND 80 POLICEMEN INVOLVED IN THE KILLINGS
WERE IN CUSTODY AND WOULD BE TRIED.
II WITHOUT
CONFIDENTIAL
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AUTHORITY, II HE SAID, M THERE IS NO DEMOCRACY. M
GARCIA EMPHASIZED THAT AS PRESIDENT HE COULD NOT
Current Class :_'OGW£tI!Z~

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UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF STATE
REVIEW AUTHORITY: SAM A. MOSKOWITZ
DATE/CASE In: 9 AUG 1999 199902275

UNCLASSIFIED

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Current C~ass: CONFIDENTIAL
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PERMIT "EXCESSES t " "CRIMINAL VENGEANCE" OR liTHE
LAW OF THE JUNGLE." HE DECLARED "WHAT OCCURRED
AFTER THE SURRENDER IN LURIGANCHO IS NOTHING MORE
THAN A CRIME t WHICH I WILL NOT COVER UP."
GARCIA SOUGHT TO CONTRAST EVENTS AT LURIGANCHO WITH THE
RETAKING OF EL FRONTON PRISON t WHERE HE POINTED TO THE
FACT THAT 35 PRISONERS WHO SURRENDERED HAD HAD ,THEIR
LIVES RESPECTED. AT SAME TIMEt HE REITERATED THAT GIVEN
THE NATURE OF THE TERRORIST PRISONERS AND THE CAREFUL
PREPARATION FOR THE RIOTS t "SEVERITY" IN SUPPORT
OF THE LAW WAS NEEDED, AND--THAT· HE WOULD NOT HESITATE
TO USE IT AGAIN UNDER THE SAME CIRCUMSTANCES. GARCIA
ALSO UNDERSCORED THAT THE ARMED FORCES JOINT COMMAND
HAD CARRIED OUT ITS ACTIONS'-ONDER ORDERS FROM THE
GOVERNMENT t THAT THE ARMED FORCES HAD OBEYED LOYALLY t
AND THAT THE GOP SUPPORTED THEIR ACTIONS.
2.
(U) IN ADDITION t THE PERUVIAN EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE
IS ASSUMING A HIGHER PROFILE ON THE PRISON EVENTS. IN
A JUNE 24 LETTER·TO THE ARMED FORCES JOINT COMMAND,
ASSISTANT LIMA BISHOP AUGUSTO BEUZEVILLE REQUESTED
PERMISSION FOR A CATHOLIC CHURCH COMMISSION TO ENTER
THE THREE PRISONS (STILL UNDER MILITARY CONTROL) ,IN
ORDER TO GIVE SPIRTUAL AND MATERIAL ASSISTANCE TO
SURVIVORS AND THE WOUNDED. ANOTHER ARCHBISHOP
COMPLAINED PUBLICLY THAT PRISON CHAPLAINS
HAD BEEN DENIED ACCESS TO PRISONS. THE
EPISCOPAL CONFERENCE ALSO ISSUED A COMMUNIQUE JUNE 24
IN WHICH IT REITERATED ITS CONDEMNATION OF VIOLENCE,
CALLED FOR AN "OBJECTIVE INVESTIGATION" OF THE
UPRISING t AND CALLED UPON SECURITY FORCES TO RESPOND
CONFIDENTIAL
CONFIDENTIAL
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TO TERRORISM WITHIN THE FRAMEWORK OF THE LAW AND
RESPECT FOR HUMAN RIGHTS.
3.
(C) COMMENT: GARCIA'S SPEECH RECALLS, ON THE SURFACE, HIS RAPID REACTION IN SEPTEMBER 1985
TO THE ACCOMARCA AND PUCAYACU MASSACRES, IN WHICH THREE
GENERALS WERE REMOVED FROM THEIR POSITIONS. THIS
TIME WE BELIEVE THINGS WILL NOT BE SO EASY t AND IT MAY
BE DIFFICULT FOR GARCIA TO CONTROL THE PROCESS HE HAS
SET IN MOTION.
PERSONS ALLEGEDLY GUILTY OF KILLING
PRISONERS CONVENIENTLY ARE MEMBERS OF THE POLICE
(UNDER CONTROL OF INTERIOR MINISTRY) NOT THE ARMED
I

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FORCES.
IT IS NOT CLEAR, HOWEVER, HOW ACCUSED
POLICEMEN COULD HAVE CARRIED OUT KILLINGS IN WHAT WAS
AN ARMY-DIRECTED OPERATION WITHOUT SHARING BLAME WITH
THE ARMY. ALSO, THERE ARE ALLEGATIONS THAT THE NAVY
MAY HAVE CARRIED OUT SIMILAR DEEDS, THAT ALL OF THE DEAD
HAVE BEEN BURIED,
SOME REPORTEDLY IN MASS GRAVES, WILL PROBABLY IMPEDE
AN INVESTIGATION AND ANY TRIAL OF THE POLICE.
NOTHWITHSTANDING STRONG POPULAR SUPPORT FOR USE
OF FORCE EVIDENT IN OPINION POLLS, GARCIA NOW WILL HAVE
HIS HANDS FULL TRYING T{}=A~ID IMAGE THAT HE IS
ENGAGING IN TRANSPARENT SCAPEGOATING OF POLICE TO
AVOID CONFRONTATION WITH MILITARY AND TO ATTEMPT TO
SALVAGE HIS OWN POSITION:---JORDAN
CONFIDENTIAL
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