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Peru's former President Alberto Fujimori waves to supporters
Image: Getty Images/AFP/L. Gonzales

Peru's ex-president Fujimori leaves hospital as free man

January 5, 2018

Peru's former president Alberto Fujimori has been freed after leaving hospital, following a medical pardon. He had been serving a 25-year sentence for corruption and human rights crimes during his time as president.


Former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori left hospital as a free man late Thursday evening, following a controversial pardon by President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski.

Fujimori, 79, held up a hand to wave to supporters as aides rolled him out the main entrance of Lima's Centenario Clinic in a wheelchair, before he driven away in a convoy of vehicles accompanied by his lawmaker son Kenji.

"To the joy of many Peruvians, today Alberto Fujimori is free," his doctor, and former health minister, Alejandro Aguinaga, said on television channel Canal N, adding that Fujimori was still recovering from heart trouble.

Kuczynski granted the former authoritarian leader a medical pardon in late December for "humanitarian reasons."

Fujimori had been serving a 25-year sentence for graft and human rights crimes during his time as president.

The pardon of Fujimori sparked anti-government protests and political resignations that have shaken Kuczynski's government. Kuczynski said last week he would unveil a new cabinet soon, but has announced no details yet.

Fujimori's rightwing populist government was in power from 1990-2000. Some Peruvians laud Fujimori for the stabilization of Peru's economy following a crisis, and a violent campaign against the Maoist Shining Path guerrilla movement.

But others criticize him for corruption and human rights violations. Fujimori's government led a violent crackdown on dissent in 1993, and burned the bodies of its victims. Under a population control program, 300,000 low-income women – many of them indigenous – were forcibly sterilized.

law/rt (AFP, Reuters)

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