New political turmoil hits Peru with dicey impeachment vote

New political turmoil hits Peru with dicey impeachment vote

LIMA, Peru (AP) – Peruvian President Martín Vizcarra is facing the threat of impeachment after the country’s opposition-controlled Congress agreed Friday to vote on his possible ouster just a day after the release of several secretly recorded audios.

The latest political storm to hit the South American country was spurred by lawmakers who accuse the president of obstructing an investigation into nearly $50,000 in government contracts given to singer Richard Cisneros, who performs as “Richard Swing.”

But the speed with which lawmakers are acting has drawn alarm, as the president has not been charged and an investigation has only just begun.

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“Peru’s democracy is unfortunately sinking further and further into crisis,” said Steve Levitsky, a Harvard University political scientist. “The removal of the president is a really big deal, and it requires serious deliberation, public debate and investigation. There has been none.”

The political turmoil strikes as Peru is reeling from the coronavirus pandemic. The nation has the world’s

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