Government of Peru re-opens forced sterilisations case
The Inter-American Human Rights Commission (IHRC) congratulated the government of Peru this month for re-opening the investigation into forced sterilisation of indigenous and rural women in Peru that took place during the 1990s.
The case of state-sponsored secret sterilization of thousands of women was a key issue during the election campaign this year- especially controversial given that Keiko Fujimori was one of the main candidates: it was under her father Alberto Fujimori’s rule that the forced sterilisations policy took place between 1996 and 2000.
Womankind’s partner DEMUS has been lobbying for over 10 years to seek justice for women victims of this crime, asking the State to investigate the real number of victims and awarding reparations to the survivors and their families.
Therefore we welcome the commitment showed by the newly elected President Ollanta Humala to the IHRC to investigate forced sterilizations as a matter of priority and to re-open the case of Mamérita Mestanza Chávez (MML), a woman who died during a forced sterilisation procedure. DEMUS has been supporting Mamerita’s family since 1999 demanding that the government of Peru identifies and prosecutes those responsible for the forced sterilisations that took place in the 1990s.
It is only this year that the first victim of forced sterilisation in Peru – of an estimated 2,000 – has received US$2,750 compensation for the violation of her rights and her body. Victoria Vigo’s trial lasted for seven years, and although she finally received compensation, the doctor responsible has not been punished yet. This CNN video which includes an interview with lawyers from DEMUS talking about this case.