Ipsos Apoyo Poll: 66 Percent Support Pardon for Ex-President Fujimori

Public support for President Ollanta Humala to grant a humanitarian pardon for ex-President Alberto Fujimori for health reasons is at 66 percent, according to a new national poll published by Ipsos Apoyo on Sunday.

The poll, published in daily El Comercio, found that 30 percent of respondents would not support the pardon.

Although the Justice minister Juan Jimenez has said the issue is not on the President’s agenda, and premier Oscar Valdes this past weekend denied rumours that he had approached Fuerza 2011 for their votes in parliament in exchange for a pardon for Fujimori, the topic is a favorite in the press.

However, the Attorney General, Jose Pelaez, has said such a pardon would be a political decision that would run counter to the laws of the land, which do not permit a pardon to those convicted of human rights crimes. Additionally, the president of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, Peruvian jurist Diego Garcia-Sayan, said this week that such a pardon is not permissible under international jurisprudence. 

Both former presidential candidate Keiko Fujimori and her brother, congressman Kenyi, have this week mentioned the possibility of requesting a pardon due to their father’s poor health.  Garcia-Sayan said that if this were the case, scientific and technical evidence would have to presented.  

Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa, in Arequipa this week, said that if Fujimori were not on his deathbed the pardon would be a legal aberration, “treason to the State and the Judiciary”

Fujimori, 73, is serving a 25-year-sentence for human rights abuses in 1991 and 1992 —for the Colina death squad killings in the Barrios Altos (15 dead in a family courtyard) and La Cantuta (a university professor and nine students murdered), and the kidnapping of businessman Samuel Dyer and journalist Gustavo Gorriti.  Fujimori also pleaded guilty to corruption charges in a subsequent trial, but under Peruvian law sentence time is not accumulated and only the longest sentence is served.

Fujimori has aged considerably since he was imprisoned in 2008. He is said to be suffering from depression and is being treated for a cancerous growth on his tongue.

Fujimori’s daughter, former presidential candidate Keiko Fujimori, said recently that the time was coming to seek a humanitarian pardon for her father.

Another poll, taken by pollster Datum, said that 49 percent of respondents would back a presidential pardon for Fujimori.

Meanwhile, the Ipsos Apoyo poll, taken December 14-16, found that Humala’s approval rating has dropped to 47 percent in December, down from 56 percent in the previous month.

The poll said the naming of Oscar Valdes as cabinet chief had support from 31 percent of respondents.
The poll of 1,200 people had a margin of error of 2.9 percent.

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