Peru sends mixed signals on drug policy

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Peru sends mixed signals on drug policy

19 June 2014

By Coletta Youngers, WOLA, IDPC

In a surprise move in late May, Peruvian President Ollanta Humala fired Peru’s top drug official, Carmen Macias, replacing her with a longtime confidant, former Defense Minister Luis Alberto Otarola. Humala also backed away from a controversial coca eradication campaign about to get under way in the Apurimac-Ene-Mantaro River Valley (VRAEM) that faced strong local opposition.

The government is sending mixed messages, however, regarding how these actions will impact Peru’s broader drug control strategy and the role that Peru’s government will play in regional drug policy debates, where it has strongly resisted any move toward drug policy reform.

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