LIMA, Peru (AP) — In autopsy after autopsy, Peruvian anti-government protesters share the same cause of death: “firearm projectile.”
Crhistian Armando Mamani, a 22-year-old musician, was protesting in a southern city when a bullet entered the left side of his torso and pierced both of his lungs.
The same January day, Roger Rolando Cayo, a 25-year-old protester, died when a shot ripped through his eye and destroyed his brain.
Human rights groups — including the United Nations — have called on the Peruvian government to investigate claims of excessive force used by police and soldiers during recent protests that have left 49 civilians dead, and the autopsies provide some evidence of the alleged use of lethal ammunition.
Thirty of the 32 forensic reports obtained by The Associated Press list gunfire as the cause of death. Some of the reports detail bullet calibers similar to those used by security forces in Peru, which experts believe indicates that police and soldiers violated their own operations manuals prohibiting shooting directly toward protesters unless there’s a serious risk to their life.
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