Name? Pedro Castillo
Westphalian identity? Peruvian
Why is he in the news? After days of delay following Castillo’s inauguration, Peru’s new president has made his cabinet picks. Castillo’s cabinet comes down to centre-left to far-left ministers, some who make up the more extreme faction of his party, Perú Libre. To put this into perspective, think self-proclaimed Marxist-Leninist, then sprinkle the word extreme in there.
Why do we care? Castillo’s picks go against a promised consensus government, notably the elected Prime Minister, Guido Bellido, who is currently under criminal investigation for defending militants from the Shining Path. A majority Perú Libre cabinet means increased economic isolation from the rest of the world and focuses on keeping foreign interests out of Peru while protecting local industries.
Why should you care? Because Castillo may be creating the kind of political turmoil that is not exactly conducive to economic stability by putting executive and legislative powers at odds. Until recently, Peru was a Latin American success story; a Prime Minister and cabinet members who want to turn Peru into a Bolivarian ‘success’ story and call countries like Venezuela beacons of democracy should raise some red flags about the kind of intentions they have for the country. You should care 6/10.
Who else cares? Iván Duque and the South American left. The Colombian president expressed high expectations for the growing relationship between the two countries, particularly in regards to their economic integration. According to Duque, the two share similar visions for a better future for each of their countries, and emphasized the importance of their relationship through the Pacific Alliance.
Any further comments? Fear not, Castillo’s picks still need to be approved by Congress. Only 37 members form part of Perú Libre, which means that there is still an opportunity to advocate for a more pluralist government. Some members of congress already vowed not to give him the vote of confidence, while others remain hesitant about his appointment.