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Peruvian authorities refused to release former President Alberto Fujimori from prison following a request from the regional Inter-American Court of Human Rights, which said it will review the divisive leader’s case, the Associated Press reported.
The decision comes nearly two weeks after Peru’s Constitutional Court ordered his release from prison where he is serving a 25-year sentence for murder and human rights violations committed during his rule between 1990 and 2000.
The regional court ordered Peru to hold Fujimori to “guarantee the right of access to justice for the victims.”
Last month, the Constitutional Court restored a humanitarian pardon granted to the former leader on Christmas Eve in 2017 by then-President Pablo Kuczynski. The Supreme Court had previously overturned that pardon and ordered his return to prison in 2018 to serve out the remainder of his sentence.
Many international groups, including the United Nations, criticized his release, saying that it would shorten Fujimori’s sentence by a decade.
Fujimori remains a divisive figure in the South American country: He is remembered for defeating the Maoist Shining Path guerilla movement and rebuilding the economy through mass privatization of state industries. However, he has been accused of a number of human rights abuses during his leadership.
In 2000, he fled to Japan and later resigned after leaked videotapes showed his spy chief bribing lawmakers. But in 2006, he flew to neighboring Chile in an attempt to run for the presidency again. He was later arrested and then extradited to Peru, where he was put on trial.
Fujimori was also convicted in three corruption cases and owes nearly $14 million in civil damages.