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Alberto Fujimori

Alberto Fujimori

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Alberto Fujimori
藤森 謙也
Fujimori landing in Andrews Air Force Base in 1998.
90th President of Peru
In office
28 July 1990 – 22 November 2000
Vice PresidentMáximo San Román (1990–92)
Jaime Yoshiyama Tanaka(1993–95)
Ricardo Márquez (1995–2000)
Francisco Tudela (2000)
Preceded byAlan García
Succeeded byValentín Paniagua
Personal details
Born28 July 1938 (age 73)
Lima, Peru
CitizenshipPeruvian, Japanese
Political partyPeru Sí Cumple
Japan People's New Party
Other political
Cambio 90 (1990–1999)
Peru 2000 (2000)
Alliance for the Future (2006)
Spouse(s)Susana Higuchi (divorced)
Satomi Kataoka[1]
Alma materUniversidad Nacional Agraria La Molina
University of Strasbourg
University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee
ReligionRoman Catholicism

Alberto Fujimori Fujimori[2] 藤森 謙也 (Fujimori Ken'ya?); pronounced [alˈbeɾto fuxiˈmoɾi]) (born 28 July 1938) served as President of Peru from 28 July 1990 to 17 November 2000. A controversial figure, Fujimori has been credited with the creation of Fujimorism, uprootingterrorism (Sendero Luminoso) in Peru and restoring itsmacroeconomic stability,[3][4][5][6] though his methods have drawn charges of authoritarianism and human rights violations.[7][8] Even amidst his 2008 prosecution forcrimes against humanity relating to his presidency, two-thirds of Peruvians polled voiced approval for his leadership in that period.[9]

A Peruvian of Japanese descent,[10] Fujimori fled to Japan in 2000 amidst a corruption scandal, where he attempted to resign his presidency. His resignation was rejected by the Congress of the Republic, which preferred to remove him from office by the process of impeachment. Wanted in Peru on charges of corruption and human rights abuses, Fujimori maintained a self-imposed exile until his arrest during a visit to Chile in November 2005.[11] He was finally extradited to face criminal charges in Peru in September 2007.[12]

In December 2007, Fujimori was convicted of ordering an illegal search and seizure, and was sentenced to six years in prison.[13][14][15] The Supreme Court upheld the decision upon his appeal.[16]

In April 2009, Fujimori was convicted of human rights violations and sentenced to 25 years in prison for his role in killings and kidnappings by the Grupo Colina death squad during his government's battle against leftist guerrillas in the 1990s. The verdict delivered by a three-judge panel marked the first time that an elected head of state has been extradited back to his home country, tried, and convicted of human rights violations. Fujimori was specifically found guilty of murder, bodily harm, and two cases of kidnapping.[17][18][19][20][21]

In July 2009 Fujimori was sentenced to 7½ years in prison for embezzlement, after he admitted to giving $15 million out of the Peruvian treasury to the formerintelligence service chief, Vladimiro Montesinos.[22] Two months later in a fourth trial, he pled guilty to bribery and was given an additional six-year term.[23]

Under Peruvian law all the sentences must run concurrently, with a maximum length of imprisonment of 25 years.




According to government records, Fujimori was born on 28 July 1938, in Miraflores, a district ofLima.[24] His parents, Naoichi Fujimori (1897–1971) and Mutsue Inomoto de Fujimori (1913–2009), were natives of Kumamoto, Japan who emigrated to Peru in 1934.[25][26] He holds dual Peruvian and Japanese citizenship, his parents having secured the latter through the Japanese Consulate.

In July 1997, the news magazine Caretas charged that Fujimori had actually been born in Japan.[27]Because Peru's constitution requires the president to have been born in Peru, this would have made Fujimori ineligible to be president.[25] The magazine, which had been sued for libel by Vladimiro Montesinos seven years earlier,[28] reported that Fujimori's birth and baptismal certificates might have been altered.[27] Caretas also alleged that Fujimori's mother declared having two children when she entered Peru;[27] Fujimori is the second of four children.[29] Caretas' contentions were hotly contested in the Peruvian media; the magazine , for instance, described the allegations as "pathetic" and "a dark page for [Peruvian] journalism".[30] Latin American scholars Cynthia McClintock and Fabián Vallas note that the issue appeared to have died down among Peruvians after the Japanese government announced in 2000 that "Fujimori's parents had registered his birth in the Japanese consulate in Lima".[25]

[edit]Early years

Fujimori obtained his early education at the Colegio Nuestra Señora de la Merced[31] and La Rectora.[32] Fujimori's parents were Buddhists, but he was baptised and raised as a Roman Catholic. While he spoke mainly Japanese at home, Fujimori also learned to become a proficient Spanish speaker during his years at school.[33] In 1956, Fujimori graduated high school from La gran unidad escolar Alfonso Ugarte in Lima[34] He went on to undergraduate studies at the Universidad Nacional Agraria La Molina in 1957, graduating in 1961 first in his class as an agricultural engineer.

There he lectured on mathematics the following year. In 1964 he went on to study physics at theUniversity of Strasbourg in France. On a Ford scholarship, Fujimori also attended the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee[35] in the United States, where he obtained his master's degree in mathematics in 1969. In 1974, he married Susana Higuchi, also a Peruvian of Japanese descent. They had four children, including a daughter, Keiko, who followed her father into politics.

In recognition of his academic achievements, the sciences faculty of the Universidad Nacional Agraria offered Fujimori the deanship and in 1984 appointed him to the rectorship of the university, which he held until 1989. In 1987, Fujimori also became president of the National Commission of Peruvian University Rectors (Asamblea Nacional de Rectores), a position which he has held twice. He also hosted a TV show called "Concertando" from 1987 to 1989, on Peru's state-owned network, Channel 7.

A dark horse candidate, Fujimori won the 1990 presidential election under the banner of the new partyCambio 90 ("cambio" meaning "change"), beating world-renowned writer Mario Vargas Llosa in a surprising upset. He capitalized on profound disenchantment with previous president Alan García and his American Popular Revolutionary Alliance party (APRA). He exploited popular distrust of Vargas Llosa's identification with the existing Peruvian political establishment, and uncertainty about Vargas Llosa's plans for neoliberal economic reforms. Fujimori won much support from the poor, who had been frightened by Vargas Llosa's austerity proposals.

During the campaign, Fujimori was nicknamed El Chino, which roughly translates to "Chinaman"; it is common for people of any East Asian descent to be called chino in Peru, as elsewhere in Latin America, both derogatively and affectionately. Although he is of Japanese heritage, Fujimori has suggested that he was always gladdened by the term, which he perceived as a term of affection.[36]With his election victory, he became the first person of East Asian descent to become head of government of a Latin American nation, and just the third of East Asian descent to govern a South American state, after Arthur Chung of Guyana and Henk Chin A Sen of Suriname (each of whom had served as head of state, rather than head of government).


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