| 26 May 2024, Sunday |

Peru’s Castillo picks career diplomat as new Foreign Minister

Oscar Maurtua, a career diplomat, was sworn in as Peru’s new Foreign Minister on Friday, replacing a leftist professor who resigned after making contentious statements before accepting the post.

Maurtua previously served as foreign minister under centrist President Alejandro Toledo in the early 2000s, and will now work for Pedro Castillo, a former elementary school teacher, in the far-left administration.

His appointment is crucial to Castillo’s political future, as his Cabinet will face a confirmation vote from the opposition-led Congress before the end of the month. He was sworn in during a ceremony at the government headquarters that was broadcast on state television, without further government comment.

Maurtua replaces Hector Bejar, who resigned under intense pressure because of comments he made before taking the minister job that resurfaced in recent days. He had said last year that the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency was partly responsible for the creation of Maoist rebel group Shining Path.

Maurtua has also served as Peruvian ambassador to several countries, including Canada and Thailand.

  • Reuters