[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Thursday, 22 December 2005, 05:50 GMT
Peru vows to smash 'drug rebels'
Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo
President Toledo wants to reduce the power of drug traffickers
Peru's president has vowed to crack down on rebels who ambushed and killed eight soldiers in a remote region.

Alejandro Toledo declared a two-month state of emergency in six central Peruvian provinces thought to be under the sway of drug traffickers.

The emergency measures allow troops to deploy in the area, raid homes and break up public meetings.

Remnants of Peru's leftist Shining Path guerrillas were blamed for Tuesday's attack in Huanuco province.

Announcing the emergency measures at a police barracks in Peru's capital, Lima, Mr Toledo blamed the violence on the escalating drugs trade in the coca-producing regions.

"They will pay," Mr Toledo said of the rebel groups.

"My government is prepared to provide everything that our police and our armed forces need professionally.

"The eight officers fell at the cowardly hands of terrorists who today are in the service of drug trafficking."

Last rebels

The ambush was the latest incident in an upsurge of violence linked to recent efforts to destroy coca crops.

Renegade Shining Path units are thought to be behind a series of attacks against security forces, despite the group's general defeat in the 1990s.

The Shining Path began a guerrilla campaign to topple the Peruvian state in the 1980s. The group is blamed for about half the 69,000 deaths occurred during two decades of civil conflict.

The group's leader, Abimael Guzman, was arrested in 1992 in a high-profile operation.

He is currently being retried for his role in the insurgency after a secret military conviction was quashed.

Peru guerrillas kill eight police
21 Dec 05 |  Americas
New start for Shining Path trial
27 Sep 05 |  Americas
Shining Path retrial halted again
12 Nov 04 |  Americas
Shining Path retrial suspended
05 Nov 04 |  Americas
Profile: Peru's Shining Path
05 Nov 04 |  Americas
Country profile: Peru
29 Oct 04 |  Country profiles

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific