Peru's former president Alberto Fujimori was taken from prison to a local hospital late on Saturday by ambulance to undergo treatment for a severe drop in blood pressure and abnormal heart rhythm.
Peru’s former president Alberto Fujimori was taken from prison to a local hospital late on Saturday by ambulance to undergo treatment for a severe drop in blood pressure and abnormal heart rhythm, Fujimori’s doctor told local broadcaster RPP. Alejandro Aguinaga said that cardiologists had recommended removing him from prison and that he risked dying. “It looks complicated,” he said.
Fujimori, 79, is serving a 25-year sentence for graft and human rights crimes. The medical emergency comes three days after Fujimori’s supporters in Congress saved President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski from a motion to remove him from office. The opposition has alleged that Kuczynski averted the bid to oust him by promising a faction of lawmakers that he would free Fujimori in exchange for support. Kuczynski’s government denies the allegations.
Fujimori is a deeply divisive figure in Peru. While many consider him a corrupt dictator, others credit him with ending an economic crisis and bloody leftist insurgency during his 1990-2000 term. Despite his downfall, the rightwing populist movement Fujimori started in the 1990s remains one of the country’s most potent political forces.
His two adult children, Keiko and Kenji, lead rival factions of the party, Popular Force, that controls a majority of seats in Congress. TV images showed Kenji, who has led calls for his father’s freedom, riding in the ambulance carrying Fujimori. Aguinaga said that Fujimori’s health may have been affected by recent infighting among his followers.