The President of Peru, Pedro Pablo Kuczynski has said he will meet Friday afternoon with leaders of the ongoing teacher’s strike to discuss demands of the teachers beyond the salary improvement won last week.
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The teachers had decided to continue to strike this week in spite of the government having announced the return of classes for this Monday, demanding more wage increases and the repeal of an education reform law.
Kuczynski agreed to the talks after the threat of dismissals, sanctions and legal action against teachers refusing to return failed, and protests continued.
The President has placed conditions on the talks however, saying that he will “not receive any citizen who has carried out acts of violence."
“There is a teacher’s strike… but I want to say to the public that I am willing to dialogue with the leaders, with only one condition: that they renounce any attempt at violence because teachers cannot be violent,” the President said.
Protesting teachers have been met with strong force from police forces.
The Prime Minister Fernando Zavalo said that the legal action currently being taken against those who have allegedly engaged in acts of violence during the protests would continue to be carried out.
The President said the meeting will take place in the Government Palace, with the Minister of Education, Marilu Martens, and Fernando Zavala. He didn’t indicate with which leaders he would be meeting. This is still unclear because the continued strike in the country’s interior is not led by the national teacher’s union, the Unified Syndicate of Education Workers (Sutep), but rather by several different factions of teachers unions.The
Peru’s health sector is also witnessing a massive indefinite strike of doctors, which has continued for over 40 days. Although this has slowed down health access for thousands of patients, emergency services are still operating.