Demonstrations in Lima and the Region of Arequipa (March 19, 2014)

The Embassy advises U.S. citizens in Perú of two demonstrations that will take place within the next several days:

On Thursday, March 20, miners in the region of Arequipa plan to block the Pan American Highway (Panamericana Sur) in the Yauca sector, and in Chala, Pedregal, and Ocoña. Travelers headed north by road from Arequipa city, or south from Ica and Nazca, may experience significant delays or disruptions in travel plans – especially if traveling on the Panamericana or along this part of the southern coast.

On Saturday, March 22, participants numbering in the tens of thousands are expected to attend the “March for Life” (Marcha Por La Vida) rally in Lima. Scheduled to begin at 9a.m. at the intersection of Av. Brasil and Av. Javier Prado, the March will proceed towards Campo de Marte. Related demonstrations will take place in other cities around the country.

Travelers should be aware that more spontaneous demonstrations, possibly related to these larger events, could develop with little advance notice. Disruptions to transportation and tour services in the vicinity of these demonstrations are likely. U.S. citizens planning to travel through the region of Arequipa or downtown Lima during these days may wish to change their itinerary. Contact tour organizers or transportation companies prior to travel to discuss any expected delays or disruptions.

Demonstrations in Perú are often peaceful, but can quickly escalate into violent confrontations.  U.S. citizens are advised to avoid large crowds and demonstrations and are strongly encouraged to maintain a high level of vigilance, maintain awareness of local events and their surroundings, and take the appropriate steps to bolster their personal security.  It is illegal in Perú for foreigners to participate in demonstrations.  In the past, some U.S. citizens who have been caught up in political demonstrations in Peru have been detained and expelled from the country.

You can stay in touch and get Embassy updates by checking the Embassy Lima website.  Up-to-date information on security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or, for callers outside the United States and Canada, by calling the regular toll line at 1-202-501-4444.  These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays).

U.S. citizens are encouraged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).  U.S. citizens without internet access may enroll directly at the nearest U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate.  By enrolling, U.S. citizens make it easier for the embassy/consulates to contact them in case of emergency.  Stay up to date by bookmarking our Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the current Travel Warnings and Travel Alerts as well as the Worldwide Caution.  Follow us onTwitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook, and download our free Smart Traveler iPhone App to have travel information at your fingertips.

For any emergencies involving U.S. citizens, please contact the American Citizens Services (ACS) Unit of the U.S. Embassy’s Consular Section, located in Monterrico, a suburb of Lima, at Avenida La Encalada, Block Seventeen; telephone 51-1-618-2000 during business hours (8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.) or for after-hours emergencies; website here. The Consular Section is open for emergency services, including registration, from 8:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. weekdays, excluding U.S. and Peruvian holidays.  Non-emergency services are provided by appointment only.

For information on “What the Department of State Can and Can’t Do in a Crisis,” please visit the Bureau of Consular Affairs’ Emergencies and Crisis link at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/emergencies/crisis-support.html