Paniagua, Valentín (1936–2006)

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Paniagua, Valentín (1936–2006)

Valentín Paniagua was born in the city of Cuzco, Peru, on September 23, 1936. Early in his political career he joined the Partido Democrata Cristiano (PDC, Christian Democratic Party) and in 1963 was elected deputy of the party. He abandoned the PDC because of its support for the military regime (1968–1980), and joined Acción Popular (AP, Popular Action) in 1974. With Peru's return to civilian rule in 1980, Paniagua was reelected to congress. For most of the next two decades he occupied prominent positions in the legislature. In the wake of the political crisis that led to the removal of President Alberto Fujimori (1990–2000) from office, Paniagua, who was acting president of the congress, became interim president of Peru in November 2000. His main goal during his short presidency was to heal the wounds created by the Fujimori regime. He appointed a broad-based cabinet that included prominent figures of the center-right and center-left, headed by former U.N. secretary general Javier Pérez de Cuellar. Military officials implicated in corruption activities were removed, harsh and controversial antiterrorist legislation was repealed, and state officials and media owners involved in illegal activities associated with Fujimori's controversial 2000 reelection were prosecuted. Paniagua also established the Truth and Reconciliation Commission to investigate abuses perpetrated by guerrilla groups and the Peruvian state in the 1980s and 1990s. After leaving office, Paniagua became AP's secretary general and ran unsuccessfully for the presidency in 2006. He died in Lima on October 16, 2006.

See alsoFujimori, Alberto Keinya .


"Valentín Paniagua." Mundo Andino/The Andean World. Available from

"Valentín Paniagua, 69, Leader of Peru after Fall of Fujimori, Dies." New York Times. October 18, 2006.

                                           Julio Carrion