Former Peruvian President arrives in Chile

Fugitive former Peruvian President Alberto Fujimori arrived in Chile Sunday, officials reported.

The officials, who asked not to be identified, said the arrival of the 67-year-old former ruler came as a total surprise and the reasons for his coming here were not immediately known.

Local media reported that Fujimori arrived in private plane from Mexico by mid afternoon Sunday with four other people who were not identified. The reports said he went from the airport to a hotel.

Fujimori resigned the presidency in a fax sent from Japan, where he fled in November 2000 as his decade-long regime faced a series of corruption scandals.

Peruvian authorities have since sought Fujimori's extradition from Japan, but Japanese authorities say they cannot extradite him because he has been granted Japanese nationality. An international arrest order of Fujimori has been issued by Interpol. Police here would refused to comment.

Fujimori, who faces 21 charges ranging from abuse of power to allowing a paramilitary death squad, has repeatedly vowed to return to Peru and again run for president in elections set for April next year.

The surprise arrival of the former Peruvian leader comes at a time when tension has grown between Chile and Peru over a law passed by the Peruvian Congress redefining the country's ocean territory.

The legislation, passed last Thursday and immediately signed into law by President Alejandro Toledo, could lead Peru to claim border Pacific waters now under Chilean control. The area is rich in fishing resources.

Chile has warned it recognizes no "international juridical effects" to the Peruvian law, AP reports.

A. A.

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Author`s name: Editorial Team