Peru assigns police to protect hikers

Police will begin patrolling Peru's famed Inca Trail following the recent armed robbery of 13 foreign tourists, officials said Wednesday.

Peru's National Institute of Culture, which administers the trail and the Machu Picchu ruins - the country's top tourist destination, said the national police had agreed to assign 12 officers to protect hikers.

She said agents assigned to the trail will be required to speak a foreign language and will focus on guarding campsites.

Last week armed assailants wearing ski masks robbed foreigners camping along the trail, taking money, cameras, jewelry and cell phones. No tourists were reported harmed in the incident.

On Monday police said they had arrested three men who confessed to taking part in the robbery, and had recovered some of the stolen items, AP reports.

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