Latin America & Caribbean

Peru clashes over President Humala's civil service plan

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Media captionPolice clashed with demonstrators who attempted to approach the presidential palace

Police in Peru have fired tear gas at students and civil servants protesting in the streets of the capital, Lima, against new public sector legislation.

Riot police clashed with demonstrators who attempted to approach the presidential palace.

President Ollanta Humala has signed into law a bill introducing annual performance assessments for civil servants and university lecturers.

Critics say the reforms will cost jobs and compromise university autonomy.

President Humala says the new rules will improve standards at universities and in the civil service.

The legislation was approved on Tuesday in Congress by 59 votes to 45, with three abstentions, after months of debate.

Further legislation on the Peruvian civil service is still to be voted by the Congress.

Mr Humala was elected in 2011 with a left-wing agenda, but protesters say he has betrayed the electorate.

"This government has refused to negotiate with us. It has talked to politicians, businessmen, but it has treated the workers as second class citizens," said the Peruvian Workers Confederation (CTP) in a statement.

Protests were held in several other Peruvian cities.

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