Peru is celebrating today to commemorate its 192nd-year of independence from Spain. The Spanish arrived in the 1500’s and stayed for over 350 years as they decimated the Inca Empire, introduced smallpox and raided the country’s gold reserves.
The fight for independence started in 1818 with Jose de San Martin seizing control of certain parts of Lima and declaring partial independent in 1821. Then Simon Bolivar came to Peru to assist San Martin and liberated the entire country from Spanish rule.
Peru is home to nearly 30 million people representing the 42nd largest economy in the world and they have all been celebrating for days with festivals, parties and the Te Deum, a traditional religious ceremony.
Peru and its people received congratulations from President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry that read as follows:
On behalf of President Obama and the people of the United States, I congratulate the people of Peru as you celebrate your 192nd Independence Day on July 28.
Both our nations take pride in the diversity that has made our countries great. Our shared values and common interest in building vibrant, inclusive societies will continue to unite us in the future.
On this special day, we celebrate Peru’s rich culture and its commitment to representative democracy, economic development, and environmental sustainability.
As you rejoice in the festivities of your Independence Day and pay tribute to the heroes of Peru’s past, I offer my warmest wishes for a happy and prosperous future.