Iconic Machu Picchu Closed Due To Anti-Government Protests In Peru

(Photo by ERNESTO BENAVIDES/AFP via Getty Images)

Dylan Housman Deputy News Editor
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One of the world’s most popular tourist sites, Machu Picchu, has been closed to visitors due to ongoing anti-government protests in Peru.

The Ministry of Culture announced the site would be closed indefinitely Saturday due to the demonstrations, which have resulted in more than fifty deaths since socialist President Pedro Castillo was ousted from power last month, according to AFP. Numerous tourists have been stranded at the site in recent weeks due to anti-government demonstrations.

It is thought that hundreds of people, mostly from outside the country, are currently trapped at Machu Picchu due to the protests, according to the BBC. Protesters demanding the the resignation of President Dina Boluarte have reportedly disrupted transportation to and from the site. Rail service to Machu Picchu was suspended after protesters damaged tracks along the path.

Left-wing demonstrators have demanded new elections, but Boluarte has remained defiant and refused to step aside. Protesters have clashed with police in various locations throughout the country, including the capital of Lima, where thousands descended in recent days to “take” the city.

Castillo was impeached and removed from office on Dec. 7 after attempting to dissolve the Congress of Peru and form a new provisional government to re-write the constitution. The former union leader and school teacher had been president for nearly a year and a half. (RELATED: Joy Behar Says Trump ‘Would’ve Been In Jail’ In Other Democracies Like Peru And Germany)

At the time, the State Department did not condemn the ousting of Castillo, claiming that Peru’s Congress was executing the democratic process after what appeared to be an attempted coup.