Parties set for tussle to succeed Fujimori

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The Independent US

Thousands of people were expected last night at a democracy rally in Lima called by the main opposition leader, Alejandro Toledo, in response to Alberto Fujimori's announcement that he would quit after a decade as Peru's president.

Thousands of people were expected last night at a democracy rally in Lima called by the main opposition leader, Alejandro Toledo, in response to Alberto Fujimori's announcement that he would quit after a decade as Peru's president.

Mr Toledo, an economist who boycotted elections in spring on the basis that a Fujimori victory would be rigged, cut short a trip to the United States for a triumphant homecoming on Sunday. No date has been set for new elections. Before returning home Mr Toledo said: "I want to be president. I will be president. I am prepared to govern."

Mr Fujimori's resignation was apparently prompted by the release of a videotape of Vladimiro Montesinos, his security chief, buying the support of an opposition politician. Mr Montesinos was reported to have been arrested last night. The Independent Moralising Force party, which leaked the video, is making inroads into Mr Toledo's support. One of the most prominent members is Susana Higuchi, the President's former wife, who was one of the first to call him a dictator.

How soon Mr Fujimori will make good his promise to stand down or "deactivate" his security agency is unclear.

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