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José Luis Bustamante y Rivero
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Portratit of José Luis Bustamante y Rivero

Full Title: President of Peru
Term in Office: July 28, 1945October 29, 1948
Predecessor: Manuel Prado y Ugarteche
Successor: Manuel A. Odría
Date of Birth: 15 January, 1894
Date of Death: 11 January, 1989
Political party: Frente Democrático Nacional
Profession: Lawyer

José Luis Bustamante y Rivero (15 January, 1894 - 11 January, 1989) was President of Peru from 1945 to 1948.

Bustamante y Rivero was born in Arequipa and received his early education there. He received his Law Degree from the Universidad Nacional de San Agustín de Arequipa and his Ph.D. from the Universidad Nacional San Antonio Abad in Cuzco. After a distinguished career as a teacher and legal scholar, Bustamante y Rivero became interested in politics.

Bustamante y Rivero reached political maturity as the author of the manifesto which launched the 1930 revolution and ousted President Augusto B. Leguía. He began his new career in 1934 by serving as a diplomat, representing Peru as Peruvian Minister to Uruguay, Bolivia and other various countries in the Americas.

He ran for President in 1945 as a candidate for the Frente Democrático Nacional, a moderate, left-of-center party that aligned itself with Víctor Raúl Haya de la Torre's APRA and the Peruvian Communist Party. Opposing him was the Legión Patriótica Independiente candidate, Gen. Eloy G. Ureta. Bustamante y Rivero comfortably won the relatively honest election.

During his first seven days as President, Bustamante y Rivero restored press freedom and full civil rights and freed all political prisoners. He also purged the Military, cancelled gambling licenses and took control of the expenditures of the national treasury.

As president, Bustamante y Rivero hoped to create a more democratic government by limiting the power of the military and the oligarchy. Conflict soon arose, however, between the president and Haya de la Torre. Without the support of the APRA party Bustamante y Rivero found his presidency severely limited.

The murder of the ultraconservative Editor Francisco Grana Garland, a prominent member of the Peruvian Elite (and bitter editorial enemy of Apra Party), sparked a political crisis that was blamed inmediately to the APRA's influence on the Government. President Bustamante y Rivero was forced to name a military Cabinet to tide over the crisis.

In October 1948, rebel sailors and officers seized five warships, locked up or shot their commanders, sent landing parties ashore under cover of a ragged bombardment. Shore-based sailors took over the Naval Academy, the Naval Armory, and the Real Felipe Fortress.

After loyal troops to the government crushed the revolt, President Bustamante y Rivero suspended all civil rights. The insurrection, he declared, had been the work of the APRA Party. Under the President's orders, government troops occupied the APRA headquarters, seized the plant of its newspaper, La Tribuna, and arrested several prominent Apristas. But for the Military Cabinet, those moves were not enough.

Postwar economic problems and strife caused by strong labor unions led to a military coup on October 29, 1948, which led Gen. Manuel A. Odria to become the new President.

Bustamante y Rivero was exiled to Argentina. He finally returned to Peru in 1955. In 1960 he was elected a member of the International Court of Justice in The Hague and served as its President from 1967 to 1969.

Preceded by:
Manuel Prado Ugarteche
President of Peru
July 1945 – October 1948
Succeeded by:
Manuel Odría
Preceded by:
President of the International Court of Justice
1967 – 1969
Succeeded by:

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