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Peru Guerrillas Plotting to Kidnap Americans, La Republica Says

The U.S. State Department’s decision to bar travel by officials to Cuzco in Peru’s southern Andes was prompted by intelligence reports that Shining Path guerrillas plan to abduct Americans in the area, La Republica reported.

Members of the armed group discussed kidnapping foreigners in Cuzco once the rainy season ends, the Lima-based newspaper reported, citing military officials it didn’t name.

The guerrillas, who kidnapped a group of about 40 Peruvians including employees of Skanska AB in April, use abductions to gain international attention and put pressure on the government, which last year stepped up efforts to disband the group, La Republica said.

A criminal organization may be planning to kidnap U.S. citizens visiting Cuzco, including the Machu Picchu Inca sanctuary, Peru’s top tourist destination, the U.S. embassy said in a Feb. 13 statement.

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